Last month, under the auspices of Western Prelate Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian, a Sunday school teacher’s seminar took place at the Western Prelacy, where clergy and more than 25 directors and teachers from various Prelacy church Sunday schools were in attendance.
A vesper service was conducted at the Prelacy’s “Sts. Drtad and Ashkhen” chapel, and the hymn “Vork Zartaretsin” was sung in commemoration of the Holy Translators. Afterward, those in attendance were invited to the “Dikran and Zarouhi Der Ghazarian” hall, where the seminar began with the singing of the Sunday school anthem.
Hagop Tchaghatsbanian, co-chair of the event, gave a short spiritual reflection by referencing Matthew 10:42: “And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones who is my disciple, truly I tell you, that person will certainly not lose his reward.” Event co-chair, Raffi Torossian’s remarks followed. These reflections were followed by presentations by Sunday school directors, in regard to their schools yearly goals.
The seminar continued with the first speaker, Very Rev. Muron Aznikian, who reflected on the theme of the seminar – “Jesus the good Shepherd.” He touched on the various obstacles that today’s youth face, including reasons for having strayed away from their faith. Rev. Aznikian emphasized that a religious education and the Bible are foundations of morality, and cited the Book of Proverbs: “The words of the wicked lie in wait for blood, but the speech of the upright rescues them.” (Prov. 12:6)
After the lunch break, the second guest speaker, Rev. Karekin Bedourian reflected on the Holy Translators and their roles in building the Armenian identity. He focused on the necessity of keeping the Armenian language strong within the youth.
Following Fr. Bedourian’s remarks, a short video clip depicting Jesus as the good Shepard was presented to those in attendance. The video presentation was followed by a workshop.
Closing remarks were provided by Prelate Mardirossian, who congratulated the Sunday school teachers and directors for their continued efforts. Emphasizing on the tribulations which we all face, he invited all to renew their faith, dedication, and service.
Prelate Mardirossian also spoke about the traditions which we inherited from the Holy Translators and invited all to not only be proud of the achievements of the Translators, but to also exemplify them in our daily lives.
The seminar concluded by the benediction of the Prelate and singing of “Cilicia.” Each Sunday school director received a gift for their schools, and the attendees received a plaque with the Lord’s Prayer as well as prayer cards.