Thursday, March 31, 2011

BOSTON: Free Events sponsored by Mass Humanities

Mass Humanities Sponsored Events

Below are events funded by Mass Humanities. For more information about any of these events and before venturing out to one of them, contact the event organizers directly. If you do not want to receive these emails, visit our subscription form and choose "unsubscribe" under the Event Announcements section. Visit that same form if you would like to receive these emails for more than one area. You may also choose to subscribe to the Humanities Calendar's rss feed.

Upcoming events in the Greater Boston Region:

Saturday, April 16, 2011 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Time Traveling Through Franklin Park - History Tours
Discover and experience the historic features of Frederick Law Olmsted-designed Franklin Park. Join Franklin Park Coalition and author and local historian, Julie Arrison, for a walk through the crown jewel of Boston's Emerald Necklace to learn about the park's transformation through the decades.
| add to my calendar |

location: One Circuit Drive, Franklin Park, Ellicott Arch, Boston
phone: (617) 442-4141
cost: free

funded by Mass Humanities grant program

Saturday, April 16, 2011 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Antony & Cleopatra Open Rehearsal
Join director Adrianne Krstansky and the cast of ASP's Antony & Cleopatra for a free Open Rehearsal. Enjoy a director's talk, scene rehearsal, and Q&A with the cast. Refreshments served.

location: The Modern Theater, 525 Washington Street, Boston
phone: (617) 776-2200 x225
cost: free

funded by Mass Humanities grant program
For more events, visit the Humanities Calendar.
Mass Humanities, 66 Bridge Street, Northampton, MA 01060

Bankers Petroleum Takes over Albania Oil Field

For a brief moment, I though that BP was British Petroleum, but, no, so read on...

31 Mar 2011 / 17:23
Bankers Petroleum Takes over Albania Oil Field

The Canadian-based oil company Bankers Petroleum announced on Thursday a $34 million (€24.64 million) deal with Albania’s state-owned oil producer Albepetrol to take over the wells in the Patos-Marinza oil field.

“While Bankers’ Petroleum agreement provided the rights to take over these wells over an extended period of time, this new agreement provides Bankers the opportunity to be the sole operator of the field, accelerating field reactivation and development, reducing administrative processes, and halting produced water disposal from Albpetrol’s production facilities into surface drainage canals,” Abby Badwi, Bankers’ President and CEO, said in a statement.

The deal would accelerate the takeover of production and royalty payments for all remaining Albpetrol active well production and also the expansion of the project area and development plan to include all of the contract area of the Patos-Marinza oilfield concession.

Effective March 31, 2011, Bankers will become the sole operator and Albpetrol will cease to conduct petroleum operations in the Patos-Marinza oilfield and contract area.

Albania’s Minister of Trade and Energy Nasip Naço praised the agreement, stressing that Bankers had played an important role in developing Albania’s oil sector.

"We have been very pleased with the way that Bankers Petroleum has developed the Patos-Marinza oilfield and recognise the beneficial impact on the government of Albania and its citizens as a result of the significant capital investment being made,” Naço said.

“This transaction, done in accordance with the existing petroleum and license agreements, will allow for the entire Patos-Marinza oilfield to benefit from the production and environmental improvements that Bankers has already demonstrated," he added.

Bankers Petroleum is an oil and gas exploration and production company focusing on opportunities in unconventional petroleum assets and is the single largest foreign investor in Albania.

The company operates and has the full rights to develop the Patos-Marinza heavy oilfield in south central Albania, which is believed to hold about two billion barrels of oil.

The 44,000 acre field, located east of the city of Fier, is the largest onshore oilfield in continental Europe, based on the amount of oil the site holds.

In Albania, Bankers also operates and has the full rights to the Kucova heavy oil fields.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Kosovar Albanian seeks housing during BU Commencement

Here's an inquiry I recently received from a Kosovar Albanian seeking housing during BU's upcoming commencement. Are there Kosovar Albanians - or others - reading this who can help him out?

