Τετάρτη, 9 Νοεμβρίου 2016

The Art of Making Spoon Sweets, Marmalades and Jams!

Fruits, their flavors and the recipes of traditional spoon sweets and jams will have a feast day at the culinary event organized by the Lyceum of Greek Women of Montreal in collaboration with the nuns of the convent of Greek Orthodox Monastery of the Virgin Mary Consolation Lachutte, Sunday December 4,  2-5 p.m. at the hall of the Annunciation Church (Evangelismos).
That Sunday the Greek Orthodox nuns under the blessing of Gerontissa Thekla will reveal all the small and big secrets of the manufacture of spoon sweets and jams based on the wonderful fruit produced in Greece and in Quebec.
These sweets, pure and healthy, inextricably linked with the Greek tradition, are suitable for a modern diet with rich flavor and useful calories.
Our nuns with full respect for tradition will teach us how fruit instead of being discarded at the time of their production, can be transformed into preserves and jams, keeping the scent and the flavors live a long time in our cupboard .
In the  event coffee and Greek pastrieswill be offered by the ladies of the Lyceum of Greek Women of  Montreal.
Also, attendees can purchase the wall calendar of Greek Women Lyceum 2017 with recipes for spoon sweets and jams, illustrated by the talented painter Katerina Mertikas.
The original works of the painter will be sold at a silent auction.
They will be sold jars of traditional sweets and jams made from the nuns of the Monastery of Our Virgin Mary of Consolation.
Sunday, December 4 2p.m-5 p.m , Evangelismos Hall,
777 St-Roch Montréal, Québec H3N 2K3.
Tickets $ 20
For information and tickets please contact Mrs Villy Fasoula, tel. 514-261 5504

Πέμπτη, 3 Νοεμβρίου 2016

When Assault Is Not A Fact!

It came as a total shock to hear that Gerry Slavounos, the Member of the National Assembly of Quebec of Greek origin, was forced to resign fροm the Liberal caucus following alleged charges of sexual assault.

Apparently, Alice Paquet, a 21-year old participant at a vigil for victims of sexual abuse at the University of Laval, took the floor and announced, in dramatic fashion to a stunned audience, that she, herself, had been a victim of sexual abuse by a sitting member of  the National Assembly.

The very next day, Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard accepted the resignation of Mr. Sklavounos from his caucus, who is now sitting as an independent MNA, while Ms. Paquet was invited to make the rounds of numerous radio and television programs, telling a story filled with gaps and contradictions.

At first, she claimed that, after the initial incident, which occurred in 2014, she went to the police, who, allegedly, discouraged her from filing a complaint because Sklavounos was a public person and she would not be believed. Shortly afterwards, she altered that story line, saying that it wasn't the police but, rather, her friends and family who discouraged her from proceeding. In the meantime, the police had already issued a statement in which they stated that they had repeatedly tried to reach Paquet, to resume the legal process and confirm the details of her story, but that she never responded to their calls.

Paquet noted that she willingly went to Sklavounos’ room but claimed, although they were kissing, “that foreplay is not a contract for sex.” She also admitted that she could not remember if she had said “no” and that she had returned to have sex with him again two weeks later. “I’m a little masochist,” she said. “I can’t say I said no clearly. I don’t remember. But I know very well I didn’t say yes. If a woman doesn’t feel free to say no, she is being raped. If she feels uneasy, it’s rape.”

Miss Paquet’s interviews are filled with so many gaps, inconsistencies and ambiguities that, taken as testimony, are likely insufficient for the pressing of charges, let alone the conviction, of assault. Regardless, Gerry Sklavounos languishes without a caucus seat and has been pilloried as an
“aggressor” in the media of Quebec and Canada.

As a woman, I fully respect women’s rights and I strongly support those who have been the victims of rape, even verbally, as it is their inalienable right, even their obligation, to denounce all rapists who must be severely punished.

However, when a young girl, such as Alice Paquet, accuses a public persona of sexual assault, the worst form of violence, and proceeds to overturn, one after another, the scenarios of her personal narrative, then I wonder how the media can so effortlessly embrace a story without proof or investigation, socially condemning someone without any regret.

Importantly, Alice Paquet’s claims have the effect of weakening the position of women who have experienced sexual violence. Instead of solidifying the case of women who have actually suffered the horror of male violence, she weakens it, fomenting suspicion in future cases. In fact, such unsubstantiated stories have the effect of ridiculing complaints of sexual violence.

Before the castigation of anyone, there must be a thorough investigation of the events. It is irresponsible of our society, whether it be represented by politicians or the media, to accept, at face value, any unsupported complaint, in effect turning the twisting and falsification of events into an iconic reality .

