March 25, 2021 marks the 200th anniversary of the beginning of Greece’s struggle for independence. After approximately 400 years of slavery, the Greeks, motivated by the spirit of enlightenment which had overrun Europe at that time, but also by their thirst for freedom, waged a struggle although outnumbered, to rid themselves from Turkish oppression with the motto "Freedom or Death".
Their supporters in this struggle, the people of Europe who were inspired by the effort and unparalleled passion of the Greeks, urged their respective governments to support this struggle. The first country to recognize the right of the Greeks to self-determination was distant Haiti to be followed slowly by the great world powers of the time.
During these 200 years, Greece has grown. It is a beacon of culture, highlighting and promoting its cultural heritage, reviving the Olympic Games, but also participating in two world wars on the side of those who supported free thought, but paying a heavy price in human lives. Today Greece is an integral part of the European family and a pole of stability and development in its region.
The Hellenic Community of Greater Montreal — which has been serving the Greek population of the greater Montreal area (Montreal, Laval and South Shore regions) since 1906 — stated that it feels the responsibility inherited from its ancestors. “Montrealers of Greek origin are a dynamic part of our society promoting the ideals and values that our forefathers taught the world.”