With a Gala Evening held at the Olympic Hall in Adelaide last Friday, the Greek Orthodox Community of SA (GOSCA) kicked off this year’s celebrations for the 200th Anniversary from the beginning of the Greek Revolution.
In attendance were a number of dignitaries among them federal and state politicians, the Consul General of Greece to Australia George Psiachas, representatives of Greek Associations and members of the community.
Apart from the Greek Independence bicentenary the event was also dedicated to the 90th Anniversary of the Greek Orthodox Community of SA, which was to be celebrated last year, but was due to the pandemic.
Addressing the attendees Minister for Innovation and Skills David Pisoni, representing the SA Premier, referred to the successful outcome of the Revolution saying that Greeks inspired other countries in Europe to fight for their independence.
“Greek immigrants have had a similar effect to Australia, as they have shown how one can progress and succeed,” he said.
In his speech, GOCSA’s President Vassilis Gonis said that the Community is moving forward following the heroic deeds derived from Greek history.
“By keeping in our memories those who fought and by honouring the Great Struggle, we are confident that wherever on the globe we may be, their legacy remains alive with us,” Mr Gonis said.
The President’s speech was followed by a video message from Greece’s president, Katerina Sakellaropoulou, who emphasized that the Greeks of the Diaspora were the ones who contributed significantly to the awakening of the Greek national consciousness before the outbreak of the Revolution.
The Consul General said that “”Hellenism, even if enslaved or in the diaspora, has always managed to keep alive the flame of its national consciousness, language and culture.”
The cultural part of the event consisted of traditional dances performed by students of the Community’s Dance Academy.
The list of attendees includes: the Assistant Minister to the Premier of South Australia Jing Lee, Labor MLC Irene Pnevmatikos representing Leader of the Opposition Peter Malinauskas, SA-Best MLC Connie Bonaros, Labor MP Tom Koutsantonis, Federal member for Adelaide Steve Georganas, Lord mayor of Adelaide Sandy Verschoor and Deputy Lord Mayor Mary Couros, Councillor of City of Mitcham and SAMEAC member Andriana Christopoulos and Charles Sturt Councillor Pavlos Alexandridis.
On Sunday, March 28th a memorial service followed by a wreath laying ceremony took place at the Greek Orthodox Cathedral of Archangels Michael and Gabriel with an extensive list of dignitaries among them Greek Australian politicians.
Sunday’s event concluded with students of the Community’s afternoon schools dressed in traditional costumes, reciting poems and singing traditional songs.