Ferid Azemi's email address is

Van Christo

I am Ferid Azemi an Kosovo albanian, and i was wondering if i could find some help when i will travel soon in Boston.
I have just graduated from Boston University ( online) and earned Master degree in Criminal Justice and the Commencement celebration will take place May 22, in Boston.
Maybe your organization could somehow help me out with housing or at least give me directions in case i may need your help. I do not have any relatives there in US so it will be kind of difficult for me being alone and with no one there.

Your help will greatly be appreciated


Thursday, March 24, 2011

BOSTON Free Immigration Advice

FREE Immigration Advice

(2011 Schedule)

April 6 & 20
May 4 & 18
June 1 & 15

Room 804 in Boston City Hall
12:00 (noon) - 2:00 PM

For more information, please contact the
Mayor’s Office of New Bostonians
Boston City Hall Room 803

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

An undersea look at ancient Albanian artifacts

Our eminent Albanian archaeology expert, Auron Tare, E-Mailed Frosina a fascinating video link showing underwater divers examining ancient pottery artifacts in the remains of a sunken vessel off the Albanian coast. The video begins with Mr. Tare's Voice of America interview describing this important archaeological find in Albania - it's a pity that Mr. Tare's commentary is only in the Albanian language since the video depicts a little-known and rarely seen exploration of undersea Albanian artifacts.

Check it out at

And you might also also check out Auron Tare's own Website at

Monday, March 21, 2011

Mayor Menino and the Albanians?

Here's a marvelous opportunity to see and meet Hizzoner up close and surrounded by Albanians. My word, won't he have something to remember and talk about to his pals at City Hall!

As you can see by those below already signed up, space is very limited so be there.


***A dinner will be held with Boston Mayor Thomas Menino and the Albanian Community on Tuesday March 29, 2011 at 6:00PM at Vlora Restaurant in the Back Bay.

If you are interested to attend, send an email to

The cost of the dinner is $100. First come first serve -- seating is limited to around 30 people.

Come and support our efforts to expand the influence of the Albanian community in Massachusetts as we discuss a variety of issues with Mayor Menino.

Those already signed up for this unique event are:

* Afrim Alimeti
* Albion Calaj
* Jane Christo
* Van Christo
* Pandeli Dhima
* Minella Gjioka
* Nexhat Ibishi
* Bishop Ilia Ketri
* Stefan Kochi
* Ada Kokoshi
* Mark Kosmo
* Very Reverend Arthur Liolin
* Eva Millona
* Arber Muhameti
* Elisbeta Nasi
* Bishop Nikon
* Armando Nushi
* Albana Orgocka
* Paul Pando
* Filgen Prifti
* Katherine Prifti
* Alda Qirici
* Orgeta Qirici

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Records of immigrants who have applied for U.S. Citizenship

A Frosina Advisory / Updated 2011 _______________________________________________________________________________________

Albanian and other newcomers to America should utilize the resources of Regional Offices of the National Archives to inquire if a relative had ever applied for USA citizenship. In the past, Frosina has directed such inquiries to Regional Offices and received cooperative responses.

Regional Offices for Records of Immigrants Who Have Applied for American Citizenship

Visit the National Archives and Records Administration at a location near you Its archives staff is your expert in records, local and national history, and access to Federal records. It has 14 research rooms open for your use -- for exploring original and facsimile documents, and for online sources. Workshops and events -- most of which are free! -- are available at most of its locations.

The National Archives at Boston
Serves Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont.


Frederick C. Murphy Federal Center
380 Trapelo Road
Waltham, Massachusetts 02452-6399
Phone: (781) 663-0130
Fax: (781) 663-0154

Regional Archives Locations by State/Territory

Alaska, California, Colorado, Georgia, Illinois, Massachusetts, Missouri, New York Pennsylvania, Texas, Washington (State)


With thanks for information supplied by a visitor to the Frosina Blog, listed below is an additional source for tracking possible USA citizenship for Albanian and other immigrants:

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

The USCIS Genealogy Program is a fee-for-service program providing family historians and other researchers with timely access to historical immigration and naturalization records of deceased immigrants.

