Nine outstanding women from throughout the Archdiocese were honored at the 2018 National Philoptochos Convention held in conjunction with the Archdiocese 44th Biennial Clergy-Laity Congress.

On Wednesday, July 4, the AGAPE Awards Breakfast was attended by more than 400 people honoring women who exemplify the mission of Philoptochos through AGAPE – All Generations Accomplishing Philanthropic Endeavors.

The breakfast was attended by His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios, Geron of America; representatives from the Ecumenical Patriarchate – His Eminence Metropolitan Apostolos, Geron of Derkon, and His Eminence Metropolitan Maximos of Silivrias; and members of the Eparchial Synod.

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Under the leadership of National Philoptochos President Maria Logus and the AGAPE Awards committee: Jeannie Ranglas, Elaine Cladis, Evangeline Mekras-Scurtis and Martha Stefanidakis, the morning was a most fitting opportunity to honor these nine women who were selected from over 50 nominees from across the Archdiocese. Gerry and Jeannie Ranglas generously sponsored this event.

The AGAPE Award recipient from the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of San Francisco was Kathy Bastas, from the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Greek Orthodox Church in Long Beach, CA. Kathy has been a Philoptochos member since 1999. She has a sincere desire to help others within the Church and greater community which has brought new people into the ministry of Philoptochos. Kathy is a dedicated volunteer not only for the church but was also recognized as the 2018 Volunteer of the Year for the Orange County Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure. She formed a team from her chapter called The Lovely Ladies of Philoptochos who have collectively raised thousands of dollars for breast cancer research. Kathy is also involved with For the Child, a local non-profit organization for abused women and children. She has volunteered over 10,000 hours to this group organizing a back to school drive, Thanksgiving food drive, Santa’s Toy Workshop, and helped with various administrative tasks. At the parish, Kathy has been instrumental in coordinating the baking for the parish festival, organizing volunteers, and also documenting recipes and costs so that future Assumption Festival bakers would have proper records to carry on this excellent work. Kathy is a true example of Philoptochos and philanthropy. Two years ago, the son of a parishioner was diagnosed with Leukemia. The single mother had two children and, though Christmas was approaching, there was not much to celebrate. Kathy led her chapter in providing food and gifts for this family, and even made sure they had a Christmas tree. She served for three terms as Chapter President, two terms as Advisor, and two terms as Treasurer. She is a wealth of knowledge and is eager and willing to share it with others and inspire the younger generation to continue the wonderful ministry of Philoptochos.

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“I congratulate Kathy Bastas for her outstanding work and her exemplification of the beautiful ministry of Philoptochos,” stated His Eminence Metropolitan Gerasimos of San Francisco. “She has reached out to spread the love of God and touched the lives through her loving and giving heart and is most deserving of this recognition.”

Special commendation is also due to the other Metropolis of San Francisco AGAPE Award nominees for their outstanding achievements: Irene Albeck – Saint Anthony Greek Orthodox Church, Pasadena, CA; Barbara Anaya – Saints Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Church, Cardiff-by-the-Sea, CA; Andrea Ballas – Saint Katherine Greek Orthodox Church, Redondo Beach, CA; Katherine Connell – Saint Katherine Greek Orthodox Church, Chandler, AZ; Ruth Duterte – Saint Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church, San Jose, CA; Helen Louis – Saint Paul Greek Orthodox Church, Irvine, CA; Polytimi Peters – Saint Anna Greek Orthodox Church, Roseville, CA; and Sandra Sanders – Saint John the Baptist Greek Orthodox Church, Carmel-By-The-Sea, CA.