By: Chris Pappis, AHEPA D6
During the Coronavirus pandemic the emergency response by AHEPA Hermes Chapter 186 and Empire State District 6 has highlighted not only the profound need, but the intense efforts, and charity that have been labeled by the people, and news media as an unprecedented, “Labor of Charity and Love Campaign” «Εκστρατεία Φιλανθρωπίας και Αγάπης» in the communities of Astoria, Long Island City, East Elmhurst, Woodside, Sunnyside, and beyond.
The direct feeding of the elderly, infirm, and the poor who are most in need by providing them with a cooked gourmet lunch Monday-Friday commenced from April 13 to 24 at Queensbridge, Ravenswood, Astoria, and Woodhaven Public Housing buildings during the Greek Orthodox Easter lent, prior to the program being moving to the next host site which is St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Cathedral of Astoria. The church touts the largest concentrations of Hellenic Americans in the world outside of Greece. This level of charity has been sponsored by AHEPA Hermes Chapter 186 brother Ignazio S. Terranova, who is a proud member of the chapter and is a candidate for the NY State Senate from Astoria. The financial support was garnered from the generosity of Seth Weissman of Weissman Equities, and #REhasYourBack. With the full support of the AHEPA District 6 Lodge and, especially the District 6 Governor Ilias “Lou” Katsos, AHEPA is hard at work in the most grassroots of fashion.
The aforementioned efforts were planned and coordinated by NY State District 6 Warden Brother George Zouvelos, who is the immediate past president, and also a member and chair of the executive board of Hermes 186. Zouvelos’ assistants are represented by Chapter Secretary Peter Argyropoulos, along with the brave volunteers including Hermes past president Louis Kokalis, Br. Ted Kouris, and Br. Anthony Pappas. Along with the Hermes volunteers are the sisters from the Daughters of Penelope Astoria Ilion Ch. 135 Effie Argyropoulos, Stella Phillips Kokalis, and Anastasia Zouvelos.
The community feeding at St. Demetrios Cathedral will last until Friday, May 8, 2020. Thereafter, will continue at a Roman Catholic Church most in need to be named shortly.
Photo: George Zouvelos – AHEPA District 6 Warden, Chairman of Hermes 186 Executive Board, and past president of the chapter