Dear Faith Friends,

After hiking the largest Greek island, Crete, for two weeks, we walked four smaller islands – Santorini, Serifos, Sifnos and Milos.  Each had its own character.  Santorini has dramatic beauty and LOTS of people, especially from Asia.  Serifos was overmined for centuries and looks a bit like deserted deserts of the Wild West; there is little infrastructure and tourists are mostly Greeks from the mainland. Sifnos is well cultivated agriculturally – enough for export – and has produced many great chefs.  Lots of French visitors – maybe because the food is so good!  Milos is still a wealthy mining community and has only recently welcomed tourists; we heard a lot of German.

On Sifnos, we took a Greek cooking class on a small family farm.  George and Dina explained how they are returning to traditional seeds, species and methods of planting to use less water and insecticides.  They want to yield diverse and healthy crops.  George learned from his parents, grandparents and other elders in the community. Now, his sons are carrying on the tradition.

It is a lot of work, but also a joy, George said.  I know that feeling in ministry.  The Christian life is joy and effort, work and rest, planting and harvesting, and passing on the goodness of our God.

I’m looking forward to cooking some of the recipes I learned from George and Dina for you.

Blessings on the journey,

So let us not grow weary in doing what is right, for we will reap at harvest-time if we do not give up. So then, whenever we have an opportunity, let us work for the good of all and especially for those of the family of faith. – Paul’s letter to the Galatians 6:9-10