Armenian Church Canadian Diocese Newsonline 15/10/2004

Armenian Holy Apostolic Church Canadian Diocese
Contact; Deacon Hagop Arslanian, Assistant to the Primate
615 Stuart Avenue, Outremont Quebec H2V 3H2
Tel; 514-276-9479, Fax; 514-276-9960
Email; [email protected]
October 15, 2004


On Sunday October 10, Bishop Bagrat Galstanian presided over the Holy
Badarak held in St. Gregory the Illuminator Cathedral of Montreal on
the occasion of the feast of Holy Translators, which is also designated
by the Primate as Day of Blessing of Cultural Workers. This year’s
category of cultural workers consisted of authors of books.

At the termination of the Divine Liturgy Rev. Fr. Vazgen Boyadjyan,
Pastor, invited 15 authors of books to advance before the Altar,
where Primate Galstanian addressed them in the spirit of the Holy
Translators, who built up the Armenian Golden Age in the 5th century
and left the most enduring legacy of the Armenian identity. After the
authors read the Oath of Cultural Workers, the traditional ceremony
of blessing was conducted, as the Primate touched the head of each
author by his Cross.

Following the ceremonies, the congregation gathered in the Marie
Manoogian Hall, where a program dedicated to the Holy Translators
was organized by the editorial board of Pourastan, the church’s
periodical. MC. Dr. H. Arzoumanian talked briefly about the profound
changes in the Armenian people’s spiritual life that started with
St. Gregory the Illuminator in 301, embedded by St. Mesrob Mashdots
(the inventor of the Armenian alphabet) in 404, and peaked by the
Translators (5th Century), who laid the foundations of the Armenian
spiritual and cultural identity for the following thousands of years.

The first speaker was Ms. Armine Keushgerian, a scholar and author,
who reminded that October has been designated as the month of culture,
and talked about the foremost translator Yeznig of Goghpa. The
translators, she said, were not merely transferring a text from
the Greek original into Armenian, but they were also scholars,
theologians and educators. The second speaker, Mr. Nourhan Ouzounian,
a noted intellectual, spoke about different translations of the Bible,
quoting international experts who designate the Armenian translation
as “The Queen of Translations”. The speaker then deliberated on the
first printing of the Armenian Bible in Amsterdam by Vosgan Yerevantsi
in 1666, shortly after Gutenberg’s invention of the print. A short
program of three songs were rendered by the church’s children’s
choir directed by Mr. Varoujan Markarian. Fr. Vazgen thanked the
participants and Bishop Galstanian gave his blessing. A reception by
the Parish Council followed.

* * *


Long time members and sponsors of Canadian Diocese and Holy Trinity
Armenian Apostolic Church of Toronto Mr. & Mrs. Kerim and Louisa Kerim
have donated artwork posters to the Diocese of the Armenian Church. The
posters are prints of limited editions of Mr. Kerim Kerim’s artwork
called Revival of the Decorative Art of Armenian Monumental Khatchkars.

It is Mr. Kerim’s wish to give the donated posters as gifts to Sunday
School students and to the junior choir members for their regular
attendance and special achievements.

On behalf of His Eminence Bishop Bagrat Galstanian we thank Mr. and
Mrs. Kerims and pray the Almighty God to grant them good health and
abundant blessings.

* * *


Upon the directive and instructions of His Eminence Bishop Bagrat
Galstanian, Primate the Diocese of the Armenian Church of Canada,
for the first time ever, an Armenian Cultural Festival has been
organized on the occasion of the Feast of Holy Translators. The
planned celebrations extend through this weekend.

On Friday night, the opening ceremony will be held at Marie Manoogian
hall of St Gregory the Illuminator cathedral. Mayor of the City of
Montreal. His Worship Gerald Tremblay as well as the President of
the Borough of Outremont Mr. Stephan Harbour will be the honorary
guests. Books about Armenian history, culture and art will be on
exhibition and for sale. The next day, Saturday, October 16, a
piano concert will be held at St Gregory the Illuminator Cathedral
in Montreal (starting 19:30) performed by Souren Barry with the
participation of “Gomidas” Church Choir directed by Varoujan Margaryan.

