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Future Olympic Athlete inspires Youth at Metropolis of Chicago Western Region Basketball Tournament

Nefeli Papadakis in Training for 2020 Olympics in Tokyo

Libertyville, IL: Saint Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church of Libertyville hosted this year’s Metropolis of Chicago Western Regional Family Basketball Tournament. The event gathered parishes from Northern and Western Illinois, Iowa, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Kansas and Nebraska over Presidents’ Day weekend, Friday, February 12, through Sunday, February 14.
The keynote speaker for the Grand Banquet on Saturday was a youth of the host parish, a young lady we are confident will become a key symbol of the potential of our Greek American Youth.

Nefeli Papadakis, age 17, had just finished earlier in the day leading the St. Demetrios Women’s Basketball team to the championship at the tournament. But for her keynote address the focus was her placement on Team USA’s Judo Squad.

Her inspirational address before 500 attendees, including His Grace Bishop Demetrios of Mokissos, Chancellor of the Metropolis of Chicago, thanked the coaches and members of the Parish community that have helped her in realizing her dreams. The address showcased for the large number of attendees, near her age or younger, the ability and strength our faith can provide in realizing dreams regardless of how large those dreams may be.

His Grace Bishop Demetrios thanked her for her powerful message and spoke of the pride he and His Eminence Metropolitan Iakovos have in her accomplishments, as well as her ability in the future to display for the world the talent of the youth of the Metropolis of Chicago.

Tournament Director and Chairperson Mrs. Tina Houck, Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministries Deacon Chris Avramopoulos, Host Parish Chairperson Tom Earth, and Host Parish Priest Father Cosmas Halekakis along with all members of the host committee and parish of St. Demetrios organized and provided another outstanding tournament.

“The power of this tournament is it’s ability to strengthen our parish families as well as our Metropolis family” declared Father Cosmas Halekakis of St. Demetrios of Libertyville.
For more information on this event and future Western Regional Family Basketball Tournaments, please contact:

Deacon Chris Avramopoulos, Director of the Office of Youth and Young Adult Ministries for the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago.
(312) 337-4130

John Ackerman, Director of Media Relations for the Metropolis of Chicago