Today was the Hrashapar Badarak today, conducted by His Holiness. Although it was really nice that Vehapar came and was celebrating, I think that the most impressive thing was just bringing all these Armenians together under one roof, in the same building, as one church. Only His Holiness has that kind of influence to get all these people in church on this day.
I also really treasured singing in the choir. GUESS WHO HAD A SOLO???? ME!!! It was one of the two measure amens after Miayn Soorp. I had the "amen" after His Holiness said "Orhnayl Vortit Soorp, Adzvadz jushmarid". I just found out yesterday; it was kind of a last minute thing. I was so honored to have a solo, even a tiny one, during this service. Even if I didn't have a solo, though, I was just so excited to be able to do this. Ever since I found out that Vehapar was coming, I hoped I would be able to sing in the choir for this service.
Working with Maestro Mekanejian was truly an honor and a privilege. I learned so much from working with him, and it was amazing to see such faith in action. This man has so much love not only for the music, but for his church. It was so beautiful. Here is a brief article about Maestro Mekanejian. Truly, if you sing in an Armenian church choir and get the opportunity to take a workshop from him, or work with him in any capacity, you should run and jump on that opportunity.
Here is the best picture from all my pictures of Friday and today. It gives you a brief glimpse of the grandness of Holy Trinity in Cambridge. It doesn't do it justice. It is a beautiful church.
This picture is an okay one, a close-up. I was having trouble getting a good one all zoomed in. The man on the left is Very Rev. Fr. Simeon Odabashian. I don't know who the other one is.
Vehapar's message was about the importance of the Armenian family. With all that Armenians have been through during their history, the family unit has really been the place where Armenian culture and religion was nurtured and preserved. The Armenian view of the family unit is that the father and mother are king and queen of their household, and the children are their subjects over which they rule with paternal/maternal love as the guiding force. Vehapar said that in the kingdom of the family, there are no weapons and no violence. Unfortunately, that isn't the case in all families, but it certainly is the ideal that we should all be striving for. Vehapar said that we need to practice our faith on a daily basis, and this reminds me of something that my mother said my grandmother used to say: "You shouldn't have to tell people that you are Christian. They should know from your actions."