THE SUNDAY MESSENGER
November 29, 2020
Second Sunday of Advent
The Status of Artsakh and Armenia
The war came to a stand-still unexpectedly on Monday, November 9, when an agreement was executed between the Prime Minister of Armenia and the Presidents of Russia and Azerbaijan. This agreement calls for much of Artsakh to be given up and various other concessions of lands in nearby areas. People who live in those regions have just days to vacate their homes. The outcry was loud and clear….the people were not happy about all that had given up and there is much dissension. In the days since, there is great uncertainty as to exactly what will happen and whether there may be a renewal of fighting. To date, the casualties of those killed and injured are in the thousands, and endless properties and sacred churches have been destroyed. Life remains unsure for the survivors and residents of Artsakh. Please continue to pray for a just outcome for Artsakh and Armenia. More news will be shared as we receive it.
“May the Lord give strength to his people.
May the Lord bless his people with peace.”
Saturday, December 5 is the Feast of St. Nicholas of Myra, Wonderworker
St. Nicholas, Bishop of Myra (c 270-342), was said to have been imprisoned for his faith during the persecution of Christians under Emperor Diocletian and present at the Council at Nicaea in 325. But his name is most associated with Christmas and with the boundless love he had for those in need, a love that inspired miracles.
According to tradition, when Bishop Nicholas’ wealthy parents died, he sold all that he had and distributed the money to the poor. He then devoted himself to helping orphans, widows, and prisoners. One well-known legend of his charity concerned the bags of gold he secretly gifted to three very poor girls whose father was about to turn them out of the house. This led to the practice of children being given presents at Christmas in his name which itself evolved from St. Nicholas to Santa Claus. The modern day image of Santa also draws from the story of the pagan god Thor who was associated with winter and the Yule log and rode on a chariot drawn by goats named Cracker and Gnasher.
Reflection: Santa Claus appears each year to be seen and heard for a short time; St. Nicholas is part of the communion of saints, surrounding us always with prayer and example. Which gets more of your attention at Christmastime?
TODAY’S BIBLE READINGS:
1Thessalonians 4: 1-11 (pages 185-186) New Testament
Luke 13: 1-9 (page 69) New Testament – (Please follow the Armenian Reading in your Bible)
Isaiah 36: 22-37: 11 (pages 712-713) Old Testament
REQUIEM SERVICES: Hokehankist today will be for:
FOR ALL THE BRAVE SOLDIERS WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES TO PROTECT THE REPUBLIC OF ARTSAKH AND ARMENIA requested by the Eastern Diocese and Holy Trinity.
“Lord, the God of heaven, the great and awesome God, who keeps his covenant of love with those who love him and keep his commandments, let your ear be attentive and your eyes open to hear the prayer your servant is praying before you day and night….” (Nehemiah 1:5–6). Prayers are requested for Ethel Terzian, Taron Poghosyan, Alice Charles, Theodora Mirakian, Leslie Movsesian and Zevart Shakarjian.
Hats of Faith Project: We have been asked by our sister church St Sahag & St Mesrob to participate in the Hats of Faith Project. We need knitted dark hats for our soldiers in Armenia. Please include a short note with each item to encourage the soldiers. If you do not knit, buy a hat(s), warm socks, or gloves to donate. The due date at our church is Sunday, Dec 6. They will be shipped by Dec. 10. If you have any questions, please feel free to give me a call, 610-449-2236, or text me at 610-220-9860. Elizabeth Barone
Thank you. God bless Armenia!!!
MARK YOUR CALENDARS: December 8 @ 7:30 PM – We are pleased to announce that PBS will be showing two important films about Armenians as a double feature: “What Will Become of Us” by filmmaker, Stephanie Ayanian and the documentary, “100 Years from Home” about an Armenian woman who travels back to Armenia to find her ancestral home. Please share this information with your family and friends.
MEN’S CLUB NEWS – The November Men’s Club drawing for 2020-21 was completed on 11/22. You can see the results on the HT Website. Click on: Organizations, Men’s Club.