Recognizing there is a great need to develop relevant resources, programs, and activities to keep youth and young adults engaged in the church, the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of San Francisco has expanded the youth ministry office by establishing the position of Pastor of Youth and Young Adult Ministries.
As of February 1, 2021, Father Gary Kyriacou has been appointed to serve in this capacity, In his new role, Father Gary will work side by side with Johanna Duterte Carter, the Metropolis Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministries, with Father Gary being responsible for the continued development and growth of all Metropolis youth activities and programs, including FDF, JOY, GOYA, and Young Adults. He will also create resources and curricula to be utilized to support and enhance the efforts of clergy and lay leaders in each parish, including collaborating with the ministry of Christian Education.
Metropolitan Gerasimos stated, “Father Gary brings with him a driving passion to engage our youth and the next generation of emerging leaders in the church. It is our responsibility to nurture them and cultivate them in the faith, and I am excited for the many opportunities that await us. I am confident that with the combined talents and dedication of both Father Gary and Johanna that our youth and young adult ministries will reap impactful results and blessings.”
Ordained to the priesthood in 2001, Father Gary first served as the Assistant Priest at the Ascension Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Oakland, CA. In 2004, he was assigned as the Proistamenos at Saint Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church in Camarillo, CA where he has been serving until accepting this new assignment. Father Gary was involved with the Ascension Cathedral’s Camp Ravencliff, and also served as camp clergy at Saint Nicholas Ranch and Retreat Center. Father Gary also currently serves as the Director of Ionian Village. Within the Metropolis of San Francisco, Father Gary has served as Chairman of the Board for the Folk Dance and Choral Festival since 2008. Born and raised in the Los Angeles area, Father Gary attended Saint Sophia Greek Orthodox Cathedral. He grew up participating in Saint Sophia Camp, eventually becoming Program Director and later serving as camp clergy.
“Our youth are faced with a variety of challenges and daily struggles,” stated Father Gary Kyriacou. “They are consumed by social media and a society that plagues them with anxiety and depression. I am thrilled that Metropolitan Gerasimos has taken concrete measures to address these issues. I am not the solution to this crisis, but I am ready to help this generation in every way that I can. I ask for your prayers as I embark on this new assignment.”
Father Gary graduated with a Master of Divinity degree in 2001 from Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology in Brookline, MA. Father Gary is a 1995 graduate of California State University Northridge with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Radio, Television, and Film. He is married to Presvytera Christie (Platis) and they have three children: Harrison (21), Jacob (19), and Elena (12).