Saint Demetrios Greek Orthodox Youth of America
Friends Forever, Orthodox for Life
A Church G.O.Y.A. is a unique organization. It brings together young people who come from a variety of backgrounds and families. Furthermore, the very process of adolescence ensures that our young members of G.O.Y.A. will be at very different levels of sociological, intellectual and emotional maturity. We understand this. Teens act up. They can be silly. They can “push the limits”. This too is part of adolescence. There is however a difference between normal teen behavior and outright disrespect for authority. A group as diverse as a G.O.Y.A. must have a uniform code of behavior. We must always remember:
- We represent our Holy Orthodox Church wherever we go.
- We represent Saint Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church wherever we go.
- The actions of one affect the entire group.
- Our advisors have not volunteered to serve as disciplinarians.
Hence each year we institute a “Code of Conduct”. Before your child is permitted to register for the first G.O.Y.A. event, you must sign the attached form and return it to the Church office, c/o Peter Zougras. By signing, you are acknowledging the following procedure that will be in affect in the event of a behavior situation:
- First incident
After the first infraction of the enclosed code of conduct, your child will be immediately removed from that particular event and sent home. You, as parent, will be required to pick him/her up from whatever location we happen to be at. Prior to the next G.O.Y.A. event or meeting, a discussion of the behavior must take place between the youngster, his/her parents, Father Chris and the Advisor Team.
- Second incident
After the second infraction of the enclosed code of conduct, your child will be permitted to participate in the next three (3) GO.Y.A. events and/or meetings only if one of his/her parents can be present. There will be no exceptions to this rule. Furthermore, one of the biological parents or legal guardians must be present. The family may not designate an “alternate” parent who happens to be at a particular event.
- Third incident
After the third infraction of the enclosed code of conduct, the young person will not be permitted to participate in G.O.Y.A. for the remainder of the year. While this may seem harsh to some, as leaders, we must protect the rights of the other young people to enjoy a G.O.Y.A. activity without the constant interruption of misbehaving youngsters.
St. Demetrios G.O.Y.A.
Friends Forever, Orthodox for Life
Code of Conduct
- ❖ Each GOYAN will come to GOYA Ministry activities with an open heart and mind, ready to have fun, learn, and grow in their faith.
- ❖ Each GOYAN will fully participate in the GOYA Ministry activities that he/she attends.
- ❖ Each GOYAN will treat the clergy, advisors, fellow participants, and visitors with love and respect.
- ❖ Each GOYAN must be active in the sacramental life of our Orthodox faith. Therefore no GOYAN is permitted to participate in any GOYA event if he/she doesn’t participate in Sunday’s morning liturgy. The extent of the exclusion from GOYA events is based on the discretion of the Priest.
- ❖ GOYANS will not bring tobacco, alcohol, drugs, weapons, fireworks, or pornographic material to any GOYA Ministry event, and will not use them at any GOYA Ministry event. Each GOYAN understands that their parent will be notified, and they will be sent home at their parent’s/guardian’s expense if they fail to meet this expectation. In the event illegal drugs or weapons are discovered, law enforcement will also be contacted.
- ❖ Each GOYAN will wear appropriate clothing while at GOYA Ministry activities. No clothing worn by a GOYAN will exhibit vulgar, suggestive, gang related, or irreligious language or images. No clothing worn by a GOYAN will advertise or promote the use of alcohol, tobacco, drugs, weapons, or violence. Each GOYAN will wear clothing that covers their stomach and underwear. Each GOYAN will dress in a modest fashion and understand that the dress code will be enforced at the discretion of the Advisors.
- ❖ Each GOYAN will use appropriate language and will not curse, use obscene hand gestures, or participate in vulgar conversations. GOYANS will not harass Advisors, fellow participants, or visitors in any way.
- ❖ Each GOYAN will treat the property of others and the church with respect. Each GOYAN will understand that he/she will be held responsible to pay for any property he/she willfully or recklessly damages, destroys, or steals.
Our commitment to you:
The Spiritual leaders and Advisory Team of the St. Demetrios G.O.Y.A. is committed to:
- lead the children into experiencing the Holy Orthodox Faith by promoting a personal relationship with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and by encouraging them to be active Sacramental members of the living Church.
- cultivate and educate our young people in order to become viable members of the Body of Christ.
- implement a ministry which will reflect the Orthodox Faith, Tradition and Life through worship (liturgia), fellowship (koinonia), service (diakonia) and witness (matyria).
Parents, by working together we will have a banner year for the Saint Demetrios G.O.Y.A. Please discuss the Code of Conduct with your child and feel free to review more information on G.O.Y.A. found in the Archdiocese GOYA Guidelines located in the Archdiocese’ webpage.
Sign the Parental-Covenant form and return it to the DAC.
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