Awards for Church Musicians

In our Archdiocese, there are several awards designed to honor the distinct contributions of church musicians – choir people, chanters, clergy, and those involved in youth music.

  1. His Eminence, Archbishop Demetrios presents an annual award, which the National Forum administers for him:
    1. The Archbishop’s Years of Service Award
      This medal is awarded annually on National Church Music Sunday to church musicians who have completed twenty-five or more years of service as choir directors of Greek Orthodox parishes. The National Forum administers this award for the Archbishop. Plans are underway to extend this medal to be awarded to organists and chanters who have also served for 25 or more years. To date, 297 choir directors of the Archdiocese of America have received this honor for their dedicated and steadfast stewardship.

  2. The National Forum presents two national awards:
    1. The St. Romanos the Melodist Medallion
      The Medallion is presented to those church musicians who have made exemplary national contributions to church music in the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. The recipients of the Medallion are announced and honored at each Clergy-Laity Congress.
    2. The Patriarch Athenagoras Medal
      The National Forum of Greek Orthodox Church Musicians awards the Patriarch Athenagoras Medal to individuals who have made exemplary contributions to church music in their Metropolises. Each Metropolis Church Music Federation selects its own recipients for this national award. The medals are usually awarded at the Annual Conference of each Metropolis’s Federation.

  3. Parish level awards are also available:
    The National Forum makes two types of certificates available to honor church musicians at the local parish level:
    1. The Archbishop Iakovos Distinguished Service Award
      The certificate is presented in loving memory of His Eminence, Archbishop Iakovos, commending the individual for his/her dedicated service to preserve, perpetuate, and promote the sacred hymnology of the Greek Orthodox Church.
    2. The Ernest A. Villas Youth Music Award of Excellence
      The certificate is presented in loving memory of Archon Ernest A. Villas who founded the Greek orthodox Youth of America. It is presented to young people for their exemplary musical achievement, participation, and fellowship.
    These two certificates are personalized for the individual(s) to be honored. See Publications List for details on ordering – please allow at least 1 week for personalization.

    1. Archons of the Order of St. Andrew
      Laymen who have demonstrated "greater than average" local, Metropolis, and Archdiocesan service are selected to be Archons of the Order of Saint Andrew of the Ecumenical Patriarchate. Nominees from each Metropolis are selected by Metropolis Archon committees and then affirmed by Archbishop Demetrios and the Ecumenical Patriarchate. The selected individuals are inducted in the fall at the Holy Trinity Cathedral and official "offikia" are conferred upon them by the Archbishop of America, serving as the Exarch of the Ecumenical Patriarch.
      1. Church Musicians Who are Archons
      2. The Offikia
      3. What is an Archon?
      4. How Archons are Selected