Congratulations to three exceptional young adults from the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of San Francisco who were among those selected to participate in the 2024 Pilgrimage of Discovery, a transformational program dedicated to sending Orthodox Christian young adults to Constantinople each year to learn about Orthodoxy, our Patriarchate, the history of the Church, the challenges facing the Ecumenical Patriarchate, the experience of the remaining Orthodox people living in Asia Minor and other important priorities. This rewarding experience helps participants better connect to their religious tradition and understand the relevance of the Ecumenical Patriarchate as they prepare to lead the Orthodox Church in the future. This immersive journey creates a lasting impact on identity, faith, family, community and culture and helps secure the continuity of the Orthodox Church from a grassroots level.

Pilgrimage Of Discovery2024

Mariana Frangos

St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church, Seattle, WA

Mariana Frangos, originally from San Diego, works as a Product Manager at Microsoft in Seattle. She recently graduated from Stanford with a degree in Mathematical and Computational Science. Mariana attends St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church where she is actively involved in the YAL Seattle group. In her free time, she loves running, baking delicious treats, doing Pilates, and Greek dancing.

Eva-Marie Kailas

Saint Constantine & Helen Greek Orthodox Church, Cardiff-By-The-Sea, CA

Eva-Marie Kailas is a freelance event coordinator who humbly serves as the Vice Chair of the 2024 National YAL Conference. She has dedicated the last six years to fostering connections among young adults in the Greek Orthodox Faith. Outside of her impactful work, Eva-Marie enjoys watching the latest in TV and film and traveling with loved ones.

Sophia Looney

St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church, Seattle, WA

Sophia grew up in Seattle, Washington in the Metropolis of San Francisco, and attended Cal Poly SLO for her master’s degree in Structural Engineering. Sophia has always loved participating in church and parish activities as well as cultural experiences; one of her favorite memories was being a camper at Ionian Village! Outside of her church involvement and leadership, she enjoys hiking, baking, reading, and swimming. A dream of hers is to swim in every ocean!

“I am very proud of these young adults and their accomplishments which have led to them being selected for this prestigious honor,” stated His Eminence Metropolitan Gerasimos of San Francisco. “Keeping them connected to our faith, learning about the Mother Church and gaining a deeper understanding and appreciation for our Orthodox Christian heritage will be of tremendous value for them throughout their lives.”

The Pilgrimage of Discovery is a program funded by the Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate and by charitable contributions from generous donors across the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. A total of 16 recipients were selected to participate in this year’s pilgrimage which will take place from August 4 – 11, 2024