We are living in a time of deep sorrow in our national and ethnic life as we are witnessing the bitter reality of how Artsakh was betrayed to forfeiture under the ruthless blows of the enemy.
History is repeating itself when we see the misery and uprooting of our people from their ancestral lands, and the martyrdom of young men in love of their homeland.
In this reality it remains for us to fortify ourselves in prayer, strengthen in faith, so that with our humanitarian actions we may inspire hope in the children of our people who need our support today. During these difficult times, let us remain as messengers of peace, to ensure our inner unity, and to face and overcome the endless trials in our lives.
When His Holiness Vazken I, of Blessed Memory, spoke about Armenia, he would reflect, “Creating a homeland is heroism; To populate a homeland is a virtue."
Today, as we prepare to celebrate the anniversary of independence of our homeland, our spirit is saddened, but it is our request and call to remain hopeful. Let us live with a vision, to reject weakness, and most importantly, let us strengthen ourselves with one another, to crown the future with victory.
Pray persistently. In the coming days, when we make our appeal to you to show your humanitarian support to the Armenians of Artsakh, whose expression of faith during these tragic days will undoubtedly take heart from us.
Pray for our martyrs. Pray for mothers who protect close to their hearts the new generation of brave men of this new era.
Faith will strengthen us. Our request to God is to preserve and protect our Armenian land. May our prayer be engaging, so that we may stand as protector of our native homeland, the precious inheritance entrusted to us by our forefathers.
Archbishop Hovnan Derderian
September 21, 2023