On Sunday, October 18, 2015, The water blessing service was conducted with the newly blessed Holy Muron, which had been blessed by His Holiness Karekin II, Catholicos of All Armenians at the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin. This service was held according to the decree of Diocesan Primate, His Eminence Abp. Hovnan Derderian, such that every parish upon receiving the new batch of blessed chrism should celebrate the occasion by blessing water and distributing it to the faithful.
On October 24, 2015, St. John Armenian Church hosted the 73rd Annual Food Festival. This spectacular event is a major attraction that draws more than 1,000 visitors from the Greater Bay Area each year. The Festival is a cultural feast of Armenian flavors, authentic traditional cuisine that is handed down from generation to generation, Armenian folk music and dancing, showcasing Armenian artifacts from Armenia and bringing the community together.
Armenians of the Bay Area, including the parish of St. John, feel a sense of great pride that thoughout the Centennial Anniversary of the Armenian Genocide, we have organized to mark the somber occasion and achieved many goals. We have honored and even celebrated the sainted martyrs of the Armenian Genocide, educated our youth, advocated for just recognition, and raised awareness in the public sphere.
On Sunday, September 20, following church services, the much anticipated presentation of the “Historic Armenia After 100 years,” by the author Matthew Karanian took place in The Paul Family Hall. Fr. Mesrop Ash introduced Mr. Karanian and invited him to the podium.
The Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross is the most important of the four feasts of the Holy Cross. It is observed on Sunday closest to September 14. This year Armenian churches all around the world celebrated, The Exaltation of the cross on Sunday, September 13.
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.
As the last days of Summer play themselves out with our vacations concluding and our children returning to school, St. John hosts its Annual Picnic. This year was simply a pleasant occasion to enjoy the fellowship of our community, set against the backdrop of the beautifully forested Huddard Park on a bright, sunny day at the close of the Summer season.
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.
Family nights are one of the best ways to bring families together, sharing delicious food, making new friends, sharing stories and having fun. Friday August 7, the Family Night was dedicated to the Armenians from Iran.
It is with great excitement that we announce to our faithful that we will be resuming publication our parish's monthly printed newsletter beginning this Fall. We offer this good news to our faithful in order to engage them in the restablishment and continued effort necessary to offer a quality publication of benefit to our parish. Please contact us if you would like to volunteer to help support this effort, as regular contributors and copy editors.