YEREVAN (RFE/RL) — Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and other Armenian officials attend a Christmas mass at St. Gregory’s Cathedral in Yerevan, January 6.
The supreme head of the Armenian Apostolic Church, Catholicos Karekin II, urged Armenians to stick to their traditional family values in the face of “pseudo-liberalism” as he celebrated a Christmas mass on Sunday.
“In the miracle-laden scene of the Holy Nativity, dearly beloved, we see that the path of salvation began with the family. It is from the family that the illumined road … was borne out of,” he said in a homily read out at Saint Gregory the Illuminator’s Cathedral in Yerevan.
During the liturgy attended by Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and other senior state officials, Karekin also prayed for “our faithful brothers and sisters of the great world family who mark this sacred day in affliction and suffering.” He referred to victims of armed conflicts, human rights abuses and “unquenchable desire for unmitigated power” around the world.
“Ungodly paths of pseudo-liberalism — which divert people from the life which the Lord commanded us to live, from spiritual life — likewise lead to dead ends, undermining the foundations of a healthy society and strong family,” Karekin went on.
“The very first platform for bringing up worthy sons and daughters for the homeland and for educating a citizen for the country is the family,” he said. “It is in the family that the future of a nation is shaped, that the foundations of a powerful country are laid. It is under the family’s nurturing roofs that the sown seeds of God’s word bear fruit in children’s souls, that the spiritual-moral values, the fearless spirit of choosing the good, are being nurtured. It is by the examples shown in the family that mutual love, trust and care are instilled.”