Tag Archive for: Christian

Advent 40-50: Interconnectivity

Advent Day 40 of 50: Interconnectivity

The interconnectivity of God and man is described in Jesus’ next statement, Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him! Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets. (Matthew 7:7-12)

Jesus explains God as Father. As we discovered early in the Advent journey, this designation is uniquely Christian and emphasizes the intimate relationship we may expect with the Creator. He invites us into his  holy and sacred family. Just as he refers to God as Father, he has now given us that right and in so doing we become brothers and sisters of Christ.

The Gospel records that one day when the crowds were so large Jesus’ mother and brothers were unable to approach him. Word got to him that, “Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside, seeking to speak with You.” But He answered and said to the one who told Him, “Who is My mother and who are My brothers?” And He stretched out His hand toward His disciples and said, “Here are My mother and My brothers!” (Matthew 12:47-48)

As Armenians, we are identified by the “ian” (or “yan”) suffix to our names, meaning “son of” or “family of.” Appropriately, the word “Christian’ (Christ+ian) is the family of Christ, and today we are part of that godly family. As such we have a responsibility to treat one another with the love and respect that God accords us. What is often called “The Golden Rule” is pronounced by our Lord at this point, “Whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them.” Armodoxy is a testament to the Golden Rule.

In viewing our world, you will now further understand why Jesus’ message was so radically novel and revolutionary at that time and still is today. It speaks of the interconnectivity between God and His creation on a level that is understandable by our actions.

We pray today, Lord, let me be guided by Your Holy words. Help me to keep ever before my mind the feelings and expressions that are from God and necessary for me to share with others. As I want to be loved, may love others. As I want to be forgiven, may I forgive others. As I want to be known, may I know my fellow man. Amen.

Cover: Luna & Gregory Beylerian, 2023

Mt Davidson Time Capsule Unearthed

Time Capsule Unearthed at San Francisco’s 
Mt. Davidson Cross Commemorating First
 Easter Sunrise Service in 1923 Reveal of 90 year-old time capsule items and burial of new time capsule; 
Religious and political leaders joined for historic event

On Saturday, April 1st, 2023, a time capsule was unearthed from the foot of Mt. Davidson Cross in San Francisco in front of a large crowd of onlookers.  Ninety years ago to the day, San Francisco officials and community members gathered at the top of Mt. Davidson Cross to witness Boy Scouts of America Troop 88 bury a sealed copper box at the foot of the Cross to commemorate the first Easter Sunrise Service held there on April 1st, 1923.

“Historic moments like these held at Mt. Davidson Cross illustrates how our Armenian-American communities can enrich and inspire society by bringing people together under the ancient canopy of our resilience and hope,” commented Fr. Mesrop Ash, Pastor of St. John’s Armenian Apostolic Church in San Francisco and Board Member of the Mt. Davidson Cross Armenian Council.

During the time capsule unearthing, representatives from the San Francisco Historical Society were present to delicately receive the items which will be prepared for archiving and placed on display for the public to view at their San Francisco museum in June.

Among the items found in the capsule– which were much more plentiful than the organizers were expecting– were a leather-bound Bible, a San Francisco telephone book, pamphlets, a Boy Scout pin, a municipal record of 1933 and several newspapers including the March 27, 2932, edition of the San Francisco Chronicle, featuring a full front-page photo collage of an Easter celebration, and several other newspapers from the time, many with headlines referencing a murder case.

Following the unearthing of the old time capsule, a new, larger copper time capsule was buried at the same spot. Memorable items were presented by various local clergy leaders including Archbishop Salvadore Cordieone, Archbishop of the Catholic Archdiocese of San Francisco and Metropolitan Gerasimos, Metropolitan of the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of San Francisco.

In front of the crowd, Archbishop Cordieone read a poignant quote from Pope Francis in 2015 during his visit to Tsitsernakaberd, the Armenian Genocide Memorial in Armenia and placed a copy of that inside the new capsule.

On behalf of the Armenian American community, Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate of the Western Diocese, placed a New Testament Bible from Constantinople (Istanbul) from 1884 belonging to a Genocide survivor and an Armenian Cross Stone (Khachkar) made especially for this event into the new time capsule.

