Eastern Prelacy: Crossroads E-Newsletter – 03/06/2008

Untitled DocumentPress Release
Eastern Prelacy of the Armenian Apostolic Church of America
138 East 39th Street
New York, NY 10016
Tel: 212-689-7810
Fax: 212-689-7168
e-mail: [email protected]

MARCH 6, 2008

Archbishop Oshagan Choloyan has sent a message today to all Prelacy
parishes asking them to offer special prayers for Armenia as well as a
requiem service for the victims of the recent clashes in Armenia, this
Sunday, March 9. The Prelate sent the message following a directive received
>From His Holiness Aram I, Catholicos of the Great House of Cilicia, who has
been in frequent consultation with His Holiness Karekin II, Catholicos of
All Armenians. The Central Committee of the Cilician See called upon all the
leaders of Armenia and the children of the nation to hold onto the nation’s
and homeland’s supreme and collective interests. The two Pontiffs agreed to
the special requiem service to be performed in all Armenian churches this
Sunday in memory of those who fell victim to the March 1 clashes.

The New England Regional meeting for pastors, boards of trustees, and
National Representative Assembly delegates with the Executive Council will
take place this Saturday, March 8, hosted by St. Asdvadzadzin Church in
Whitinsville, Massachusetts.
The Prelate and Vicar will participate in the regional meeting. On
Friday evening Archbishop Oshagan and Bishop Anoushavan will attend the
Lenten Vigil Service at St. Asdvadzadzin Church; Bishop Anoushavan will
deliver the sermon.

Archbishop Oshagan will preside over the Divine Liturgy this Sunday,
March 9, at Sts. Vartanantz Church, Ridgefield, New Jersey.

On Wednesday, March 12, Archbishop Oshagan, Bishop Anoushavan,
Archpriest Mousegh Der Kaloustian, Rev. Fr. Nareg Terterian, and Rev. Fr.
Mesrob Lakissian will visit the Armenian Home in Flushing, New York, and
later that same day they will visit with the Senior Citizens group at St.
Sarkis Church, Douglaston, New York.

Under the auspices of Archbishop Oshagan, the 40th anniversary of
Archpriest Fr. Arshag Daghlian will be celebrated on Saturday, March 29, at
St. Stephen’s Church Hall, Watertown, Massachusetts. Dinner will be served
at 6 pm, followed by a program. Reservations for the event (donation of
$20), can be made by contacting the church at 617-924-7562.

The Eastern Prelacy’s National Representative Assembly will be hosted by
St. Stephen’s Church, Watertown, Massachusetts, May 8-10. Information for
delegates, including hotel reservations, meal plans, and airport shuttle
service are on the Prelacy web page. Additional information will be posted
on a regular basis, so check the site often. In addition to the NRA, the
National Association of Ladies Guilds (NALG) will be meeting and celebrating
its 25th anniversary; and a conference of Yeretzgeens will take place. To
get to the NRA site click here.

His Holiness Aram I, Catholicos of the Great House of Cilicia, has
designated the year 2008 as the "Year of Christian Education."
To read His Holiness’ message in Armenian click here.
To read His Holiness’ message in English click here.

The fifth of the six-part Prelacy Lenten program took place last night
at St. Illuminator’s Cathedral in New York City with the participation of
more than sixty people. After the Husgoom Service (Peace-Compline), Deacon
Shant Kazanjian, director of the Armenian Religious Education Council
(AREC), spoke about "Prayer and Christian Formation."
Dn. Shant first defined Christian formation as total integration and
incorporation into the life of the Church with its distinctive worldview and
lifestyle that is different from the general culture. A disciplined prayer
life plays an essential role in that process, he said.
Prayer is spontaneous when we
are at the mountain top or in the valley of life. But if we wait only at
these two poles to pray we will pray very infrequently. Life is in the
plain. Hence, the need for a disciplined prayer life. Following Scripture to
remain steadfast in prayer, Christians from the earliest days have observed
fixed hours of prayer both in private and with other believers. Dn. Shant
emphasized how the Lord’s Prayer is at the Center of the Sermon on the Mount
(Matthew 5-7), indicating that prayer is at the heart of the teaching of our
Lord Jesus Christ and thus it is central to our life and our faith in God.
In fact, the Lord’s Prayer is the paradigm of Christian prayer. "If one
prays and lives the Lord’s Prayer, he will certainly experience the reality
of the Kingdom of God here and now, and he could anticipate sharing in it in
the life to come," said Dn. Shant. After the lecture, an animated discussion
The final Lenten lecture will be next Wednesday, March 12, and will be
presented by Rev. Fr. Vartan Kassabian, pastor of St. Gregory Church of
Merrimack Valley, North Andover, Massachusetts, who will speak on "Family as
Christian Educator." The Lenten program is sponsored by the Prelacy Ladies
Guild (PLG), the St. Illuminator’s Ladies Guild, and the Prelacy’s Armenian
Religious Education Council (AREC).

