Catholicosate of Cilicia
Antelias - Lebanon
25 December 2016. On Sunday morning, His Holiness Aram I presided over the Holy Liturgy at the St Gregory the Illuminator Cathedral, celebrating the feast of St Stephen, the martyr proto deacon, which is also the observance of the vocation of deacon. Rev Torkom Donoyan, former Dean of the Seminary, celebrated the Holy Liturgy and preached the sermon. Addressing the deacons, Reverend Torkom said that the commemoration exhorts us to put aside our ego for the love of Christ and to put Christian values before our own selfish desires.
At the end of the Holy Liturgy, the Catholicos led the procession of the priests, deacons, seminarians and the faithful to the Main Hall to celebrate the Proto Deacon. After hymns honouring St. Stephan, Deacon Avedis Asayan read a statement on behalf his colleagues and said that they will apply St Stephen’s message to their own time and bear witness and serve the community based on the principles and values of the Armenian Church.
His Holiness concluded the celebration by thanking the deacons for their thoughtful statement, adding that St Stephen’s feast is the celebration of the Christian value of self-giving and service for the sake of the community. He ended with a prayer blessing the deacons and the faithful.