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Sunday, 2 March 2014

Armenians in Madras Pray for Rain - 'Amen' Was Audible from the Whole Congregation - 1807

Extracted from “The Literary Panorama by Charles Taylor, 1807”

Supplication for Rain by the Armenian Christians.

The uncommon series of dry weather in the district of Madras gave occasion to solemn service in the Armenian Church at Madras on Sunday November-- 1806.  After the customary Mass, prayers were read, and the Rev. Arathoon Simeon, the Vicar, in a short discourse from Kings xvii.1.xviii. Isaiah i.5. “ I will command the clouds that they rain non rain etc” stated instances and reasons of similar visitations with which Providence chastised corruption of morals, and neglect of religious duties in the days of the prophets, exemplified the contrition and conduct of pious men of old, and exhorted his audience to penitence and supplication. 

After this, a Hymn, commencing  Turn thy wrath from us they earthly creatures: benevolent Lord, spare and do not let us perish etc was sung, kneeling before the altar, with every mark of humility and devotion.  This was followed by an appropriate prayer, and recital of Psalm the whole concluded with the Lord’s Prayer: in which the sentence  thy will be done in Earth as it is done in Heaven, was emphatically repeated by the Vicar, to which a feeling chorus of Amen was audible from the whole congregation.  In their own country the Armenians perform this service on such occasions, in the fields and arid plains.

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