April 2023
ACYOA Youth Palm Sunday Banquet

On Palm Sunday, April 2nd, the ACYOA Seniors and Juniors sponsored the annual Youth Sunday banquet. More than 60 parishioners gathered to share a meal, hear about the ACYOA, listen to some beautiful piano music by Andre Alexandrian, see a Juniors slide show prepared by Hovsep Seferian, and honor the recipient of the ACYOA Award for service to the youth, Yn Anahid Kalayjian. Mariam McClure served as the Mistress of Ceremonies, and the other youth speakers included Alex Madajian, Mariam Karapetyan, and Aren Avetisyan. Dr. Zaven Kalayjian gave a lovely tribute to his mother, and Yn Anahid exhorted us all to love others with our deeds, not just with our words. 

Many thanks to Der Hovsep, Yn Jennifer, the young people, and Junior's moms for making this event a success. A special thanks go out to Jerman Hallajian, whose expertise in the kitchen was invaluable.
Holy Week and Easter Sunday at St.Mary Church

This year's celebration of Palm Sunday and Holy Week took place at St. Mary Church with great joy and excitement.

On April 2, Palm Sunday was celebrated, commemorating our Lord's entrance to Jerusalem. During the Badarak, Der Hayr blessed the children of our community. A special installation service for newly elected ACYOA members took place, followed by an ACYOA luncheon and program in the church hall.

On April 6, the Great and Holy Thursday, the Holy Badarak and Washing of the Feet took place, commemorating the Last Supper of our Lord. It was followed by a solemn service of the Betrayal and Passion of our Lord (Khavaroom) that took place in the evening.

The Order of the Crucifixion of Christ and the Order of the Entombment of the Lord were held on Great and Holy Friday, April 7.

On Easter Eve, Saturday, April 8, the Vespers and Scriptural readings by our Shnorhali School students were followed by the celebration of the Jragalouits Badarak. 

Easter Sunday, the Feast of the Glorious Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, was on April 9. It began with a Morning Service and Badarak celebrated by H. E. Archbishop Vicken Aykazian with the participation of our choir members and deacons and followed by Antastan (blessing of the four corners of the world) service.

Our utmost thanks to Mrs. Jermen Hallajian for hosting the dinner on Thursday; Mrs. Asanet Hacikoglu for decorating the Tomb of Christ, Hermine Khatchatoorian for donating the Palm leaves; Mrs. Anna Seferian for donating altar flowers on Palm Sunday and Ms. Sara Arabian for making crosses for Palm Sunday; Stepanyan, Barseghyan, McClure and Guiragossian families for changing the altar curtain and preparing the church for Easter celebration.
St. Mary Parish Council and Der Hayr would like to thank all those who contributed towards the Easter Lilies and Yughakin Donations, supporting our church during this difficult time.

To see the list of donors, click here.
Shnorhali School celebrates the Resurrection of Jesus

In commemorating the Resurrection of Jesus, the most important celebration of Christianity, on April 8th Shnorhali School students gathered at St. Mary Armenian Church to participate in a fun and educational event to learn about Holy Week and Christian traditions. With our Pastor Rev. Hovsep Karapetyan and Religious Education Coordinator Beverly Sivaslian students learned that Easter celebrates the defeat of death and the hope of salvation and that the sins of humanity were paid for by the death of Jesus and that his Resurrection represents the anticipation believers can have in their own resurrection. Students also decorated Easter eggs and after dinner, participated in Holy Liturgy and read verses from Holy Scriptures. 
Participation in this sacred and fun event was a great opportunity for our students to learn about the significance of our holy traditions, to strengthen their connection with our Church, culture, and heritage, for team building, and to help our students to establish everlasting bonds with their Armenian friends.
Teen Starts Recycle Education Club for Shnorhali School

Mariam McClure, a senior high school junior, has started a recycling education club for the students of the Shnorhali School.  Once a month she will meet with the children, during the last 15 minutes of their lunch period, to lead them in fun educational activities concerning ecology and recycling.  Mariam will use this service experience, to complete her IB diploma from Washington and Liberty High School in Arlington, Virginia. If anyone is interested in helping Mariam with this project send her an email at
Commemorating the Holy Martyrs of the Armenian Genocide

A solemn commemoration of April 24 took place at St. Mary Chruch on Sunday, April 23. The day began with the Holy Badark, which was followed by a special service at the Katchkar on the Church plaza commemorating the Holy Martyrs of the Armenian Genocide who sacrificed their lives for their faith and homeland.

Shnorali School students also paid their respects to the Holy Martyrs of Genocide by participating in the Divine Liturgy and the Commemoration Ceremony at the Khachkar in front of the Church where they put flowers.

The day concluded with the blessing of Madagh, which was served to our parishioners for the occasion. Then an illustrated talk titled "Emerging from the Genocide's Shadow: Stories of Armenian Resilience" took place at the Church Cultural Hall, presented by Dr. Khatchig Mouradian, a lecturer in Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies at Columbia University, and the Armenian and Georgian Area Specialist at the Library of Congress. 

