Prelate Celebrates Divine Liturgy and Conducts Blessing of Water at St. Garabed Church in Las Vegas

On Sunday, October 11, 2015, H.E. Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian, Prelate, paid a pastoral visit to the Las Vegas parish community where he celebrated Divine Liturgy, delivered his message, and conducted the blessing of water with the Holy Muron blessed by His Holiness Aram I, Catholicos of the Great House of Cilicia, in July in Bikfaya. The Prelate’s pastoral visit also included a meeting with the Pastor and Parish Council to discuss parish-related matters and future endeavors.

The service began with the procession of the Prelate into the church. Parish Pastor Rev. Fr. Arsen Kassabian and deacons assisted at the altar. The Prelate began his message by reflecting on his participation in both Muron blessing ceremonies, the first in July in Lebanon and the second just two weeks prior in Armenia, and on the significance of the Holy Muron as a symbol of the power and presence of the Holy Spirit and a source of spiritual renewal.

Next the Prelate spoke on the legacy of our Holy Translators, given that the Feast was observed the previous day in our church calendar. His Eminence exalted the devoted service and priceless contributions of our Holy Translators to our faith, language, and culture, to the birth of our national consciousness and national identity.

Tying in the day’s Gospel reading from Mark, which told of the poor widow’s offering, the Prelate stated that our Holy Translators, in the example of the poor widow, put in all that they had into our nation’s treasury. They gave their heart, soul, mind, and all their strength to their work, and as a result brought about a cultural awakening and enlightenment for our nation. “Today, as we remember these holy men and intellectual giants, let us honor their work and legacy by vowing to do our part to keep our faith, language, and culture thriving. Let us also instill and awaken in our younger generations love and reverence for our faith, language, and heritage so that they in turn pass it down to subsequent generations and thus ensure the survival of our distinct religious and national identity for centuries more,” concluded the Prelate.

At the conclusion of his sermon the Prelate conducted the blessing of water ceremony. Requiem service followed, during which prayers were offered for the soul of St. Garabed Church benefactor Mr. Larry Barnes, who passed away in July.

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