Tag Archive for: Holy Spirit

Holy Spirit Mystery

Armodoxy for Today: Holy Spirit Mystery

Pentecost is the feast of the Christian Church. It is on this day that the Holy Spirit descended upon the Apostles and the Church was born.

Of the three Persons of the Holy Trinity – Father, Son and Holy Spirit – the Holy Spirit is perhaps the most difficult to understand. We understand the concept of a father. And we understand the concept of a son. We have examples of fathers and sons in our lives, and even if they are not virtuous or respectable examples, we think we understand the notions of fathers and sons.

The truth is the Holy Trinity is what we refer to in Armodoxy as a “mystery.” Try as we might we cannot be understood. Every Sunday we begin the corporate worship of the Church, the Holy Divine Liturgy, the Badarak, with the words, խորհուրդ խորին անհաս անսկիզբն… It is a declaration that the object of our worship, God, is a “deep mystery, unexplainable and without beginning…”

Jesus specifically explained, “The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.” (John 3:8)

It is often tempting for people, especially clergy, to speak on behalf of God. During this Pentecost season, while we focus on the effects of the Holy Spirit, it is important to understand ourselves as people – humans – each of us trying to understand the Devine based on the traditions that affect our spirituality. As the Armenian Church, gives us an understanding from the Apostolic era – a time that knew Jesus up close and personal.

The other day I was listening to a very popular preacher, Joel Osteen. At the end of his sermon he invited the people to accept Christ by reciting a short prayer. He concluded by saying, “If you said this prayer, we believe you were born again…” It was refreshing to hear him qualify his claim with the words, “We believe…” In so doing, he shared that this was an interpretation – his and his denominations understanding – of the born-again experience. “The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”

The Pentecost period is a time to contemplate the power of the Holy Spirit in our lives, by allowing the Spirit to move within and without our lives – to blow where it wishes and for us to feel and accept its power.

Let us pray a prayer adapted from the Holy Divine Liturgy, “I beseech you, Lord our God who alone are good and ready to hear, look upon me, your sinful and unprofitable servant, and cleanse my soul and my mind from all the defilements of the evil one; and by the power of your Holy Spirit enable me to stand in your presence and in appreciation to glorify you, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.”

Pentecost – Hokegalust

Armodoxy for Today: Pentecost

A young girl in a parking lot
Was preaching to a crowd
Singing sacred songs and reading from the Bible
Well, I told her I was lost
And she told me all about the Pentecost
And I seen that girl as the road to my survival…
~Paul Simon (Duncan)

The Pentecost is a turning point event in the life of the post-Resurrection Christian Community. While the word Pentecost eludes to the 50th day after Easter, let us refer to it by its Armenian names Hokegalust as it is more descriptive and, therefore, more meaningful for the Christian. Translated, Hokegalust means the coming of the Spirit. Jesus promised the Great Comforter. On this day, the promise is fulfilled. We read the story in the Book of Acts, 2nd chapter.

When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

And there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men, from every nation under heaven. And when this sound occurred, the multitude came together, and were confused, because everyone heard them speak in his own language. Then they were all amazed and marveled, saying to one another, “Look, are not all these who speak Galileans? And how is it that we hear, each in our own language in which we were born? Parthians and Medes and Elamites, those dwelling in Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya adjoining Cyrene, visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, Cretans and Arabs—we hear them speaking in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.” So they were all amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “Whatever could this mean?”

 Others mocking said, “They are full of new wine.”

The first and most important take-away from this story is that the Uncreated Essence, the Third Person of the Holy Trinity, the One that was floating above the Earth before time,  the Holy Spirit, has landed upon this group of individuals – each from a different background – and has transformed them into a Community, which will eventually change the world. This is a sacred mission that is here to transform the world, its understanding of peace, harmony among people, and the golden key that turns the locks to every door, namely, love.

The Disciples were ordered to go to the world and spread the message of faith, hope and love. Thus, the Disciples turned into Apostles, meaning one who is sent. In Armenian, the word Arakyal (apostle) comes from the verb Arakel (one who is sent).

The revolution starts now. Jesus came and he touched the Disciples and the people with his message, but it was on this day that his message was given the feet with which to walk and change the world.

Join us tomorrow as we continue on the theme of the hokegalust – the Sacred turning point and beginning of the Revolution, on Armodoxy for Today.