Silence and shame are unacceptable when it comes to women's violence but lies and unsupported accusations weaken every assaulted woman’s position.

Δευτέρα, 28 Μαρτίου 2016

International Press Coverage of the Greek Debt Crisis !!! An open lecture


On April 8, 2016, journalist and writer Justine Frangouli-Argyris, a weekly blogger for the Huffington Post and until recently the Athens News Agency correspondent for Canada, will deliver a talk on the international press and its coverage of the Greek debt crisis.

Drawing on her extensive experience in print and digital media, Ms. Frangouli-Argyris will examine the—in her view, decidedly harsh —portrayal of Greece in the international media from 2010 to the present. An open discussion will follow her talk.

The lecture, organized by the Research Institute of Hellenic American University, in cooperation with Hellenic American College, will be held on Friday, April 8th at 19:00 at the Auditorium of the Massalias 22 building.

The lecture will be given in English.

Ms. Frangouli-Argyris, a native of Lefkada and graduate of the University of Athens Law School, is a journalist and writer. She has been living and working in Montreal, Canada since 1989. She is the author of several best-selling novels, including High Heels for Six and For the Love of Others, as well as several works of non-fiction, among which her authorized biography of Spyridon, former Primate of the Greek Orthodox Church of America.

Ms. Frangouli-Argyris is currently a Huffington Post blogger (USA Edition) and a columnist for various Greek-Canadian and Greek newspapers and websites.

Τετάρτη, 2 Δεκεμβρίου 2015

Justine Frangouli-Argyris’ Latest Novels Travel to New York !!!!

The renowned author of the North American Greek Diaspora,
Justine Frangouli-Argyris, presents her latest novels, “High Heels Foreverand Barefoot on the Sand

on Friday, December 18, 2015, from 6-8 p.m. at the Stathakion Cultural Center of New York.

The event will be held under the auspices of the Hellenic Press Office of New York with the generous support of the Lefkadian Association of New York.

The works will be introduced by journalist Dimitris Filippides and publisher Demetrios Rhobotis , while the author will be presented by publisher/philanthropist Margo Catsimatides.

Excerpts from the books will be performed by the Greek-American actor, Anthoula Katsimatides.

The Greek Press Officer, Athanasia Papatriantafyllou, will chair the panel.

A cocktail reception will follow during which the author will sign her books.



Friday, 18 Dec. 2015,  6-8 p.m

Hellenic Societies of Greater New York at:

22-51 29th St, Astoria, NY, 11105. Phone: (718) 204-6500


Biographical note:


Justine Frangouli-Argyris was born on the Greek island of Lefkada where she completed her primary and secondary education. A graduate of the University of Athens Law School’s Political Science department, Frangouli-Argyris has been a contributor to daily newspapers, radio, television and magazines in Greece and North America since 1983.


She is a member of the Union of Journalists of Athens Daily Newspapers (ESIEA), UNEQ (l’Union des Ecrivaines et Ecrivains Quebequois) and the Quebec Writers’ Federation (QWF).


Justine Frangouli-Argyris has been living and working in Montreal, Canada since 1989 as a correspondent for the Athens News Agency (ANA). During the same period, she also collaborated with local Greek-Canadian and American radio stations and publications.

She is an author of numerous best-selling works of fiction and biographies and is currently a Huffington Post blogger.


Τρίτη, 1 Δεκεμβρίου 2015

Andrianos Maris: Leader and Dreamer!!!

Justine Frangouli-Argyris
Huffington Post

One of the greatest leaders of the Hellenic Community of Greater Montreal, Andrianos Maris, passed away a few days ago. He is the man who changed the root of the community's history, extending its reach and its activities beyond the borders of Montreal island proper. He left behind a great legacy, one that placed the Greek Community of Montreal on another level.

Andrianos Maris was born in 1925 and died closely after having celebrated his 90th birthday. He completed his elementary schooling in Andros, in 1937, graduated from high school in Athens in 1944 and went on to study business at Pittman's College, in England. Between 1947 and 1952, Maris worked for a shipping company based in London and Piraeus.

He subsequently emigrated to Canada, arriving in Montreal in February of 1952. In December of that same year, he joined with other post-war Greek immigrants in establishing a Greek library on Mansfield Street, in the heart of downtown Montreal.

It was precisely at this time, when the "pre-war" generation of Montreal's Greek immigrants were reluctant to accept any recent "newcomers" into their Agia Triada Community, that Andrianos' success in organizing the Mansfield library resulted in its members being incorporated into the official Greek Community of Montreal shortly afterwards.

In 1955, Andrianos Maris married Mary Campanis, in Athens, who bore him two boys, Nikos, in 1956, and George, in 1958. In 1962, he encountered the respected Archbishop, Athenagoras, to whom he expressed his concerns about the situation and uncertain future of the Greek schools in Montreal. His official involvement in community matters began in 1967 when he became a member of the College of Governors of the Greek Community of Montreal.