Musical Armenia 25 was heartily applauded by an appreciative audience
last Sunday at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall. The first part of the
program featured violist Aleksandr Nazaryan with Bo-Kyung Park on the piano
and the Yerevan Quartet composed of Srbouhi Pantikian (violin), Alexander
Dzyubinsky (violin), Aleksandr Nazaryan (viola), and Lilit Kurdiyan (cello).
The second part featured the pianist Karen Tchougourian whose exceptional
talent captivated the audience. Musical Armenia 25 was dedicated to the
memory of three former prelates of the Eastern Prelacy: Archbishop Hrant
Khatchadourian, Archbishop Karekin Sarkissian, and Archbishop Mesrob
Ashjian, who was the founder of the Musical Armenia series.
Following the concert a reception for the artists and benefactors took
place at the Prelacy. Photos are by Antranig Sarkissian.

The Catholicosate of the Holy See of Cilicia announced that His Holiness
Catholicos Aram I will consecrate the Holy Muron (Holy Oil) on June 7, 2008.
The Holy Muron, symbol of the grace of the Holy Spirit, is traditionally
blessed every seven years. Only the Catholicos can consecrate the oil which
is then distributed to the various dioceses for distribution to the
parishes. The oil consists of 48 different herbs, flowers, and oils which
are combined in a special vessel and mixed with some of the old Muron, thus
creating an unbroken chain with the past. The preparation of the Holy Muron
is a long process and each stage is accompanied with special prayers. Prior
to its blessing, the Muron remains for forty days on the altar of the
Cathedral. The Muron Blessing is expected to attract a large number of
pilgrims from various parts of the world.
During this same period the World General Assembly of the Catholicosate
of the Great House of Cilicia will convene in Antelias beginning on June 3
through to June 5.
The Prelacy is organizing a pilgrimage to Antelias for the Muron
blessing. For details click here.

An international gathering of youth is being organized by the Holy See
of Cilicia. His Holiness Aram I is inviting the youth, 18 years and older,
to attend this gathering from August 13 to 20, 2008, coinciding with the
annual pilgrimage during the Feast of the Assumption of the Holy Mother of
Plans are underway for the Catholicosate, the Prelacy, and our Parishes
to facilitate the travel of the young adults to the gathering by assisting
with a portion of the travel expenses. For information contact your local

This Saturday, March 8, the Armenian Church commemorates one of three
days in the Armenian liturgical calendar in memory of St. Gregory the
Illuminator, the founder of the Armenian Church. The three days of
remembrance are: Entrance into the Pit; Emergence from the Pit; and
Discovery of his remains. This Saturday we commemorate his commitment to the
Gregory stood fast to his faith and refused to renounce Christ. He
endured many tortures and his final punishment was banishment into a deep
pit (Khor Virab) where he remained for a period of thirteen or more years.
Miraculously he survived the ordeal, thanks in large part to a woman
(identity unknown) who secretly lowered food into the pit, permitting
Gregory’s survival.
The Monastery of Khor Virab is a major destination for tourists and
pilgrims who visit Armenia. The church complex was built on the exact
location where St. Gregory was imprisoned. The pit is intact and it is
possible for visitors to climb down the ladder (27 steep steps) into the
pit. The church, named Sourp Astvatsatzin dates to the 17th century. The
area is one of the most picturesque in Armenia, with the absolute best view
of Ararat!
We would like to point out that in the Armenian Church during Lent
saints are commemorated only on Saturdays. During the remainder of the year,
saints are commemorated on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.
Commemorations never take place on Wednesdays or Fridays, these being
fasting days.

