The Los Angeles County Supervisors recognized the Armenian Genocide in a day of remembrance on April 24. Community leaders, headed by His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate of the Western Diocese, were invited by the Supervisors to participate in the recognition ceremony early on April 23.
Fr. Vazken Movsesian addressed the Supervisors on behalf of the Primate with this message:
This day, as we commemorate the Anniversary of the Armenian Genocide and the planned annihilation and execution of the Armenian people by the Ottoman Turks, we raise our voice against all crimes against humanity, against intolerance and the manifestation of evil that leads to acts of violence.
Genocide does not start all at once. The seeds of killing are planted by prejudice and intolerance, as we are witnessing right now Sri Lanka, or last month's in New Zealand, or by the huge refugee crisis and migration of people that is taking place throughout the world. We realize that being heirs of the title "First Genocide of the Modern Era" carries the responsibility to be the first to respond to acts of hatred, and so we do.
This past Sunday we celebrated the feast of Resurrection. We witness to the illumination of darkness by light and the defeat of death by life. We pray that the commemoration of the Armenian Genocide is the reminder and opportunity for us to work for a world where bigotry, intolerance and hatred can be replaced by knowledge and kindness, by understanding and celebration of diversity and most importantly by love and charity. We pray for this change and ask that it start with us here in this chamber and all who are affected by the decisions taken here.
Thank you and God bless.