Archive for the ‘Holy Fathers of the Church’ Category

       This Tuesday, July 5, the Armenian Church commemorates Constantine the Great and his mother, Helena. Constantine was the first Christian emperor of Rome. In 330 he founded Constantinople as a “second Rome,” and considered himself to be a servant of God. He was buried amid the apostles in the basilica he founded in their honor in Constantinople. Helena followed her son in becoming a Christian and devoted her life to charitable work. She built many churches and monasteries and is believed to have played an important part in the recovery of the true cross in Golgotha. She is also believed to have helped find Christ’s exact place of burial where later the Church of the Holy Sepulcher was built.

Posted from the Eastern Prelacy’s Crossroads E-Newsletter

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       This Saturday, July 2, the Armenian Church remembers Catholicos Nerses the Great and Khat the Bishop. Nerses the Great was the father of Catholicos Sahag I. He succeeded two Catholicoi whose reigns were unexceptional, and the people were eager to return to the line of their beloved Gregory the Illuminator. Nerses was a student of St. Basil of Caesarea, one of three great Cappadocian Fathers. Nerses’ pontificate was the beginning of a new era. He brought the church closer in service to the people, rather than to royals and nobles. He convened the Council of Ashdishad that resulted in numerous laws on issues related to marriage, worship, and customs. He built many schools, hospitals, and monasteries. He sent monks to preach the Gospel throughout the country. His bold actions resulted in great displeasure by the royal family, and in 373 he was reportedly poisoned by the king. His accomplishments for the spiritual and social well-being of the common people earned him the gratitude of the entire nation and the honorific “Great.”

       Khat the Bishop worked closely with St. Nerses the Great. He, like Nerses, had great passion for social issues, especially helping the poor. Nerses entrusted most of the benevolent work of the church to Khat. He is so closely associated with St. Nerses that the church decided to commemorate them on the same day.

       By the light of unspeakable grace of your divine knowledge you arose on the land of Armenia, merciful heavenly Father; have compassion on us who have sinned.

       Saint Nerses, pure in soul, from birth you were chosen to inherit the paternal lot of shepherding righteously and lawfully.

       You adorned the Church with the laws of truth and established good order within it; through his prayers have mercy on us, O Christ.

       With great honor Saint Nerses was honored by the blessed chosen holy fathers of the Council where he confessed the Spirit true God with Father and Son.

       You revealed to Saint Nerses the hidden mystery of times yet to come; through his prayers have mercy on us, O Christ.

       At the command of the heavenly King he accepted the cup of death from the king and was translated into heaven into the heavenly nuptial chamber.

Canon to the Holy Patriarch Nerses the Great from the Liturgical Canons of the Armenian Church

Posted from the Eastern Prelacy’s Crossroads E-Newsletter

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Posted from Crossroads, Eastern Prelacy E-Newsletter

On Saturday, January 22, 2011, the Armenian Church remembers the Holy Fathers Athanasius and Cyril.

       Athanasius was a bishop and doctor of the church. He was born and died in Alexandria. While a deacon, he attended the Council of Nicaea in 325, where he was a strong opponent of Arianism. He served as Bishop of Alexandria for 46 years; about 17 of those years were spent in exile because of disagreements with the emperor. Much of his writings have survived, as well as some of his letters. Athanasius in one of the four great Greek doctors of the church, along with Basil the Great, John Chrysostom, and Gregory of Nazianzus.

       Cyril of Alexandria was a father and doctor of the church, born in Alexandria and nephew of the patriarch of that city. He presided over the third Ecumenical Council at
Ephesus. He wrote treatises that clarified the doctrines of the Trinity and the Incarnation. He was a brilliant theologian of the Alexandrian tradition and highly revered by the Church of Armenia.

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