BOSTON – Dozens of Greek-Americans of all ages from Boston and many of its suburbs and other cities of Massachusetts and New England ignored the heavy rain and strong winds and gathered on Sunday, October 27 at the Maliotis Cultural Center to honor he heroes of October 28 on the holiday known as ‘OXI’ Day.
Pupils from afternoon Greek Schools as well as from the day school of the Holy Trinity parish in Lowell, MA presented an animated program with poems, songs, narrations, and dances. The choirs of Holy Cross School of Theology and of the Maliotis Cultural Center also participated.
The event, which was organized by the Federation of Hellenic-American Societies of New England, began with prayer offered by Father Athanasios Nenes, presiding priest of the Taxiarchae Greek Orthodox parish of Watertown, MA. Fr. Nenes represented Metropolitan Methodios of Boston and said that the Metropolitan “is very sick and was forced to say at home.”
Present at the celebration was the new chaplain of the School of Theology, Archimandrite Athenagoras Ziliaskopoulos. No other priest was present from the parishes of the entire Metropolis of Boston.
Keynote speaker was Nicholas Gage (Gatzoyiannis) acclaimed journalist, author and film producer. His theme was: “Against All Odds- The Meaning of OXI DAY
Gage said, among other things, that “within a month of the invasion, the Greeks drove the Italians back into Northern Epiros and kept on going. By December they had taken the port of Aghia Sarandes, which had been renamed Edda by Mussolini in honor of his daughter. The Greek People went mad with pride and patriotism; church bells rang, flags blossomed everywhere and pedestrians shouted, “On to Rome.” The entire Western World took hope from the incredible Greek victory, the first defeat of the Axis powers.”
Greetings were offered by Vasilios Kafkas, president of the Federation of the Hellenic American Societies of New England, Consul General of Greece in Boston Efstratios Efthimiou, and Greek-American state senator of Rhode Island Leonidas Raptakis.
Four dance groups performed Greek dances from various parts of Greece. A reception followed for all.