2 THE SHEPHERD • JUNE 2022 • SAINT SPYRIDON GREEK ORTHODOX CHURCH OF SAN DIEGO Yogi Berra, a baseball legend who played for the New York Yankees, was known for his memorable quips and quirky sayings which didn’t make sense but at the same time seemed to make sense. He said things like “You can observe a lot by watching; If the world were perfect, it wouldn’t be; and It ain’t over ‘til it’s over.” Another of his guid- ing lines was “when you come to a fork in the road, take it!” is made some sense in his world because on the way to his house there was a fork in the road, and whichever way you took, you still got to his house. We all have experienced decision points in our lives. We have to choose one way over another. I subscribe to a daily email called the “Prayer Team” written by Father Stavros, the priest at St. John the Baptist Greek Ortho- dox in Tampa, Florida. In his recent emails, Father Stavros writes about the struggles we experience in coming to a fork in the road as Christians. He describes this fork in the road as “a decision between something Christian or something un-Christian, between doing some- thing that pleases God or something that will disappoint Him, between doing something virtuous or something sinful.” In our lives we face one of two choices which Saint Paul, in his Epistle to the Galatians, categorized as “works of the esh” or “fruits of the Spirit.” Works of the esh “adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idola- try, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissen- sions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like.” Whereas, fruits of the Spirit are “love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentle- ness, self-control.” (Ga- latians 5:16-23.) Unlike the road to Yogi Berra’s house, the choice between works of the esh and fruits of the Spirit won’t both lead us to His House. In our lives, the fruits of the Spirit are in a daily battle with the works of the esh for the supremacy of our souls. We have to decide which road we are on; are we on Our path or on His path? Are we doing His will or Our will? O en, our own self-deception can lead us away from nding our True Self. I recently heard someone say that villains see themselves as the hero in their story, but what separates a true hero from a villain who thinks himself a hero, is that the true hero has the ability to re ect and to change. “Lord Jesus Christ, son of God, have mercy on me a sinner!” 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 Our group usually does not meet during the summer months, so this gives us some time to absorb and re ect on what we have just read, what we are planning for our next se- ries of sessions starting in September, and on the growth of our ministry in general. When we rst wrote up our ministry statement to present to our Parish Council, we focused on who we are and what we do as a part of the Church as the Body of Christ. In Ephesians 4, St. Paul reminds us that the Church is His Body on earth, and that we are being built together with Christ as our cornerstone, all one, walking worthy of our calling in unity and love, using our God-given gi s for the growth and upli ing of others, joined and knit together in love. So, the focus of our ministry is rst about reading, learning, and sharing what we understand the Word of God to be, so that we can build a better, more prayerful relationship with Him and with each other and with our broader community. Recently some of us read a very interesting interview with Sr. Dr. Vassa Larin, an Ortho- dox nun who has a social media presence on the internet, “Co ee with Sister Vassa.” One of questions she was asked was about how she would describe her mission and what ad- vice she would give to others. She responded, “Neither Orthodox monasticism, nor Ortho- doxy in general, exists in a bubble, non-con- versant with ‘this world.’ ...in general, I believe we are called in every generation to contextu- alize the received Word in our own lives, first internalizing it in our own context, and then ‘giving birth’ to it in our world... bringing peo- ple together around the truths of our tradition, and closer to living that tradition on a daily basis—not just on Sundays... it’s not about us, if we want to spread the Word. So just be yourself and share of yourself, staying close to Christ and His Word, letting him get bigger, and yourself smaller.” is actually gave us a new and deeper insight into what our own Women of the Word ministry is and can be – a way for women in our community to gath- er in love around the Word of God, exploring our “truer” selves in relationship to Christ and to one another, and bringing our under- standing of Orthodoxy into the full context of our daily lives. Wishing everyone a most blessed Holy As- cension and Holy Pentecost! With All Peace & Love in our Risen Lord, + e Women of the Word Bible Study Group We all have experienced decision points in our lives. We have to choose one way over another. FROM THE PARISH COUNCIL PRESIDENT On behalf of Philoptochos, thank you for your generosity all year long. We are blessed with a giving community that so graciously stands behind our many endeavors, fund- raisers and events. Because of you we have been able to support all our ministries, our community friends in need, and those most impacted by the unimaginable conditions in war-torn Ukraine. We could not do this without you. We are grateful for your mem- bership and your involvement. We are excited our Greek Festival is return- ing this year! ere are many ways – large and small – you can be involved. Staying true to a decades-long tradition, our Anthousa Chapter is once again creating the Festival Pastries – a cornerstone of the weekend. Please watch for upcoming baking dates - we need volunteers! Don’t miss this educational, fun, and gratifying experience! Please reach out to any of our Philoptochos Ladies or call the church for more information…ask what you can do to help. Look for chapter updates throughout the summer and plan on joining us for our Sum- mer Ice Cream Social in August! Currently not a member – please consider joining us! https://www.anthousa.org/Anthousa_Mem- bership.html With love in Christ – So a Samouris Anthousa Chapter President PHILOPTOCHOS NEWS