In 1980, he was elected president where, a short while later, he was able to realize a big dream by commencing construction on the modern and imposing community centre of the Hellenic Community of Montreal, and this, in the face of much adversity and the persistent negativism of many members.
In 1985, he brought about the much desired union of two local Greek Communities, those of Montreal and South Shore, and laid the groundwork for the construction of South Shore's community center, the church of St. John and another community school, Socrates IV.

In 1986, the famous actress and Greek Minister of Culture, Melina Merkouri, officially inaugurated Montreal's community centre. Immediately following, the Greek Community of Montreal would become a multi-task organization, housing facilities, trilingual schools, churches, institutions and social services, going on to be widely recognized as a model organization of Hellenism in the Diaspora.

I first met Andrianos Maris in 1988, even prior to my settling permanently in Montreal. I admired him for his passion and organizational skills and his great dreams about Hellenism.

Andrianos Maris will be remembered because he conceived the dream of uniting the pre-war and post-war generation of Greek immigrants under one entity, the Hellenic Community of Montreal. The creation of the Library on Mansfield in 1952 made him the first man to pierce the status quo, enabling the joining of all of Montreal's Greeks under one common umbrella.
He closely co-operated with the then head priest of St. George's Cathedral, who is, today, Metropolitan Sotirios of Toronto, to promote the smooth and advantageous transition of the "Socrates" Greek elementary schools from the province's English School Board to the French School Board, enabling an agreement to be signed to this end by the President of the Hellenic Community at the time, Demetrius Manolakos.

It can be said that Andrianos Maris had his glamorous and his difficult moments as president of the Hellenic Community over the span of twelve years (1980-1992). Along the way, he made thousands of friends as well as a handful of enemies. However, he will go down in history as a dreamer, a leader of Hellenism abroad and a protector and preserver of the Greek language and culture in the new lands of the Diaspora.

He was the initiator of the "big dream" of bringing together all the communities of Greater Montreal (Montreal, the South Shore, Laval), stirring both feelings of enthusiasm as well as animosity amongst the Greeks of the city.

Andrianos Maris was a model leader, a passionate man with regards to the survival of Hellenism. Our frequent discussions, in recent years when I would visit him at home, consistently revolved around a key theme: "Will we succeed, as Greeks, in injecting our spirit into the future generations? Will our children speak our language? Will they learn about the glamorous history of Greece in depth?"

I would enjoy my coffee over endless conversations with Andrianos and his wife, Mary, who was the pillar of his existence, his steadfast rock, until his final days. Mary adored her husband. She believed in him and supported him, enduring endless hours of his absence when he was immersed in community matters. She became, in effect, the mother of the whole Greek community.
Andrianos Maris was a landmark of the Greek Community of Montreal and my personal idol, given his Helleno-centric ideas.

In the end, his body may have weakened and ceased to beat, but his spirit will forever soar above the Hellenic Community of Greater Montreal. He is, and will remain, a point of reference for the post-war generation of Montreal's Greek immigrants.

May his memory be everlasting!!!
Photo courtesy of the Hellenic Congress of Quebec

Τρίτη, 17 Νοεμβρίου 2015

We are not Fearful. We are not Hateful. We are Free!

Justine Frangouli-Argyris

Walking the streets of Paris last year, after the murderous attack on the offices,I had the feeling that fear had descended like a cloud, blanketing the "city of light." The hundreds of police cars roaming the streets and the numerous blockades everywhere signified the terror felt by all Parisians. In the cinemas, detectives searched handbags while the air wafting around the Seine smelled of gunpowder. My son would head home early from work, as would his friends. 

 Sadly, Paris was well aware that another attack was taking shape, somewhere in the hollows of some deprived Muslim neighborhood.  As such, the authorities were supposedly hard at work, stepping up their checks and counter-checks on persons known to have contacts with any nefarious Islamic organization.

 The attack on the French train last summer which those brave American soldiers were able to derail given their familiarity with the fight against terror, averted another tragedy. Undaunted, the "Islamofascists" were preparing a new, more sophisticated attack with its plotters freely commuting between Paris and Brussels without anyone so much as batting an eye.

 Until this past Friday the 13th when they simultaneously hit numerous sites around the capital. At the Stade de France where President Hollande was in attendance, in the restaurant, at the bar and in the Bataclan concert hall, the terrorists struck with precision, in suicide bomber fashion, replete with explosives strapped to their bodies. The count currently stands at 129 dead, a result of the extremist religious fury of young Islamists, "heroes" of their own delusions.

