On a chilly afternoon, December 3, 11 members of the St. John ACYO met at the base of the Mt. Davidson Cross to spend an hour and a half tending the to the precious San Francisco landmark, and profound Armenian Genocide memorial. The previous season had left a growth of grass and weeds coming through the cracks at the base of the cross, and the fallen leaves blanketed the surrounding space.
For the past 68 years, the young leaders of Armenian Churches throughout the West Coast have gathered together on Thanksgiving Weekend for the Annual Convention of the Armenian Church Youth Organization. This year's convention was hosted at St. Apkar Armenian Church in Scottsdale, Arizona.
Our teen youth gathering with families was on Saturday, June 11 hosted by John and Paula Boghossian. Swimming, games, basketball, and visits with friends were enjoyable to kick start the summer. Families enjoyed delicious Armenian foods and a wonderful kebab lunch and numerous desserts which were also prepared by our families. This event gave our Sunday School families a chance to enjoy a casual and relaxing day by the pool to bond with their families. Even adorable baby Maneh had some fun splish-splashing in the pool surrounded by the love and care of our Sunday school teens.
St. Vartan Armenian Church of Oakland was host to the 67th Annual ACYO Convention which was held over Thanksgiving Weekend, November 27-29, 2015. More than 30 ACYO delegates from chapters across the Western Diocese participated in the convention presided by His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, the Diocesan Primate.
Under the leadership of Fr. Mesrop Ash, St. John ACYO Jr. Members participated in the Assembly and attended the elegant banquet, where they had lots of fun dancing and spending time with their friends.
Year after year, it has been a true source of joy that more and more youth are attending the Annual Western Diocese Summer Camp program, known as Hye Camp. It is a safe and nurturing environment, where our youth can grow in their relationships with one another, their culture, and with Christ.
For the past three years, St. John has offered an Internship program for High School and College students where interns gain practical work experience, learn to work together, being creative, help the community and above all have fun.
This year 10 students participated in this program including Slavik Gevorkyan, Nick James, Lea Kissick, Maria Stone, Grant Hilman, Slavik Bayatyan, Andrew Boghossian, Alex Kouyoumdjian, Allen Torchiyan and Enrike Kaltakhtchyan. They met twice a week, every Tuesday and Thursday from beginning of July until beginning of August.
For the past 6 months, St. John Jr. ACYO boys has been practicing basketball to participate in ACYO Sports Weekend which is held on Memorial weekend. Friday, May 23, under the leadership of Fr. Mesrop Ash and their coach Vasgen Kosdantyan, St. John participated the 51st Annual ACYO Sports Weekend. We are proud to announce that the Jr. ACYO of St. John received the 3rd place Basketball trophy. Furthermore, all of the boys served on the Holy Altar during the Divine Liturgy at St. Paul Armenian Church in Fresno. We're also proud that long serving St.
On Sunday, February 15, following the Divine Liturgy, under the leadership of Fr. Mesrop Ash and Youth Advisor Edward Barber Jr. twelve members participated in the Armenian Church Youth Organization meeting. During the meeting they discussed the upcoming ACYO Jr. Retreat, Hye Camp registration and upcoming activities including April 24 events.
If anyone is interested in joining St. John ACYO please contact Fr. Mesrop Ash.
Each year, on the first day of the Fast of the Holy Catechumens (First Lent), the Armenian Apostolic Holy Church celebrates the Feast of St. Sarkis the Captain, his son Martiros and his 14 soldiers-companions. By the order of His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians; the feast is proclaimed as a day of blessing of the youth. Saint Sarkis the Warrior is one of the most venerated Armenian saints. He is considered the patron saint of love and youth. His feast day is celebrated in late January or early February.
Cultivating a generation of young people who grow in their Chrstian faith and knowledge is one of our parishes most important goals. It is with great joy and pride that we announce that on Sunday, December 21, 2014 St. John launched Its junior ACYO program under the direction of our parish priest Fr. Mesrop Ash and youth advisor Ed Barber Jr., and with the support of many parents.