Армянская церковная молодежная организация Америки
|Армянская церковная молодежная организация Америки|
|The Armenian Church Youth Organization of America|
The Armenian Church Youth Organization of America (ACYOA)
ACYOA is the national youth program of the Diocese of the Armenian Church of America and was created on January 12, 1946 in Providence, Rhode Island. The Diocesan-wide national organization, created for the youth of the Armenian Church, emerged from the foundation of the then many local Junior Leagues and clubs that were formed for the young people of the parishes of the Armenian Church.
The mission of the ACYOA is to create among young adults a greater sense of spiritual culture and tradition, and to instill within its members, a true spirit of civic mindedness.
The purpose and role of the ACYOA, in the context of the Diocese of the Armenian Church, is vital importance, as it is charged with preparing and equipping young adults to participate in leadership capacities.
However, in order to do this, the Organization must educate its members about the teachings of the Armenian Church and the history of her people. It must motivate and stimulate creative thinking and illustrations of faith among its members by providing vehicles through which they may express themselves and demonstrate their faith, abilities, skills, interests, concerns, and willingness to try.
These vehicles must enable them to build friendships and lasting relationships. The Organization must develop programs through which members participate, receive information, feel a sense of belonging, experience meaningful relationships, and be exposed to the Armenian Church and her rich, cultural heritage. These programs must be diverse and they must lead young Armenian adults in the direction of future participation and leadership within parishes and Church at large.
There is no doubt that the ACYOA provides a very tangible and obvious connection to Armenia, our Motherland. This connection is made real through our efforts to improve and educate within Armenia, by means of teaching our faith to our brothers and sisters who were oppressed from such an education. Our connection is realized through our hands on service in building and repairing in Armenia, and creating programs that attend to the needs of children and adults in Armenia. Specifically, we built houses, orphanages, educated children on the Armenian Orthodox faith, and provided food and clothing to those in need. The love for and optimism for out free and independent Motherland is deep rooted in all that we do and will always be a part of who we are. Service in our Motherland connects us to our brothers and sisters and creates connections that often bring great value to our organization and the Armenian Diaspora.
Our membership enjoys a spectacular diversity of background. We have members born in countries throughout South America, Europe, Asia, Africa, and North America and speak a wide array of languages and dialects. We accept Armenians who are 0-100% Armenian in decent. The reason we encourage diversity and are so effective in providing a means on integration into the Armenian church, is that we are rooted in the living the teachings of Christ and the moral and ethical standards of the Armenian culture, which we considered to be intertwined with the former. Where ever you have come from, what ever language you speak, you are welcome to the ACYOA in the spirit of enhancing your development in the Armenian Church.
ACYOA and the Armenian Church:
The ACYOA has a unique strength in providing its members with a an opportunity to grow in their faith on many levels. There is a direct and powerful effort by the organization to educate its members about the Armenian Church and our faith, through a wide range of tools and resources and many of our events and activities. In addition to this very successful direct effort, we have collaborated with other organizations and give our members the opportunity to explore the vast resources available to them in developing their maturity and richness in their lives through their faith, their church and their heritage. The ACYOA sees our faith as being the single most important aspect of who we are as Armenians, and who we live our lives as such. Our connection to the Armenian Church brings clarity and purpose to the lives of our members as Armenian Americans. We consider ourselves a direct conduit in many ways to developing Armenian youth into active participants in the Armenian Church as Sunday school teachers, choir members, altar servers, and Clergy. Our record and reputation in this regard is outstanding and second to none among Armenian youth organization in America.
ACYOA and the Armenian Bibliocracy:
The ACYOA is an organization that embodies the ages of the Armenia nation, when it was considered a bibliocracy, a nation of learning of spirituality, literature, music, and the arts. Our activities are varied within these categories and we are often concerned and involved with bring our members the opportunity to expand their knowledge in these categories, and to develop their skills in these areas. This is embodiment exists on a local level among our chapter activities, and on a national level through our programming and events. It is a significant part of the well rounded developmental strategy stated in our Mission.
Often the ACYOA is not only considered as second to none for its excellence in its involvement in developing its members into active participants of the Armenian Church, but service is also very important to us and what we do. Our involvement in service is again tied to our faith and living the teachings of Jesus Christ, and can be found in an assortment of service activities on local chapter levels and throughout our many national programs and events. In addition to our service to Armenians in the Motherland, we have helped those in America in need and instill a necessity of service in our members within this country, and it’s communities. Our members have created service activities within their communities to meet many different needs to many different people and participated in various service programs throughout the country. Service is important to us and we feel this binds us as humans and provides meaning within the lives of our members.
ACYOA on Politics:
Our organization is not a political organization and has no activities on a national level to achieve political results. We feel this is not within our scope, nor our strength, and instead we devote our efforts to other meaningful objectives. We do, however, provide growth and development in the moral and ethical values of our members, along with certain connections and skill sets necessary to be successful in achieving political objectives for various Armenian causes. We do not get involved in lobbying for issues, but provide a deeper purpose of enriching the lives of our members who may go on to use their experiences and development from the ACYOA in their lobbying and other political efforts in their communities and nation.
Leadership is clearly a priority of the ACYOA, as we have an annual conference devoted specifically to this one trait. We believe that by strengthening our members in leadership, they will best serve their parishes and communities and ensure the future of the Armenian Church, and parishes throughout the nation. We have proven successful in providing programming to develop our members into leaders and active members on boards, executive committees, and decision making throughout the diocese and elsewhere. By training our members to become leaders with strong moral and ethical values based on our faith, they are better able to make good decisions confidently and effectively. This is an area that we consider to be valuable and worth detailed attention and substantial allocation of our developmental efforts.
ACYOA is an organization that has long been creating an atmosphere for building strong life long friendships. It connects young Armenian Americans together in a common purpose, and from the strength of our connection in faith, our members have developed relationships in networking, long lasting friendships, and even marriages. Our programming and social events provide many opportunities for these relationships.