Divine Liturgy in Commemoration of the 97th Anniversary of the Armenian Genocide

On Tuesday, April 24, 2012, the 97th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide was commemorated with Divine Liturgy and Requiem with the participation of the Armenian Apostolic, Catholic, and Evangelical Churches.

The service was held at St. Mary’s Church in Glendale.

Divine Liturgy was celebrated by H.E. Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, the sermon was delivered by H.E. Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian, Prelate, and remarks were delivered by Very Rev. Fr. Krikor Chahinian and Rev. Joe Matossian

The Prelate began his message by stating that “on this 97th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide, we have gathered together to remember and honor the blessed memory of our martyrs who from 1915 to 1923 fell victim to systematic genocide perpetrated by the Ottoman Empire, and to reaffirm our vow to continue our struggle for recognition, justice, and reparation.

Two weeks ago we celebrated the glorious Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. The miracle of the Resurrection is the ultimate triumph of good over evil, of life over death. Our Lord Jesus Christ conquered death, He trampled death by death, and gave us the promise of a new beginning, of salvation and eternal life. The Armenian people, the first to accept the new life granted by Jesus Christ, have embraced the promises set forth by the Resurrection of Christ as national values and ideals, and have survived and thrived amid great adversity because we are armed and fortified by the spirit of the Resurrection.

Many tried to repeatedly massacre us and obliterate us from the pages of history, but our faith gave us the strength to defend ourselves and our rights. Time and time again we as a nation rose from the ashes of tragedy and were born anew.

Today is the day to reaffirm our pledge, our vow to keep our faith unmovable, keep our national character pure, and the pursuit of our rights and our cause a priority. May Almighty God grant us the strength and determination to continue our struggle for long-overdue justice so that the souls of our martyrs can finally be at peace as they rest in the sanctuary of His heavenly Kingdom”, concluded the Prelate. (See the full text of the message separately)

At the conclusion of the Liturgy, requiem service was conducted at the memorial cross-stone in the church courtyard, followed by the placing of wreaths and flowers.

In the afternoon, the community gathered at the Genocide memorial monument in Montebello for a commemoration organized by the United Armenian Council. The program included remarks and messages from invited political dignitaries and a keynote speech by Dr. Israel Charny, Executive Director of the Institute on the Holocaust and Genocide in Jerusalem. The program was followed by a requiem service conducted by the Armenian Apostolic, Catholic, and Evangelical Churches, and concluded with the Armenian national anthem.

The Prelate and representatives also participated in a number of other events, among them commemorations organized by the Armenian Consulate, Glendale City Council, and United Young Armenians.
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