Celebrating 20 Years of Service
Today marks a very special day for me; it's been 20 years since I was ordained as a celibate priest at the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin.
As I stand here today, back in the spiritual cradle of our ancient and beautiful Armenian Church, I'm filled with gratitude, awe, and a sense of wonder at the journey God has laid out for me.
My heart swells when I think back to the young man I was, taking my vows on this hallowed ground, entirely unaware of the incredible tapestry God would weave through my ministry.
Over these two decades, I've had the blessing to serve in 3 different continents, in 10 vibrant cities, across 3 loving dioceses, and within 8 unique parishes. I've been fortunate enough to serve in 11 different capacities, each teaching me something valuable about the power of faith, the resilience of our community, and the depths of human kindness.
I have seen the faces of our Church change, but never its spirit. Whether it was an intimate setting in a modest chapel or a grand ceremony in a cathedral, what has always stood out is the love and faith that bind us all. Through baptisms and funerals, through weddings and regular Sunday services, your faith has given me the strength to carry out my duties with as much love and commitment as I had on the first day.
I have also witnessed the Church grapple with new challenges — challenges that our predecessors might not have imagined but that have given us the opportunity to grow and reflect Christ's love in new ways. Through it all, it has been both humbling and invigorating to be a vessel of God's grace.
To each parishioner, to every family, to all my brothers and sisters in Christ who have been a part of this journey, my heart overflows with thankfulness. Thank you for opening not just the doors of your churches but also your hearts to me.
I look forward to many more years of service, of learning, and of growing together in faith and love. Please keep me in your prayers as you are in mine.
With prayers and gratitude,
Fr. Mesrop Parsamyan