Your Eminence Archbishop Nikitas of Thyateira,
Your Eminence Metropolitan Gerasimos of San Francisco,
My Beloved Brothers in the Holy Spirit,
Dear Clergy and Faithful of this Community of the Holy Cross,
Beloved Bishop-Elect of Amastris, Your Grace Spyridon,
Together with all the Saints, we offer fervent prayers for all those who have brought you before the Holy Altar this day, whether alive in this world or the next.
Beloved Bishop-Elect Spyridon, you were known for most of your life as Spencer, an Anglicized version of your Baptismal Name. But today, your name echoes that of the Great Bishop of Trimythous (Τριμυθούντος), who is the perfect icon of a pastor and a theologian. And you are both as well, an experienced shepherd of the Flock of Christ through your many decades of parish ministry, and you are a theologian who has worked to explicate the sacred texts of our Orthodox liturgical life for the access and the understanding of the Faithful.
I, for one, look very much forward to your continuing service in our Archdiocese and your new participation in the Assembly of Bishops. Here, I believe, you have a talent that must not be buried, but it should be shared with your brother Bishops. I speak of your theological talent.
We must continue to seek the best translations for all Orthodox in the United States, faithful to the Greek original, and translations that allow all Orthodox to worship ἐν ἑνἰ στόματι – “with one voice,” as we pray in every Divine Liturgy.
Bishop-Elect Spyridon, your vast experience and familiarity with the liturgical texts of the Church give you a distinct and enriched perspective that must be shared with all. We know the tremendous value of the original Greek language; therefore, we must provide the very best translations!
You are a living link to the Christian community that was there as early as the Second Century, as is attested by the Letter of Saint Dionysios of Corinth to the Bishop there, whose name was Palmas. In that letter, according to Eusebius, there was advice in regard to marriage and celibacy.
Your life has been abundantly blessed by God, and has had its share of challenges, which by the grace of God, and by your love of the Church, you have overcome. I pray that your episcopacy is becomes the means of your sharing your many gifts with an even wider circle of the Faithful.