Theodore Pritsis matriculated at Hellenic College in 2001, receiving a bachelor’s degree in religious studies in 2005. He received a Master of Divinity at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology in 2009. During the 2007-2008 academic year, he studied on a full scholarship from the Greek Government Scholarship Foundation, focusing on Byzantine history and Ancient Greek philology at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. He received a Master of Theology in Byzantine history from Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology. Upon graduation, he served in the Office of the Chief Secretariat of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem.
He currently serves as a youth representative to the United Nations’ “Religions for Peace” North America Interfaith Youth Network for the Department of Inter-Orthodox, Ecumenical and Interfaith Relations of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. He is also serving as a Fellow to the United Nations Headquarters for the Department, where he focuses on issues of peace, security and humanitarianism.
Elaina Karayannis, Fellow
Originally from Philadelphia, PA, Elaina received her Bachelor’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology from Temple University in 2015 and graduated from Eastern University in 2017, with a master degree in International Development, concentrating on refugees and forcibly displaced persons.
Prior to her masters degree, Elaina taught English in Thailand, addressed human rights issues with Burmese refugees, worked with malnourished children who had a variety of cognitive and physical disabilities in a Guatemalan hospital, and implemented social work and art therapy programs for middle eastern refugees in Athens Greece. Her most recent experience was working in Moria Refugee camp and detention center, on Lesvos Greece. There she acted as one of the Shelter Coordinators, providing shelter, among other entities, to the 4,000+ refugees residing within the camp.
Though her experiences abroad, Elaina has recognized that despite all people being created in the image of God, there is a great injustice that prevents people from fully achieving this. Therefore, Elaina’s primary focus during her fellowship is on refugees and those forcibly displaced. She seeks to advocate for human rights-based policies related to these areas. She believes combining her International Development degree with the Church is a perfect way to achieve this goal, and she is looking forward to serving the Church as an advocate for positive change.