The USCIS Genealogy Program offers (partial listing):

* Record Copy Request: Researchers with valid record citations (USCIS file numbers), gained through a USCIS Genealogy Program index search or through independent research, may request copies of historical immigration and naturalization records. Fee: $20.00/$35.00 (depending on the record type).

Records available through the USCIS Genealogy Program (partial listing):

- Naturalization Certificate Files (C-files) from September 27, 1906 to April 1, 1956

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

FREE Intermediate English Language Classes


Please help us spread the word! We recently expanded our Adult Basic Education program and changed it to Next Steps Transitional English Program (Next STEP). The class is FREE for all immigrants who have intermediate-high level English levels and have a goal of learning English to get jobs, better jobs, or enroll in college. Our level 1 class begins at SPL 4.

Our classes have had students from all over the world, including Haiti, Vietnam, Cape Verde, Guatemala, China, Honduras, Morocco, Ethiopia, etc. This program has 4 levels--the highest level is divided into a college track or job training track. In addition to ESL, students will work with a counselor here to help with enrolling into college or helping with job placement. We have had students go into different job training programs at the completion of our classes or enroll in college like Bunker Hill, UMass Boston, and other colleges of interest.

We offer a class for the following levels 1, 2, 3, 2&3 combined Intensive, 4A (college track), 4B (job track). Each level is a 15 week cycle with classes 4 days a week (Tuesday through Friday). The class schedule is Tuesday through Friday. Depending on the level, class time can vary from 8 hours a week to 16 hours a week. The classes are held in the morning and daytime.

We accept applications all year round. Interested applicants can start applying for these classes. To apply, they should come to our information and testing session held every Tuesday at 2PM or certain Mondays at 9AM (ext. 318 will have a list of Monday testing dates). We can also arrange a different time with applicants if they cannot make either days.

We hope to serve 150 students per year, so we appreciate your help in getting the word out!


Victoria Wong
Recruitment Coordinator
Asian American Civic Association
Educate. Empower. Employ.
87 Tyler Street 5/F
Boston, MA 02111
T: (617) 426-9492 ext. 251
F: (617) 482-2316

Monday, March 14, 2011

FREE Immigration Advice
(2011 Schedule)

March 16
April 6 & 20
May 4 & 18
June 1 & 15

Room 804 in Boston City Hall
12:00 (noon) - 2:00 PM
For more information, please contact the
Mayor’s Office of New Bostonians
Boston City Hall Room 803

Kokkalis Program on Southeastern and East-Central Europe

I'm a big fan of the Kokkalis Programs at Harvard. Check out, for example, the April 6th program on Southestern Europethat should be very interesting!


Kokkalis Program on Southeastern and East-Central Europe

The Kokkalis Program invites you to attend the following upcoming events:

4:30 p.m.

Turkey on the Eve of Elections: Politics, Society and Judiciary
A panel discussion with Can Paker, chairperson, Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV);
Dilek Kurban, Democratization Program director, TESEV; and Etyen Mahçupyan, Democratization Program advisor, TESEV
Bowie-Vernon Room (K-262), Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, 1737 Cambridge Street
Co-sponsored by the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, Center for Middle Eastern Studies, and the Seminar on Turkey in the Modern World, Harvard University

2:15 p.m.

The Dissemination of Liberal Economic Thought and the Rise of Nationalism in South-Eastern Europe in the 19th Century
Dr. Michalis Psalidopoulos, Constantine G. Karamanlis Chair in Hellenic and Southeastern European Studies, Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University, and professor, Department of Economics, University of Athens
Cabot Room, Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, 27 Kirkland Street at Cabot Way
Co-sponsored with the Southeastern Europe and Greek Study Groups, Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies

Please help us spread the word about these events by sharing this email:

Friday, March 11, 2011

Albania Slide-Show Presentation in Quincy

Learn about Albania through slide-show presentation

The Thomas Crane Library is inviting local residents to come out and learn about the small Balkan country of Albania.

The free slide-show presentation will take place on Tuesday, March 15 at 7:00 p.m. at the Crane Library, 40 Washington Street in Quincy.

