On Sunday, December 26, 2021, and on the occasion of the feast of St. Stephen the Protodeacon and First Martyr, also considered the feast of the deacons serving in our church, Divine Liturgy was celebrated by Rev. Archpriest Fr. Zareh Zargarian, Vicar of the Armenian Diocese of Canada and Parish Priest of Holy Trinity Armenian Apostolic Church.
To serve as a testament to the commitment and sacrifice of the heroes who died for the independence of Artsakh and the freedom of its people, a Commemorative Monument donated by Mr. and Mrs. Levon and Karine Garibyan and their family, was unveiled at the entrance of the Holy Trinity Armenian Church.
Attending these ceremonies were H.E. Ms. Anahit Harutyunyan, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Armenia to Canada; Mr. Varoujan Lapoyan, the Honorary Consul of the Republic of Armenia in Toronto, Parish Priest of St. Mary Armenian Apostolic Church, Right Rev. Fr. Vartan Tashjian; representatives of the Armenian churches in Toronto; representatives of political parties, unions and organizations, as well as the Torontonian fallen martyr Christapor Artin’s family and Mr. and Mrs. Garibyan.
In his sermon Rev. Archpriest Fr. Zareh Zargarian drew a comparison between the unselfish sacrifice of St. Stephen the Protodeacon and First Martyr and the fallen martyrs.
Divine Liturgy was followed by a Requiem offered for the rest of the souls of the heroes who fell for the independence of Artsakh and the freedom of its people.
Reflecting on this somber occasion, the following guests shared their thoughts: Rev. Archpriest Fr. Zareh Zargarian; Ms. Aida Gregorian, who has found her Armenian roots and has been actively involved in the humanitarian efforts in Armenia and Artsakh; Mr. Hagop Janbazian, representing the Armenian Community Centre of Toronto; Right Rev. Fr. Vartan Tashjian; and H.E. Ms. Anahit Harutyunyan, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Armenia to Canada.
The guests and the parishioners followed the religious procession to the entrance of the church where the monument has been placed. After placing wreaths and singing requiem prayers, the unveiling of the monument took place.
The ceremony ended with the singing of the Armenian national anthem by everybody present.
We pray that God Almighty bless the souls of the martyrs and keep their memories alive in the hearts of Armenians across the world.