Holy Trinity GOYA
The Greek Orthodox Youth of America, or GOYA, is the ministry to teenagers of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. Since GOYA is ministry, the orientation and implementation of the program should reflect the Orthodox Christian Faith, Tradition and Life. GOYA is ministry to junior high and high school grade Orthodox Christian teenagers. Teenagers should be in seventh through twelfth grades to participate.
MISSION AND GOAL OF GOYA MINISTRY
The mission and goal of GOYA ministry is to lead our young people into experiencing the Holy Orthodox Faith. By developing a personal relationship with our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ and becoming active sacramental members of the living Church, our young people will be equipped with tools necessary to assist them in their journey toward salvation.
THE FOUR CHARACTERISTICS
The National Department of Youth and Young Adult Ministries recommends that GOYA ministry be based on the following four characteristics: Worship (Liturgia), Fellowship (Koinonia), Service (Diakonia), and Witness (Martyria).
WORSHIP: As Orthodox Christians, we believe that God reveals Himself through Holy Tradition and Scripture. Worship is the sacramental expression of these, and is thus a very important element in ministering to our young people. It is important for GOYAn’s to be active sacramental members of the Church.
FELLOWSHIP is the way Orthodox Christians integrate their faith with daily life. It is sacred when Orthodox Christians gather together in our Lord’s name. The relationship of the Holy Trinity is the perfect model of Fellowship. The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit share perfect communion and exist in perfect love. By gathering together in fellowship, and by experiencing this love, we emulate the relationship of the Trinity, and develop our life in Christ.
SERVICE: Christ came to serve, not to be served. Young people are urged to do the same. Therefore, we can honor and glorify God by loving and serving humanity in His name. Young people should use their God-given charismata (gifts) to serve.
WITNESS: Man is both a spiritual and physical being. The spiritual reality is not always expressed in the material world. In order to be true to oneself and to the Orthodox Christian Faith, young people should strive to exemplify faith. They must be a witness to their faith, offering a convincing word and verbal expression of this faith, to those they come in contact with.