We warmly welcome children, and all of the joy and energy that they bring, into our parish life and into our worship services.
Our parish is distinguished by its large and growing population of families with young children. Children are an important part of parish life, attending Divine Liturgy and receiving communion beginning in infancy after baptism.
Parish youth activities include weekly Sunday School, acolyte service, and candle-bearing. For high school age youth there have been various social and service activities, as well as service trips to Kodiak, Alaska.
We also offer a Catechesis of the Good Shepherd program for young children. This includes separate groups for ages 3 to 6, and ages 6 to 9.
Sunday School meets every Sunday at 9:00 a.m., mid-September thru mid-June.
Youth and Sunday School Coordinator: Fr. Kevin Lien
Grades 5, 6, and 7: Rosalie Broding and Justina Goakey
Grades 8 through 12: Karen Barton and Susan Judy
Mission Statement: "Our mission is to guide all youth in a life in Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior through Worship in the Liturgy and prayer services of the Church, Education, Service, and Fellowship."
Youth Minister: Oscar David Johnson
The Youth of Annunciation: 3rd Trip to Kodiak and Spruce Islands, Alaska, June 22-30, 2015
June 22-30, 2015 marked our high school youth group’s third Missions Trip to Kodiak and Spruce Islands, Alaska! The eight youth who served on this trip were John Jensen, Anastacia and Daria Kakorin, Peter Olson, Brandon and Ksenia Riddle, Cassian Storm, and Elliot Vallejos. The three chaperones that led were Fr. Dn. John Jensen, and Christopher and Bethany Banke. While in Kodiak, we served the community by unpacking and moving desks, dressers, and bunk beds from a large shipping container that had been donated by the OCMC and Rutgers University. This provided furniture for St. Herman Seminary and multiple non-profit organizations throughout the community. We also performed maintenance and cleaning tasks at Holy Resurrection Cathedral, which came especially needed after the vandalism that occurred at the church just two weeks prior to our arrival. In addition, our team cleaned, cleared out, and organized the sizeable Seminary basement, as well as thoroughly deep cleaned all the singles dorm rooms.
Yet, the highlight of our service work in Alaska was when our team traveled to Spruce Island and performed maintenance on Sts. Sergius and Herman of Valaam Chapel. The Chapel needed moss scraped off the roof, the trail around the church cleared, and the porch swept. While on Spruce Island, Fr. Innocent Dresdow guided our team on the St. Herman pilgrimage, and spoke to us about the life and works of St. Herman. Our pilgrimage included visiting Monk’s Lagoon, St. Herman’s fresh water spring, The Meeting of Our Lord Chapel, and Fr. Gerasim’s cell and chapel. We were blessed to go on a total of four boat outings this trip, one of which was to St. Nilus Island. On St. Nilus we visited with the four sisters of St. Nilus Skete. They graciously taught us about their way of monastic life in the Gulf of Alaska, and especially the importance of a life of simplicity and prayer.
The youth mentioned many things that really impacted them on the trip, from setting foot on to Monk’s Lagoon, to going gill-net fishing for the first time ever, to visiting St. Nilus Skete and talking with the sisters, to the lessons of why maintaining a healthy community is important. Overall, we all learned more about, and participated in, the life and works of our beloved North American Saint, Apa Herman.
On behalf of the Youth of Annunciation, we wish to express our heartfelt gratitude to each person who helped make this work pilgrimage possible. It was an honor and blessing to participate in this journey. Thank you!