Catholicosate of Cilicia
Antelias - Lebanon
On 24 March, Palm Sunday, the cathedral and the courtyard in Antelias were packed with children and their parents who had come to celebrate the triumphant entrance of Jesus to Jerusalem. Palm Sunday is also the “Day of the Armenian Child,” which was instituted by His Holiness Aram I soon after his consecration as Catholicos of the Holy See of Cilicia.
After the Holy Liturgy, the clergy, the choir and the children walked in procession around the compound of the Catholicosate and at the end, Catholicos Aram I greeted the children from his balcony by repeating Jesus’ words “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” (Matthew 19:14). He then addressed the adults and said that he noted with great joy that the parents had come to church with their children, for it showed their desire to teach the children the traditions of the Armenian Church. The Catholicos concluded his message with a special word of appreciation for the important role that the mothers play in the education and spiritual growth of their children.
The festivities were concluded when Catholicos Aram I blessed and gave a gift to each child.