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Culture

St. Demetrios Students Honor 100 Years Since the Catastrophe of Asia Minor

NEW YORK – On Sunday, April 10 students from Saint Demetrios High School alongside faculty members presented writings, songs, and dances in honor of those who perished and suffered during the Asia Minor catastrophe, the Hellenes who hat their lives uprooted and destroyed in the 1920s. This special assembly was organized by the students themselves who after studying the history of Asia Minor, wanted to give back in their own way.

The memorial ceremony took place on Sunday, April 10, 2022 at the Petros Patrides Cultural Center Homeland. Photo by Saint Demetrios Prep/Facebook

Vivid black and white photos were displayed on a big screen as students spoke eloquently in English and Greek about what it meant to live in Smyrna and other parts of Asia Minor as Greeks, Armenians, a small population of Jews, and even Americans. Anton Skuratovsky, a 7th grader, recreated the voice and mannerisms of American Diplomat George Horton who was honored to represent his nation in the region and fought to protect the Christian population. The Saint Demetrios Dance troupe performed several festive traditional dances which were common at weddings and community affairs. The theme of remembering the past resonated throughout the Patrides Center of the Saint Demetrios School as the audience listened intently, mesmerized by the fact that young high school students would take on this special project. Angeliki Tsementzi, Nina Siristatidou, Peggy Simakos, Dimitris Carabas, and Mr. Panagiotis Kanellopoulos were the teachers active in the success of the event. Reverend Father Vasileios Tsourlis was so impressed that he asked the students to revisit holding this assembly to a wider audience in New York.

The event was organized by St. Demetrios Vice Principal Helen Karagiorgos. Photo by Saint Demetrios Prep/Facebook

This special centennial celebration was attended by Reverend Father Vasileios Tsourlis, Dean of the Saint Demetrios Cathedral, Stephen Thomatos, Parish Council President of Saint Demetrios Cathedral, Evelyn Kanella representing the Greek Consulate, members of the Federation of Hellenic Societies, the school PTA, faculty and administration members of the Saint Demetrios School system, and families of students.

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