Name Day Celebration of Holy Cross Cathedral of Montebello

On Sunday, September 14, 2014 the Christian world celebrated the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross. The feast is also the name day celebration of Holy Cross Cathedral of Montebello. H.E. Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian, Prelate, joined the parish community to celebrate the special occasion with Divine Liturgy and the blessing of madagh.

The Prelate celebrated Divine Liturgy, assisted at the altar by Rev. Fr. Ashod Kambourian. Prior to delivering the sermon, His Eminence conducted the Antasdan service, blessing the four corners of the world, which for this feast is dedicated to the exaltation of the Cross as it journeyed from Persia towards Jerusalem. Addressing the congregation, the Prelate first greeted and congratulated the parish on their name day celebration, conveying his blessings to all and especially to the youth, to Prelacy Schools’ students and to Sunday School children who resumed a new school year on that day. His Eminence thanked God for his safe return from Washington D.C. where he had joined the entourage of His Holiness Aram I, Catholicos of the Holy See of Cilicia, at a summit aimed at protecting and preserving Christianity in the Middle East.

The Prelate began his sermon with a brief historical background on the origin of the feast, its confiscation, recovery, and triumphant return to Jerusalem. He then spoke of the triumphant message and promise of the Cross, redemption and salvation by the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ. The Prelate noted how mankind was immersed in sin, with no means of cleansing and saving himself. So our loving, just, and powerful God, in His mercy, sent His Son to grant redemption and salvation to mankind and to free us from the destructive binds of sin. By way of the Cross, man was made into a new being and given the promise of a new and everlasting life, a promise that is achieved through rebirth by the Holy Spirit and accepting Jesus Christ as our one and only Lord and Savior. The invitation is open to all, said the Prelate, all one has to do is embrace the life-changing and life-saving gift.

The Prelate then turned his attention to the battle being waged in the Middle East against the Cross and against our brethren. He noted that the Armenian people are all too familiar with persecution, however, no matter the circumstances, our forefathers did not falter in their faith nor did they lose hope. Their faith gave them hope and strength to persevere. And so, he prayed for the power of the Holy Cross to once again embolden our Christian brothers and sisters, to give them the strength to stand their ground and emerge victorious against forces of evil. In conclusion, His Eminence prayed for the Holy Cross to protect us all, to guard us against evil and preserve us from enemies, and to lead us to everlasting life.

At the conclusion of the service the Prelate was led in a procession to “Bagramian” Hall where he blessed the madagh. The ceremony came to a close with the Cilician and Armenian anthems.

A lunch reception followed. In his remarks, Holy Cross Cathedral Dean, Very Rev. Fr. Muron Aznikian first thanked the Prelate for joining the community on their special day. He greeted the guests, among them Executive Council Chair Mr. Vahe Hovaguimian, thanked them for their attendance and invited them to participate in parish life.

The Prelate once again conveyed his blessings to the parish family and wished that all are filled with the inspiring hope and promise of the Holy Cross.

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