Aside from the clergy, it was an honor to have many state and city politicians in attendance for this historic event. CA Lieutenant Governor Eleni Kounalakis, San Francisco Mayor London Breed, as well as San Francisco Supervisors Myrna Melgar and Ahsha Safai all provided brief remarks and ceremonially added their own small San Francisco-related momento into the new time capsule.

The historic event was organized by the the Council of Armenian-American Organizations of Northern California (CAAONC), a coalition of more than 30 Armenian-American organizations that purchased the Mt. Davidson Cross through a City of San Francisco public auction in 1997. The CAAONC has renovated the Cross and maintains it and the hilltop as an offer of thanks to San Francisco for becoming a safe haven for survivors of the Armenian Genocide.

“The San Francisco Armenian American community was gratified to save the Cross from demotion in 1997 and serve as its caretaker for the past 25 years in memory of the victims of the Armenian Genocide committed by the Turkish government, remarked Roxanne Makasdjian, Founding Board Member of CAAONC and event Mistress of Ceremonies.

“We do this as a way of thanking San Francisco for taking in the Armenian refugees a century ago, and as a way to honor our history, both as the first nation to adopt Christianity in 301 AD, and as descendants of Armenian Genocide survivors. For us, this Cross and this time capsule embody the importance and purpose of remembrance,” commented Makasdjian.

Watch the Video

Listen to The Next Step Podcast #390 by Fr Vazken Movsesian, produced on November 16, 2015, starting minute 33, when Fr Vazken recaps a Pilgrimage by a group of  St Peter Armenian Church members, Glendale, led by him. The Pilgrimage was to 7 Churches in 3 days, including a hike to Mt Davidson Cross.

Listen to the Podcast

Archbishop Hovnan Derderian’s Remarks at the Mount Davidson Cross

Watch the live stream here:


Next Step #673: Post Genocide-recognition- downshifting to use lower gears to go faster. Fr. Vazken talks about the importance of the genocide tag and some of the dangers of the designation. Comfort directed: Christian responsibility in the face of evil. Politics and the license to play with history. Philosophy, reason, God. First look at an old book: Tolstoy’s “My Religion”. Calculations for today: 4weekETB
In His Shoes Mission Statement 
Congressman Adam Schiff reads Pres. Biden’s Letter re: Genocide
Armenian Film Foundation
Survivors” by Don and Lorna Miller
Deitrich Bonhoeffer
Genocide Commemorative Concert
Leo Tolstoy, “My Religion”
We will not be erased
WD168 – this week: Post Genocide-Recognition
Ara Topouzian Stringed Tranquility
Cover photo: San Francisco Street downshifting
Produced by Suzie Shatarevyan for InHisShoes.org
Listen via Stitcher Radio on demand!
Listen on Apple Podcasts

LJ2021 – Day 20 – Your Pearl

Lenten Journey 2021:
Faith in a Post Pandemic World
by Fr. Vazken Movsesian


Day 20: Your Pearl

Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls, who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had and bought it. – Jesus (Matthew 13:45-6)
Mid-Lenten exercise: Have you found a pearl, something so valuable, that you are willing to give up everything to claim it? If not, do you think such a pearl exists? Is it attainable? Is it claimable?

Filters and Editors

Next Step #661: The murky waters of editorial privilege leaking into editorial license: how the Russian Orthodox bishop sold out the Christians. Also, how Christianity Today sold out their most valuable asset: the meaning of C. The relevance of Encyclopedia Britannica 1903 in 2021: Surprised what you’ll discover.
Abp. Hovnan Derderian to the Russian Orthodox bishop
Encyclopedia Britannica archived
YWCA History
Roosevelt Democrats
Komitas Quartet
Cover: 2005 Fr. Vazken; SFSS
Engineered by Ken Nalik
Produced by Suzie Shatarevyan for InHisShoes.org
Look for The Next Step on blubrry.com
Listen via Stitcher Radio on demand! 



Beethoven’s Baptism

Next Step #654: On the 250th anniversary of Ludwig van Beethoven’s baptism, Fr. Vazken discusses the need to belong to the greater story of humanity. How important are the wonderful and amazing events to our need to believe in the Christian message? Nicea, the Creed, the missing message and the need for 2020.
Beethoven Biography
Christmas Star: Jupiter & Saturn align
Vatican Nativity Scene defended
WD168 this Week
In His Shoes Toy Drive
Cover: Beethoven & Violin, public domain
Engineered by Ken Nalik
Produced by Suzie Shatarevyan for InHisShoes.org
Look for The Next Step on blubrry.com
Listen via Stitcher Radio on demand! 

