In the Armenian Apostolic Church, 14 January observes the Feast of the Birth of St John the Baptist, the Forerunner. The birth of St John is described in detail in the Gospel according to St Luke (1:5-25). He is known as the ‘forerunner’ because it was he who would herald the news of the Saviour through the baptism of our Lord Jesus Christ.
On this occasion those bearing names rooted in ‘St John the Baptist, the Forerunner’, in Armenian Hovhannes (John), Megeurdich (Baptist), Garabed (Forerunner) celebrate their name day.
A blessing service was held during the Divine Liturgy on Sunday 13 January when His Grace Bishop Haigazoun Najarian congratulated the congregation members of the namesake who came forward to light candles for the blessing.