2017 United States Youth Work Team
Traveling From: 7/20/2017 to 7/31/2017; Team Cost: $1125*
YUKON DEANERY, ALASKA -- Work with Orthodox clergy and community leaders in Alaska to reach out to youth from the village and surrounding area of Pilot Station who have been invited to participate in this regional youth camp program that will teach a deeper appreciation of Orthodoxy while challenging young people to live in the fullness of the Faith and connect them to their cultural roots.
The 2017 Yukon Alaska Mission Team will participate in the annual Deanery youth camp. The camp incorporates lessons on the Faith, living as Orthodox in this world, a Christian understanding of social media, as well as arts and crafts, music and sports in a rustic setting where the youth will learn about their Yup’ik traditions. Youth in these rural villages have a unique need for fellowship and community. The Team will be working in partnership with the Diocese of Alaska to reach out to the youth and foster their growth and involvement in the Church. The Church in Alaska desires to see the spiritual needs of her youth met as they are empowered to grow personally and spiritually.
The Church faces many challenges as she continues to maintain an Orthodox witness and proclaim Christ while equipping a new generation of future believers and leaders to know and live their faith. OCMC Mission Teams work in partnership with the OCA Diocese of Alaska to provide catechism to the faithful, offer youth ministry to foster their growth and involvement in the Church.
It has been over two hundred years since the Orthodox Christian Faith was proclaimed on the shores of Alaska, and for this reason, it is often considered America’s Holy Land. The presence of Orthodoxy in these villages can be traced back to early Russian missionaries whose witness has contributed to the faith in these villages. Pilot Station, first called Ankachak, is part of the Lower Yukon region located on the bank of the Yukon River. It is a remote village accessible only by air, water, or snowmobile, inhabited, mostly by native Yup’ik people who practice a traditional subsistence lifestyle. A picturesque village with pine trees, rolling hills, and an astonishing view of the Yukon River and surrounding landscape, Pilot Station has a K-12 school with approximately 175 students who come from the surrounding areas. Over 500 people live in Pilot Station, and 95 percent are Native Yup’ik people. One of the oldest structures in the region is the Transfiguration of our Lord Orthodox Church, built in the early 1900’s and is listed on the National Park Register of Historic Places.
All members should be prepared to share and teach the Orthodox Faith. Family participation is welcome. Youth workers, church school teachers, camp counselors are encouraged to apply!
Dates: July 20 – July 31, 2016
Cost: $1,125.00 (+ airfares)
Travel – Members make flight arrangements (round-trip) to Anchorage and Pilot Station, Alaska: meet in Anchorage, Alaska, Thursday, July 20 for orientation; travel to Pilot Station, AK, on Sunday, July 23 and return to Anchorage on Sunday, July 30; return home July 31. OCMC will provide a travel itinerary for Anchorage/Pilot Station. Airfares are not included in participation cost.
Fund raising - Each Team member is responsible for the participant cost and airfares. Team members raise funds to cover the cost of their participation. Participants are encouraged to let others know that they will be sharing in the work of missions through their tax-deductible donations, and invite others to participate through prayer and financial support. The cost includes room and board, local transportation, orientation costs, ministry expenses, excursion and materials.
OCMC relies solely on gifts and offerings from churches and individuals for support. If you would like to contribute to this ministry mission project, we welcome you to do so and are grateful for your support. This is optional and for that reason it is not included in the participant cost.
Share in a journey of faith… Orthodox Mission Team members are challenged to view the world with God's eyes and seek how He wants to use them to fulfill His plans. This cross-cultural experience, combined with outreach, offers participants a life-changing learning experience. This experience is about people, culture and missions. It is also about prayer, for you and others; it is about God, those you serve, and about yourself, as you serve Him.