Christmas Prayer Service and Blessing of Water at Glendale Memorial Hospital

 

In celebration of the Nativity and Theophany of our Lord Jesus Christ, on Friday, January 3, 2014, morning prayer service and the blessing of water ceremony symbolizing the Baptism of our Lord Jesus Christ was conducted at Glendale Memorial Hospital.

H.E. Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian, Prelate, led the prayer service, conducted the blessing of water, and conveyed his New Year and Christmas blessings and well wishes to the administration, staff, and patients.  St. Mary’s Church Pastors assisted in the service.  Glendale City Council member Mr. Ara Najarian and Prelacy Executive Council member Dr. Dikran Babikian were among the guests in attendance.  Reporters from Channel 7 and LA Times were also present.

Glendale Memorial Hospital and Health Center President Mr. Jack Ivie delivered welcoming remarks expressing his appreciation to the Prelate for what has become a beautiful tradition.

The Prelate first delivered his message then conducted the service and ceremony.  His Eminence expressed thanks to God for the gift of another year and for the opportunity to continue the tradition of gathering in the first days of the new year to exchange well wishes to one another and conduct the Blessing of the Home service beseeching God to protect and keep in peace this facility, its faculty and patients.  The Prelate explained the blessing of the water ceremony signifying the baptism of Jesus in the Jordan River by John the Baptist and the use of the Holy Chrism (Muron) in the Armenian Apostolic Church for blessings, consecrations, and anointing, symbolizing the presence of the Holy Spirit.  He explained that the oil used today is revered because it contains part of the original oil blessed by St. Gregory the Illuminator centuries ago, since whenever a new batch is prepared and blessed, a small amount of the old go into it, thus preserving continuity.

Reflecting on the start of a new year, the Prelate invited all to resolve to thank God daily for the abundance of blessings in our lives, to emulate the love and mercy of our Lord by demonstrating brotherly love, compassion, and goodness to one another, to lift the spirits of the less fortunate by sharing our blessings and spreading the good tidings of Christmas to as many people as we can throughout the year.  In conclusion, His Eminence commended the hospital faculty for the care and compassion they provide, prayed for the Lord to heal the infirm and restore them to health, and wished that 2014 will be a blessed year for all filled with greatest gifts of health, love, peace, and joy.

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