* * *


His Eminence Bishop Bagrat Galstanian met with the Ladies’ Auxiliary
Committee for Social Services together with the pastor of St. Gregory
the Illuminator Armenian Church Rev. Fr Vazgen Boyajyan.

The meeting was held upon the request of the Ladies’ Auxiliary on
Tuesday, October 12, 2004 at the Diocesan headquarters. The committee
members asked the Primate’s views and visions regarding the mission of
the Ladies’ Auxiliary. Serpazan talked extensively on the importance
of their mission, made several suggestions to further consolidate
their services and encouraged them to keep on serving our people. They
agreed to meet on a monthly basis in order to review the progress of
the reform plan.

* * *


In August 2004 the Press Office of the Armenian Holy Apostolic Church
Canadian Diocese requested the faithful to pray for the health of
Maritsa Rina Laleyan- Yemenidjian.

Mrs. Laleyan was in deep coma at Sacre Coeur Hospital in Montreal. The
family, friends and many other fellow Christians sent prayer notes
and caring thoughts to the Yemenidjian family.

Today, we inform you with deep spiritual joy that Mrs Yemenidjian’s
health has started to improve. We ask once again for your prayers
for her full recovery.

The power of prayer will bring miracles to Maritsa Rina
Laleyan-Yemenidjian. She is in need of our support through this
prayer request.

* * *


On October 15, His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and
Catholicos of All Armenians, during a meeting with the Brotherhood
of Holy Etchmiadzin, announced that he was departing for the Russian
Federation to join the Armenian community of Moscow as they celebrate
the 75th Anniversary of the birth of His Holiness Alexey II, Patriarch
of Moscow and All Russia, head of the Russian Orthodox Church.
During his two-day visit to Moscow, the Catholicos of All Armenians
will also offer the service of Blessing the Foundation of the new Holy
Cross Armenian Cathedral and Diocesan Headquarters for the Armenian
Diocese of New Nakhijevan and Russia.

In the course of the meeting, His Holiness reflected on the recent news
that the “Jehovah’s Witnesses” religious organization has received
official registration by the state authorities of the Republic of
Armenia, and expressed his concern at the registration of yet another
totalitarian cult. His Holiness stated that attempts to justify the
registration of this destructive group are unacceptable, and regards
as disingenuous and unfair the accusations that the Armenian Church
and her clergy are weak and incomplete in their pastoral ministry.
“The Holy Armenian Apostolic Church has a mission to serve, and
notwithstanding all difficulties and challenges, will bring all of
her efforts to realizing that sacred mission in the lives of our
people”, stated His Holiness. The Pontiff of All Armenians expressed
his appreciation to all faithful sons and daughters of the Armenian
Church who have displayed concern and devotion regarding this issue.

Accompanying His Holiness during his visit to the Russian Federation
are His Grace Bishop Navasard Kjoyan, Vicar General of the Araratian
Pontifical Di ocese; His Grace Bishop Arshak Khatchatrian, Chancellor
of the Mother See; and Rev. Fr. Mushegh Babayan, Staff-bearer of
His Holiness.

* * *


Sunday, October 10, was a joyous day in the life of the Armenian
Church. During the celebration of Divine Liturgy, the vast St. Gregory
the Illuminator Mother Cathedral of Yerevan was filled with faithful,
family and friends, as nineteen deacons of the Armenian Church
were anointed and ordained into the Holy Order of Priesthood by
His Grace Bishop Arshak Khatchatrian, Chancellor of the Mother See
of Holy Etchmiadzin. His Holiness, Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch
and Catholicos of All Armenians, presided during this unprecedented
historic event. This marked the first occasion in memory that so many
faithful sons of the Armenian Church were ordained to the priesthood
at one time. In order to accommodate this large number of ordinates,
the ordination service was moved from the Mother Cathedral of Holy
Etchmiadzin to St. Gregory. Six of the deacons are graduates of the
Gevorkian Theological Seminary, one is a graduate of the St. James
Theological Seminary of the Armenian Patriarchate of Jerusalem and
twelve are the first graduates from the Accelerated Academic Course
for the Priesthood, under the auspices of the Mother See of Holy

