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His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros Greeting to the 38th Annual Charity Gala of the P.G.E.I. of America Charitable Foundation

His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros

Greeting to the 38th Annual Charity Gala of the

P.G.E.I. of America Charitable Foundation, Inc.

November 13, 2022

The Venetian – Garfield, New Jersey

 

Your Grace, Bishop Apostolos of Medeia,

 

Archimandrite Christoforos Oikonomidis, Chancellor,

Very Reverend and Reverend Fathers,

President Alex Theodosiou,

Chairman of the Gala, Nicolas Rallas,

Our Master of Ceremonies and dear friend, Savas Tsivicos,

Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

I am delighted to be with all of you this evening, and indeed humbled to be named your honoree for this 38th Annual Charity Gala of the P.G.E.I. of America Charitable Foundation. You honor not only my humble person tonight, but all those who serve Christ and His Holy Church, for what can be filled with more charity than the Church itself, which is an institution of love.

Hence, to receive your recognition this evening is a real joy for me. For I know you, Pan Gregorian Enterprises, Inc., to be a fraternity of like-minded and like-souled entrepreneurs and business leaders, bound by a commitment to one another and to the wider world.

Being “institutions of love,” is not so easy in our contemporary world. It seems that everyone is trying to distinguish themselves by being so negative about everyone else. This ultimately leads to mere opposition as a way of life, rather than cooperation and real synergy of interests and activities. My experience of your organization is of a positive and mutually beneficial institution, one that seeks to give more than it receives.

The list of your charity’s recipients tells the tale of your philanthropy and sense of public service. All of you are to be congratulated this evening, because your generosity and sense of duty and mission are catalysts for change in the philanthropies that you support.

Therefore, my friends, you are the honorees tonight, and I am here to recognize you. To acknowledge all that you do for the Omogeneia. All that you do for one another, to support your fellow members. All that you do for Greece and Cyprus. All that you do for the local Church communities and for the Metropolis of Nee Jersey. And all that you do for individuals, even when there is no credit or recognition, but simply when you together to be of help to those in need.

The Pan Gregorian Enterprises Charitable Foundation is a shining star in the firmament of Diaspora philanthropies, and you are all to be thanked and affirmed for the work that you do.

As your Archbishop, to see your good works and behold their impact is a cause for hope and strength. These past few years have been hard – both for the Church and for your businesses.

But because of organizations like this, you can come together like the proverbial bundle of sticks and be unbreakable in your determination. Our strength as a community has never been because we are the largest, but because we are so closely knit. We stand with one another and protect each other’s interests.

You have come so far as an organization. Pan Gregorian Enterprises, Inc. of New Jersey is now comprised of 320 Stockholders and 800 Associate Members, a truly dynamic body.

Therefore, I am so very grateful to receive this acknowledgment tonight, knowing that it stems from the deep connections that you all maintain. Connections that make strong the House of the Greek Orthodoxy across this region, and ultimately across the country and the world.

I pray that our gracious Lord will continually bless you and all the good works that you perform.

May your families and friends enjoy good health, spiritual and material prosperity, and the peacefulness that comes from living a positive life.

This has been a very special evening for me. I receive you honor also on behalf of the One Hundredth Anniversary of our Sacred Archdiocese as the premier Eparchy of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in the Diaspora.

Thank you again, and may the Lord bless us all.

 

Photo: GOARCH/Dimitrios Panagos