St. David Armenian Church Youth Reorganize, Community Lay Leaders Participate in Religious Education Program
ST. DAVID ARMENIAN CHURCH YOUTH REORGANIZE, COMMUNITY LAY LEADERS PARTICIPATE IN RELIGIOUS EDUCATION PROGRAM
Boca Raton, FL – On Sunday, September 11, 2011, the Armenian Church Youth Organization of America (ACYOA) Jrs. and Srs. gathered at St. David Armenian Church to reorganize the chapter and elect new officers. The meeting was presided by the Very Rev. Dr. Nareg Berberian, Pastor.
Fr. Nareg introduced FLArmenians Contributor George Macarian as the new Youth Advisor of the ACYOA Chapter at St. David Armenian Church.
Currently, there are over 20 ACYOA members. George Macarian explained that through his leadership, many programs and activities will be organized for them with the assistance of a new ACYOA Executive Board. There will be religious, educational, and social activities for them. During the meeting, five new officers were elected in the executive board.
Florida Armenians would like to congratulate the newly elected officers and wish all the members a very successful year. We also congratulate George Macarian who recently graduated from the University of Florida, and has moved back to Boca Raton. He will be a great asset to the St. David chapter as a Youth Advisor and a liaison to the ACYOA Central Council.
In addition, the Diocesan Assembly has declared the upcoming year as “The Year of Lay Ministry.” Very Rev. Dr. Nareg Berberian has initiated a Religious Education Program for the lay leadership of our Church, so that the participants will closely study the faith, history and theology of the Armenian Church.
This seven week course is designed to enhance the knowledge of our lay leaders in the faith and theology of the Armenian Apostolic Church, while fulfilling their role as “Lay Ministers” of St. David Armenian Church. Participants will meet regularly every Thursday through October and further attendance from the community is highly encouraged.
The Religious Education Program will offer the following themes: The Sacraments of the Armenian Church, the Apostolicity of the Armenian Church, the Divine Liturgy, the Understanding of the Holy Trinity, the Theology of Death and Dying, the Holy Bible, and Contemporary issues the Armenian Church faces today.
On Thursday, September 15, 2011, from 7:00 – 9:00p.m., more than 25 Lay Leaders participated in the first lecture series. Fr. Nareg spoke eloquently about the sacraments of the Armenian Church and its impact in our lives. He emphasized that the sacraments of the Church are the means to enter into the vineyard of the Lord and enhance our faith by maintaining its divine mystery in our lives. “Since we are offered to the altar of God during our baptism, we are called for the first time to become lay ministers of the Church and live through faith, hope and love,” stated Fr. Nareg.
In his remarks to the participants, Fr. Nareg noted, “To be a successful and effective lay minister, it is prerequisite to gain knowledge of the basic teachings of our Church so you may be able to identify yourself with the history and faith that you are called upon to serve as a representative of your church community. Without that basic knowledge, a lay minister will fail in his/her ministry.”
The participants were captured by the theme and fully engaged in a theological discussion. Carol Norigian, Diocesan Delegate and Chair of the Women’s Guild reflected, “As I continue to study about our Church, my faith and my service in the Armenian Church will strengthen, and I will appreciate the theology and the ancient tradition passed onto us through the generations.”
On Sunday, September 18, 2011, the Diocesan theme was introduced to the parishioners of our Church. Fr. Nareg delivered a sermon based on Jesus’ word, “Follow me.” He focused on three points: 1) The Call comes from Christ; 2) The Call is simple; and 3) The Call is transformative. Being an active parish in our Diocese, St. David Armenian Church will continue to follow the directives sent by the Diocese to strengthen the lay leadership of the Church through educational and outreach programs.
The next course in the Religious Education Program will discuss the Divine Liturgy (Holy Badarak) of the Armenian Church, on Thursday, September 29, 2011.
Recently, our Pastor published his first handbook entitled, “Walking Through the Armenian Faith and History: An Instructional Handbook,” which will be unveiled in February 2012.