The Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day has acquired the magical power to connect all Armenians in the world, physically, virtually and spiritually. A vibrant and fast-growing Armenian community celebrated the 107th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide on April 24, 2022, at St. Garabed Armenian Apostolic Church of the Desert in Rancho Mirage, California.
Thanks to dedicated and visionary leaders, generous donors and hardworking community members. St Garabed Armenian Apostolic Church, with its impressive Complex, including the inspiring sanctuary, elegant social hall, and rapidly growing enthusiastic community, is recognized as the “Crown Jewel of the Desert”.
After an inspiring church service, parishioners and guests gathered at the Social Hall for luncheon which was followed by the 107th Anniversary Genocide Remembrance Day Remembrance Day Celebration.
Deacon Gevork Gevorkian’s opening prayer, Aida Askejian, Ladies Society chairlady welcomed the guests and announced that the luncheon proceeds will be dedicated to the Etchmiadzin Children’s Fund. Parish Council chairman Vartan Nazirian welcomed the guests and expressed his appreciation of the church community for their unwavering commitment, enthusiasm and support. He then introduced the Parish Council members.
The program started with a beautiful rendishen of three songs played on Duduk by Deacon Gevorkian
The first speaker, Dr. Silva S. Karayan, Professor Emeritus at California Lutheran University, the granddaughter of a genocide survivor and a dedicated leader, Der Nerses Avak Kahana Babayan, who stayed with his flock through three deportations until Aintab Armenians settled safely in Aleppo.
Dr. Karayan reassured the audience that we will all continue to get together every year, on the 24th of April, for remembrance and reflection, for appreciation and inspiration, and for solidarity and empowerment. We Should do so with a firm determination to continue to live and prosper as proud, productive, and loyal Armenian American citizens.
The second speaker was Dr. Garabet Moumjian, an independent historian, researcher and security consultant and linguist specializing in the Middle East. He is also an Arabist and Ottomanist.
Dr. Moumjian spoke authoritatively about the Armenian Genocide. He underlined the importance of raising the issue of compensation for Armenian assets, fixed and liquid, parallel to pursuing the recognition of the Genocide. He further stressed the point that solely the pursuit of the Armenian Genocide recognition has come to an end in itself, adding that the recognition efforts should be linked to the compensation demands.
The 107th anniversary of the Armenia Genocide celebration was a remarkable event, both impressive and empowering which will be remembered by the parish of St Garabed Armenian Church of the Desert, for a long time, thanks to the untiring efforts of the Parish Council and the Ladies Society.