New York’s St. Vartan Cathedral welcomed a distinguished visitor on Sunday, April 7, in the person of Bishop Sahak Mashalian, of the Armenian Patriarchate of Constantinople, who celebrated the Divine Liturgy on the Feast of the Annunciation.
Diocesan Primate the Very Rev. Fr. Daniel Findikyan presided over the service, in which a number of Diocesan clergy and numerous deacons took part. The Gomidas Choir directed by Kris Kalfayan sang the sacred music.
Bishop Mashalian delivered a sermon on the occasion in Armenian and English, touching on the role of the Angel Gabriel in the Annunciation story, and the presence of angels in human affairs. In the course of his homily, he asked people to pray for the Istanbul Patriarchate as it embarks on an election to choose a successor to the late Patriarch Mesrob II Mutafyan.
A reception and luncheon followed in the Diocesan Center’s Haik and Alice Kavookjian Auditorium, sponsored by C.A.R.S., the Essayan Getronagan Alumni, Tibrevank Alumni, Armenian-American Support and Educational Center, and the Knights and Daughters of Vartan.
Bishop Mashalian currently serves the Armenian Patriarchate of Constantinople as its director of Ecumenical and Interfaith Relations and as secretary of its Religious Council; he has also served in Jerusalem and Armenia (as dean of the Gevorkian Seminary). He was visiting the Eastern Diocese this month to lead a series of clergy retreats for priests in the New England, Midwest, New York-New Jersey and Mid-Atlantic regions.
Click here to read Florence Avakian’s extensive personal interview with Bishop Mashalian.