Name Day Celebration of St. Gregory The Illuminator Church of San Francisco

On Sunday, March 13, 2016, St. Gregory the Illuminator Church of San Francisco celebrated its name day with Episcopal Divine Liturgy celebrated by H.E. Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian, Prelate, who also delivered the sermon and conducted the blessing of madagh. Pastors Very Rev. Fr. Barouyr Shernezian and Archpriest Fr. Khoren Habeshian assisted at the altar, alongside deacons.

The Prelate focused his sermon on the unshakable faith and unyielding will of our patron saint St.
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Gregory the Illuminator, who paved the way for Christianity in Armenia, stating “St. Gregory made tremendous sacrifices because he believed with all his heart and soul that Christianity was the right path for our nation. His successors shared in his vision for our nation and faithfully continued the righteous work he began. And over the centuries, amid constant strife with numerous adversaries, we have been able to preserve and grow our faith, because generation after generation, recognizing that our national identity is rooted in our faith, has taken on the responsibility of serving to keep our faith strong.”

The Prelate also reflected on the day’s Gospel reading on the sixth Sunday of Great Lent, the Sunday of the Second Coming, which tells of the hypocrisy of the Pharisees and Scribes, stating that St. Gregory the Illuminator served selflessly, faithfully, lovingly, humbly, and sincerely, for the benefit of the collective, in contrast to the Pharisees and scribes who served for recognition and selfish gain, whose faith was superficial as were their words, and whose actions stemmed from an impure heart.

His Eminence also touched upon the 50th anniversary of the parish, which will be celebrated later in the year, stating that the founders of the church drew their inspiration and motivation from the exemplary faith and service of St. Gregory, and worked together with faith, hope, and love, for the common good of the community. “Today, the responsibility to continue the work they began decades ago falls on all of you. Together with your new pastor Fr. Barouyr, may you serve for the progress of this Church with brotherly love, devotion, unity, and harmony, having as your guide and example of life and faith of our predecessors, and inspiring others along the way,” he concluded.

Divine Liturgy was followed by the blessing of madagh by the Prelate. His Eminence once again congratulated and commended the parish family and wished them continued successes in their mission.

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