Catholicosate of Cilicia
Antelias - Lebanon
Stated His Holiness Aram I on the eve of the feast of the Presentation of Jesus in the Temple (Dyarentarch)
Friday 13 February 2014. On Thursday evening, a large number of parents and their children gathered at St. Gregory the Illuminator Cathedral to attend the evening service prior to the Feast of the Presentation of Jesus in the Temple. His Holiness Aram I presided over the ceremony and preached.
After recounting the story of Jesus’ parents taking the 40-day-old baby to the Temple, according to the Jewish tradition, His Holiness spoke of the two symbols of the feast, light and presentation of Jesus to the temple. Jesus brought light to the world through his birth to save the people who were involved in evil deeds and living in darkness. He prayed that the faithful would take the light from the altar of the Cathedral to their homes and fill their lives with Jesus. Referring to the ritual of the presentation of Jesus to the Temple, he told the parents that by bringing their children to the church, they were offering them to God, promising that they would grow in the church with its spiritual and religious values. The Catholicos then talked about the family as the ‘little church’ and the role it plays in bringing up their children as Christians according to the teachings of the Armenian Church.
At the end of the service, the clergy, the seminarians and the congregation gathered around the traditional bonfire to celebrate the ancient church tradition of Dyarentarach with poetry and songs.