Father Moushegh’s 40th Anniversary of Priesthood Celebration January 29th, 2012


Sunday, January 29, 2012 was a memorable and moving day for our beloved Pastor, Archpriest Fr. Moushegh Tashjian, his family, relatives, friends and hundreds of St. Mary parishioners who attended the church services and the banquet that followed in the Fesjian Hall, in honor and tribute to Archpriest Fr. Moushegh’s 40th Anniversary of Ordination and Consecration into Priesthood and 20th Anniversary as Pastor of St. Mary Armenian Church.

The services were presided by His Eminence Arch. Hovnan Derderian, Primate, former Primate His Eminence Arch. Vatche Hovsepian and Very Rev. Fr. Baret Yeretzian. The Khatchadourian Choir sang the hymns of the badarak, directed by Dn. Stepan Gozumian and Dn. Rupen Ozsogomonian, organist. Deacons and acolytes served on the altar, which was beautifully decorated for the occasion with colorful flowers.

Towards the end of the Liturgy, a special Encyclical of His Holiness Karekin II, Catholicos of All Armenians was carried into the sanctuary and to the Holy Altar by Very Rev. Fr. Baret Yeretzian, while the choir sang the uplifting hymn “Hrashapar”. Standing by the Primate on the Altar, Fr. Yeretzian read the encyclical to Archpriest Fr. Moushegh, in gratitude for his four decades of services, starting from his ordination in Jerusalem to serving four parishes in the Western Diocese: Hollywood, San Francisco, Pasadena and Costa Mesa, congratulating him with greetings and blessings. Afterwards, Archbishop Derderian gave an eloquent sermon, praising Fr. Moushegh for his dedicated services and achievements in all four parishes he served. He added, he had only admiration for Fr. Moushegh since he first met him over 32 years ago, while he was the Pastor of St. John Church in San Francisco and in appreciation presented him a colorful framed picture of the Nativity of Christ as a gift.

The second part of the exciting testimonial event began with a large banquet of 250 guests in the Fesjian Hall, which was beautifully decorated for the occasion. Dr. Kris Mirzayan, Vice Chairman of the Parish Council acted as the Master of Ceremonies and invited the Primate for the invocation. The dinner and the delicious mezzas were served by Salpi’s Catering. Parish Council Chairman Hovsep Bergciyan, Antranik O. Zorayan, Suren Toumanian, Rose Kaskavalciyan, Claudette Mekalian, Dr. Richard Kasper, Fr. Baret Yeretzian, Arch. Vatche Hovsepian (who gave Fr. Moushegh a beautiful and ornate pectoral cross) and Arch. Hovnan Derderian all saluted Fr. Moushegh for his devotion and services, leadership as true Pastor, gentle and kind nature and friendliness.

A video of pictures on large screen, prepared by Puzant Zorayan showed Fr. Moushegh’s life from childhood in Beirut to Seminary years, ordination as deacon and priest in Jerusalem, scenes from all four parishes served in California, and finally some family pictures.

Vartan Tashjian, Fr. Moushegh’s brother, a renowned educator and painter/artist from Cyprus sent Armenian/English greetings for the auspicious occasion via YouTube. Everyone was impressed by his eloquent English and Armenian messages. Tavit Tashjian, a young pianist and a nephew of Fr. Moushegh, performed classical selections. A 28-page color booklet was also printed.
During a cake cutting ceremony, everyone joined in singing “For he is a jolly good fellow”. Before closing, Fr. Moushegh, with gratitude and humility, thanked everyone for their blessings, greetings, attendance and generous gifts. He thanked his family, most especially his Yn. Sylva, children, mother, brothers, sister, the Catholicos of All Armenians, the Primate and former Primate, the Parish Council and the Committee and volunteers, for organizing the event. He also thanked his relatives, friends and all the parishioners who sent their congratulations and well wishes and invited all to join the church and make St. Mary an even stronger parish.

With the benediction of Arch. Hovnan Derderian, the historic and joyful anniversaries in the life of Archpriest Fr. Moushegh Tashjian ended with the reciting of the Lord’s Prayer.

Vartan Tashjian’s Video Message in English and Armenian

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