The Holy Week and Feast of the Ressurection of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ are always a call to renewal through His mercy and glory. St. John gives thanks for the opportunity to celebrate these occasions in 2016 along with the family of the faithful.
On Sunday, March 20, St. John Church celebrated Palm Sunday, the triumphant entrance into Jerusalem by our Lord Jesus Christ. Upon the conclusion of the Divine Liturgy, Fr. Mesrop invited all the children to participate in the procession along with the altar servers, followed by the Opening of the Door service (Turnpatsek). Solemn Holy week services began , the morning of Maundy Thursday, the Last Supper and Communion, then in the evening washing of the feet, where Fr. Mesrop washed the feet of dozens of children, followed by the Betrayal Service or Khavaroom. Hagop Kupelian sang one of the most moving hymns of Armenian Sacred Music, Oor Yes Mayr Im, “Where are you, mother”.
On Good Friday, Mrs. Nelly Shirikian along with her daughter Natalie decorated the tomb of our Lord with beautiful flowers, and at 7:00pm Fr. Mesrop along with the deacons conducted the Burial Rite service.
On Saturday morning of Easter Eve Fr. Mesrop conducted a special prayers service for children and parents and gave a short message. More than 100 parishioners with their children, grandchildren attended the service and enjoyed the breakfast with the Easter Bunny in eager anticipations for the Easter Egg hunt. Later that evening the Easter Eve Jerakalouys service was held, which is always beautiful and mysterious, especially at the end when the faithful came forward for candle-lighting ceremony called Jerakaloytz.
On the morning of Sunday, March 27, the church bells were ringing inviting all the faithful to worship and celebrate the Resurrection of our Lord. Following the Glorious Divine Liturgy and Antasdan Service, the faithful gathered in the Paul Family Hall for Fellowship Hour where they enjoyed the Easter Bread (Choreg) prepared by St. John Ladies Society.
On behalf of Fr. Mesrop and St. John Parish Council, we would like to take this opportunity to express our gratitude to all the volunteers who work tirelessly during the lent and Holy Week. Special thanks to the altar servers, choir members, ACYO members, and Ladies Society for preparing choregs and meals, all the parents for donating colored eggs, and to all volunteers who decorated the church, the hall and prepared the Saturday morning breakfast.