Thirteen years ago, the very foundation that binds our country together was challenged. Our nation, built on ancient Hellenic ideals, stood strong and once again showed the world America’s resolve and the unity of its people. The outpouring of support since that fateful morning was stronger than the devastation we all anguished over and with which we continue to live. The connections we have to our neighbors and the responsibilities we accept from our community are what make this country the envy of the world and the greatest nation in history.
On this day, this solemn day, we are given the opportunity to reflect upon and appreciate the values that create a just society and a principled country. America is second to none and stands as a beacon of hope for the world to admire and the wise to emulate. With pride, dignity, perseverance and an unyielding drive to make the future better, we pulled together and re-built what we lost and mended what could never be restored.
At the same time, we are reminded that upholding the virtues of a life well lived is an obligation that must be continually fulfilled. The simple act of caring for the displaced, the less fortunate, the suffering or the grieving, gives us the opportunity to improve the world around us and make our Shining City on a Hill even more illustrious. We must never forget the strength that comes from a unified community nor the significance of personal responsibility, what we Greeks know as ‘philotimo’. This uniquely Greek concept encourages each of us to live our lives with honor and participate with dedication to the highest ideals.
Let us never overlook the Hellenic values which created the benefits we and western civilization have enjoyed for millennia. Let us never ignore our responsibilities to our fellow man, our community and our nation. And let us never forget to thank God for the United States of America.
Dr. Zenon Christodoulou
AHEPA – D5