Forty Martyrs Church of Orange County Celebrates Name Day with Episcopal Divine Liturgy and Blessing Of Madagh

On Sunday, March 6, 2016, in celebration of the name day of Forty Martyrs Church of Orange County, H.E. Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian, Prelate, celebrated Divine Liturgy, delivered the sermon, and afterward conducted the blessing of madagh at the adjacent “Gugasian” Hall. Parish Pastor Rev. Fr. Karekin Bedourian and deacons assisted at the altar.

In his sermon, the Prelate highlighted the faith and courage of the young men of Sebastia, stating that though they were martyred in the year 316, they continue to be an inspiration and example for us to emulate today. Knowing well what their fate would be if they disobeyed the emperor’s order to renounce their Christian faith, the young soldiers stood firm in their convictions and gave their lives for the faith, and in doing so, they became worthy of God’s grace and His crown of righteousness, stated His Eminence. He then expounded on the day’s Gospel reading on the Sunday of the Unjust Judge, which tells of a persistent widow asking for justice from an uncompassionate judge, the lesson of which is to stand firm in our faith and to keep hoping no matter the circumstances.

“The forty martyrs did not lose heart in the most unspeakable of circumstances and in the face of certain death. They prayed not for God to save them, but rather to give them the courage and strength to bear their burdens.
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” Despite all the challenges in our lives, the stresses of daily life, illness, financial woes, and the like, as children of God, and in the example of the forty martyrs and the poor widow, we must continue to reach out to our Lord. Unlike the judge in the parable, our God is a just God, and He always delivers justice; maybe not in the timeframe that we would like, but in His time,” stressed the Prelate.

Referencing the “Year of Service” proclamation of His Holiness Aram I, His Eminence invited the faithful to honor the name day of their church by pledging their commitment to working together with humility, brotherly love, mutual respect and understanding, putting aside self-interest, for the advancement and collective good of the parish community, stating, “The previous year was one of renewal for this parish; with the renovation of the physical structures of the church and complex, may your spirits also be renewed and your sense of duty to the community reinvigorated.”

At the conclusion of requiem service, the procession headed to “Gugasian” Hall where the Prelate conducted the blessing of madagh. His Eminence commended the Pastor, Board of Trustees, and Ladies Guild for their dedicated service and thanked the Minassian and Bouloujian families for sponsoring the madagh in memory of their loved ones.

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