 Today, Europe is, once again, stained in blood while, at the same time, thousands of boatloads of Syrians continue landing on Greece's shores without any control of note while, to no one's surprise, it was ascertained that one of the Parisian assassins had crossed into the continent < via the Aegean island of Leros.

 With Turkish traffickers guiding them westward without any regard as to who may be on board, only for what profits are to be had, it is a simple task for any terrorist to hide among the migrants. And, of course, the Greek government, saddled with the tribulations of its debt crisis, is unable to stand up to its European lenders who insist on quickly settling < 50,000 refugees in the country.

 As a Canadian citizen, on the other hand, I am troubled by the insistence of our newly elected Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, to make good on his promise of bringing 25,000 Syrian refugees to this country by year's end. The timeframe for such an undertaking is very short in order to perform the requisite background checks of those seeking political asylum. The authorities, who normally take years to award temporary residence permits, should not view the issue on political or humanitarian terms alone.

Even before last week's tragic events, the Canadian public was clamoring for a thorough investigation of all refuge claimants to the country.  For, as we have seen, there is no room for error as even the smallest oversight can result in the spilling of innocent blood, even in this socially progressive and peaceful bastion in North America.

 As such, I will continue my relentless criticism of this massive, political and uncontrolled, invasion of refugees to Europe and America. Compassion for the migrants is undertsandable but one must weigh the risks involved.

 In any event, I must confess that I  do not fear the Islamofascists, nor will I hate them. However, I have a profound regret that the west continues to turn a blind eye to the spreading of the snake's nest in its midst with the naive immigration policies and minimal safeguards it has adopted over the years. I am saddened that Islam continues to be used by many elements, radical or not, as a homicidal religion thousands of years after its origin.

 Make no mistake. These terrorist attacks are not the result of simple religious fanaticism but, rather, a deeply-rooted hatred by Islamic extremists against the prosperity and progress of the western world. And this hatred often becomes a symbol among young migrants in their host countries. And this hatred often leads to a dance of death!

 It's time to put it bluntly. The Hydra must be beheaded, now! With weapons and war, we must make a Hercules out of Europe! We will no longer tolerate living under the threat of the ISIS.

We are not afraid. We do not hate. We are free!

Τετάρτη, 4 Νοεμβρίου 2015

Sunny Days in Ottawa!


This is the letter I received last night from our new Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau.
I am sharing it with you for the strong feelings of hope  it bears . I like the father-husband touch and yet the strong commitment of Justin Trudeau for a brighter future here in Canada! I like the title of his new tenure as head of this country: SUNNY DAYS!
Justine, as I write to you, evening is falling outside our new home, Rideau Cottage, on the grounds of Rideau Hall in Ottawa.
A few minutes from now, Sophie and I will put Xavier and Ella-Grace to bed (Hadrien is already fast asleep), but before I go, I want to share a few thoughts with you, to mark this moment.
Tomorrow, we take the next step in our journey together. I will be sworn in by the Governor General, and become Canada's 23rd prime minister. And I will announce the team of extraordinary Canadians who will serve as ministers in your new government.
This is all thanks to your support, and the support of millions of Canadians like you. Thank you.
On October 19, Canadians spoke loudly and clearly, that they want a government that will bring real change – in both the things that it does, and the way that it does them.
Our platform promised a new, ambitious plan for a strong and growing middle class. And you rightly expect us to fulfill that promise.
Which is why I am going to spend the next four years working harder than ever to deliver on what we promised.
Before the election, I also made a personal commitment to bring new leadership and a new tone to Ottawa. Sunny ways.
The new Canadian government will work together with our allies, with our provincial, municipal, and territorial partners so we can deliver the real, positive change that we promised you.
And we’ve already started. I just last week extended an invitation to provincial premiers, and opposition leaders to join me in Paris as part of the Canadian delegation to the United Nations Climate Change Conference at the end of this month.
Because being engaged on the international stage is important. It is critical for creating economic growth, good-paying jobs for the middle class, and prosperity for all Canadians. To that end – in addition to the climate change conference in Paris – I have confirmed that I will attend the G20 Leaders’ Summit in Turkey, the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting in the Philippines and the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Malta.
But we’ll also be getting straight to work at home: The first bill introduced by our government will be a tax cut for the middle class so we can get started right away growing our economy, strengthening our middle class, and helping those working hard to join it.
I am deeply grateful to have this opportunity to serve you – and every Canadian across our great country. I am committed to leading an open, honest government that is accountable to Canadians, lives up to the highest ethical standards, brings our country together, and applies the utmost care and prudence in the handling of public funds.
Thank you for putting your trust in me, and our team. We will not let you down.
Justin Trudeau
Justin Trudeau
Prime Minister-designate