Ecumenical Service Commemorating the Centennial of the Assyrian, Armenian, and Greek Genocides

On the evening of Tuesday, August 4, 2015, a special ecumenical service was held at St. Mary’s Assyrian Church in Tarzana to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Assyrian Genocide.
buy avana online no prescription

The event was held under the auspices of H.G. Mar Aprim Khamis, Bishop of the Western United States, with the participation of elected officials, leaders and representatives of various faiths and ethnicities, and members of the Assyrian community. By the invitation of Cr-Bishop Father George Bet Rasho, Pastor of St. Mary’s Church, H.E. Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian, Prelate, was invited to attend and deliver his message. The Prelate was accompanied by Very Rev. Fr. Boghos Tinkjian, Rev. Fr. Vazken Atmajian, Rev. Fr. Razmig Khatchadourian, Rev. Fr. Ardak Demirjian, and Archpriest Fr. Hrant Yeretzian. Holy Martyrs Church Board of Trustees Chair Mr. Levon Arabian and member Mr. Greg Martayan were among the guests in attendance.

A reception was held prior to the event. The service began with the procession of Prelates into the Church. A procession of flags followed, among them the Armenian flag. Youth also carried placards on which were written names of villages targeted during the Genocide. The ceremony was comprised of prayers and hymns, including “Der Voghormya” sung in Armenian. Speakers included Bishop Mar Aprim Khamis (Assyrian Diocese of the Western U.S.), Archbishop Hovnan Derderian (Primate, Western Diocese), Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian (Prelate, Western Prelacy), Bishop Mar Awa Royel (Assyrian Diocese of California), and Paul Krekorian (Los Angeles City Council member), who was the keynote speaker.

Prelate began his remarks by greeting the organizers and guests at what he referred to as a beautiful expression of brotherly love honoring the memory of the millions of Assyrians, Armenians, and Greeks who in the shadow of World War I fell victim to systematic genocide perpetrated by the Ottoman Empire, and also celebrating the shared rebirth of our nations from the ashes of genocide. “Just a few months ago, the Armenian people commemorated the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. Our Church canonized our martyrs into the sainthood, and they are now our intercessors before God. Today we stand in solidarity with you, our Assyrian brethren, as you commemorate the genocide of your people,” said the Prelate, and went on to speak of the commonalities between the Assyrian and Armenian people, both ancient peoples who have lived amongst one another for centuries, were among the first to accept Christianity, who lived and died together one hundred years ago.

“One hundred years ago our ancestors were massacred on shared lands for no other reason than our Christian faith and ethnicity. We were driven from our ancestral lands, our ancient and priceless religious and cultural treasures destroyed. They killed the body, but they could not kill the soul, for here we are today, alive and well, standing in solidarity as we keep the legacy of our martyrs alive,” stated His Eminence. The Prelate paid tribute to the strong faith of both peoples, which gave them the strength to survive and rebuild, stating that with that same faith and hope, we will pay tribute to their sacred sacrifice in the name of faith and nation by continuing to remember, remind, and demand recognition and justice.

In conclusion, the Prelate noted that when the past is not properly acknowledged, as is the case with the Assyrian, Armenian, and Greek Genocides, history is bound to repeat itself, just as it is today in the Middle East with the persecution and massacre of our fellow Christians and other religious minorities in the Middle East. Thus, “In this centennial year and beyond, we must be the voice not only of our martyrs, but of all those subjected to a similar fate today, so that the vicious cycle of genocide is put to an end and people of different faiths and ethnicities can coexist in peace, tolerance, and mutual respect,” concluded His Eminence.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Latest News

Weekly TV Show

October 23, 2022 October 16, 2022