An altar server training program was held at the Western Diocese in LA. Allen Torchiyan, Enrike Kaltakhtchyan, Paul Israelian, and I were able to attend. It was a great weekend for us to learn different aspects of the Sunday Liturgy. Topics included learning different liturgical hymns as well as learning the different roles of an altar server. On that Sunday, we attended the liturgy at the cathedral. We also got to know the Burbank ACYO Chapter a little better. They were very welcoming.
In commemoration of the 60th Anniversary of the consecrations of both St. Vartan Oakland and St. John San Francisco a first-of-its-kind joint pilgrimage was organized by Fr. Hovel Ohanyan and Fr. Mesrop Ash. This group consisted of 54 faithful from the area and throughout the Western Diocese, who signed up to reconnect with their ancestral homeland and commit themselves to spiritual renewal.
St. John Armenian Church is happy to release the Unified Camp Scholarship Application for 2017. It is a source of great spiritual joy for our community that many of our young people have applied and been accepted to participate in the Armenian Church Summer Camp of the Western Diocese. Through the generosity of various funds established with the purpose of sending young Armenians to Hye Camp, St. John is offering several scholarships to children and youth who have been active in the life of the parish.
On Friday April 28, St. John held another family night dinner to honor this community's long record of service by our veterans, peace officers, firefighters, and other first responders. Proceeds from the dinner are still coming in, and are expected to exceed $ 1,000.00, which is to be used for the chaplaincy program that assists current and former soldiers and their families in Artsakh, led by Dn. Volodya Najaryan.
Mother’s Day is a celebration honoring mothers. There is simply no way we can ever really thank mothers for all they do for us. Around the world, people follow different traditions of celebrating Mother’s Day. Here in the United States Mother’s Day is one of the most important holidays, and it always falls the second Sunday of the month of May.
On Friday, January 20, St. John once again hosted a Family Night, this time honoring the Armenians from Baku. St. John has been a real home for Armenians from Baku, since the time that many came to the Bay Area fleeing the brutal Sumgait Pogrom in 1988, and the war for the independence of Artsakh.
San Francisco, in many ways, is the envy of the world. It has a lot going for it. Natural beauty, industry leading companies, great sports teams, and a social and political culture all its own. There is one area, sadly, the City has continually struggled with. Homelessness is a major and visible concern. It is an issue that seems to be on every politician's agenda yet only seems to be getting worse.
January, our meeting welcomed our new slate of officer’s. We had a cozy meeting in the Ashjian Room. We warmed up the chilly winter day with lunch brought in from the Olive Garden, and we enjoyed their minestrone and their signature salad and bread while surrounded by friends. Those who stayed to the end of the meeting enjoyed the surprise of having a chance at winning a door prize. Three lucky attendees took home a ceramic magnet from Jerusalem.
The Sunday School teachers are committed to keeping our children motivated and engaged. Our teachers: Cecelia Baloian, Talene Movsesian, Alexis Burke, Lesley Kissick, Sevag Sarkissian and Ellen Eagen continue to eagerly devote their time in preparing lessons and work with our children weekly.
The ACYO, sleepover was a fun night for everybody. First, we all went into the kitchen and cooked meat casseroles for the homeless. Then we delivered them to the homeless shelter. After that, we had a special career presentation by Anthony Catchatoorian.