Feast of the Transfiguration of Our Lord

Sunday Messenger

The Sunday Messenger
July 7, 2024

Paree Janabar to Der Hakob and all the travelers who will be leaving for Armenia. Our prayers go with them!

Feast of the Transfiguration of Our Lord

Scripture and Feast Day Notes

From Today’s Readings

Wisdom 7:25-8:4 Solomon extols the virtues of wisdom, having sought her from his youth: she is a powerful source of renewal, prevails against evil, and draws us to friendship with God since “God loves nothing so much as the person who loves wisdom.” (v. 28) Discuss/reflect: In 1 Kings 3: 1-15, God asks Solomon what he wants most. Rather than long life or wealth, he asks for wisdom, which in Hebrew is literally “a listening heart.” How might such a heart help you?

Zechariah 14: 16-21 Declaring that a day is coming when the Lord will be king over the whole earth, the prophet foresees that all — even former enemies of the faith — will be called to Jerusalem on the Feast of the Tabernacles to celebrate and worship him as the Lord Almighty. Discuss/reflect: “Holy to the Lord” will be inscribed on the horses’ bells and on cooking pots (v.20) on that day. What parts of your life do you feel are inscribed to the Lord? 

1 John 1:1-7 John proclaims the truth of Jesus Christ based on all he has seen, heard,  and touched so that others “may have fellowship with us” (v. 3) and in turn with God. God is light and walking in that light means living by the truth and loving God and one another. Discuss/reflect: In what ways have you, like John, “seen,” “heard,” and “touched” Jesus?

Matthew 16:13-17:13  This rich account, worthy of a long summation, begins with the important conversation at Caesarea Philippi when Jesus asks “Who do people say I am?” After hearing the answers (John the Baptist, a prophet), he asks “and who do you say I am?” To which Peter famously replies “You are the Christ, the Son of God.” In the next account, Jesus predicts his death and counsels that anyone who follows him must take up his cross as well for “those who want to save their life will lose it.” Finally, we read the account of Jesus’ transfiguration.

Today is the Feast of the Transfiguration
The Transfiguration, one of the five major feasts of the Armenian Church, marks the extraordinary occasion Jesus took his three closest disciples, Peter, James, and John, up to Mt. Tabor where he was “transfigured,” appearing radiant. Moses and Elijah appeared at his side, symbols of the Law and Prophecy which Jesus had come to fulfill. A voice from heaven was heard saying: “This is my beloved Son.”

Some customs of an ancient Armenian pagan festival for the goddess Asdghig are still associated with this feast, such as decorating the church with roses (and therefore the Feast’s name Vartavar; it is more formally called Aylagerbootyoon or Baydzaragerbootyoon) and spraying one another with water. Reflection: Only in Matthew, do we learn the disciples’ reaction to this miracle: fear and awe, calmed by Jesus’ touch. (17:6-7) Think of a time when you were afraid, anxious, or confused. Were you aware of Jesus’ presence? Next time you feel this way, prayerfully dwell on the Lord’s radiant transfiguration

The Kiss Of PeaceAfter 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 greeting 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.

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.

Coffee Hour – as we approach the summer months, coffee hour will be abbreviated. Coffee and tea only will be provided. Please feel free to bring other treats to share during coffee hour.

Reminder – 2024 is half over…..have you paid your 2024 dues yet? According to the Diocesan Bylaws, membership dues are to be paid no later than December 31st each year in order to be a member in “good standing” and to be eligible to vote at the annual assembly.

Attention Graduates! – Looking for graduates to be included in an upcoming issue of the LOOYS (all levels). We invite you to submit your own details for inclusion. Write-up should include: full name, parents’ names, name of institution, grade level or degree achieved, activity involvement (church or school), and future plans (further education/work/other). Please include a picture (in high resolution color), if possible. Everything should be sent to choirboss@hotmail.com by July 30, 2024.

AYO – Spring is here and Ayo! has just launched its new project “Put Down Roots.” In partnership with the Yerevan Botanical Gardens, the project aims to create an educational-therapeutic horticulture space to provide opportunities for forcibly displaced children (and others) to get their hands dirty, de-stress and learn about the environment! Once built, this special section of the botanical gardens will be available for children and youth for years to come. You can directly support the initiative here: https://secure.qgiv.com/event/ayoisyou/.

Armenian Sisters AcademyThe best way to learn about ASA is to experience it for yourself! Visit our campus to see how our deep appreciation for the Armenian language and culture empowers our students, promotes self-respect, and prepares future role models. All visitors must have a scheduled appointment and may not freely enter the building without prior notice. To schedule your private tour contact Legna Santerian at Lsanterian@asaphila.org or (610) 687-4100.

Stay Connected with our New Church PortalOver the past several months Holy Trinity Armenian Apostolic Church has changed to a new Church Management System called One Church.  The new software puts you in control of your information (email, phone number, giving information, etc.), allows us to communicate with you more effectively, facilitates online, text, and app donations, and provides greater connectivity throughout our community.  You should have received an email.  If you have not gotten one (please make sure to check your spam folder), then reach out to the church office.

Humanitarian Support for Artsakh Ongoing From The Knights And Daughters Of Vartan – As the Azeri government still cracks down on the Armenian people in the nation of Artsakh, the people are not giving up! Please consider making a donation to the Knights and Daughters of Vartan Call to Action Committee! Donations will go towards humanitarian aid. For further information please visit the Knights and Daughters of Vartan website at https://kofv.org/a-call-to-action-from-kdv-for-artsakh/

Mail your donations to Knights of Vartan, Mr. Ronald Nazeley, Treasurer, 558 Kentwood Bluffs Drive, Los Angeles 90045.

Checks should be made to Holy Trinity Armenian Church, Memo: Artsakh, and brought or mailed to church. Online donations can be made by going to www.holytrinity-pa.org, go to donations, scroll down to Open Donation and enter Artsakh.

Seeking Part-time Organists – the Choir of Holy Trinity continues to seek multiple talented musicians who would be seriously interested in playing the organ for the Sunday morning Divine Liturgy (Badarak) on a rotating schedule. Organ lessons will be provided to the interested candidates, along with one-on-one direction from a senior choir person.  For further information, contact Karinne Andonian at karinne.hov@gmail.com.

~~~~~~~~~~TODAY’S EVENTS~~~~~~~~~~

Feast of the Transfiguration of our Lord

Following Coffee Hour at 1:00pm, we will again have a Fire Truck to enjoy the fun of water games of Vartavar. Bring your children and water toys.

Aug 18        Feast of the Assumption of the Holy Mother-Of-God (Grapes Blessing)
Sep 02         Labor Day – Church Office Closed
Sep 15         Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross
Sep 21         Armenian Independence Day
Sep 29         Feast of the Holy Cross of Varak3