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Heroes Fight Like Greeks
Fr. Efstratios Magoulias

On Wednesday, March 22, our 7th-grade class traveled to the Houston Holocaust Museum to learn more about the atrocities that were committed during World War II and to immerse themselves in an important history lesson.

Upon returning to campus, Fr. Efstratios Magoulias of the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral prepared a presentation discussing Greece and the Nazi Resistance. Greece, a nation whose landmass can fit into the state of Texas over five times, withstood attacks for over 200 days from both the Italian and Nazi-German armies. Of all the occupied states, no country withstood the Axis invasion as long as the Greek army. 

After eventually falling to the Axis Powers, the Greek Orthodox Church provided safety for hundreds of thousands of Jews who had fled to and were living in Greece. Churches, monasteries, and civilians took Jewish families into their homes and hid them, while the Orthodox Church as a whole offered false citizenship papers and “Baptismal Certificates” to save, protect, and keep families together. Most notably, the bishop of the island of Zakynthos, Metropolitan Chrysostomos, when confronted by German forces demanding the names of the Jews living on the island, only offered his own name (and with this great presentation of bravery, the Germans stopped searching on the island for Jews. Zakynthos is the only place where no Jewish souls were taken or lost). 

After over five years of German occupation, Greece received its independence and was recognized for their bravery in holding off the Axis Powers, as well as for protecting so many people from certain persecution and death. 

The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Winston Churchill, when speaking about the Greek’s resistance to the Nazi forces, said, “Until now, we used to say that Greeks fight like heroes. Now we shall say: heroes fight like Greeks.”

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