On April 18, a delegation representing the Primate addressed the Los Angeles County Supervisor's Meeting, where April 24 was designated as a Day of Remembrance of the Armenian Genocide. Earlier, Supervisor Kathryn Barger and Supervisor Janis Hahn co-authored and introduced a motion that designated April 2017 as Armenian History Month.
The Very Rev. Fr. Dajad Yardumian, Rev. Fr. Vazken Movsesian and Deacon Hayk Tigranian were the guests of Supervisor Kathryn Barger, who invited them to the dais as the presentation was made.
Fr. Vazken's message to the Supervisors:
I am here with a delegation of clergy, representing His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate of the Western Diocese of the Armenian Church of North America. More so, we represent the oldest Christian tradition on Earth as the Armenian Apostolic Church.
While we appreciate the gesture to recognize the Armenian people and their accomplishments, it’s important to remember the reason we Armenians are here in this great country of the United States. It was upon this group that in 1915 the most barbaric crime of Genocide was waged. We were forcibly ejected from our historic homeland. The people you applaud and honor today were once homeless and immigrants. Yes, we are here today as a witness to the power of good overcoming evil. With the message of Easter fresh in our minds, we are a witness to the victory of life over death.
We thank you for honoring the memory of our sainted martyrs by proclaiming April 24 as a “Day of Remembrance for the Armenian Genocide” here in Los Angeles County.
However, we also stand today as a witness to what happens when intolerance, hatred and injustice go unchecked. We ask that you, the Supervisors of Los Angeles County, in your deliberations always keep in mind the need to address issues of intolerance, hatred, bigotry and injustice as a top priority to maintain the standards of a civil society. Further, honor the sanctity of life by recognizing the homeless population as God’s creation and the immigrant population as a symbol of hope in tomorrow.
Thank you. And God bless.