College Ministry keeps young Antiochian Orthodox students close to the life of the Church after they leave their home parish to attend college. In support of pan-Orthodoxy, much departmental energy is channeled into the more overarching Orthodox Christian Fellowship (OCF)—a campus group for Orthodox college students from all jurisdictions. Nevertheless, the College Ministry believes in staying personally connected to students who come from Antiochian Orthodox parishes. It is therefore crucial for our ministry for each parish to kindly send us the contact information for all of their young parishioners who enroll in college each year. Only by keeping our database complete and up-to-date can College Ministry effectively promote OCF events and keep in touch with students through care packages and e-newsletters.
College Student Database
The Orthodox Christian Fellowship (OCF), the college ministry of the Orthodox Churches in the United States, is developing and maintaining a database of all Orthodox college students. The purpose of this database is to assist the church in keeping our students connected to Christ and His Church. Students that are part of the database will receive regular communication from OCF regarding programs and ministries (i.e. College Conference, Real Break) that they may experience. Their contact information will be shared with the OCF chapters of the schools they are attending and/or the closest Orthodox Church as a means of offering support and encouragement to students while they attending school. We ask that you visit the OCF webpage to submit your college student's information. Let's keep our young people connected to Christ and His Church!
Each year during Christmas break, Orthodox Christian Fellowship's (OCF) College Conferences host hundreds of college students from across North America for four days of fellowship, prayer, and presentations offered by dynamic Orthodox speakers. This year's conferences, held at the Antiochian Village in Pennsylvania and St. Nicholas Ranch in California, will take place from December 27-30, 2014. The theme is "but you are a chosen generation" (I Peter 2:9). For information about scholarships and registration, visit the OCF's website page for the Conferences.
Registration is also open for Real Break 2015, the OCF ministry alternative to the typical collegian's spring break experience. Built on a foundation of fellowship, education, worship, and service, Real Break provides students the opportunity to travel to another state or country to participate in ministry, while also cultivating relationships with like-minded peers.
A letter from His Grace Bishop Gregory of the American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese, liaison from the Assembly of Bishops of the U.S.A. to the Orthodox Christian Fellowship (OCF), concerning the Church's joint ministry to our Orthodox college students:
Dear Reverend Fathers:
As many of you know, the loss of our Christian youth is a staggering problem today in our country. Statistics show us that more than 80% of our young people are graduating high school, going to college and never returnlng to their faith group. l do not mean their parish or community, but their faith. In other words, more than 6 out of 10 Orthodox young adults will abandon Orthodoxy. This is a huge challenge for all of us.
As the official campus ministry of the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of the United States of America, Orthodox Christian Fellowship (OCF) works on behalf of all Orthodox to connect students to Christ and His Church during college. Through its campus-based chapters, regional events and programs such as College Conference and Real Break, OCF engages Orthodox college students across the continent in fellowship, education, worship, and service.
Orthodox Christian Fellowship — its Board of Directors, staff, and thousands of college students past and present — honors the passing of one of the greatest spiritual leaders of our generation. A theologian, scholar, and administrator, His Eminence, Metropolitan Philip has left an imprint on thousands of Orthodox youth in North America. OCF is eternally grateful for his unwavering commitment to young people and his unceasing efforts for Orthodox unity.
While born in Lebanon and educated at Balamand University, Metropolitan Philip attended seminary and public university in the United States. In Detroit, he earned his degree at Wayne State University and became known for living his Orthodox vocation by engaging in many humanitarian, spiritual, and cultural efforts. Being a college student must have had an enormous impact on him, as he keenly understood the benefits of harnessing the collective talents of the Orthodox youth.