Ministry Night Presents Challenges and Opportunities of Parish Youth Work

27 November 2012 • On–Campus • Virginia Nieuwsma

Student Richard Ajalat converses on Campus Ministry Night (Photos: J. Nieuwsma)Student Richard Ajalat converses on Campus Ministry Night (Photos: J. Nieuwsma)The Orthodox Christian Fellowship (OCF) and the Orthodox Church in America's (OCA) Department of Youth, Young Adult, and Campus Ministry, co–sponsored a free and public forum in the Bashir Auditorium at St. Vladimir's Seminary, on Tuesday, November 27. Titled "Campus Ministry Night," the evening featured presentations by OCF Executive Director Jennifer Nahas, Regional OCF chaplain for New York and New Jersey The Rev. John Diamantis, and the Chair of the Department of Youth, Young Adult, and Campus Ministry, Andrew Boyd (Class of '12).

Presenters focused on practical skills and useable resources needed for campus and young adult ministry. Jennifer Nahas of OCF outlined the challenges for this generation of youth: college kids will not have what their parents had economically, today's college degree does not equal job security, it is now taking an average of six years to obtain a college degree, and the current moral climate makes it very difficult for Orthodox Jennifer Nahas of OCF explains collegiate statisticsJennifer Nahas of OCF explains collegiate statisticsChristian young people to survive spiritually.

Father John Diamantis then shared ideas for establishing OCF chapters and campus–based ministries. "We are now identifying Orthodox students by soliciting names from parishes of who their college students are, and are developing a data base for that," he explained.

Finally, Andrew Boyd presented several specific resources available from the OCA, and shared strategies for incorporating young adults into the parish community. The evening concluded with a time of discussion and fellowship.