Saturday, April 24, will be observed by the worldwide Armenian Church as the “Feast of the Holy Martyrs of the Armenian Genocide.” Services at St. Vartan Cathedral will begin at 10 a.m., wth all health restrictions observed.
In 2015, the centennial year of the Armenian Genocide, the martyrs of 1915 were ceremonially recognized as holy saints. With their canonization, the Genocide martyrs joined other great exemplars of holiness, virtue, and sacrifice, in the “canon” of revered saints from church history.
This year, with many localities living under pandemic regulations, the Armenian faithful will again enter this holy day largely separated from each other—but still in the mystical company of our assembled saints.
At St. Vartan Armenian Cathedral in New York, the Divine Liturgy will take place on April 24, beginning at 10 a.m. It will be followed by a special prayer service for the Holy Martyrs of the Armenian Genocide. Fr. Vazken Karayan, pastor of Holy Cross Church (Union City, NJ), will celebrate the badarak, with Diocesan Primate Bishop Daniel delivering the homily.
The service is open to the public, under strict observance of health and safety regulations. It will also be streamed over the St. Vartan Cathedral Facebook page.
The Genocide commemoration is traditionally a time of intense activity in the Armenian community; but this year, public gatherings are largely curtailed in favor of online events. A number of in-person and online events are noted on this website under Upcoming Events.
Honor the day from your home by watching a special episode of the Diocese’s “Bread and Salt” series, which revisits the April 2015 canonization service, and explains the way we now regard the Holy Martyrs of 1915. Click here to view the video.
For a more in-depth look at the meaning of Christian sainthood and martyrdom, click on the link to “A Great Cloud of Witnesses.”