VAN NUYS–The Santa Barbara Choral Society and Orchestra conducted by renowned Armenian conductor Jo Anne Wasserman filled St. Peter Armenian Church sanctuary on March 2 with the sounds of glorious music. More than 300 people were mesmerized for nearly two hours as 135 musicians performed Mozart’s Requiem Mass in D Minor, Morten Lauridsen’s Lux Aeterna, Edward Hampartzoumian’s Erevan Erebuni, and Hayr Mer. The event was hosted by St. Peter Church in celebration of its 50th Anniversary.
Our Home-Mer Doon, Inc., led by Board President Adrienne Krikorian, held the event to raise awareness of its program in Armenia. Board members Tanya Paretchan from Philadelphia and Barlow Der Mugrdechian from Fresno also attended the event. Mer Doon provides transitional homes, education, life skills training, a family environment, and hope for the future for young women in Armenia who come from orphanages and disadvantaged life styles. The first home, which currently has ten residents, is located in Etchmiadzin.
Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate of the Western Diocese, praised the efforts of the Mer Doon Board and the staff in Armenia, congratulated St. Peter on its 50th Anniversary, and warmly greeted guests who came to support Mer Doon. Following the Benediction by Fr. Shnork Demirjian and singing of Hayr Mer, guests mingled with the musicians in Karagozian Hall, enjoying a lavish buffet reception that was prepared by the many volunteers who helped make the event a success.
After the guests, many of whom traveled from all parts of California, listened to a greeting from the Mer Doon staff and residents in Armenia, Ms. Krikorian gave a short presentation about Mer Doon, introducing the Board’s “Sponsor One Day at Mer Doon” fund raising campaign. The cost of operating Mer Doon is approximately $200 per day. Guests were invited to select one or more notable days in their lives and to annually sponsor those days at Mer Doon. The event was an overwhelming success thanks to the generosity of St. Peter Parish Council and organizations, the event sponsors, volunteers, Ms. Wasserman and the musicians, and the many people attended and supported Mer Doon.
Those interested in annually sponsoring one or more days’ expenses at Mer Doon can get more information at Mer Doon’s website www.mer-doon.org, or by calling Adrienne Krikorian at (818) 347-6107. Tax deductible contributions to Mer Doon should be made payable to Our Home-Mer Doon, Inc. and mailed to Mer Doon c/o Adrienne Krikorian, P.O. Box 8936, Calabasas, CA 91372-8936.