By His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros of America
At the Greek Independence Parade
April 10, 2022
Your Eminence Metropolitan Nicholas of Detroit,
Honorable Consul General of Chicago, Emmanuel Koubarakis,
AHEPA District Governor, Dimitris Papageorgiou,
Fellow Hellenes and Philhellenes,
Ζήτω τὸ Εἰκοσιένα!
Here in Detroit, you proudly march in honor of the Immortal Heroes of 1821. You are the vanguard of our Omogeneia – those who do not shy away from either their faith or their culture.
You bring honor to our Greek Orthodox community, to this Metropolis, and especially to our Sacred Archdiocese in its centenary celebration as the premier Eparchy of the Ecumenical Patriarchate.
This march today, this very parade, is a manifestation of love and gratitude – that is, love for Greece and our Orthodox Christian Faith, and gratitude to God for the gift we have of being free Greek Orthodox Christians. And we owe the bestowal of this gift upon us to the sacrifices of our spiritual and physical ancestors, who fought the good fight for freedom.
This Parade today symbolizes the march through history of the Greek People. Indeed, we are a Γένος that has never been confined to a single place, but we all know what we mean when we say Greece. Like Odysseus, the Greek Soul has sailed through history, winding a path of discovery and innovation. Like the famous Archimedes, we can say “εὕρηκα!” about so many things:
And these are just the beginning of a list that could go on for days!
Our National Pride is worthy, and it is belied by the size of our National Home. Greece is a small jewel-box of a country, which has traversed land and sea to bring the foundational values of Western Civilization to the world.
And through our culture, philosophy and language, we brought the greatest gift imaginable to the world – the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Therefore, we will march proudly today, with gratitude and grace, and with the Flag of our Fathers and Mothers held high – a flag that embodies our dedication to freedom. Two hundred and one years ago, our ancestors raised their own symbol of liberty on the Feast of the Annunciation at Agia Lavra in the Peloponnese. Today, we wave our flag to remind the world that their sacrifice will never be forgotten.
The Greek Orthodox community of Detroit has never forgotten. This Metropolis has never forgotten. And I tell you that our Sacred Archdiocese will never forget.
Let us march, therefore, and be of one mind and one heart.
As one community of faith.
As one Omogeneia.
As one Greek Orthodox Church.
Ζήτω τὸ Ἑλληνικὸ Ἔθνος! Ζήτω!