On Saturday the 25th of November 2023, ACOY NSW gathered to celebrate their patron saint, St John Chrysostom by focusing on a teaching from his homily on the Hebrews. Explored was an extract from this homily, “But if we are friends, if we truly care for one another, let us help one another spiritually” – the youth were blessed to have His Eminence Metropolitan Basilios and Father John Daher explore this theme further.

His Eminence took the youth through how friendships, both good and bad, can be explored through the Bible and through the various writings of the saints. He went on to share his wisdom on how friendships can be a gift from God and lead you closer to your faith and be beneficial for oneself and others, however, they can also be the opposite, destructive and have the potential to dismantle the good spiritual habits developed over time.

Then, explored was how the Divine Liturgy can build friendships, with Father John by examining the different characteristics that make up a good friend and how the ultimate friendship is shown through Christ as He demonstrated the ultimate display of friendship – laying His life for us all. The youth learnt how attending the Liturgy is a way of expressing gratitude through worship and through communion and what we share as one community. When one attends Liturgy, they too, take part of the Last Supper that Jesus shared with His friends, the Apostles.

With games, food and lectures, the day was spent having fun not only whilst playing games and working together, but through learning more about our faith, together, and getting to know how to live out friendship with Christ by supporting each other to salvation.