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Church celebrates exhibit, 75 years

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  • Bill Samsonoff
    http://www.seacoastonline.com/news/09302006/nhnews-ph-por-legacy.exhibit.html Church celebrates exhibit, 75 years By Emily Aronson earonson@seacoastonline.com
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 1, 2006

      Church celebrates exhibit, 75 years

      By Emily Aronson

      PORTSMOUTH -- St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church celebrated its diamond
      anniversary Friday with a new exhibit at Strawbery Banke Museum and a
      special visit from His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios of America.

      Archbishop Demetrios, the head of the Greek Orthodox Church in North
      America, cut the ribbon to unveil the exhibit during a black-tie gala at
      the Wentworth By the Sea Hotel in New Castle. The six-paneled display was
      later moved to the Tyco Visitor's Center at the museum, where it will be
      shown for the next six months starting today at 10 a.m.

      The Legacy Exhibit, as it's called, features artifacts and photos from
      Greek immigrants' arrival in the Seacoast during the early 1900s, formation
      of St. Nicholas parish 75 years ago, and the local Greek leaders of today.

      Museum President Larry Yerdon said this is the first time Strawbery Banke
      has hosted an exhibit telling the story of a local church or cultural

      "It's really a milestone because 75 years in a community is not an easy
      thing," Demetrios said. "It's not simply just surviving; it's surviving
      with progress, with glory."

      The archbishop said the church's Father Angelo Pappas was his student when
      he taught at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology.

      Pappas and the archbishop walked around the exhibit together, as Pappas
      explained the story behind certain pictures or mementos.

      The archbishop said he was especially touched by the tattered immigration
      documents from the early 20th century.

      Exhibit Chairwomen Pam Pappas-Clarkin and Doreen Athans Papatones said the
      Byzantine-style arches and domes found in many Orthodox churches inspired
      the exhibit's design.

      "The main focus was the church being the center of Greek life and
      everything radiating out from that," Papatones said.

      Former church President Nancy Notis said the display also emphasizes the
      importance of civic duty within the church, noting pictures of Father
      Pappas blessing bodies at Ground Zero in New York City and an article
      announcing church member Andrew Jarvis' election as mayor.

      "We were a true minority, but we have been able to contribute so much,"
      said Greg Filias, co-chairman of the 75th anniversary gala.
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