GLENDALE — The “Friends of Maria Jacobsen” committee has organized a special memorial service in commemoration of the 102nd anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. The ceremony will be held at the courtyard of the Bethania Lutheran Church (where Maria Jacobsen’s bust stands) , 603 Atterdag Rd., Solvang, California on Sunday, May 17, 2017 following the church worship service at 11:00 A.M. Armenian community representatives will lay a wreath in honor and memory of 1.5 million Armenian martyrs as well as Danish humanitarian/missionary Maria Jacobsen (1882-1960) whose entire life was dedicated to serving orphaned Armenian children both in the Ottoman Empire and in Lebanon and was a key witness of the Armenian Genocide. “We are honoring Maria Jacobsen’s memory on Mother’s Day”, said Dr. Garbis Der-Yeghiayan, chairman of the Committee, “she is known as the beloved ‘Mama” by her grateful former orphan children”. On October 23, 2016, Jacobsen’s bust was unveiled in the courtyard of the Bethania Luthern Church in the presence of hundreds of her admirers, including her former orphans.

The Committee will make an important announcement at the conclusion of the memorial ceremony: Student Essay Contest in Honor and Memory of Maria Jacobsen. The theme of the essay contest is: In the more than 100 years that have passed since the first Genocide of the 20th century – the Armenian Genocide of bigotry, prejudice, intolerance, persecution, deportations, and heinous plans to annihilate a nation – what you believe your generation can do to make NEVER AGAIN a reality? The essay contest is open to all students attending Armenian, public or private high schools in Southern California and all high school students living in Solvang, California.

The Armenian community is cordially invited to join the “Friends of Maria Jacobsen” committee to pay a special tribute to her and to all the martyrs of the Armenian Genocide.

For more information on the Commemoration and/or the essay contest, e-mail to: [email protected].

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