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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, the members of our Parishes and the entire Greek Orthodox Family in America

Beloved Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Each year on the Twenty-Eighth of October we give honor to our Hellenic forefathers and mothers by commemorating their valiant stand against the forces of tyranny and fascism that were sweeping across Europe during World War II. For on that date in the year 1940, the nation of Greece took a brave position by issuing a resounding “NO” -- “OXI” -- to the desire of fascism to subjugate and occupy Greece. 

Today, October 28 is celebrated as “OXI Day”, for it is representative of the freedom-loving spirit of Hellenism and Christianity which inspired and strengthened the nation of Greece to stand firmly against the advance of Nazi ideology and foreign occupation. Today, our celebration of October 28 as Greek Orthodox Christians who are blessed to live in the United States is a reminder of the value of liberty and the importance of advancing that which is just and noble.

The spirit behind Greece’s cry of “NO,” was distinguished chiefly by its substantive quality of an enduring love for freedom, witnessed by the entire world: When other nations were succumbing to intimidation, the tiny Greek nation summoned a massive strength to declare that no worldly power had the right to threaten the God-given freedom and security of its people. Thus, as we celebrate this day, we celebrate with freedom loving people of all nations the spirit and resolve of our Hellenic forebears. We also celebrate with others our Orthodox Christian heritage, inviting all to participate in the promotion of liberty, peace, and justice in all places. May our celebration of OXI Day honor those who gave so much in faithfulness to truth, honor, and liberty; and may we affirm our resolve to remain the guardians and promoters of the same heroic and freedom-loving spirit of those who gave their lives on October 28, 1940.

With paternal love in Christ,