15th Encounter of Pontian Youth Associations

panagia_soumela_sunapantima_777036883The 15th Encounter of Pontian Youth Associations at the Panagia Soumela Monastery starts on July 18 and will last until July 21 at Kastania, Imathia. The Encounter includes lectures, performances, folklore events, getting to know the sights of Veroia and discussions on issues concerning the Pontian Hellenism.

The Encounter is a successful institution, with the participation of more than 700 representatives of Pontian youth associations from Greece and abroad. Especially this year, the Encounter is celebrating its 15th anniversary.

Among the aims of the Encounter’s organizers is the experiential contact of young people with the Pilgrimage and the work of the Church of Panagia Soumela in Vermio with the customs and the traditions of the Pontian people, as well as sensitizing them in acknowledging the Pontian Greek Genocide.


  1. A breath of fresh air in a toxic environment. It’s heartening that young people want to uphold the Pontian culture and let it die. Alex, if you bother reading this, Pontians are true Greeks. An isolated colony of Athens that flourished for Millenia along the Black Sea coast before they were uprooted by the barbaric Turks, aided and abetted by deplorable European power. The language is the closest of the Greek dialest to the ancient tongue.

  2. OMG my husband is descended from the Ponti, his parents now in their 80s were kicked out of Asia minor and relocated to Thessaloniki, and then to Athens to live in the slums during WWII. They lived in a one room hovel provided to them by the govt at the time, and in the 1960s immigrated to Canada. (from abject poverty to working poor slavery) Where more oppression waited them, by their own family. I read that book ‘Not Without My Name’ and I couldn’t sleep for weeks. It still haunts me. I’m a third gen Canadian of Greek origin and would like to move there to raise sheep/goats and make feta. My biggest fear is another genocide, or ethnic cleansing by many hostile neighbors. I agree with most of your comments, but that Alex character has good points too. Why can’t Greeks ever get along? My husband is afraid to move to Greece, the people, the politics, the hostile neighbors. It’s pretty hard to go back and forth if I want to raise sheep and make cheese…. Thanks for sharing your info about the Pontian Greeks. I hope they can preserve their culture.

  3. My parents were in their 80’s and they were both born in Greece. It was their parents who moved to Greece from Pontus. I don’t know if your in-laws were around during the populations exchange. It was a sad part of history as Pontians were driven from their homes after millenia by the Turks. That is why I despise Islam so much. It is barbarous and I fear Greece is being overrun by muslims. Alex does not live in Greece by what I have read of his posts. I don’t even know if he has ever been there for any extended period of time. He is fixated on Skopians and communists and obsesses over them. Most everyday Greeks are more concerned with trying to survive through this economic nightmare. Some who live in urban areas also worry for their safety from ‘illegal immigrant” criminal gangs.

    This is not the time to go to Greece and raise goats and make fetta. As noble as that sounds, Greece is being overrun by foreigners, the illegal immigrants and the Euroasses. It has happened many times in the past. Hopefully they can get out of it again.

    For now, katse sta avga sou.