During the 2009-2010 school year, world traveler and photojournalist Barry Pell and his wife lived and taught English in Tirana, the capital of Albania. Mr. Pell will discuss the experience of working and daily life in Albania. Pell has traveled widely over the past 40 years, visiting and documenting landscapes and cultures in 155 countries.

Mr. Pell also lived and traveled in China for two years and in eastern Europe for one year. He currently lectures on international cultures at schools, universities and institutions in the Boston area.

For more information, visit or call 617-376-1301.

Sterio Voskopoja Painting Exibition at Holy Trinity Church

It's short notice, but here's a great opportunity on Sunday for both Albanians and non-Albanians to see - up close - the works of Albanian artist, Sterio Voskopoja, in South Boston!!

Sterio Voskopoja Painting Exibition at Holy Trinity Church

Posted by: "PD" pdhima

This coming Sunday after the Liturgy, in the hall of Holy Trinity Albanian Orthodox Church, the famous Albanian painter, Sterio Voskopoja, will exhibit his art work for the first time in Boston.

Bishop Ilia will open up the ceremony.
Everyone is welcome to join us.

Coffee and refreshments will be served.

Holy Trinity Albanian Orthodox Church
245 "D" Street
South Boston, MA 02127

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Froska Thought for the Day II

“A man is not old until regrets take the place of dreams”
- John Barrymore

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The Boston Cultural Council

Here's another good opportunity for the Greater Boston Albanian Creative Community to make itself known by participating in the many activities and events sponsored by Mayor Menino and The Boston Cultural Council!


Office of Arts, Tourism & Special Events
Mayor Thomas M. Menino

For immediate release:

Mayor Thomas M. Menino and The Boston Cultural Council (BCC) are proud to present this year’s awardees of the Boston Cultural Council Grant.

“It is so important, especially in these economic times, that we continue to support arts and cultural programming in our communities,” said Mayor Menino. “The City of Boston and The Boston Cultural Council are proud to support these outstanding organizations that contribute so much to the rich cultural landscape of Boston.”

The Boston Cultural Council (BCC), under the umbrella of the Mayor’s Office of Arts, Tourism and Special Events, annually distributes funds allocated by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency, to support innovative arts, humanities and interpretive sciences programming that enhances the quality of life in our city.

Congratulations to the BCC 2011 Grant Recipients. This year’s recipients include The Freedom Trail Foundation, Medicine Wheel, Boston Symphony Orchestra and Artists for Humanity. A total of 103 applications were received of which 66 were funded: 43 Program grants and 23 Performing Arts Student Series (PASS) grants. Equaling a total of $126,641.00 funds allocated.

The BCC is comprised of Boston residents appointed by Mayor Thomas M. Menino to serve for up to six years each. The BCC annually reviews applications during a series of fall meetings conducted to evaluate the overall quality of proposed programming and its potential benefit to diverse audience in neighborhoods throughout Boston.

For detailed information visit or call 617-635-3911.

The Mayor’s Office of Arts, Tourism, & Special Events is responsible for advancing the arts, tourism and culture in the city of Boston by providing advocacy, support, promotional and technical assistance, and by producing special events and public celebrations that reflect the city’s rich diversity.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Gezuar 8 Marsin!
Happy March 8th!

(Mother's and Women's Day in Albania)

The Boston Arts Festival in September

Here's a great opportunity for Boston's Albanian creative community to showcase some of its works at the 2011 Boston Arts Arts Festival in September. Download the URL listed below for additional info!


The 2011 (ähts): The Boston Arts Festival Call to Visual and Craft Artists is now available for download at

The festival will be entering its 9th year and will be returning to its original format as a two-day festival. The 2011 festival will be held Saturday, September 10th and Sunday, September 11th. There will be a specially built artist village in Christopher Columbus Waterfront Park that will showcase over 60-juried visual artists who exhibit and sell one-of-a-kind and limited edition works of art including painting, sculpture, ceramics, pottery, jewelry, fine glasswork, woodwork, mixed media and photography. The festival is designed to launch Boston's arts season with a diverse and vibrant performing arts program, its visual and craft artist village and family-friendly activities. Past performances have included the Boston Ballet, BalletRox, Zili Misik, Boston Lyric Opera, Chu Ling Dance, Blue Man Group and several other incredible acts. The festival celebrates the Boston arts scene in its many forms and attracts over 50,000 people each year.

