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Honoring St. Ghevont in 2016

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A special message from the 6th grade congratulating Srpazan, Der Hayr, and the entire priesthood in honor of St. Ghevont (the patron saint of Armenian clergy) and his companions. "At the dawn of the 5th century, Armenia was an independent nation. Its people had invented an alphabet, translated the Holy Bible and established their first university. lt was during this era, known as the Golden Age of Literature, that a promising young man was ordained a priest. His name was Father Ghevont. He emerged as the most enlightened leader after the deaths of the great illuminators, St. Sahag and St. Mesrob. The St. Leon parish is honored to be the only church in America that bears his name. In 432 AD, King Ardashes was deposed, exiled and jailed in Persia. The Persians were determined to destroy the Christianity of Armenia and establish their religion of fire-worship. The Persians delivered an official ultimatum. Father Ghevont, chief spokesman, drafted a firm and dignified refusal. The Persians were enraged. Battle was inevitable. The eloquence of Father Ghevont inspired General Vartan Mamigonian to take command to defend the Armenian Christian religion and homeland. The Battle of Avarair in 451 AD represents the first military battle fought in the defense of Christendom in the history of the world. On the eve of the battle, Father Ghevont stressed the supreme sacrifice of Jesus, before offering the sacrament of Holy Communion. During the ensuing battle, General Vartan was killed and the Armenian forces collapsed. Father Ghevont walked through the battlefield, administering last rites to the dying. He and other surviving clergy were captured, subjected to unbearable tortures and finally put to death by the sword. St. Ghevont's courageous spirit, patriotism and devotion to the Armenian Church have been a source of pride and inspiration for fifteen centuries. St. is remembered two days before Vartanantz Day when St. Vartan and the spiritual victory of the Battle of Avarair are commemorated." -http://bit.ly/1PtX0Xq
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