St. John Armenian Orthodox Church of San Francisco celebrated the feast of Holy translators on Sunday, October 10, 2021, with the observance of the Divine Liturgy celebrated by Abp Hovnan Derderian, primate of the Western Diocese of the Armenian Church with the assistance of Fr. Mesrop Ash, parish priest, and dedicated altar servers and choir members.
Upon conclusion of the service Fr. Mesrop Ash thanked and welcomed Abp. Derderian for his pastoral visit. In recognition of their unwavering service to St. John Armenian Church, the following parishioners were honored by the Primate with the Archbishop's Award. "Hye Spirit" medals Mr. and Mrs. Setrak and Anoush Maghdissian, Deacon Anthony Catchatoorian, Linda Lester, and Judi White for their relentless dedication to serving St. John Armenian Church. He also recognized and thanked the altar servers for their service especially the sacrifices they made throughout the pandemic.
Following the awards ceremony, Abp. Derderian delivered a short message to the Sunday School Students and emphasized the importance of receiving spiritual nourishments only by attending Sunday School regularly, communicating with God by prayers, and following commandments. Surpazan also acknowledged and express his gratitude to Fr. Mesrop and Yer. Annie for their outstanding performances throughout the years, especially during the pandemic.
It was a difficult and emotional moment when Fr. Ash invited Abp Derderian to consecrate the special Icon commissioned by Mrs. Marina Balasanyan in memory of her daughter Gayane Balasanyan who was the victim of a tragic event 3 years ago. Fr. Ash informed the faithful that the artist started the Icon before the war and ended after the cease-fire.
Following the consecration, Requiem service was conducted requested by families for the soul of their loved ones, for the soul of all the members of St. John Church who passed in 2020-2021, and all the souls of our brothers and sisters who sacrificed their lives during the 44-day war.
Upon conclusion of the service, Fr. Mesrop invited the faithful to the courtyard for reception prepared by Ladies Society and Parish Council.