HOLY CROSS, LAVAL PARISH


Palm Sunday
Palm Sunday, commemorating our Lord Jesus Christ’s triumphal entry into Jerusalem, was celebrated with joy and enthusiasm in Holy Cross church in Laval, on Sunday, April 17th. At an early hour the church was already crowded. The service was officiated by Reverend Father Komitas Mirzakhanyan with the assistance of the church deacons and young acolytes.  The liturgical chant was performed by “Etchmiadzin” choir conducted by choirmaster deacon Vahe Pouchikian. The church service was presided by His Grace Bishop Bagrat Galstanyan, Primate of Canada. Before the Lords Prayer, the Primate shared his message with the faithful and blessed the crosses made by palm fronds in the presence of Sunday School children. The liturgical service was followed by a beautiful ceremony of Door Opening symbolizing the reopening of the Heaven doors before the human being. At the end of the ceremony the blessed palm branches and crosses were distributed among the faithful. On the occasion of Palm Sunday celebration there was a luncheon initiated by Ladies’ Guild where a great number of the faithful took their participation.
Maundy Thursday/Holy Thursday
On Thursday, April 21st, the Armenian Church commemorated The Last Supper of our Lord Jesus Christ with His twelve apostles. As we know, the Last Supper signifies the establishment of the sacrament of the Holy Communion. At 11 o’clock in the morning a Divine Liturgy was performed by Rev. Father Komitas Mirzakhanyan at Holy Cross church. The service was also attended by Reverend Father Narek Kushchyan, a guest priest from the Diocese of Georgia. Towards the end of the service Fr. Komitas introduced Fr. Narek to the faithful, who shared his message.

Washing the Feet service
The same day at 6 o’clock in the afternoon, the beautiful rite of washing feet service was held in the presence of the faithful. On this occasion the pastor had chosen customarily 12 youngsters recalling the number of 12 Apostles. Following the biblical readings and prayers,  Reverend Father Komitas Mirzakhanyan blessed the water and the oil with the Holy Cross. Following the example of Jesus Fr. Komitas washed and anointed the feet of 12 youngsters with the blessed oil. Towards the end of the service the blessed oil was distributed among the faithful. The service was also attended by Reverend Father Myron Sarkissian, pastor of Armenian parishes of Mississauga and Ottawa. Afterwards those presented were invited to a light  supper initiated by Polat family which was followed by rite of “Khavarum”.

“Khavarum”
Fallowing the supper at 9 o’clock in the evening during the service of the Khavarum, the 7 readings from the gospels was held, which represents the last prayer of our Lord Jesus Christ at the Garden of Gethsemane, the bedrail of Judah, the contemn Jesus, the denial of Peter. Father Myron along with the pastor father Komitas were participating during the service. As well as the deacons and the choir members of the church. Fallowing the “Our Es Mayr Im” church song Father Myron Sarkisian delivered the massage of the day. The church service ended at 12:30am.

Good Friday
Friday evening at 7 o’clock, the rite of the burial of our lord Jesus Christ was held at the church in the presence of great number of the faithful. In front of the Holy Alter was installed a tomb decorated by colorful flowers, symbolizing the tomb of our Lord. The service was also attended by Reverend Father Narek Kushchyan, a guest priest from the Diocese of Georgia. Near the end of the service Fr. Komitas introduced Fr. Narek to the faithful and invited him to deliver his message to the present people.

Easter
This year Easter was held on April 24th, a day that all the Armenian nation were commemorating the 96th anniversary of the Armenian genocide. On Easter Sunday following the morning church service Easter Divine liturgy was held at Holy Cross Church. The Divine liturgy was celebrated by Fr. Komitas Mirzakhanyan, assisted by deacons and accolades of the church. The liturgical chant was performed by “Etchmiadzin” choir conducted by choirmaster deacon Vahe Pouchikian.

At the end of the celebration Fr. Komitas greeted the faithful with his Easter message. He also passed a message from His Grace Bishop Bagrat Galstanyan, Primate of Canada. Right after, Fr. Komitas invited all the children who attended the Divine Liturgy as well as the Sunday school children who were holding Easter baskets to take parte of the blessing ceremony.

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