IT WORKED!! 2020 Metropolis Virtual Ministry Awards Recognition By Stamatis Astra, of the Astra Report


2020 Metropolis Virtual Ministry Awards Recognition

By Stamatis Astra, of the Astra Report


It will not work!  We are in the middle of a health crisis, that has become an economic crisis, and to top it all we are witnessing a social crisis.  Families are worried, the economic future is unstable, people have to literally choose between their life and health and their livelihood.  How can we have a first time ever “virtual awards dinner”? 


Thoughts and skepticism were filling the mind like dark clouds before a summer New England storm.  And then the silver lining … we will make it work!  Even the worst events and situations can have a positive aspect. These are the unprecedented times during which people, families, and our community need a beacon, a light, and a hope that only the Church can and will give.  These extraordinary times when we were forced to stay inside, to face our deepest fears, we all looked inside our hearts and soul and found the answer in our faith.  The pandemic was a slap in our arrogant face, and it gave us the opportunity to discover what really matters in our lives.  


So, yes, it is going to work! Despite the challenges, the technical issues, the unknowns of the first virtual program, the evening started with the upbeat Master of Ceremonies, Phil Paleologos, giving the tone of hope and spirituality that reached through the computer and streaming devices in to our homes.  


Athena Kalyvas, president of the Philoptochos Board, shared all the tireless efforts and charity work that during the past three months have spread their wings from the homeless veterans program to the COVID 19 relief efforts and offered a helping hand to all those in need.


Father Thomas Chininis, president of the New England Clergy Brotherhood, talked about the new opportunities within the lives of our parishes.  The example of the honorees inspires us all to do better and serve our community and those in need.  The honorees are the beacon and light we all need to guide us.


Next, Honorable Consul General of Greece, Stratos Efthymiou, talked about the importance of the message of hope and peace that the church is spreading.  The Consul General mentioned the special bond between Boston and Greece, all the connections and long history between our city and our motherland.


IT IS WORKING! Thirty minutes into the night, the music by Enosis Band uplifted and brought the joy and love of our Greek music into our homes.


His Eminence Metropolitan Methodios, on this special day when we celebrate the feast of Saint Methodios, took pride in and expressed gratitude for 34 years of this awards ministry to those who work to spread our faith and help the communities.  We honor and are reminded of all the good work our ministries and faithful do to restore the icon of God, on the hearts, minds, and souls of all.  “Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that” His Eminence quoted, and we must be instruments of peace in our society and our parishes can play a role to renew our social fabric.  And we will assume our responsibility to offer service and our calling to bring unity, peace, justice and love and above all to unite us all under God.  


Yes, IT IS WORKING as 55 different honorees “virtually” walk into our homes and hearts and give us an example to follow.  It is different, maybe there is no loud clapping and we miss the smiles on the proud faces, but listening to their stories and work fills us with inspiration. 


Yes, it is different.  This year we did not gather all together, we did not hug and share stories and pictures in person.  But we did do the wonderful job of collectively offering over 5,000 meals to those in need.  Sometimes it takes very little, to make a huge impact.


Thank you to all who worked so hard for making a lonely Sunday evening become a memorable event that we will remember for years to come.