Easter Celebration within the Prelacy

On Sunday, March 31, 2013, large numbers of Prelacy faithful flocked to their local churches to ceremoniously celebrate the Glorious Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.

H.E. Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian, Prelate, celebrated Easter Divine Liturgy and delivered his Easter message at Holy Martyrs Church in Encino.  A standing room only crowd filled “Avedissian” Hall where the service was held to accommodate the large number of faithful.

With the choir singing the “Hrashapar” hymn, the Prelate entered the hall and ascended to the altar to begin the service.

With triumphant faith and renewed spirits, we give thanks to Almighty God for making us worthy of this day to share with one another the Good News of His Glorious Resurrection, began the Prelate’s message.  I extend my well wishes to H.H. Catholicos Aram I on behalf of you all and personally, and our Easter congratulations to our leaders, praying for justice, righteousness, and peace to guide their service to our people.  “Today the angels are descending from Heaven, they give good news to mankind announcing that the crucified Jesus is risen from the dead, and with Him arose you all.” St. Nerses of Lambron, with an inspired spirit and transfigured life, wrote these words centuries ago.  Almost 2,000 years ago, wicked and jealous people set out to thwart Christ’s mission.  They thought that by burying Him and placing a large rock in front of His tomb, they had put an end to His ministry.  But it was not so.  When Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome went to anoint His body, they became witnesses to the greatest of miracles; they saw a young man who said “Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He is risen. He is not here”, and heard the angel’s triumphant proclamation.

Centuries later, the triumphant proclamation of the angel still brings renewal to our lives.  Let us proclaim that the Resurrection of Christ is a reality, that His tomb was empty on that morning; let us see the Risen Christ with the eyes of our soul so that we too may arise with Him.  The Resurrection is the greatest event in the history of the world.  It set a new path, a new beginning, and has granted new life to mankind throughout the centuries.  Now, it must be for us too a new life.  Many understood, but many could not or would not comprehend His mission.  They tried Him, crucified Him, buried Him, all in the hopes of silencing Him.  But they could not.  With His innocent blood He cleansed us and was victorious over evil and death, which was a triumph for goodness.  Our forefathers embraced the message and promise of the Resurrection and chose the path of Christ.  Easter is an invitation for us to follow in their example, to overcome all obstacles which serve to defeat us, and be guided by His Light and Truth.  There is so much injustice in this world today.  Let us conquer injustice with justice, and lies with truth, so that we too may be worthy of the abundant life He promises filled with love and peace.  Let us pray for peace in the world, for righteousness and justice to prevail, and for our brethren in Syria.  Renewed and reinvigorated by the hope of the Resurrection, with grateful hearts let us embrace the message of His Resurrection, “I am the way and the truth and the life”, and let us join the angels in triumphantly proclaiming, “Christ is Risen from the dead, Blessed is the Resurrection of Christ”, concluded the Prelate.

On behalf of the Holy Martyrs Church family, Parish Pastor Rev. Fr. Razmig Khatchadourian expressed gratitude to the Prelate for celebrating Easter with the parish community, and wished him many more years of good health and service within the Western Prelacy.

The collective confession was held at the conclusion of Divine Liturgy, after which faithful received Holy Communion by the Prelate and Pastor.

On Monday, April 1st, faithful gathered at Hollywood Hills Forest Lawn “Hall of Liberty” and Glendale Forest Lawn “Church of the Recessional” for Easter Memorial Day requiem prayers for their loved ones.  The Prelate presided over the service at the Hollywood Hills location.  Clergy members participated in the service.

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