The Clergy Family Initiative

Ministerial Excellence Fund (MEF)

Research across all denominations shows that the economic challenges all Clergy face pose a major impediment to ministerial excellence. The Financial Literacy Program that we are doing for each Metropolis is to raise awareness about the unique challenges our Clergy and their families face; provide some basic financial resources for our Clergy; and also let them know about the MEF.

We have very powerful research data regarding the state of our Clergy that indicates widespread financial stress as one of the major findings. The Clergy Initiative seeks to mitigate financial stress through education and through validated direct grants.

Fr. Al Demos oversees the MEF program with Fr. Constantine L. Sitaras, Clergy Initiative Chairman. Clergy can receive a grant of up to $10,000 after the following are completed:

  • Enrollment in the program and complete a confidential application with some basic debt information.
  • Enrollment in Pete the Planner which is a web-based financial management program. (The Clergy Initiative Grant covers this cost).
  • Enrollment and completion of the Dave Ramsey Program of the Financial Peace University. (Cost covered by The Clergy Initiative Grant).
  • Access to private mentoring with Father Al Demos, the Administrator for the Clergy Initiative and confidant for the Clergy.
  • Submission of debt to be paid for by the Grant. Funds go directly to the financial institution(s).
  • Completion of a confidential financial and debt survey after the Program is concluded.

This $10,000 Grant can be utilized to help pay down student loans, medical debt, credit card debt, or if no debt, to enhance retirement fund.

For further information please contact: Fr. Al Demos at (917) 842-9844 or [email protected].


"For years I walked around with a heavy heart because of poor financial decisions. The weight was crushing me. I started listening to the Dave Ramsey Program…the experience has been life changing and has brought much peace to my life. I am so grateful! Thank you for making a difference in my life, my family's life, and in my Ministry!”


The Clergy Family Initiative, a ministry of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese Benefits Office, is pleased to announce the launch of the first-ever Parish Council Nominee Training Video Series.

These programs, made possible through a generous grant from the Lilly Endowment, will be used by Parish leadership as part of the mandatory Parish Council Nominee Training -- as mandated by the regulations of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America.

The goal of the series is to have each Parish Council Nominee better understand the challenges that our Clergy face and how they, the Council Members, have a direct role in assisting the Priest in his ministry to the flock entrusted to him.


We invite you all to view the Clergy Family Initiative video of your particular Metropolis.

View the Training Videos »

We encourage the beloved Clergy of our Archdiocese to apply for the Clergy Family Initiative Financial Literacy and Grant Program.

Apply »

It is our heartfelt prayer that, as Parish Lay Leaders, you will learn more about the ministry of your Priest, and his personal challenges, and the need to grow as co-workers in sharing the Ministry of Christ.


It has been shown that this program benefits the financial health and well-being of the priest and his family, and by extension, their parishes and parishioners."

His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros of America


The Clergy Family Initiative Objectives

Our program is multipronged and designed to accomplish six objectives:

  1. To educate our Laity on the unique challenges our Clergy and their families face and how those challenges can impact their ministry.
  2. To educate our Clergy on recent data from within our own Archdiocese on the personal, educational, and financial challenges our Clergy face.
  3. To provide research for Clergy, Presvyteres, and other Church Staff.
  4. To discuss the importance of managing personal and Parish finances, leading to an understanding of how efficient management both leads to healthier and more vibrant Parishes.
  5. To review our Ministerial Excellence Fund and the grant process associated with our Lilly Endowment Grant.
  6. To establish a community of Clergy support throughout the Archdiocese and its philanthropic ministries.