Universal Converter

Next Step #744: Queen Elizabeth II, passes and the speed of updates. Personal passing’s: reflections on Sam Boranian and life led in humility. Jesus and accessibility: The Universal Converter and how to “plug” into the power of the Holy Spirit. Metaphors and more on postures.
Queen Elizabeth II, first hour after passing
Sam Boranian obituary
Universal Converter 
Grandpa’s Magical Toys
Produced by Suzie Shatarevyan for InHisShoes.org and Epostle.net
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Holy Spirit Building the Church

Next Step with Fr. Vazken #730: From the words of St. Paul (Ephesians 4) to the vision of Bishop Daniel Findikyan, “Building Up the Body of Christ” is the next step in direction and opportunity for the Armenian Christian experience. Pentecost and the witness of the Holy Spirit building Christ’s Holy Church: Direction for the Christian Church. Spiritual music from the Monastery of Holy Geghart. “Going back to move forward” – a quick look at Luke 2.
Building Up the Body of Christ by Bishop Daniel Findikyan (text & audio)
Second Palm Sunday Sermon
Unleashing his vision (2018 Interview with Bp. Daniel)
Story of Pentecost
Cover: Ruins of Havuts Monastery Armenia at Sunset, V. Kulkov
Produced by Suzie Shatarevyan for InHisShoes.org
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Consecration and Transformation

Next Step with Fr. Vazken #712: Consecration! The power of the Holy Spirit to transform the inanimate to the living. On the eve of the Consecration of the new San Diego church, Fr. Vazken delves into the mystic ritual that touches our lives today. The Holy Trinity revealed in our service. Vachik Mangassarian: dared to stand with us.
Consecration of San Diego Armenian Church
Follow the Consecration at https://www.facebook.com/westerndiocese
Vachik Mangassarian Obituary
Fr. Mesrob’s last unction (Next Step #31)
St. Andrew, Cupertino
ANN Sample
Neil Young and Spotify
Needle and the Damage Done
Cover: “Sneak Peek” of the San Diego Church, 2022
Produced by Suzie Shatarevyan for InHisShoes.org
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Name & Legacy

Next Step #585: The legacy of Catholicos Vazken I – what do we take away from him 25 years after his death. His name, a special calling and expression of the Holy Spirit. One Vazken to the next in this edition. An angel named Alyssa visits and makes a 25 year old connection.
Alone Again Or by Love
25th Anniversary Video Tribute
Vazken I – Addresses & Messages PDF
Photo Gallery of 25th Anniversary Event
Vazken on Vazken: Personal Reflections
Cover: Catholicos’ tomb close up
Technical Director: Ken Nalik
Produced by Suzie Shatarevyan for InHisShoes.org
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Pentecost Close to Home

Next Step #470: Intolerance escalates; bullies back down from bigger bullies all in the name of comedy? Maher, Griffin and the rest (excuse us Professor & Mary Ann). Pentecost- the power of the Holy Spirit to transform. Protest a la capitalism = putting out the fire with water. Continuity and growth by finding the next generation of protesters. And more…
Adana by Zaruhi Babayan
Teachings of Fr. Mesrob Sarafian
Reflections from the Priest’s funeral (Next Step #31)
Five Differences between Orthodox & Evangelicals
Upcoming Decennial Forgiveness Day: http://inhisshoes.org/event/7×77/
From 2007 Forgiveness day: http://7×77.org
Photo: Portland Art
Engineered by Ken Nalik
Produced by Suzie Shatarevyan for InHisShoes.org
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Depth of Spirit

Next Step #415: When a daughter brings her father’s treasures to Fr. Vazken, it sets the backdrop for three dimensional conversation. Pentecost is the coming of the Holy Spirit which adds depth to the flatness of two dimensional reality making the Church active. The obligation to speak out with the voice.
Sts Sahag Mesrob Children’s Choir & St. Mary Narek Bell Choir
Gor Mkhitarian “Passport” Debut
Dekmejian Speech
Photo: Depth of Spirit by Fr. Vazken (2011)
Engineered by Ken Nalik
Produced by Suzie Shatarevyan for InHisShoes.org
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50 Ways to Leave Your Nightmares

Next Step #103 – May 27, 2010

A look at the gifts of the Holy Spirit in defining the Body of Christ – the Holy Church. It’s Pentecost: Happy Birthday to the Church! Gifts of Grace: Technology and the Armenian Church and the Cupertino years. Sacrificing for others, in an expression of forgiveness. Memorial Day – some die, others work, but all give. It’s the sacrifice that makes us who we are.
Book Review: Muriel Mirak-Weissbach “Through the Wall of Fire: Armenia—Iraq—Palestine From Wrath to Reconciliation”;
Ani’s Bubbles: Forgiveness;
Music: “Amen Hayr Sourp” Dudukner Quartet
Produced by Suzie Shatarevyan for epostle.net

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