The deadline for applications is April 15th at 5 p.m. We look forward to receiving and reviewing your applications and äht submissions!

For more information about (ähts): The Boston Arts Festival visit:

or contact the Mayor's Office of Arts, Tourism & Special Events at 617-635-3911 or email us at

Facebook: Boston Arts Festival

Monday, March 7, 2011

The Four Albanian Popes

Pope Saint Eleutherius (175-189)
Pope Saint Caius (283-296)
Pope John IV (640-642)
Pope Clement XI (1700-1721)

In the official newspaper of the Vatican in Rome, L'Osservatore Romano*, Giovanni Armillotta published an article titled "Pope Clement XI and the Albani Family"* in which he stated that the prominent Albani family in Italy was founded by two Albanian brothers, George and Filip of Michele dei Lazi, who fought the Turks alongside the 15th century Albanian folk hero, Gjergj Kastrioti, known in Europe as Scanderbeg (1405-1468). As a military leader of outstanding capabilities, Scanderbeg united hitherto warring Albanian clans into a common army to battle the invading Turks thus preventing the Ottoman Empire from extending into Europe.

The Albani brothers took the name "Albanesi" that George's son, Altobello (1454-1564) had changed to "Albani". In addition to Pope Clement XI (1700-1721), Armilotta states that the Albani family produced other illustrious personages who became cardinals, diplomats, and important statesmen including Giovanni Girolamo (1509-91) cardinal, Orazio (1576-1653) statesman, Anibale (1682-1751) cardinal, Alessandro (1692-1779) cardinal, and Guiseppe (1750-1834) cardinal.

Armallota concludes his article in L'Osservatore Romano by stating that "even before Clement XI (1700-1721), we find there were three other Pontiffs of Albanian origin: Saint Eleutherius (175-189), Saint Caius (283-296), and Pope John IV (640-742)".

Pope Saint Eleutherius (175-189)**
Eleutherius spread the Bible to many countries of the Roman Empire. While the legend that an English king Lucius sought baptism from Eleutherius may be fiction, the pope sent a mission to the British which was then a Roman province. He is believed to be the first Albanian pope.

Pope Saint Caius (283-296)
Caius decreed that before a man would be bishop, he must first be porter, reader, exorcist, acolyte, sub-deacon, deacon, and priest. He divided the districts of Rome among the deacons. It was during the pontificate of Caius that Diocletian ascended the imperial throne.

Pope John IV (640-642)
John IV did not forget his native land which was being harried by Serbs. He sent funds to Dalmatia to help redeem the poor natives who had been carried off by barbarians. He also secured relics from the its troubled churches and built a church in Rome to house them.

Pope Clement XI (1700-1721)
Born in Urbano, Italy, of the Albani family whose forebears fought for the Turks for 25 years alongside the 15th century folkhero of the Albanians, Scanderbeg thus preventing the Ottoman Turks from overunning Europe. Clement XI also fostered foreign missions but was unsuccessful in converting Czar Peter the Great.

*L'OSSERVATORE ROMANO Year CXL -N 139 (42.777), Vatican City, Wednesday, June 20, 2001
** See Frosina in

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Albanians and cigarette smoking?

During our many visits to Albania, my wife, Jane, and I particularly noticed one trait about Albanians: They smoke a lot! No matter where we traveled throughout Albania - north to south - it became instantly apparent to us just how much Albanians smoke, and how many cigarettes they can consume in one sitting! Fortunately, the Albanian government finally posting warnings about the dangers of smoking on its cigarette packages!

According to the American Lung Association. cigarette smoking is the most preventable cause of the death and illness worldwide. The sites below have all the facts and figures to help you understand the problem and become part of the solution. Smoking kills. Pass it on.

Above the influence: Tobacco Facts

The Scoop on Smoking

American Lung Association: Facts & Figures

Source: The Boston Globe/Surfing the Net with Kids/January 14, 2011