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Church

Archdiocese Announces Formation of Advisory Committee for Saint Basil Academy

NEW YORK – The Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America on December 8 announced the formation of the Advisory Committee on Mission Fulfillment for St. Basil Academy. This newly established committee has been commissioned by His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros of America with performing a strategic evaluation of the Academy’s mission in order to propose a forward-looking vision that responds more effectively to the ever-evolving needs of contemporary society and the modern-day household.

Since 1944, St. Basil Academy has been a sanctuary for children in need, providing youth and young adults with a safe and nurturing environment that fosters growth and development. Over the years, the Academy has grown to include comprehensive residential programs, such as The Youth Program, The Bridge Program, and The Family Program, all while seeking to expand its mission in support of its residents and the wider Christian community.

In today’s rapidly developing world, the needs of children, young adults, and families are more complex than ever before. This is why the Advisory Committee on Mission Fulfillment has been entrusted with conducting a thorough examination of the Academy’s programs and resources. This review will analyze the Academy’s existing programs and ministries and utilization of its assets in order to optimize them for service to the community. The Advisory Committee shall also provide its insights to the National Ladies Philoptochos Society on the property’s existing usage and future opportunities.

The committee is composed of dedicated members appointed by the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, St. Basil Academy, and the National Ladies Philoptochos Society. Together, these individuals and institutions bring a wealth of experience and a shared commitment to preserving the Academy’s mission. The committee’s aim will focus on enhancing the method with which the Academy addresses present-day societal needs, so that it may apply its ministries in a more impactful and relatable way while remaining true to its original vision.

The Very Rev. Archimandrite Nektarios Papazafiropoulos, National Archdiocesan Chancellor, and Mr. Lou Katsos, an esteemed community leader, will serve as the committee’s Chairman and Vice Chairman, respectively. Their recommendations will be purely advisory in nature to the Board of Trustees of St. Basil Academy, which is an affiliated institution of the Archdiocese, and the National Ladies Philoptochos Society, which is the sole landowner of the Academy’s property. Since purchasing the property, the National Ladies Philoptochos Society has consistently supported St. Basil Academy’s mission and provided over $11 million in financial support over the past 20 years.

The Advisory Committee is scheduled to conclude its work by June 30, 2024, at which time a comprehensive report will be presented for review to the three aforementioned institutions. This analysis will outline innovative strategies and recommendations for revitalizing the Academy’s programs and outreach.

The Advisory Committee’s inaugural meeting took place at the Archdiocesan headquarters on December 5. Following the fruitful and promising deliberations of this first session, His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros offered the following remarks:

“I am deeply grateful to the entire family of St. Basil Academy and National Philoptochos for all of their tireless work and dedication over the years to support and upbuild this precious institution of our Sacred Archdiocese. Their service and selfless assistance have been a true cornerstone in spearheading initiatives for the welfare of our children. With the establishment of this Advisory Committee, we enter a new chapter that seeks to reaffirm our collective commitment as a National Church to fostering healthy families and nurturing well-functioning, visionary members of society. I am confident that this joint effort will reinvigorate the ministries offered by the Academy and propel the entire program forward with a renewed spirit, so as to ensure that we continue to meet the challenges of our times with grace and foresight.”

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