About the ACYOA

ACYOA Celebrates 60 Years

The Armenian Church Youth Organization of America (ACYOA) celebrates 60 years of dedicated service to her mother church- the Armenian Apostolic Church. At its first Constitutional Assembly on January 12, 1946, the ACYOA became the first and only national youth organization in America founded by the Armenian Church. To this day, the ACYOA remains loyal to its 60 year old mission: to raise faithful sons and daughters of the Armenian Church and the Armenian Orthodox faith.

The ACYOA is a Christ-centered organization for young people over the age of 18. It seeks to educate young Armenians about their Christian faith, Armenian culture, and Armenian history; prepare young Armenians to be active members and leaders of the Armenian Church; and to provide opportunities for worship, Christian witnessing and service in the Armenian Nation.

In recognition of the 60th anniversary of the ACYOA, the ACYOA Central Council has appointed a committee to lead the celebration. 60th Anniversary events will be held throughout the year, all across the Eastern diocese. The committee is comprised of current ACYOA members and alumni from several parishes.

When asked about the 60th Anniversary of the ACYOA, Central Council Chairman Maria Derderian commented, "The ACYOA is not simply an organization for the youth, and it is not simply an organization. It was, is, and continues to be a vehicle for members of the Armenian Church to draw near to Christ. During this anniversary year, let us remember the vision of our founder, Abp. Tiran Nersoyan, and come together as past, current, and future ACYOA members to continue the work of our Lord, praying for His grace and guidance in leading our organization into its next 60 years. We look forward to a variety of programs that the 60th Anniversary Committee will plan and execute -- as well as the renewed spirit of enthusiasm which we are confident these programs will instill in the youth."

"Anniversaries are a time to celebrate and, as an ACYOA alumna and current Executive Secretary, I hope to be part of that celebration. But in addition, I think we should use this milestone to look back and see where we've been and what we did and did not accomplish, to be joyful about where we are right now, and to look to the future with excitement and ambition. It is a future I look forward to sharing with alumni, current and new ACYOA members with whom, all together, we can build up the 21st century Armenian Church of America," stated ACYOA Executive Secretary Nancy Basmajian.

This year's ACYOA Sports Weekend and General Assembly will return to Providence, Rhode Island; the birthplace of the ACYOA. The St. Sahag ACYOA of Providence are already planning the events for the weekend and are hopeful that the 60th anniversary will draw new interest as well as rekindle the interest of alumni across the country.

For more information about the ACYOA please visit www.acyoa.org, or contact the Diocese of the Armenian Church at 212.686.0710. To get involved in the ACYOA on a parish level, contact your local Armenian parish priest.

Young church members from throughout the Diocese gathered with
the Primate, clergy, and members of the Diocesan staff in Washington D.C.
Memorial Day Weekend, 2003, for the Armenian Church Youth Organization of
America's General Assembly and Sports Weekend.

Hosted by the St. Mary Church of Washington, D.C., the ACYOA
General Assembly and Sports Weekend featured fun, fellowship, and also a
chance to celebrate the Divine Liturgy.

Prayer of the ACYOA

O Lord our Savior Jesus Christ, Who art the Way, the Truth, and the Life, give us, the youth of the Church of Armenia, we beseech Thee, the wisdom to know, to love, and to serve Thee in our personal lives severally, and in the corporate life of our organization.

Thou that leadest men in the way, lead us, thy children, that we may be able to serve the Church through our people, with courage and vision, and in the faith of our illustrious forefathers. Inspire us, O Lord, and open our eyes to thy light, that we may cherish and profit by the heritage which our forefathers have left to us, and that we may be aware of our responsibilities as citizens of our beloved county, the United States of America.

Fill us, O Christ our God, with thy Holy Spirit, that we may be the obedient and unselfish servants of the Will of our Heavenly Father, to whom, together with Thee and the Holy Spirit, is befitting Glory, Dominion and Honor, now and always and unto the ages of ages. Amen.