A Visit to Las Vegas

I was invited by the Orthodox Congregation in Las Vegas, Nevada where Rev. Fr. Yuhanon Panicker is the vicar, for Holy Qurbana. After the H. Qurbana we drove through to have a feeling of the kind of life. Though the temperature was so high people were flocking in big number to try their luck in the casinos and to watch shows. The popular saying “what happens in Las Vegas stays in Las Vegas does not apply to my visit as I did not do any thing there you would not do.


6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. V.G. Saju
    Jul 08, 2012 @ 14:04:19

    Dear Thirumeni,
    Who shooted the video? Was it by yourself? You know videography also?The church attendence is very poor. Was it on Sunday? If yes, I think terrorists should attack again so that the churches will be crowded. You told at Pathanapuram convention (April 2011) that a big church near ground zero was filled by inch after the attack. Please dont think i’m a saddist.


  2. Yuhanon Meletius
    Jul 08, 2012 @ 14:46:28

    Yes Saju I shoot the video in my small Sony camera. There are only twelve families in the congregation. Two Marthoma Church members and a Catholic Church member were also there to have that many people. They have only once in a month service which is on Saturdays. They worship in a rented out protestant Church. We should appreciate their dedication. They spend quite a large sum for H. Qurbana each time.


  3. V.G. Saju
    Jul 08, 2012 @ 15:59:35

    Dear Thirumeni,
    I did’nt know that it was a small congregation. I thought in this modern age, people are not interested in attending church. Really their dedication should be appreciated. Moreover, I doubted why there was no curtain in the madbaha. Is there big churches of our community?


  4. Seena
    Jul 14, 2012 @ 00:52:31

    Dear Thirumeni:
    Thank you for sharing your visit to Las Vegas via your video montage. Your ride down the Las Vegas Strip during the day saved you from having to endure the “sensory overload” that it turns out to be during the night! Its surprising to see that Syrian Orthodox Christians are present everywhere including LV and that they made the effort to invite you to celebrate the H. Qurbana under such difficult circumstances! Hats off to you for taking the time to go and be with them! I guess you said it loud and clear that “what happens in LV does not have to just stay in LV!” by posting this video…….


  5. Yuhanon Meletius
    Jul 14, 2012 @ 01:56:21

    This comment is a surprise.Yes we are there every where. Some times for the good reason and some times not for so much the good reason. In any case we are every where. There is the other side of the LV story. Lot of people live there not lured by the glitter and fancy of the colorfulness of the city but to earn their living through hard toil and to provide a better future to their children. Where my people are there in such an environment, I have to be. Thanks for the complements. Thirumeni


  6. hrudayaspandanam
    Feb 14, 2013 @ 17:42:35

    Respected Thirumeni,
    I too walked the streets of Las Vegas at night, but did not attend the shows etc. The fountains were a pretty sight. What impressed me was the fact that there were persons on the streets playing instruments for money, just like the performing children’s circuses on the roads and traffic junctions in Bangalore. Poverty and inequality or drugs ruined lives? Anyway I did not like the city- so much imitation.

    Early in the morning, while leaving the hotel via the casino on the ground floor, I saw old women with their bed-coffee trying their luck at the slot machines and a man in a wheel chair being wheeled in. It is a sad place.

    It is a sad city. It is for those who hunger for something that they cannot identify and madly try to find in the glitter and speed and noise.

    Perhaps it is the beginning of recognizing that one is among pigs and might trigger a turning back.

    To me, it is a sad place- pretty and too bright but with no nourishment like the sugar icing on a cake. How long would one be able to sustain oneself on that? A person might go into a sugar shock.

    Perhaps, if Jesus lived today, he would walk the streets of Las Vegas in search of the lost/ wandering sheep there. He would get them through His unconditional acceptance, not through condemnation and terrorizing (same way he accepted the woman caught in sin).



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