It known as the ‘Paris of the Balkans’ and since 1862, it has been the capital of Romania, and one of most controversial endeavors and legacies of its former communist dictator Nicolae Ceausescu, is the ‘People’s Palace’, the gigantic building that is one of the most important and dazzling sights of Bucharest.
It is the pinnacle of communist architecture and was built to reflect the country’s prosperity and grandeur. With a total area of 365,000 square meters, it is the largest public building in Europe and the second largest in terms of surface area worldwide, after the Pentagon in the United States. It also holds the title of ‘the heaviest building in the world.’
Despite its original name as ‘People’s Palace’, it was a restricted area as far as Romanian citizens were concerned. After the death of Ceausescu, however, the gates of his palace were opened – and suspicions about the untold fortune hidden inside it were confirmed.
Its subsequent transformation into the ‘Palace of Parliament’ gives a hopeful message that, after a difficult period, in the place where the people’s freedom was banned through communism and dictatorship, it has returned… through democracy.
Bucharest is also referred to as ‘Little Paris’ since the ‘Arc de Triomphe’ which impressively adorns its center, was modeled after that of Paris.
The gardens that ‘pose as living portraits,’ the public parks including Herestrau, the roof of the George Enescu Philharmonic Orchestra, the impressive Ancient Greek-influenced ‘Romanian Athenaeum’, the Church of Stavropoleos, and the Unity Square ‘Piata Unirii’, together with the wide tree-lined boulevards that lead to large circular squares, which house impressive monuments, beautiful baroque mansions, large sidewalks with charming neoclassical cafes… endow the area with a cosmopolitan air despite the historical baggage!
For each of our destinations, we travel with some kind of aim or vision… this time in our luggage we packed ‘our fanciest and cleanest clothes,’ those of the Blue and White ethics’, inspired by the Hellenic roots of the Hippocratic Oath.
Medical science and the oath guided us on an initiative of the Global Doctors’ Hippocratic Institute, under the auspices of the Medical Association of Athens (ISA) to Bucharest, Romania. The purpose of the trip was to build a great bridge of interaction and solidarity between the Greek people and the people where the first martyr of our country’s freedom and forerunner of the Neo-Hellenic Enlightenment Rigas Feraios (Velestinlis) wrote all his works as a writer, translator, and thinker just before 1821.
The Romanian territory was the one he chose to as the subject of his three cartographic works including the New Map of Wallachia and the General Map of Moldavia, as well as the maps he printed in 1797 in Vienna.
Inspired by the Oath, the message is: “We, the descendant Doctors of Hippocrates, will be guarding the values of the Father of Medicine and will remain loyal to his principles as well as the holistic therapeutical approach that is the cornerstone of the Hippocratic philosophy… The necessity of re-harmonizing modern medicine with Hippocratic legacy is now evident. With this trip we are promoting this principle. We are serving this principle. We are transmitting this principle in the whole world.”
The inner voices of the group of the Global Doctors’ Hippocratic Institute, chaired by Regional Governor of Attica Dr. George Patoulis, are rallying around their faith in the Father of Medicine – Hippocrates.
Acclaimed scientists and academics are at the helm of this large group, among them Dr. Konstantinos Pantos, world renowned specialist in fertility medicine teacher of IVF, founder and Scientific Director of the Genesis Athens Clinic, Dr. Antonios Polydorou, Dr. Konstantinos Kouskoukis, Ms. Chrysoula Papadopoulou – the person who has been standing by the side of the organization that has been realizing the visions of Dr. Pantos for years, Fotios Patsourakos, etc.
The New York-based National Herald and our show followed them on their own mission: in the courtyard of the Motza Metropolitan Hospital, in the presence of the Rector of the University of Bucharest Dr. Viorel Jinga. That institution of higher learning supports the global promotion of the universal character of Hippocratic medical science and medical thought, as well as networking among Greek and international scientific human resources, all under one roof, so to speak.
Having as a common goal Hippocratic Medicine, Thought and Philosophy, the Global Hippocratic Doctors’ Institute contributes to the scientific and professional development of ‘international medical capital’ by creating these conditions that are suitable for the establishment of Hippocratic awareness in the international medical community, as well as to the promotion and visibility of the Hippocratic philosophy in the international medical world.
On a day dedicated to children, there were emotional speeches expressed in the intense colors of personal experience. Countless Romanian mothers with their children in their arms praised Dr. Pantos of the Genesis Athens Clinic, because he helped them fulfil their dream of having children through IVF.
The event was attended by prominent members of the academic and scientific community of Romania as well as Ambassador of Greece to Romania Sofia Grammata, President of the Hellenic-American Chamber Christos Seferis, and Radu Vladareanu, President of the Association of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Romania.
The enthusiasm will be extended as the University of Bucharest Rector invited the president of ISA to install a bust of Hippocrates next October.
Our show, Apostoli-Mission, through its own campaign to unite Hellenism with the diaspora and philhellenism with the cultures of other peoples, will soon join in an exclusive long-distance trip to beautiful Melbourne where we will follow the Global Hippocratic Doctors’ Institute in collaboration with the ISA and the Region of Attica to the Annual Global Doctors Hippocratic Institute Conference and the Hellenic Medical Diaspora World Congress on November 17-19, reflecting efforts to unite the medical associations that are in the United States, Australia, England, and in various other countries of the world.
Our bilingual travel show Apostoli-Mission, is available on the National Herald websites: www.thenationalherald.com and www.ekirikas.com, every weekend, on ODYSSEY TV in the U.S. via STAR but also through Zina Koutselinis’ show, Truths with Zina.
Follow on Instagram: Clelia_charissis.
Special Thanks to: Dr. George Patoulis, Dr. Kostas Pantos, Antonios Polydorou, Chrysoyla Papadopoulou, and:
NEW YORK (AP) — Where will you be watching the April 8 total solar eclipse? There are just a few weeks left to pick your spot to see the skies darken along a strip of North America, whether by land, sea or air.
BALTIMORE – Determined to mount a serious election campaign, with a focus on social issues emphasizing public education, first generation Greek-American educator Sia Kyriakakos spoke to The National Herald about her great endeavor.
NICOSIA - With Turkey already hunting for energy in parts of Cyprus’ offshore Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) it doesn’t recognize, the Greek-Cypriot government said Turkey didn’t have the right to allow a university research boat to conduct research in those waters.
ATHENS - A move by the ruling New Democracy government to allow private colleges in Greece has drawn interest from 10 top international schools, Education Minister Kyriakos Pierrarakakis said ahead of a vote in Parliament.
ATHENS - While there’s been an easing of tensions between the countries, Turkey said that Greece’s positioning of troops on some Aegean islands near Turkey’s coast violates peace treaties and said their sovereignty could be challenged.
Sign up for a subscription
Want to save this article? Get a subscription to access this feature and more!
Have an idea for a story, or know of an event we should cover? We want to hear about it!
The National Herald is the paper of record of the Greek Diaspora community. Through independent journalism, we bring news to generations of Greek-Americans, with stories on the individual, community and international level. Visit and support our 106 year-old sister publication Εθνικός Κήρυξ.
You’re reading 1 of 3 free articles this month. Get unlimited access to The National Herald. or Log In