Letter to Editor

Letter to the Editor: On the Kalanta, Greek Christmas Carols

January 6, 2023

To the Editor:

These days, I had the great opportunity and pleasure to watch the Christmas celebration of the Greek school of our parish.

In the hall packed full of people we found seats with great difficulty. Taking in my hands the simple, but beautiful program of the celebration, I was moved, seeing the cover decorated with one of the most beautiful paintings by the Greek artist Nikiforos Lytras. The painting was from 1872. Children stand outside a modest home. The housewife listens to them. Dressed in period costumes and holding simple, period musical instruments, they are dedicated to their cause – to sing the kalanta, the Christmas carols. To sing the miracle of the Incarnation, the Birth of Christ, the Redeemer of the World. They still want to wish the housewife the best, and the householder a thousand years of life.

The kalanta, the carols are the songs that move us all. They fill us with joy and hope for better times. They promise us a better world, a better cosmos. And we all know that the word ‘cosmos’ means the ornament, the jewel. Happy holidays and all the best for the New Year with peace on Earth and goodwill to all people. Thank you for the hospitality.

Katerina Kollarou
Astoria, NY


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