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Second Annual Joint Divine Liturgy of the Oriental Churches

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On Thursday May 11, 2006, under the guidance and leadership of His Grace Bishop Serapion, His Eminence Mor Clemis Eugene Kaplan (Syriac Orthodox Church), His Eminence Hovnan Derderian and His Eminence Moushegh Mardirossian (Armenian Apostolic Church), the Coptic, Armenian, and Syriac sister Oriental Orthodox Churches of the Western United States celebrated the second annual joint Divine Liturgy at the Armenian Apostolic Church in Burbank, CA.

The day was filled with prayer, solidarity, and fellowship among over one hundred clergy members of the three sister churches. At the conclusion of the Divine Liturgy each of the bishops gave a small speech, in which each of them expressed their deep joy in praying once more together.

His Grace Bishop Serapion emphasized the importance of celebrating the Divine Liturgy among our sister churches, since we are in full communion with each other. His Grace also expressed the great need for each of us to study the rites and liturgical services of our sister churches, which will also strengthen our understanding of the rites of our own churches. One way we will help to instill this in our youth is through the Joint Oriental Orthodox Bible Competition on May 13, in which each youth will learn to chant a hymn from each of the three churches.

After an agape meal together, the meeting concluded in peace. May our Lord help continue this process of uniting and beatifying His bride, the one only holy catholic and apostolic Orthodox Church, Amen.

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