Prelate Participates in Pasadena Armenian Genocide Memorial Ground Blessing


On Sunday, April 27, 2014, the ground blessing of the Pasadena Armenian Genocide Memorial was held at Memorial Park with the participation of over 700 community members, among them clergy, elected officials, students, and representatives of community organizations.  H.E. Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian, Prelate, participated in the ceremony.  He was accompanied by Rev. Fr. Boghos Tinkjian, Archpriest Fr. Nareg Pehlivanian, Rev. Fr. Khoren Babochian, and Rev. Fr. Boghos Baltayan.

The program began with welcoming remarks by former California State Assembly member and Pasadena Armenian Genocide Memorial Committee Board member Anthony Portantino, who thanked the clergy leaders for their presence and for conducting the ceremony.  With the singing of the “Today He is Risen” Easter hymn, the clergy proceeded to the site of the memorial where the blessing ceremony began with Psalms and Gospel readings.  After blessing and consecrating the site and the soil brought from Armenia, the Prelate added the Armenian soil to the foundation.

At the conclusion of the ground blessing, the Prelate delivered his message, stating that the ceremony was a moving and also empowering one for the Armenian nation, because “the fact that there are over 200 hundred Armenian Genocide monuments in over forty countries, and that we are standing here today for the ground blessing of a new monument in the Diaspora, almost a century later, sends a resounding message to Turkey that they failed in annihilating the Armenian people, and that they will ultimately fail in their denialist campaign”.  His Eminence reaffirmed that as the descendents of Genocide victims and survivors, we will never forget what our ancestors endured, that generation after generation we will keep their memory alive, remind the world of our history, and purse our rightful demands.  In conclusion, the Prelate conveyed gratitude to the Pasadena City Council for their unanimous approval of the project, and to the Memorial Committee and sponsors for their hard work and support, and expressed hope that the memorial will serve “as an everlasting reminder of our history, a symbol of our resilience, and of the triumph of justice, truth, and goodness.”

The event continued with a program emceed by Judge Dikran Tevrizian.

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