“For with you is the fountain of life; in your light we see light.” Psalm 36:9

Easter is the fulfillment of human anticipation for spiritual renewal – a longing desire that Christians feel deep down in their hearts with an implicit faith. As the deer pants for streams of water, we as Christians yearn for the fountain of life – Jesus Christ (Ps. 42:1). In the resurrected Christ, we see the clear light, which illuminates our entirety. In this spiritual anticipation, the mystery of the Resurrection of Christ, the Lord is revealed.

What Christians call a mystery, the rest of the world considers a paradox that subconsciously challenges even the most skeptical minds. Those who perceive the mystery of Resurrection from a spiritual point of view comprehend its life-giving power that leads to eternity. Subsequently, they strive to illuminate their lives with the inextinguishable light of Christ and drink from His fountain of life.

Christ is risen from the dead.
Blessed is the Resurrection of Christ.

Believing in the Resurrection of Christ implicitly is not sufficient. More than ever, we have to have explicit and abiding faith so that we may surmount everyday challenges thrown at our face. Many are worldly distractions that try to deviate us from the path of truth and righteousness. The evil of this world is ready to devour us lest we stumble or succumb to its temptations. As a Christian nation, we continue to thrive be- cause of our faith and essential values we hold in reverence – our independent Motherland Armenia, Holy Etchmiadzin, the ingenious Armenian people living in Armenia, Artsakh or Diaspora, the call of the blood of our martyred heroes, and the visionary youth of today. These eternal values embody the true mystery of resurrection and transcend the worldly transient. Historically, the Armenian people shared the Passion of Christ and the anguish of crucifixion. However, through the Resurrection of Christ, we rose victoriously with a renewed life.

This year, quite symbolically, Easter coincides with the celebration of the 100th anniversary of the First Republic of Armenia and the heroic Battle of Sardarabad. Derived from the core message of Easter, we witness the awakening of the patriotic spirit and national unity in the hearts and minds of our beloved faithful. Today, the resounding chimes of Sardarabad ring louder than ever. They testify the freedom-loving spirit of our people, which vouchsafed Armenia’s first independent Republic in 1918. Not too far from Sardarabad, we can hear the prayerful peal of Etchmiadzin bells proclaiming the undying spirit of our resurrected nation. The heroes of Sardarabad, Artsakh, and Avarayr, although chronologically apart from each other, symbolize one and the same historical truth that nothing can defeat our resilient faith in Christ.

Dear faithful,

The secret of our eternity lies in the mystery of the Resurrection of Christ. It is imperative for us to cling firm to our Christian values in order to continue to thrive on the face of this earth. Our forefathers attested to that truth through their personal example and sacrificial life. Therefore, this Easter should be an- other invitation extended to each of us to live with faith and serve as an example to our children, youth, and young families. Furthermore, we are reminded to preserve our identity, kindle the love for our Motherland, and remember the sacrifice of our ancestors, who always prioritized the mission of the Holy Church in their lives.
With this in mind, let us glorify God by proclaiming, “Christ is risen from the dead. Blessed is the Resurrection of Christ, the Lord. Amen.”

HOVNAN DERDERIAN
PRIMATE ARMENIAN CHURCH WESTERN DIOCESE

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