27 December 2015. On Sunday morning, His Holiness Aram I presided over the Holy Liturgy at the St Gregory the Illuminator Cathedral, celebrating the feast of St Stephen, the martyr proto deacon, which is also the celebration of the vocation of deacon. Before the sermon, Bishop Norayr Ashekian invited the deacons to the front of the altar and spoke of the life of St Stephen, one of the first deacons, who was martyred for his commitment to his faith, moral principles and service to the early Christian community.
At the end of the Holy Liturgy, the Catholicos led the procession of the priests, deacons and seminarians and the faithful to the Main Hall where deacon Sarkis Ajemian addressed everyone on behalf of his colleagues. His Holiness then delivered his message in which he said that St Stephen’s feast is the celebration of the Christian value of self-giving and service. He said that this moral principle is at the heart of the seminary curriculum and, through the example of the seminary, an invitation to all Armenians to serve the church and the nation. He then blessed everyone.