Fr. Mesrop Parsamyan
Today, we observe Red Sunday in the Armenian Church, a day that reminds us of the sacrifice of the martyrs who gave their lives for Christ, His Church, and their faith. The color red symbolizes blood, life, and the struggle and victory for life.
As we contemplate the color red, we are reminded of the blood of Jesus Christ, who shed His blood on the cross for the atonement of our sins. His blood is the ultimate sacrifice, the perfect expression of love, and the way to eternal life. But red also reminds us of the blood of the martyrs who followed in His footsteps, who stood up for their faith, and who were willing to die rather than renounce their beliefs.
The early Church Father Tertullian once wrote, "The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church." Indeed, the early Christians laid the foundation of the Church through the martyrdom of their blood, creating a place where future generations worshiped Jesus Christ without fear. Thanks to their courage, Christianity prevailed. Had it not been for these valiant warriors of God, Christianity would have remained a prohibited and persecuted religion.
The greatest gift bestowed upon humankind is freedom, which is attained through knowing the Truth. It was for that Freedom and Truth that God's witnesses sacrificed their lives, including the millions of martyrs from our Armenian nation.
Today, we face different challenges, but the call to faithfulness and the commitment to the Truth remain the same. We are called to walk the path of faith, to recognize Jesus Christ as the Truth, and to testify to Him with fearlessness and bravery. We may not be asked to give our lives for our faith, but we are asked to live our lives for Christ. We are asked to put Him first in everything we do, to love Him with all our heart, soul, and mind, and to love our neighbor as ourselves.
Let us, therefore, pray for the courage and the faith of the martyrs, and let us commit ourselves to the Truth, our Lord Jesus Christ. May He strengthen us in our faith and grant us the grace to live for Him.