Our journey through Lent continues, as we approach Holy Week. This
Sunday, March 9, the sixth and final Sunday of Lent, is the "Sunday of
Advent" (Galstyan Kiraki). On Advent Sunday we are asked to ponder on the
mystery of the first coming of Christ and especially His second coming,
which is mentioned in the prayers read this Sunday. Christ came to the world
for the salvation of humankind. He will come again for the judgment of
sinners, and when the righteous will become worthy of entering the Kingdom
of God. Advent Sunday has its own special hymn, which proclaims that the
apostles knew the mystery of the advent of Christ. The story of the
expulsion from paradise is repeated and an appeal is made to Christ to ask
the Heavenly Father to establish peace on earth.

Consecrated relics of St. Gregory are preserved in Holy Etchmiadzin in
Armenia and the Holy See of Cilicia in Antelias, Lebanon. This Saturday,
which as noted above commemorates the beginning of St. Gregory’s
imprisonment in the pit, is a day of pilgrimage in Antelias. Thousands of
pilgrims come to the Cathedral of St. Gregory the Illuminator for the
service and procession and for an opportunity to see the sacred relic of the
patron saint of the Armenian Church. It is brought out each year on this
occasion. It is also used every seven years during the consecration of the
Holy Chrism (Muron).

Bible readings for today, March 6, are: Isaiah 53:1-54:5; 1 Corinthians
Now I would remind you, brothers and sisters, of the good news that I
proclaimed to you, which you in turn received, in which also you stand,
through which also you are being saved, if you hold firmly to the message
that I proclaimed to you-unless you have come to believe in vain. For I
handed on to you as of first importance what I in turn had received: that
Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures, and that he was
buried, and that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the
scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he
appeared to more than five hundred brothers and sisters at one time most of
whom are still alive, though some have died. Then he appeared to James, then
to all the apostles. Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also
to me. For I am the least of the apostles, unfit to be called an apostle,
because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I
am, and his grace toward me has not been in vain. On the contrary, I worked
harder than any of them-though it was not I, but the grace of God that is
with me. Whether then it was I or they, so we proclaim and so you have come
to believe. Now if Christ is proclaimed as raised from the dead, how can
some of you say there is no resurrection of the dead? If there is no
resurrection of the dead, then Christ has not been raised; and if Christ has
not been raised, then our proclamation has been in vain and your faith has
been in vain. We are even found to be misrepresenting God, because we
testified of God that he raised Christ-whom he did not raise if the dead are
not raised, then Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you
are still in your sins. Then those also who have died in Christ have
perished. If for this life only we have hoped in Christ, we are of all
people most to be pitied. But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead,
the first fruits of those who have died. For since death came through a
human being, the resurrection of the dead has also come through a human
being; for as all die in Adam, so all will be made alive in Christ. But each
in his own order: Christ the first fruits, then at his coming those who
belong to Christ. Then comes the end, when he hands over the kingdom to God
the Father, after he has destroyed every ruler and every authority and
power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet.
The last enemy to be destroyed is death. For "God has put all things in
subjection under his feet." But when it says, "All things are put in
subjection," it is plain that this does not include the one who put all
things in subjection under him. When all things are subjected to him, then
the Son himself will also be subjected to the one who put all things in
subjection under him, so that God may be all in all. 1 Corinthians 15:1-28
For listing of the week’s Bible readings click here.

A New CD from ZULAL-"Notes to a Crane." Zulal, the a cappella trio, has a
new CD called "Notes to a Crane." It is a beautiful CD that adheres to the
groups name Zulal, which means "clear water." The group (comprised of Yeraz
Markarian, Anais Tekerian, and Teni Apelian) takes Armenia’s village folk
melodies and weaves intricate arrangements that pay tribute to the rural
roots of the music while introducing a sophisticated lyricism and energy.
The CD has 18 selections and can be purchased from the bookstore for $15,
plus shipping and handling. For a brief example of Zulal’s clarity click

We remind you of the recent CD issued by the Prelacy..
YERKABSAG (Musical Wreath), a musical tribute to the genocide martyrs, which
was produced on the occasion of the 90th anniversary of the Armenian
Genocide, under the direction of Armenian American musicologist Krikor
Pidedjian conducting the Chamber Choir of Yerevan and the Alan Hovhaness
Chamber Orchestra. Available at the bookstore for $15, plus shipping and
handling. To hear the beautiful rendition of Giligia click here.

