GLENDALE, CA—The Armenian Relief Society of Western USA held its annual Christmas Party on January 2 at the Armenag Der Bedrossian Hall in Glendale’s St. Mary’s Church where over 300 ARS members and guests, from as far as San Francisco and Fresno, gathered to ring in the new year and reaffirm the organization’s continued devotion to serving the community locally and around the world for yet another year.
The holiday celebration, Emceed by ARS General Manager Jasik Jarahian, also marked the 100th Anniversary of the ARS. It was presided over by ARS Central Executive board chair, Vicky Marashlian; and board advisor, Nova Hindoyan.
“the ARS Centennial is a time to renew our oath to serve with dignity and pride, and to help revitalize our 100-year old organization with new ideas and strategies, so that we can keep up with changing needs of our communities in a forever-changing world,” Sossie Poladian, the Chairwoman of the ARS Western USA Regional Executive Board, said in her remarks at the Christmas event.
Poladian said that those generations who came and passed, realized that their success depended on awareness and appreciation of the ARS mission, and faith, and added, “With the same awareness, we will pursue our important mission and publicize ARS programs.”
Poladian also stressed the importance of volunteerism in shaping the lives of the ARS members. “The ARS Centennial is a chance for us to look back at the time we joined this great organization, sometimes following the footsteps of our mothers and sisters into the ranks; and how the bonding experience of working with other volunteers has shaped our minds and hearts, and enriched our lives”.
She said that Regional Executive greatly appreciates the efforts of each member, while continuing to utilize available resources to help chapters. The board continues to exert efforts to pursue new programs to build the future ARS.
“We hope that the new generation of ARS members will firmly hold on to the beliefs and will exert a level of commitment as our long-time members, so when the torch is passed onto the new generation, we will be assured that the ARS will be in good hands for the next Century,” Poladian said in her closing remarks.
Poladian had referred to the use of new technology as one of the ways to enhance communication. To receive the ARS Voice Online newsletter, send requests to ARSVoice@ARSwestUSA.org.
Jasik Jarahian, who has continually organized the annual program, praised the local chapters for their financial contributions, encouraging members to participate in the May 16th ARS Centennial Fund event, and contribute to the book.
US Census representative Anahid Tovmasian was also on hand at the event, using the opportunity to explain necessary details for completing forms for the 2010 Census.
Salpi Mayilian, Gagig Badalian and Varouhie Shahinian entertained the crowd, helping to create enthusiasm and high spirits, and a desire to not leave the hall by leaving old and new friends behind.