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November 25, 2015
On this national day of Thanksgiving, let us renew our thanks and devotion to our heavenly Father, whose blessings surround us not only on this day but always. Let us honor and praise Almighty God and pray that His generous bounty will continue to grace our lives.

As you gather together on this holiday with your loved ones, may you be filled with happiness and contentment in the true spirit of Thanksgiving. Let us express our gratitude for God’s glorious gifts and raise our voices, “Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Ephesians 5:20)

Thanksgiving is a reminder of our deep connection to family, friends, and God. After independence, several presidents designated certain days for “thankfulness and prayers.” However, it was not until 1863, with the bloody Civil War raging, that Thanksgiving became an annual holiday. President Abraham Lincoln issued a proclamation saying that in spite of the war “gracious gifts continued to flow from the ever watchful providence of God, and gratitude was called for.” Later an act of Congress established the fourth Thursday of November as a national day of thanksgiving.
The Armenia Fund’s International Thanksgiving Day Telethon will take place tomorrow, Thanksgiving Day, November 26, under the general theme of "Our Home” (Mer Douneh). Having become a Thanksgiving Day tradition for Armenians around the world, the Telethon will air from Los Angeles and be broadcast from coast to coast and internationally.

This year's goal is the construction of furnished single-family homes for families in Artsakh with five children or more who lack adequate housing. There are already 466 families identified in Artsakh who fit the criteria and 211 are known to live in unacceptable housing conditions.

The homes that Armenia Fund constructs for these families will have land plots of 10,000 sq. ft. each, where the families can grow fruits and vegetables. Armenia Fund will provide furniture for every room in the house as well as provide household appliances, including water heaters, refrigerators, washers, stoves and vacuum cleaners. Priority will be given to low-income families, families of veterans of the Artsakh Liberation War, as well as to the survivors of soldiers who died defending Artsakh.

This Sunday (as last Sunday) there will be a second plate collection to benefit the telethon in all Prelacy parishes. Please give as generously as possible.

Go to for details of the broadcast schedule in your area.
Bible readings for Sunday, November 29, Second Sunday of Advent, are: Isaiah 36:22-37:11;  Thessalonians 4:1-11; Luke 13:1-9.

At that very time there were some present who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. He asked them, “Do you think that because these Galileans suffered in this way they were worse sinners than all other Galileans? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish as they did. Or those eighteen who were killed when the tower of Siloam fell on them—do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others living in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish just as they did.”

Then he old the parable: “A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard; and he came looking for fruit on it and found none. So he said to the gardener, ‘See here! For three years I have come looking for fruit on this fig tree, and still I find none. Cut it down! Why should it be wasting the soil?’ He replied, ‘Sir, let it alone for one more year, until I dig around it and put manure on it. If it bears fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down.’” (Luke 13:1-9)

For a listing of the coming week’s Bible readings click here.
This Saturday, November 28, the Armenian Church commemorates the Holy Apostles, Thaddeus and Bartholomew, who were the first evangelizers of Armenia, and were martyred there, giving the Armenian Church its apostolic identity.

Thaddeus came to Armenia about 43 AD to preach Christianity. He was martyred in southeastern Armenia. His tomb lies in the Armenian monastery or St. Thaddeus (Iran) where a chapel was built in the third century. Bartholomew is believed to have arrived in Armenia about 66 AD. He was martyred in Hadamakert, southeast of Lake Van.

An apostle is “someone who is sent”—an emissary or ambassador of the Kingdom of God, sent to announce the Kingdom’s coming in Jesus Christ, and authorized to claim men and women’s allegiance to Him. “We are ambassadors for Christ, god making his appeal through us. We beseech you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God,” (2 Corinthians 5:20).

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