Asbarez: Prelate’s New Year And Christmas Dinner a Great Success

Prelate Bishop Torkom Donoyan leads the procession of clergy in prayer

“The Church Is Considered the Greatest Armenian Miracle,” Prelate Bishop Torkom Donoyan

The Prelate’s Traditional New Year and Christmas dinner at the Holy Cross Armenian Cathedral’s Baghramian Hall in Montebello on January 6 was a great success with hundreds of community leaders, organizational representatives and parishioners in attendance.

Western Prelate Bishop Torkom Donoyan, who hosted the event, told those gathered that while individuals may come and go, but the church, “the most remarkable Armenian miracle,” is and will remain unwavering.

He attributed his successes, blessings, and achievements throughout his four-year tenure as the Prelate of the Western Prelacy, to the church, while acknowledging that any human faults and shortcomings solely belong to him. The Traditional dinner was organized by the Western Prelacy Ladies Auxiliary and more than 450 guests attended the dinner.

This year’s Prelate’s Traditional New Year and Christmas dinner was hosted by benefactors Mr. and Mrs. Mike and Evelina Sarian. Master of Ceremonies was Reverand Father Karekin Bedourian who greeted the guests and invited all to start the program.

On behalf of the Western Prelacy Ladies Auxilary Sosse Eshgian, welcomed the guests and wished an enjoyable evening for all. Prelacy Executive Council Secretary George Chorbajian, delivered a message on behalf of the body.

The Prelate led the procession of the clergy, who entered the hall chanting Christmas hymns, uplifting the guests, who were holding candles.

The traditional wine and consecrated bread ceremony took place. Prelate Donoyan bestowed his blessings upon the tables and conveyed his well wishes for New Year and Christmas.

A video message by His Holiness Aram I, Catholicos of the Great House of Cilicia, was shown. The pontiff conveyed his New Year and Christmas well wishes to the Prelate, the guests and the community at the start of a new year.

Greg Hosharian and his band offered a delightful musical performace during the traditional dinner. The entertainment continued throughout the dinner featuring performances by an extraordinary artistic performance from Ms. Armine Vartanyan, Mr. Hovhannes Balyan, Mr. Arman Beglarian, and Mr. Berj Karazian, with the accompaniment of Ms. Armenuhi Terterian on the piano.

The focus of Prelate Donoyan’s message was to provide an annual assessment and accounting of the activities of the Western Prelacy. The attendees were briefed on the achievements recorded by the Western Prelacy during the previous year, which included the accomplishment of delivering $2,750,000 in humanitarian assistance and various other initiatives. H.G. Bishop Donoyan expressed his reflections and words of thanks and gratitude to the Western Prelacy clergy, the Religious and Executive Councils, national delegates, parishes, the Ladies Auxiliary, staff, friends, and guests and benefactors, donors and the evening’s sponsors for their valuable support.

In his message, the Prelate also expressed his appreciation and gratitude commanding the contributions made towards the construction of Hacob and Hilda Baghdassarian Preschool and Holy Archangels Church in Crescenta Valley. He first acknowledged the generous contribution from Hilda Baghdassarian and her children, Gevik, Peter, and their families, in memory of their late husband and father, Hacop Baghdassarian, and in honor of their mother, Hilda Baghdassarian. He then recognized the contributions made by Mr. and Mrs. Varant and Hoori Melkonian, in memory of their father, Melkon Melkonian, and in honor of their mother, Angel Melkonian. Prelate Donoyan also expressed his appreciation and presented a special memento as a token of gratitude to the Sarians for their generosity in hosting this year’s New Year and Christmas dinner. He commended Mike and Evelina Sarian for their unwavering support to the Prelacy, the Holy See of Cilicia and the Church and their commitment to support various Western Prelacy humanitarian programs.

The traditional New Year and Christmas dinner dedicated to the Prelate, which is the only fundraising event organized by the Western Prelacy, came to an end as he led the atendees in signing of the “Protector,” “Cilicia,” and “Pontifical Anthem.”