This year's Genocide remembrance was marked by the third consecutive year of recognition of truth and honest history, as President Biden, with honor, dignity, and courage, used accurate terminology in describing the Ottoman Empire's killing of more than 1.5 million Armenians, a 108 years ago, and called the Armenian Genocide by its name.
Shnorhali School Commemorates the Martyrs of the Armenian Genocide

On April 30, the Armenian Genocide was commemorated at St. Mary Armenian Apostolic Church in Washington, D.C. Shnorhali School students paid their tribute to the Armenian victims of the Genocide by staging a short play called "Rescue the Armenians: on efforts of American missionaries and Armenian Fedayees."
 The theatrical performance consisted of 4 scenes that told the story of the Abdul-Hamidian massacres of the 19th century. The play depicted the determination and the heroic struggle of the Armenian fedayee and freedom fighters, the heroic defense of the city of Van during 1915 on one end, and the pious activities of Clara Barton, George Knapp, and other notable American missionaries and their remarkable contribution in saving Armenians on the other hand. The play was authored by Haykaram Nahapetyan, the history teacher at Shnorhali School, and staged by Shnorhali School teachers and students.
 From the play, our students learned about one of the most tragic pages of our bloody past, got acquainted with one of the heroic episodes of our history and the incredible efforts of our heroes, learned about the historical figures who sympathized with our pain, and were able to unconstrainedly present it to the audience spiced with songs and dance.
 We deeply thank Haykaram Nahapetyan for the script, Armine Khachatryan for the musical accompaniment, Vahag Babayan for technical assistance, and the Armenian language teachers, students, and parents for the beautiful presentation of the event. We hope that the enjoyable impressions of the event and the lessons learned from the event will remain in our children’s memory for a long time.
Women’s Guild Food Festival Workshop

The Women's Guild held their first workshop on Saturday, April 22, in preparation for the 2023 Spring Food Festival! Over 20 women gathered in fellowship and service to prepare Haskanoush and Simit for the upcoming Festival in May. Over the course of four hours, the group prepared hundreds of delicious desserts! Special appreciation to the Workshop Leaders, Hripsime Sivaslian and Asanet Hacikoglu! 

To learn more about our workshops, please Click Here.
A Word of Thanks

Shoutout to the Garden Committee members, in particular Takuhi Hallajian, Shoghig, and Raffi Sahakyan, for beautifying our Church garden on Friday, April 22.
On the morning of April 22, they got together and did amazing work that included weeding, planting,
sweeping, etc.
Keep up the good work of making our church a better place for our parishioners.

In addition, we are grateful to Gilda and David Andonian for taking the initiative to bring flowers and plant them around the grounds of our church. Everyone's welcome to share their Green Thumb. If interested, please contact the church office for details.

We are also grateful for Onnik Sivaslian's unwavering dedication to seeing the many needs of our church met. Without being asked, he's been ensuring the water filters are replaced on both Drinking Fountains in our church so every parishioner, visitor, and child will drink purified water.

April 29, 2023
Raffi Kevork Nersessian & Nora Palandjian
Parents: Bedros & Baytzar Nersessian and Norayr & Isgouhi Palandjian
Best Man: Kevin Amorini
Maid of Honor: Ann-Marie Amorini

Congratulations and may God make the newly married couple worthy of the desirable crown of Holy Matrimony.
Baptism and Confirmation

April 1, 2023
Sofie Jamaldinian
Daughter of Raffi & Mona Jamaldinian
Godparents: Sampat Jamaldinian & Nazila Khoshnevis

April 14, 2023
Cody Vahram Bedrossian
Son of Adam & Leona Bedrossian
Godparents: Dikran & Sylvia Dourian

May God bless our newly baptized with His love and may His protection and guidance always be with them.
Hokehankists - Requiem Services

April 23, 2023
For the Souls of : the Heroes who were killed in defense of the sovereign territory of our Homeland during the April 11th attack in Tegh, Armenia.
Artur Sahakyan (1999), Mkrtich Harutyunyan (1989), Henrikh Kocharyan (1997)
& Narek Sargsyan (1994)
Requested by: Rev. Fr. Hovsep and Yn. Jennifer Karapetyan & the Parish Council

For the Soul of: Diramayr Zabel Kalayjian
Requested by: Yn. Anahid Kalayjian & Zaven and Berj Kalayjian (grandsons)

April 30, 2023
For the Soul of :
Angela Bardizbanian (9th anniversary)
Requested by :
Raffie, Maureen, Arthur & Raffie Jr. Bardizbanian (Son & Daughter-in-law & Grandchildren)

May God rest their Souls in peace and may His loving favor be with their Loved Ones. 
St. Mary Armenian Apostolic Church 
Rev. Fr. Hovsep Karapetyan, Pastor
4125 Fessenden Street N.W, Washington, DC 20016 
202-363-1923 /