Feast of the Holy Cross of Varak

Sunday Messenger

September 25, 2016

Feast of the Holy Cross of Varak

Feast of the Holy Cross of Varak

On Sunday, September 25, Armenian Churches worldwide will celebrate the Feast of the Holy Cross of Varak—an observance unique to the Armenian Church.

In the 7th century, a monk named Totig received a vision of a brilliant cross descending from Mount Varak in historic Armenia, and coming to rest on the monastery at the mountain’s foot. Totig raced to where the vision had led him, and there found a miraculous Christian relic: a fragment of the True Cross of Jesus Christ!

How had it gotten there? The relic had been brought to Armenia by St. Hripsime, in the late 3rd century, during her flight to find refuge from the persecutions of pagan Rome. When St. Hripsime was martyred by King Drtad, the hiding place of the cross was forgotten—and the holy relic had languished in its secret place for nearly 300 years, before being found again by the monk Totig.

To commemorate this discovery, the catholicos of the time, St. Nersess the Builder, established a feast day. And the Holy Cross became a relic of great power in Armenia, moving from Varak to Sepastia and finally to Van, where it still could be seen by pilgrims—until the time of the Genocide.


  • Galatians 6: 14-18 (page 174) New Testament
  • Matthew 24: 30-36 (page 25) New Testament – (Please follow the Armenian Reading in your Bible)

REQUIEM SERVICES: Karasoonk (40th Day memorial Service) today will be for:

  • DEBORAH HANAMIRIAN on the 40th day of Her eternal life requested by Pauline Chapjian and Family.

Hokehankist today will be for:

  • EDWARD TERZIAN (1st Anniversary of His eternal life) requested by Helen Terzian Gallagher and Ethel Terzian.

HAROUTYOUN AZNAVURYAN (8th  Anniversary of his eternal sleep) requested by his wife Armenoui, son Carlo , Polina and his family,  daughter Lolita Babikian and her family, grandchildren: Aram, Shant & Sara, Raffi, Armineh Babikian and Arthur & Benthley Aznavuryan.

“The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective” (James 5:16b).   Please remember in your prayers: the St. Garabed parishioners and all the victims of the flooding in Baton Rouge,   healing for Virginia Shakarjian,  Janice Boyajian Pinkerton and Anita Mirijanian;  law enforcement officers who have been killed or injured in the line of duty;  those killed in the many terrorist attacks in gatherings here and abroad and their families who are suffering their loss;  comfort for the bereaved among us; for the current unrest in Armenia; all those affected by the ongoing conflict in Artsakh – families whose loved ones were killed and  the injured as they try to recover; and all who are persecuted for their faith and forced from their homes during these perilous times.

Today following Badarak, we will be holding a brief service of Thanksgiving in joyful celebration of the independence of the Republic of Armenia since 1991.
FELLOWSHIP HOUR: is sponsored today by Pauline Chapjian and Family in loving memory of DEBORAH HANAMIRIAN on the 40th day of Her eternal life. All are welcome.

FELLOWSHIP HOUR: is also sponsored today by Helen Terzian Gallagher and Ethel Terzian in loving memory of EDWARD TERZIAN on the 1st Anniversary of His eternal life. All are welcome.

ALTAR CANDLES are donated today by Berjoohy Murray and Family in loving memory of EDWARD TERZIAN on the 1st Anniversary of His eternal life.

Sunday of Talents – Is God calling you to serve? Of course, He is! Join us to explore some volunteer opportunities at Holy Trinity which may be the perfect fit for your God-given talents. There are many ways to serve the Church and help it grow and thrive.  Come and join us on Sunday, October 9th to find out more.

Fall Bible Study:  We invite you to attend our fall adult Bible study. The six-week series will focus on the general or “universal” epistles of the New Testament and be led by Fr. Hakob and others. We will meet on Thursday mornings in October and November; our first session is October 6. Ask any of our Parish Council representatives for details. All our programming is free of charge, and we encourage our faithful to bring along a friend.

MEN’S CLUB RAFFLE – Tickets are now available – and selling fast – for the 200 Club Raffle.  A one-time donation of $100 will entitle you to eight months of drawings, with five tickets drawn each month.  The first drawing will take place in November and the last in June; the prizes in those two months will be $1000 / $400 / $200 / $200 / $ 200 !! And your chances are better than the lottery!  Contact Larry Der Hagopian (215-672-4188) or Mickey Paretchan (215-947-4394) if you haven’t already purchased your ticket!  The Men’s Club provides financial support for our church through this endeavor, and has been sponsoring two orphaned children via CASP for many years.

ATTIC TREASURES: If you’re cleaning out your closets, we would greatly appreciate donations of your CLEAN & UNDAMAGED gently used items to be sold at the Attic Treasures table during the Harvest Bazaar.  No toys, clothing or books (except cookbooks).  Desired items are jewelry, women’s accessories, housewares, small furnishings, and more, more, more. Attic treasures can be left in the 1st room on the right down the Sunday School hall. Call Ayshe Chakmaklian for more info. at 610-828-2411. If you need a New Jersey pick up call Grace Meranshian at 856-217-9333.

THE NICENE CREED/ HAVADAMK –  This is the Profession of our Faith which is recited every Sunday moments after the Gospel is read from the altar.  Sometimes it is sung, but more often it is recited by the Deacons and/or the Choir.  We invite you to affirm your own “Profession of Faith” by reciting along with us.  God longs for all of us to express our faith and devotion to Him.

CHURCH CALENDAR (please mark your calendars)


  • Sunday October 2nd: Pancake Breakfast sponsored by our Church School
  • Thursday October 6th: Bible Study: 10:00 a.m.
  • Sunday October 9th:   Sunday of Talents
  • Thursday October 13th: Bible Study: 10:00 a.m.
  • Sunday October 16th: Honoring Dn. Albert and Dn. Garo
  • Thursday October 20th: Bible Study:10:00 a.m.
  • October 28th, 29th & 30th: Harvest Bazaar

The Bookstore: The Bookstore is open every Sunday after Liturgy. Please stop in and browse.

COUNTRY STORE: The Country Store is open every Sunday after church services in the kitchen. All are welcome.

If you know of anyone who is a shut-in, or ill and would like a visit from Der Hayr, please call the office and give their name to Maggie our church secretary.
CHURCH ETIQUETTE: We wish to remind you, our faithful, to please maintain a quiet and contemplative manner as you approach the chancel for communion. We especially ask that you refrain from conversation while waiting your turn for communion as well as afterwards as you return to your pew.    Thank you.

THE KISS OF PEACE: After the gifts of the Eucharist are brought to the Altar Table, the deacon proclaims, “Greet one another with a holy kiss.”  The person giving the greetings says, Kristos ee mech mer Haydnetsav – Christ is revealed amongst us.  The recipient would respond, Orhnial eh Haydnootiunun Kristosee – Blessed is the revelation of Christ.

Anyone who wishes to request any Requiem Services MUST inform the office by 1:30pm Wednesday the week before. If you also want to sponsor the Fellowship Hour you MUST call Merle Santerian at 215-947-3777.
Would you like to:
– receive this Bulletin on Friday via email?
– request a Hokehankist, house blessing or hall rental information?
– find in-depth information on our faith, our parish and our activities?
– sign up for an event online?
If the answer to any of these questions is YES, please visit our parish website at www.holytrinity-pa.org
WE ASK THAT EVERYONE KINDLY TURN OFF ALL CELL PHONES and all other such electronic devices prior to entering the sanctuary out of respect for the sanctity of our services.