The GOYA ministry educates teenagers grades 9-12 about our Greek Orthodox Christian Faith, and inspires them through discussions, service projects, activities and fellowship to incorporate those teachings into their daily lives.  

GOYA meets weekly at the church on Monday evenings from 7:30 - 9 p.m. from September through May, beginning September 11, 2023.  This year the youth ministry will explore the theme:  “In the World...but Not Of the World.”  We welcome and encourage our high school youth to join us

2023-24 Calendar




  • FANARI:   FALL, WINTER, LENTEN & SUMMER camps are 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!  There are also opportunities to join the Leadership Team and/or be a counselor.  Read more information and see graphic below.
    GOYANs and Jr. GOYANs look forward to this tradition of assembling college care packages for college freshmen each year from our parish. This long-standing tradition at Ascension lets our freshmen know we're thinking of them when they're away from home!  

  • YOUTH SUNDAY A much-loved tradition in our Parish is our annual Youth Sunday celebration, a day to honor our youth.  In 2024, Youth Sunday will take place on February 4.  In 2023, 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 past year during our fellowship celebration HERE.  See photos of the 2023 Youth Sunday HERE.  The 2022 Youth Slide show is available for viewing HERE.  
    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.   In 2023, our Parish Festival took place on March 22nd and then Ascension hosted the Regional Oratorical Festival on Saturday, April 29 for the entire Metropolis of Chicago. 

  • JR. OLYMPICS TAKES PLACE EVERY MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND!  Jr. Olympics takes place at Saints Constantine & Helen Church, Palos Hills, with a full offering of more than 15 competitive events for youth between 7-18 years old.   For more information, visit our Jr. Olympics webpage.
  • 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 opens 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!

  • METROPOLIS OF CHICAGO SEEKING COUNSELORS & LEADERSHIP TEAM MEMBERS:  Fanari Leadership Team and Lighthouse Counselor Applications are open!  To learn more, stay in touch with the Metropolis of Chicago Fanari webpage HERE.  

  • LIGHTHOUSE FOR HIGH SCHOOL SENIORS: Lighthouse is a week-long summer camp ministry for Orthodox high school seniors offered by the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago, administered by Orthodox clergy and laypeople who work with campers to prepare them in a Christ-centered way for the social, emotional, practical, and spiritual challenges they will face in college.  This summer, it will take place Saturday, June 22 - Saturday, June 29, 2024.  Lighthouse registration for HS Seniors will open on March 11, 2024.

  • FANARI CAMP COUNSELOR opened in 2023 on February 21 for summer camp 2023.  There will be priority given to those who submit their applications early.  The early priority deadline closed on April 4th.  Stay tuned to the Metropolis Fanari website for more information.

  • 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

  • IONIAN VILLAGE announced the dates for the Summer 2023 programs:  Session One:  June 19 – July 9, 2023; and Session Two:  July 18 – August 7, 2023.  Registration opened on Saturday, January 21, 2023.  Ionian Village is the international camping ministry of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America with campgrounds located in Peloponnesus, Greece. Each 20-day session is open to young people who will have completed grades 9 through 12.  For more information, CLICK HERE to visit www.ionianvillage.org/

    CrossRoad is a ten-day academic summer institute that prepares high school juniors and seniors to make big life decisions and invites them to connect with the Orthodox Christian theological and spiritual tradition. Historically, CrossRoad has been hosted solely on the campus of Hellenic College Holy Cross; however in recent years, it has also been offered in Chicago on the campus of North Park University.  Application Deadline is typically in February.  For more information, visit www.crossroadinstitute.org; or, or call 617-850-1310.    




  • 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.