Two DVDs: "Uprooted" and "Journey to Resurrection," by artist Lucy
"Uprooted" is a powerful documentary that begins with a brief history of
Christian Armenia depicted by this talented artist’s works. "Journey to
Resurrection" depicts the artist’s religious journey and personal
experiences growing up in Jerusalem. Lucy Janjigian’s works have been
exhibited around the world and are in many public, private and corporate
collections. Each DVD sells for $25, plus shipping and handling.

EMAIL ([email protected]) OR BY TELEPHONE (212-689-7810)

This Sunday, March 9 at 2 a.m., we officially switch to Daylight Saving
Time (three weeks earlier than normal). Don’t forget to advance your clocks
ahead one hour (spring ahead). Congress made this decision for an earlier
return to DST beginning last year, supposedly as an energy-saving move. It
will be darker in the morning upon rising, but lighter at night for the
commute home.

This Sunday evening, at 5 pm in the Choral Room 264, at the Aaron
Copeland School of Music at Queens College the Mark Kyrkostas "Remember Me
with Music" birthday concert will take place. Mark Kyrkostas was a featured
artist in the Prelacy’s Musical Armenia concert of 1989. For information


March 8-New England Regional Conference with Board of Trustees and NRA
delegates hosted by St. Asdvadzadzin Church, Whitinsville, Massachusetts.

March 30-Second lecture of a series presented by St. Sarkis Church,
Douglaston, New York, 1:15 pm. With participation of Samvel Jeshmaridian,
PhD and Elize Kiregian, M.A. Information: church office 718-224-2275 or Dr.
Arthur H. Kubikian 718-786-3842.

April 11-Photo Art Exhibit featuring the work of Levon Berberian. Opening
reception, 7 to 11 pm, at the Prelacy offices, New York City. Jointly
sponsored by the Prelacy and the New York Mayr Chapter of the Armenian
Relief Society. Proceeds will benefit the ARS Centennial Fund. The
exhibition will also be open to the public on Saturday and Sunday, April 12
and 13, from 1 pm to 5 pm.

April 20-Third lecture of a series presented by St. Sarkis Church,
Douglaston, New York, 1:15 pm. With participation of Samvel Jeshmaridian,
PhD and Elize Kiregian, M.A. Information: church office 718-224-2275 or Dr.
Arthur H. Kubikian 718-786-3842.

May 5-Mothers’ Day Luncheon, sponsored by the Prelacy Ladies Guild, St.
Regis, New York City. Reception at 11:30 followed by luncheon.

May 8-10-National Representative Assembly of the Eastern Prelacy, hosted by
St. Stephen’s Church, Watertown, Massachusetts. Click here for details.

May 8 and 9-National Association of Ladies Guild (NALG) conference in
conjunction with the National Representative Assembly, celebrating the 25th
anniversary of the NALG, will take place at St. Stephen Church, Watertown,

June 3-5-World General Assembly of the Catholicosate of the Great House of
Cilicia will convene in Antelias, Lebanon.

June 7-Blessing of Holy Muron in Antelias, Lebanon. Click here for details.

June 27 to July 6-St. Gregory of Datev Institute, Summer Christian Studies
Program for youth ages 13-18 at St. Mary of Providence Center in Elverson,
Pennsylvania, organized by the Armenian Religious Education Council. For
more information click here.

July 19-"A Hye Summer Night 3," dance hosted by Ladies’ Guild of Sts.
Vartanantz Church and ARS Ani Chapter, Providence, Rhode Island. For details

August 15-17-International Gathering of Youth and Pilgrimage to Der Zor,
organized by the Catholicosate of Cilicia. Details will follow.

October 25-Gala celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Prelacy of the
Armenian Apostolic Church of America under the jurisdiction of the Great
House of Cilicia and the 110th anniversary of the establishment of the
Armenian Church of America. Marriott at Glenpointe, Teaneck, New Jersey.
Details to follow.

Web pages of the parishes can be accessed through the Prelacy’s web site.

To ensure the timely arrival of Crossroads in your electronic mailbox, add
[email protected] to your address book.

Items in Crossroads can be reproduced without permission. Please credit
Crossroads as the source.

Parishes of the Eastern Prelacy are invited to send information about their
major events to be included in the calendar. Send to:
[email protected]


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