Ascension's FAITH/JOY ministry provides the opportunity for children in grades K-5 to learn and grow in their faith.  Beginning September 15th, meetings take place once a month on a Friday evening, unless otherwise noted.  Each meeting will explore different topics and consist of a lesson on our faith, a craft, a snack and fun fellowship time.  We also hold several special events and participate in various service projects throughout the year.  Our theme this year will be The Miracles of Christ!

Friendships formed in youth groups have a tendency to last a lifetime.  Don't miss this wonderful opportunity to meet new families and friends and participate in the life of the Church!  For more information, contact



2023-2024 CALENDAR

Note:  Since Faith/JOY meets on Friday evenings, the snacks that we offer will always be fast-worthy for our children. Although your home fasting rules may be different, we encourage our children to begin learning about fast days, even from now.

Contact Pastoral Assistant John Anton at for more information.


  • JR. OLYMPICS  takes place each year at Saints Constantine & Helen Church, Palos Hills, with a full offering of more than 15 competitive events for youth between 7-18 years old.  Team Ascension participated in the 43rd Annual Metropolis of Chicago Jr. Olympics, over Memorial Day weekend, May 25-26. See photos HERE!  Visit our Jr. Olympics webpage.

    CLICK HERE for information on Ascension's Parish Oratorical Festival program.  Express Your Faith! Represent your Parish! Do you like to write? Draw? Chant? Present your point in front of an audience? Don’t miss the opportunity to show your God-given talents as a writer, speaker, artist and vocalist by participating in the St. John Chrysostom Oratorical Festival. If you are in 4th – 12th grade, you are encouraged to participate in this program, which gives you the opportunity to reflect upon and express what your faith means to you.  Ascension's Parish level Oratorical Festival took place on Wednesday, April 10, 2024 in the Anagnos Fellowship Hall following 9th Hour & Pre-Sanctified Liturgy. Submissions were due Wednesday, April 3, 2024. Submissions that advance from the Junior and Senior Divisions (grades 7-12) will present at the Metropolis Oratorical Festival on Bright Saturday, hosted this year by Holy Apostles, Westchester, and were submitted to the Metropolis by April 22, 2024.  More details can be found on the Oratorical webpage HERE, or by contacting Mrs. Despina Petros, Ascension's Oratorical Chairperson at

  • YOUTH LENTEN RETREAT:  The Youth Lenten retreat for K-5th graders took place on Friday, April 26th, 2024.  The theme was "Lazarus, Come Out" with lessons, crafts and lazarakia baking!  See photos HERE.

  • FANARI CAMPS:  FALL, WINTER, LENTEN: Offered by the Metropolis of Chicago these camps take place at the St. Iakovos Retreat Center in Kansasville, WI  for 5th - 12th graders and activities include: Worship, Orthodox Life, Fun activities like Olympics, tubing, and much more! Visit the Fanari website for more information on upcoming events.
  • FANARI SUMMER CAMP Fanari Summer Camp is the Metropolis of Chicago summer camping ministry, available for rising 6th grade through rising 12th grade campers. The Summer camp program has four individual sessions each year, running from mid-June through mid-July. Each year, 150-160 campers join each week of Fanari Summer Camp for growth in their faith & friendships, while having a ton of fun along the way. Some of our most enjoyable activities include: Worship, Orthodox Life & Bible Study, Boating & Swimming, Summer Olympics, dances, field trips, and much more!

    • 2024 SESSIONS  Registration for Summer Camp opened Monday, March 11, 2024 @ noon

      Session 1: Sunday, June 16 – Saturday, June 22, 2024
      Session 2: Sunday, June 23 – Saturday, June 29, 2024
      Session 3: Sunday, June 30 – Saturday, July 6, 2024
      Session 4: Sunday, July 7 – Saturday, July 16, 2024
      Session 5: Sunday, July 14 – Saturday, July 20, 2024

    \CLICK HERE for more information!

    Fanari is looking for wonderful young adults to join the Leadership Team! To learn more and apply, click here

  • Fanari Camp FACEBOOK Page and Instagram 
  • Y2AM Ministry At Home Resources   Check this wonderful resource out!

  • GOA Center for Family Care Comfort Food for Families



  • YOUTH SUNDAY A much-loved tradition in our Parish, Youth Sunday is held every year to honor and celebrate our youth and the vibrancy they bring to our community through our many ministries.  Youth serve in many capacity in church during Youth Sunday, and there's an extended celebratory fellowship hour in their honor.  Witness the exuberance our youth brings to Ascension's Parish life by watching a video presented during our 2024 fellowship celebration HERE.   Photos from Youth Sunday 2024 can be seen HERE.

    Youth Sunday Slide Show

  • Sunday, January 15, 2023: DIVE FOR THE CROSS OUR ANNUAL DIVE FOR THE CROSS EVENT took place on Sunday, January 15th from 4:30 - 6:30 p.m. at the Highland Park Rec Center Pool for K-12th Graders.  See photos HERE.

  • Sunday, February 5, 2023: YOUTH SUNDAY A much-loved tradition in our Parish is our annual Youth Sunday celebration, a day to honor our youth. On Sunday, February 5, 2023 we celebrated and honored the important role our children play int his parish.  Witness the exuberance our youth brings to Ascension's Parish life by watching a video presented this year during our fellowship celebration HERE.
    See photos of this year's Youth SundayHERE.
    View Photos from Youth Sunday 2023

    View our Slide Show highlighting Youth Events throughout 2022