THE MYRRH-BEARER  VOLUME 18, ISSUE 6 JULY/AUGUST 2012

The Consuming Fire: Fr. Gary

In Colorado Springs a wild-

fire is burning out of control;

tens of thousands of people have been evacuated from their homes. It takes just a few seconds for a spark to become an inferno. An average of 5 million acres burns each year in the United States, causing millions of dollars in damage.

Once a fire begins, it can spread at a rate of up to 14 miles per hour, consuming everything in its path. As a fire spreads through brush and trees, it can take on a life of its ownit finds surprising ways to keep itself alive, creating its own weather and wind patterns, even spawning smaller fires by throwing embers miles away. It jumps boundaries and shows little regard for human expectations. All consuming fire can be a very scary thing; it defies predic- tion and understanding.

But fire is necessary to the earthly cycle of renewal. When stewards of the land extinguish every spark, refusing to allow any fire at all, the cycle of life suffers. Vegetation age sandbegins to choke itself, plant can’ t reseed and diversity of flora and fauna deteriorates. Drought and wind take their toll and fire inevitably does break out creating a confla

gration like the Yellowstone National Park Fire of 1988 which burned out of control for months, and could only be extinguished when cooler, moister weather conditions came with the change of seasons  read more ...


Ventura County AHEPA Chapter 220

Ventura County AHEPA Chapter 220 recently announced Alexander Farkas as the winner of the 2012 Bill Gatsios Memorial Scholarship Award. He was presented with the $500 scholarship at an AHEPA dinner at St. Demetrios on May 29th.

Alex, a graduating senior at Westlake High School, is the son of David and Annie Farkas. He has participated in Greek Dance, volunteered at the Rescue Mission and served in the altar here at St. Demetrios for many years.

At Westlake High School, Alex ran cross country, served as the sports editor of the school paper, and was captain of the tennis team. A member of the National Honors Society with an outstanding academic record, he has been accepted to the University of Missouri where he will study journalism with the goal of pursuing a career in sports broadcasting.

AHEPA members said they were proud to present this year’s Bill Gatsios Scholarship to such a well-rounded, deserving young man. Read More ...

Newsletter June 2012

President's Message: Chris Mallakis

I am proud to report that in the first five months of the year, we have accomplished our goals and continue to make progress in our parish community and in our plans for building our future home.

The Spring General Assembly was well- attended and all the ministries and organizations of the church were represented with written and spoken reports. Every parishioner should devote their time to coming to the General Assembly meetings twice each year. It is the best way to stay informed about everything going on at St. Demetrios.

This month we have our 34th Annual Ven- tura County Greek Festival. We all need to come together and redouble our efforts for Festival this year. It is very important to have a successful and profitable Festival so we can increase the building fund and build our new home.

Please don’t wait for an invitation! Contact Festival Chair John Poulos, any Parish Council Member, the office, or Father Gary and offer your help.

Message from Fr Gary

Fr Gary

Encounter Christ


Many Evangelical Christians can name the date in which they were “Born Again.” The day in which they made Christ a priority in their life. Many of us, as Orthodox Christians, make that commitment on the day of our Baptism and Christmation, as infants. Are we transformed by the love of Christ? Do we allow ourselves to be transformed by Christ? There is a common theme in the Sunday Gospel readings following Pascha (Easter). Each of these five Sunday Gospels after Pascha distinguish a person (or persons) transformed by Christ.

The Sunday following Pascha we hear of “Doubting” Thomas. Thomas is skeptical about the encounter his brother disciples have with the risen Lord and make a bold proclamation, “Unless I see and touch!” The Lord reveals himself to Thomas and Thomas is immediately transformed. Without having to touch, he exclaims, “My Lord and my God!” Thomas encounter’s Christ and his faith is renewed.

The second Sunday after Pascha, we learn of the Myrrh-Bearing Women. These brave women approach the tomb of Christ and find it empty. Having encountered Christ, they return and share the good news with the disciples. Then on the third Sunday after our Lord’s Resurrection the Church shares the story of the paralytic. Although this happens before the Lord’s crucifixion, it holds fast to the theme of “Encountering Christ.” The man has suffered with an infirmity for 38 years...

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