Prelate Conducts Christmas Service at Glendale Memorial Hospital

Each year during the New Year and Christmas season, H.E. Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian, Prelate, pays a special visit to Glendale Memorial Hospital to conduct the blessing of water symbolizing the baptism of our Lord Jesus Christ and to convey his New Year and Christmas wishes to the administration, staff, and patients. This year’s service was held on the morning of Thursday, January 5, 2017, the Eve of the Nativity. The Prelate was joined by Archpriest Fr. Nareg Pehlivanian, Archpriest Fr. Vazken Atmajian, and Rev. Fr. Ardak Demirjian.

Prior to the service, President Jack Ivie greeted and introduced the dignitaries in attendance; Glendale Mayor Paula Devine, City Council Member Ara Najarian, City Manager Scott Ochoa, Fire Chief Greg Fish, and Deputy Police Chief Carl Povilaitis. Noting that the Christmas service has become tradition for the hospital, he thanked the Prelate and clergy for visiting and conducting the service each year, and invited His Eminence to deliver his greetings and message.

The Prelate began by wishing a happy New Year to all. He greeted the attendees, among them devoted members of the Armenian Relief Society. His Eminence thanked God for granting the gift of a New Year and the opportunity to once again celebrate Christmas with the Glendale Memorial family. He explained the meaning of the two services to be conducted, the Blessing of the Home and Blessing of Water, and then spoke briefly on the transformative message of the Birth and Revelation of our Lord, stating, “As we begin a New Year, with new dreams, hopes, and opportunities, may we take this time also to reflect on ourselves and commit to renewing and bettering ourselves in mind, body, and spirit, so that we too can live the abundant life promised by our Lord.” In conclusion, the Prelate thanked President Jack Ivie and the Glendale Memorial Hospital and Health Center administration for their continued collaboration with the Prelacy, for their enthusiastic participation in the annual Christmas service, and for the compassionate care they provide to their patients, praying for God to continue to lead them in their calling and to bring healing to the sick.

The Blessing of the Home service followed, followed by the Blessing of Water, during which designated hymns were sung. The Prelate invited Mr. Ivie to serve as Godfather of the Cross, and prior to blessing the water with the Holy Chrism explained the history of the Holy Chrism dating back to St. Gregory the Illuminator. In conclusion, the Prelate delivered the benediction, which was followed by the singing of the Christmas hymn “Great and Marvelous Mystery” and the Lord’s Prayer.

The Prelate presented a gift to Mr. Ivie, a crystal rendering of the Prelacy Chapel, after which he visited patient rooms and blessed a newborn.

KABC Channel 7 was present and conducted an interview with the Prelate, which aired later in the day along with a segment from the service.

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