Zero to power of 10

Next Step #643: War in Artsakh: News we hope would never happen but deep down knew it would. Azerbaijan: A case for systemic racism. Attack while the world is asleep: 1915 and today, taking advantage of the moment. What does it mean to have faith? To overcome evil with the good? The power of Miuron and the strength for the entire army. Questions for the Christian reconciling the peacemaker of the beatitudes. Juxtaposing the faith in Christ next to the reality of war. Identity and reconciliation: Double hypocrisy.
Cat Stevens Peace Train
All Armenia Fund – give safely and generously
The Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict explained
Artsakh conflict visually explained
Archbishop Barkev of Artsakh interviewed (Armenian)
WD168 this week
Prayer Service for the Army with Fr. Vazken’s Message
Jethro Tull: One White Duck/Zero to power of 10
John Lennon: Imagine 
Cover: Artsakh Cross; 2019 Susan Movsesian
Technical Director: Ken Nalik
Produced by Suzie Shatarevyan for InHisShoes.org
Look for The Next Step on blubrry.com
Listen via Stitcher Radio on demand! 

Is Normal B.C. possible?

Next Step #626: Life had changed since the pandemic and continuing through the death of George Floyd. Is there a new normal? Any hope of returning to normal B.C.? Here is a straight-forward and simple way of finding purpose and meaning in this hurting world. A Christian response to today: Finding God so Ego can be forgotten. Why Christianity is a radical approach to life’s difficulties. Acknowledging God validates your humanity. Peel an onion and there’s nothing in the middle. Peel an artichoke to find the heart and flavor. From Christ to Floyd: Human torture and “humane” death. “As you have done to him you have done to me…” (It works both ways.) Jesus’ death cause: Asphyxiation and now the “least of his brothers” has died of the same causes.
Ara Dabanjian’s “Moonless Night
Element Band
Fr. Vazken’s: George Floyd and the Pentecost
Trump & the Bible photo-op
Bishop Brudd’s Op-Ed on Trump & the Bible
Archemedes’ Lever
Cover: Utah Spring, Fr. Vazken 2019
Technical Director: Ken Nalik
Produced by Suzie Shatarevyan for InHisShoes.org
Look for The Next Step on blubrry.com
Listen via Stitcher Radio on demand! 

Sign & Dome

Next Step #508: Prelude to the Reclaim Conference (2018) looks at a form of learn and introspection. The unlikely pairing of two icons, a sign and a dome beg the question: what is there to reclaim? Something lost? Something forgotten? Here is a run down of what to expect at the conference and in life. A lenten journey with tentacles that reach out.
Antranik Kzirian “The Oud Player”
Reclaim: Embracing-Faith.com
Reclaim Conference Program
Buddha on the Road
Engineered by Ken Nalik
Produced by Suzie Shatarevyan for InHisShoes.org
Subscribe to In His Shoes » Next Step with Fr. Vazken by Email
Look for The Next Step on blubrry.com
Listen via Stitcher Radio on demand!

Kodak Moment No More

Next Step #500: The New Year kicks off with a look at one of the giants that didn’t make it to 2018. Unable to adapt and slow to accept changes, Kodak presents a prophetic picture as the Spirit of the Future. Fr. Vazken talks about the church, the challenges to the community of believers and a Darwinian understanding of survival. Commitment to the disenfranchised and the circle of Christian understanding.
Ernek Te Ais Nor Tari by Rouben Hakhverdian & Lilit Pipoyan
Kodak Wikipedia article
Celebrity Deaths of 2017
Carl Sagan “Pale Blue Dot” (short video) (book)
Edited News: www.Yahoo.com
MLK Retreat: www.InHisShoes.org/MLK
Photo: “Frogs, Legs & Film” (c)2018 Fr. Vazken Movsesian
Engineered by Ken Nalik
Produced by Suzie Shatarevyan for InHisShoes.org
Subscribe to In His Shoes » Next Step with Fr. Vazken by Email
Look for The Next Step on blubrry.com
Listen via Stitcher Radio on demand!