Washington, DC.- (GreekNewsOnline)
Keeping up with a long tradition, His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros of America has proclaimed May 17 as “AHEPA Sunday” in the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America.AHEPA Sunday is an annual recognition of a long and cherished relationship between AHEPA and the Greek Orthodox Church in America.
The encyclical issued by Archbishop Elpidophoros states, in part: “This year, … all of us can take a moment to remember the work of AHEPA, which for nearly one hundred years has been foundational to the Greek-American experience of the United States and beyond. Whether it was the defense of the Greek Orthodox Faith in times of anti-immigrant prejudice, establishing medical and housing facilities both here and in Greece, or advocacy for the freedom of Greece and especially for the Ecumenical Patriarchate, AHEPA has always been among the extraordinary pillars of the Omogeneia.
“We are honored by, and appreciate deeply, the kind words of Archbishop Elpidophoros, who eloquently commemorated our mission and recognized the community service work our members provide across the United States and around the world, especially in helping to meet the current coronavirus pandemic,” Supreme President George G. Horiates said. “The AHEPA family values the close ties and shared history it has with the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. We are also grateful for the blessings His Eminence has bestowed upon the AHEPA family and our members.”
Founded in 1922 in Atlanta, Georgia, on the principles that undergirded its fight for civil rights and against discrimination, bigotry, and hatred felt at the hands of the Ku Klux Klan, AHEPA is the largest and oldest grassroots association of American citizens of Greek heritage and Philhellenes with more than 400 chapters across the United States, Canada, and Europe.
AHEPA’s mission is to promote the ancient Greek ideals of Education, Philanthropy, Civic Responsibility, and Family and Individual Excellence through community service and volunteerism.
Encyclical of His Eminence Archbishop
Elpidophoros for AHEPA Sunday
To the Most Reverend Hierarchs, the Reverend Priests and Deacons, the Monks and Nuns, the Presidents and Members of the Parish Councils of the Greek Orthodox Communities, the Distinguished Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, the Day, Afternoon, and Church Schools, the Philoptochos Sisterhoods, the Youth, the Hellenic Organizations, and the entire Greek Orthodox Family in America
My Beloved Brothers and Sisters in the Risen Christ,
Χριστὸς Ἀνέστη! Christ is Risen!
On behalf of the entire family of the Holy Archdiocese of America, I extend the warmest greetings and congratulations to all the esteemed and beloved members of the American Hellenic Educational Progressive Association on the occasion of the annual observance of AHEPA Sunday.
This year, in the midst of the COVID-19 Pandemic, we may have to be distant from our usual festive celebrations that commemorate the positive mission of AHEPA, but all of us can take a moment to remember the work of AHEPA, which for nearly one hundred years has been foundational to the Greek-American experience of the United States and beyond. Whether it was the defense of the Greek Orthodox Faith in times of anti-immigrant prejudice, establishing medical and housing facilities both here and in Greece, or advocacy for the freedom of Greece and especially for the Ecumenical Patriarchate, AHEPA has always been among the extraordinary pillars of the Omogeneia.
Now, AHEPA is helping to meet the crisis with their faithful chapters across America, and we are thankful for their ceaseless contributions. Together, we will get through this crisis, but we must work even more closely now to preserve our Church and our communities, and to advance the goals of AHEPA in this hour of need. May God always bless the American Hellenic Educational Progressive Association, its chapters and families, and keep them safe and healthy for many more years to come.
With paternal love in our Risen Lord,
Archbishop of America