Dear Brothers and Sisters,
I missed you last Thursday, for I had traveled to Lebanon to attend the Central Religious and Executive Councils meetings of the Catholicosate of the Holy See of Cilicia, presided by His Holiness Catholicos Aram I.
On another occasion I can share what we discussed during the meetings. For the time being, I would like to continue our weekly tradition of sharing our experience in daily life, exploring new avenues for the welfare of our communities here at home and abroad as well.
While you are traveling on highways, I am sure billboards of varied sizes have caught your attention. I keep thinking about one that says, “Adopt a Highway.” Adopting someone or something is always a noble gesture. It expresses a caring spirit, be it toward a human being, an institution and, in this case, a road, which enables private and public transportation.
The first time I saw this costly invitation to become a sponsor of a highway was in Queens, on Clearview Expressway, which unites the Grand Central Parkway to Throgs Neck Bridge, eventually leading to Interstate Highway 95. After reading it, I thought, “Who am I to adopt a Highway with my modest budget?” Nevertheless, I wished there would be wealthier people who may assume this kind of sponsorship.
After exiting the Expressway, as I was heading to my apartment, I noticed on the side path a homeless man whose entire wealth was contained in a supermarket cart. I genuinely wondered: “While I am unable to adopt a highway, couldn’t I sponsor a homeless?” I approached the man and made a donation, and since then, every weekend I continue to do so. I have to confess that it gives me an inexplicable inner joy that I am bringing an insignificant yet positive difference in his life. Besides, I have learnt many things from him who seemed to owe nothing.
Having shared this most private experience, I am glad to inform you that last week, when I met H.E. Archbishop Shahe Panossian, the Prelate of the Armenian Community in Lebanon, he personally thanked all our donors who spontaneously are reaching out to their brothers and sisters suffering in Lebanon. His Eminence also said that sponsors who would graciously make a $250 donation to cover the partial expenses of a student will be highly appreciated.
I am glad that our Lebanon Relief Fund so far has reached 124.200 dollars.
May All-Mighty God grant us all health and prosperity, to keep reaching out to the needy and in return be filled with unperishable joy and serenity.