ΖΗΤΩ ΕΛΛΑΣ!! - Happy Greek Independence Day!!
I hope this message finds you in safety and in health. On behalf of the AHEPA District 6 Lodge: ΖΗΤΩ ΕΛΛΑΣ!! - Happy Greek Independence Day!! March 25th marks the beginning of the Hellenic War of Independence. It is also the Feast of the Annunciation, a day chosen to start the revolution of 1821 by the Filiki Etairia, and a day which the Orthodox tradition has frequently celebrated as “the beginning of our liberation”, and which now has two meanings. From 1821 to 1829, the Hellenic struggle would attract the sympathy and support of Philhellenes around the world and many fought and died there that Hellas may be free. In the end, the nation of Hellas was born on September 12, 1829.
Today “We are all Greeks” as taken from poet Percy Bysshe Shelley’s (1792-1822) famous verse drama “Hellas” written in 1821 at the start of the Hellenic Revolution (his last during his lifetime) and published in 1822 with the view of raising money for the war. The full quote from the poem being “We are all Greeks. Our Laws, our literature, our arts have their root in Greece…”.
Nearly 2,500 years ago, the Greek historian Thucydides wrote, “The secret of happiness is freedom, and the secret of freedom is courage”. Today, the AHEPA Family proudly celebrates the courage of those who fought, both Hellenes and Philhellenes, and struggled in the Greek War of Independence and the long tradition of freedom that originated in ancient Greece and is the birthright of every human being. In the Hellenic struggle, we recognize the very best of the Hellenic tradition: a love of liberty, a hatred of tyranny, and a spirit of independence and part also of our American and AHEPA traditions. We celebrate not only the birth of a new nation, but the continuation of that old tradition not only on some of us as Hellenes but also as Americans and AHEPANS.
Brother Lou Katsos
AHEPA District 6 Governor