2023 Annual Impact Report

Y2AM: a Spiritual Community 

for Youth & Young Adults


Youth and Young Adults are a key focus of initiatives to increase engagement for all who embrace the Greek Orthodox Faith.  Our Youth and Young Adult Ministries (Y2AM) provide programs that offer safe and supportive environments for young people to explore and grow in their faith. Spiritual growth, community building, personal development, outreach, and evangelism are some of the benefits of our various youth programs. 

In 2023, Y2AM continued to reach thousands of young people – from elementary school through young adulthood. In addition to their Fall and Winter camps, Fanari camp hosted 5 week-long sessions of summer camp that allowed hundreds of children to connect with peers who share their values and beliefs, and form relationships that can support them through life’s challenges.

Some of the biggest successes of the year included: the 2023 Junior Olympics where 1450 youth athletes representing 28 parishes competed in individual and team sports; and the Annual YAL Chicago Conference where nearly 500 young adults from over 30 states (and 2 Canadian Provinces) engaged in worship through Divine Liturgy, faith-focused talks and presentations, evening events, and a service activity with Project HOPE. 

Making sure our young people feel at home in the church is particularly important as they go through their formative years and try to understand their identity and beliefs. Father Luke Melackrinos, Director of Programs and Ministries, believes these programs “play a crucial role in assisting young people in facing the challenges of growing up, strengthening their faith and relationship with Christ, and developing important life skills and values that will benefit them in adulthood.” 

“YAL (the Young Adults League) is important to me because creating a secure community for our young adults, provides them with the space to discover and establish their identity within the context of Orthodox Christianity. Young adults undergo numerous changes and often feel pressured to have everything figured out. Bringing our young adults together reassures them that they are not alone — and this sense of connection contributes to fostering their spiritual growth.

We’ve witnessed incredible growth in participation over the years, with thousands of energetic individuals coming together for a myriad of events. These connections extend far beyond the initial gatherings, evolving into lifelong friendships and relationships.”

Evalina Bournias, YAL Chicago Conference Co-Chair

“Unity in Christ cultivates relationships with family, friends, and neighbors—bearing fruit for vibrant communities and a flourishing Church” – Metropolis of Chicago Vision for Growth 

Help us accomplish our Vision and support the growth of our parishes, ministries, and philanthropic organizations. 

Support >>