“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” — Matthew 5:16

Beloved Brothers and Sisters in the Lord,

For over 25 years, the Bishop Anthony Philoptochos Student Aid Endowment Fund (BAPSAEF) has been a vital source of our support for our seminarians and students attending Hellenic College/Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology. It was the vision of His Eminence Metropolitan Anthony, of blessed memory, to create an endowment fund so that anyone desiring to study for the Holy Priesthood not be hindered by financial constraints. In partnering with the Metropolis Philoptochos, the BAPSAEF had its humble beginnings and since that time has provided more than $2 million in scholarships to our seminarians and students. Our parishes have been blessed with clergy who have demonstrated tremendous commitment to serving the Lord in His Holy Vineyard, and I know that many of our priests have been the direct recipients of this exceptional generosity.

Each year, the Metropolis Philoptochos sponsors the Light the Path Christmas Luncheon which benefits this endowment fund and sustains the important support offered to our students. This year, there will be Light the Path events – one in southern California on Saturday, November 17 at Saint Sophia Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Los Angeles; and one in northern California on Saturday, December 1 at the Holy Cross Church in Belmont. I ask that all our clergy and faithful participate in these events and support this important endeavor as generously as you are able.

Especially as Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology celebrates its 75th Anniversary this year, it is only fitting that we join with our Metropolis Philoptochos to celebrate this auspicious occasion and also honor them for they have been beacons of philanthropy, love and compassion for our students. We are the only Metropolis that offers this level of support to our students, and it will take the continued cooperation of all our parishes to invest in our Church by supporting Light the Path which will benefit the future of our clergy. Additional information on Light the Path is attached and can also be found on the Metropolis Philoptochos website or by calling the Metropolis Philoptochos Office at 415-431-2600.

I will be in attendance at both of these events, and look forward to personally greeting you and thanking you for the generosity and love for this ministry. May God grant you His abundant grace, peace and mercy, and Light the Path for more young men to follow His call to the Holy Priesthood!

With Love in Christ,
+ G E R A S I M O S
Metropolitan of San Francisco