2 THE SHEPHERD • MARCH 2022 • SAINT SPYRIDON GREEK ORTHODOX CHURCH OF SAN DIEGO is past month, I went to a celebration of life for a dear friend who passed in January. She was seventy years young, a devote Chris- tian who shared her faith with everyone she met. She had moved to Arizona several years ago, but remained active in her local church from afar. On January 5th, her pastor got a text from her “I’m in the hospital strug- gling to breathe, please pray for me.” e pastor and congregation began prayers and they continued to text. On January 11th, the pastor reached out to her in a text “how are you?” She replied simply “not good, I think I’m ready to go to my Lord.” She passed shortly therea er. Her celebration of life was a beautiful sum- mary of a life well-lived being generous to others. As I sat listening, I was struck by so many things, but I think most by her last text “I’m ready to go to my Lord!” We spend our whole lives doing this, that or the other thing, but when our time comes will we be ready to meet our Lord? Will we be judged as a generous, loving and forgiving person; will we nd salvation? I thought of Lazarus, who was four days dead when Jesus went to his tomb, raised His voice and called to Lazarus. Unlike Jesus, whose burial cloths remained folded up in the tomb a er His Resurrection; Lazarus came out wearing his burial cloths signifying that he would wear them when he died again. Like Lazarus, it seems to me, each day we get another chance to hear the Word and pur- sue salvation by being generous, loving and forgiving people. One habit of highly e ec- tive people is that they “begin with the end in mind!” If we have our end in mind, we can make a conscious e ort to visualize who Christ wants us to be and walk His path so that when our time is near we will be ready to meet our Lord. e upcoming journey through Lent is a chance for us to renew our faith and partici- pate in the life of the Church. I hope you will mark your calendars for March 20th for the Spring General Assembly , and April 24th for the Pascha Picnic . We have reserved Ad- miral Baker Park and look forward to renew- ing our tradition of celebrating the Resurrec- tion together. Many Blessings, Jim Gilpin, Parish Council President Yes, the storage dungeon is fewweeknights and aweeken adjacent to the Kitchen. Reno anddisposalofallcabinetsand walls were prepped and RFP open, and brighter room via u lighting, aswell as heavy duty have a few finishing touches t nextcoupleofweeks. Special thanks for theirhardwo somewell-deserved breaks) fo JimLeventis,CoreyLeventis, a request forall topleasemakea cleanandorganized,whilealso that youmay“forget”behind. Πιστεύουμε ότι θα σας αρέσε στην Κουζίνα. Όλη η ομάδα π διατηρήσουμε και μελλοντικά καθαριότητα αυτού τού χώρο μας! Regards, Vlassiand theTeam WOMEN WORD OF THE We have completed our look at the many ref- erences to angels in both the Old and New Testaments. We are now more aware than ever that these two parts of Holy Scripture are One Book, one story, one message of the relationship between God and man which o en includes the presence of angels and their role in our salvation. Since we returned from our winter break, we have focused on the writings related to angels in the rst three centuries of the ear- ly Church. ere is a clear continuity from Genesis to Revelations through the Apostol- ic epistles and writings of the early Church Fathers. In the book we are reading, e Holy Angels, the author writes: “ e Apostol- ic Fathers had direct contact with the Twelve (Apostles). It is to them that we owe the preser- vation of Holy Tradition in word and in fact… ese are the men who preserved the Gospels and Epistles for us and in whose ranks the continued presence of the Lord on earth was made possible in their acts of faith.” Here are some things that remain constant through all of the centuries: the idea that the angels were created before man and the world; the presence of a hierarchy of angels; the idea of a rst fallen angel - Satanael, a messenger of God who through pride became an angel of iniquity and the keeper of Hell; and the con- stant battle between good and evil. One of the early Fathers preserving this Tra- dition about the reality of angels is St. Ig- natius of Antioch who writes, among other things, about “the things which are visible and invisible, the angelic orders, and the pre-emi- nence of the Cherubim and Seraphim.” And, indeed, we see the tangible result of that pre- served to this very day in our Divine Litur- gy and represented in the Sacramental Fans behind the altar. Another early Christian writer, St. Clement of Rome reminds us of the participation, role, and constant example of the angels in our communal worship: “Let us think of the whole host of angels, how they stand by and serve His will…and cried out: Holy, holy, holy, Lord Sabaoth: the whole of creation is full of His glory… en let us gather together as with one mouth…that we may be- come sharers in His great and glorious prom- ises.” And in the Pastor (Shepherd) of Her- mas, we hear of the guardian angel attached to each one of us which he calls “the angel of righteousness (who) is meek and peaceful” and can “ascend into your heart” if you follow the path of repentance and hear his voice “to live to God.” May this be so for each of us! And FROM THE PARISH COUNCIL PRESIDENT On May 23, 2021 the Parish General Assem- bly authorized the Parish Council to retain real estate brokers, Institutional Property Advisors, a division of Marcus and Milli- chap, to solicit proposals for possible sale of church properties. e purpose of the sale would be to generate funds for the construc- tion of new Parish facilities. In October of 2021 the Parish Council along with the Saint Spyridon Hellenic Foundation (owner of a portion of the properties on the block) entered into an agreement with Insti- tutional Property Advisors to solicit propos- als for possible sale of church real estate in accordance with the May General Assem- bly’s direction. e agreement was reviewed by our attorneys and is very clear that unless a sale is approved by the Parish Council, the Parish General Assembly, the Saint Spyridon Hellenic Foundation and our Metropolis, the Parish or the Foundation are in no way ob- ligated to sell any property or pay any com- mission to Institutional Property Advisors. As a reminder, according to the Archdiocese Uniform Parish Regulations (UPR), and our Parish By-Laws, parish property cannot be sold or transferred without the approval of the Parish General Assembly and the Me- tropolis. At the May 23, 2021 meeting, the General Assembly did not authorize the sale of any property; it only authorized the Parish Council to solicit proposals which it is in the process of doing. e exciting news is that Institutional Prop- erty Advisors has begun its marketing cam- paign and is seeing signi cant interest. ey are telling us they anticipate receiving mul- tiple proposals from quali ed developers. Once all the proposals are received the Par- ish Council will review the proposals with the ultimate goal of bringing one or more of the proposals to the General Assembly for consideration. We anticipate bringing the Parish Council’s recommendation to the General Assembly sometime in the fall. e Parish Council of Saint Spyridon Greek Orthodox Church Saint Spyridon Hellenic Foundation PARISH VISION UPDATE continues 3