O Come All Ye Faithful

On 6 January, sanctuaries of the Armenian Apostolic Church worldwide will celebrate the Feast of the Holy Nativity and Theophany of Our Lord Jesus Christ, which is the commemoration of the Birth and Baptism of Jesus.

We encourage our community faithful to be a part of the joyous celebrations as we raise up our voices in praise of our Lord’s birth.

Click here for the schedule of church services over the coming days.

Primate’s Christmas Message for 2017

“My peace l give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you” (John 14:27)

The message of Peace is a powerful theme over Christmas that resounds in our hearts with the birth of the Christ Child. But the world, entrusted to man’s care, continues to lack peace.

As we approach the celebration of the Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ, read the Primate’s Christmas message in Armenian or English and be reminded that God’s plan for mankind’s redemption started at the cave in Bethlehem.

The Presence & Peace of God

“Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.” – Colossians 3:15

Thank God throughout each day for His Presence and His Peace. These are gifts of supernatural proportions.

Ever since the resurrection, God has comforted His followers with these messages: Peace be with you and I am with you always. Listen as God offers you His Peace and Presence in full measure. The best way to receive these glorious gifts is to thank Him for them. It is impossible to spend too much time thanking and praising God.

God created us first and foremost to glorify Him. Thanksgiving and praise put us in proper relationship with God, opening the way for His riches to flow into us. As we thank God for His Presence and Peace, we appropriate His richest gifts.

Our Christian Mission in December

The Christmas Bowl is a program of Act of Peace, the international aid agency of the National Council of Churches in Australia.

Each year on the Feast of Stephen the offering plates of the Church of Holy Resurrection are donated to the Christmas Bowl Appeal which is founded on the simple message of giving the cost of your Christmas meal to someone who is less fortunate. This powerful mission has been owned by Australian churches since the Christmas Bowl began in 1949.

During this advent season as we reflect on the birth of our Saviour and understand how God’s love transforms lives there is no greater way of demonstrating this than giving to those in need.

Donations can also be made personally at the church office. Donations of $2 or more are tax deductible.

Click here to read more about the Christmas Bowl mission.

Services Over the Festive Season

Sunday 18 December: Consecration of the New Icon & Blessing 

Divine Liturgy commences at 10.30 a.m.

Sunday 25 December: Feast of St Stephen the First Martyr
Divine Liturgy commences at 10.30 a.m.

Sunday 1 January: New Year’s Day
Divine Liturgy commences at 11.00 a.m.

Thursday 5 January: Eve of the Feast of the Nativity & Theophany
Jakalooyts – Divine Liturgy commences at 5.00 p.m.

Friday 6 January: Feast of the Nativity & Theophany of our Lord Jesus Christ – Divine Liturgy commences at 10.00 a.m.

Consecration, Blessing & Bestowing of Ranks

SUNDAY 18 DECEMBER

The Icon of the Holy Mother & Christ Child
A new painting of the Holy Mother of God and Christ Child will soon adorn the altar table following the consecration of the painting this Sunday.

The tradition of placing an image of the Virgin Mary and Infant Christ over the altar table where Badarak is celebrated glorifies the virtue of her consent to become the “living temple” of the Incarnate Lord. Through Mary, the gift of salvation entered the world in the flesh and blood of Jesus Christ. So befittingly this image is placed upon the holy altar where the gifts of bread and wine become the Body and Blood of our Lord.

The Relic of Noah’s Ark
The Commemoration of the Pontiff St James of Nisibis will be observed this Sunday when the holy relic of Noah’s Ark which is kept in our Diocese depository will be brought down for the occasion.

According to tradition, the Pontiff St James who was a nephew of St Gregory the Illuminator and described as the “Wonderworker” for his numerous miracles,  became the bearer of a piece of Noah’s Ark in his quest to climb the mountain to search for its existence.

On this day, a special blessing service will take place for members of our congregation with the holy saint’s namesake, Hagop.

Click here to read more about the commemoration.

Interview on The 3D Julfa Cemetery Project

Diocese Chancellor, Mr Nishan Basmajian recently had the opportunity to interview Dr Judith Crispin on the Julfa Cemetery Digital Repatriation Project that aims to return the 2000 medieval UNESCO intangible world heritage khachkars from Julfa to the Armenian people.

The project outcomes are many including two permanent 3D installations – virtual reconstruction of the cemetery – in Yerevan and Sydney as well as an international touring installation, a permanent archive of historical photographs, published books and papers to name a few.

The multi-million dollar project has been supported and funded for the most part by the Australian Catholic University however local and international Armenian support is now required for the project to continue.

Click here to read the transcript of this very interesting interview with Dr Judith Crispin who can only be described as a genuinely inspirational defender of human dignity with a profound social conscience.

Arachnortaran Model on Display

A replica of the new Arachnortaran or Diocesan Centre is now on display in the Primate’s office at the Armenian Apostolic Church of Holy Resurrection (10 Macquarie St, Chatswood). The model captures the imposing characteristics of the building and puts into perspective the Architect’s plans and drawings.

We invite our community members to take a personal interest in the construction of the Diocesan Centre as it will be a dignifying building which reflects the respect of the faithful towards their church.

For a private viewing or information on how you can partner with us in the Diocese project with your donation or pledge, please contact Nishan Basmajian on 9419-8056 or by email diocese@armenian.com.au

Feast of St Stephen the Protomartyr

The Armenian ecclesiastical calendar marks December 25th as the feast day of St Stephen.

St Stephen was an early Christian convert, one of the original seven deacons ordained by the Apostles. Due to his passion for spreading the word of Christ, he directed his attention towards synagogues, preaching often. His preaching was confirmed by many miracles.

He became the first martyr of the Orthodox Church after being stoned for upholding the Christian cause. Further historical details about St Stephen’s life are recorded in Chapters 6 and 7 of the Acts of the Apostles.

As such, this feast in the Armenian Church is appropriately dedicated to all current deacons. They serve the altar on that day adorned with their finest orarion (stole – Ourar) and are also granted the privilege to wear a crown (Saghavard).

The Advent Gospels

Advent (Hisnag), 50 days counted back from Christmas celebrated on January 6, is a time to prepare ourselves for the arrival of our Lord Jesus Christ. Similarly to the 40 day Lenten period in preparation for Easter, a unique set of Gospels are read on the six Sundays in the Armenian Church.

These are essential readings to reflect on our Christian walk to remind us how God wants us to share the goodness of His provision in our lives.

All the Gospels come from the Book of St Luke and the message from each talks about our response to Christ, specifically how we respond to those in need identified by Christ – the poor, the meek, the needy. We are also reminded of the foolishness of attaching too much importance to wealth, how faith must bear fruit and warned about excuses, idleness and pride.

THE SUNDAYS OF ADVENT
1st Sunday:   Luke 12:13-31 – The Parable of the Rich Fool
2nd Sunday: Luke 13:1-9 – Jesus Calls People to Repent or Perish
3rd Sunday:  Luke 14:12-24 – The Parable of the Great Feast
4th Sunday:  Luke 17:1-10 – Jesus Tells About Forgiveness and Faith
5th Sunday:  Luke 18:9-14 – The Parable of the Two Men Who Prayed
6th Sunday:  Luke 19:12-28 – The Parable of the King’s Ten Servants