The Accelerated Academic Course for the Priesthood was a new program
in stituted by His Holiness more than two years ago to select
individuals with higher educations who wished to bring their service
to the Armenian Church and Nation as priests. The Course had strict
and difficult entrance requirements: The candidates must have the
recommendation of their Diocesan Primates, a minimum of a bachelors
degree from an institution of higher learning, and passed the entrance
and subsequent exams, maintaining exemplary grades throughout the
two and a half year program. The main target of the program was to
reach out to the rural villages and settlements that are in dire need
of priests. The first twelve graduates who became priests were among
the most highly educated of the students. Among them are an architect,
a physicist, a composer, a psychologist, an accountant, a historian,
scientists and instructors.

On the evening prior to the ordination, a public examination of the
candidates’ profession of faith was conducted in the Mother Cathedral
of Yerevan. The sponsoring priests testified for the spiritual and
religious training and virtues of the candidates. The candidates
unanimously rejected and anathematized the heretics and schismatics
and vowed to follow the true faith of Jesus Christ, the Apostles and
the Armenian Patriarchs. As a sign of their orthodox faith, they
recited the dogmatic creed of the Armenian Church, written by St.
Gregory of Datev, and vowed to remain faithful to the hierarchy of
the Armenian Church and the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin.

The following morning, during the Divine Liturgy, the candidates
ascended to the Holy Altar of the Cathedral with the recitation
of psalms. Rev. Fr. Vardan Navasardian, assistant to the Grand
Sacristan of the Mother Cathedral of Holy Etchmiadzin, had organized
a team of deacons to assist their brothers in their vesting. After
removing their stoles from each individual deacon, they were placed
back around the ordinates necks, and turning westward to the faithful,
they raised their hands as a sign of their renunciation from secular
life and devotion to a spiritual one. The ordaining bishop anointed
the foreheads and palms of both hands of each new priest with Holy
Chrism (Muron) and gave them new names. The faithful present awaited
each new name in hushed yet eager anticipation.

Deacon Artur Hovhanissian became Father Aristakes;
Deacon Hovhannes Baghalian became Father Vrtanes;
Deacon Ararat Nurijanian became Father Husik;
Deacon Arman Shahnazarian became Father Nerses;
Deacon Mher Ghahramanian became Father Gyut;
Deacon Arman Simonian became Father Norayr;
Deacon Husik Hayrapetian became Father Babken;
Deacon Hovhannes Vahanian became Father Moushé;
Deacon Gagik Babayan became Father Mashtots;
Deacon Haik Petrosian became Father Ghazar;
Deacon Artur Sargisian became Father Smbat;
Deacon Artur Dravants became Father Matteos;
Deacon Arayik Mkrtchian became Father Manuel;
Deacon Vahan Andreasian became Father Tovmas;
Deacon Karlen Ghazarian became Father Arakel;
Deacon Vladimir Galsdian became Father Yeznik;
Deacon Garnik Arakelian became Father Simeon;
Deacon Hovhannes Sargisian became Father Pavstos;
Deacon Vachagan Babayan became Father Anania;

Following their anointing, His Grace Bishop Arshak presented the
chalice used to prepare Holy Communion to the newly ordained priests,
transferring to them the power and right to celebrate the Divine
Liturgy and distribute the Body and Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ to
the faithful. While the kiss of peace was joyfully being distributed
among the thousands of faithful, His Holiness Karekin II led the
procession of bishops, members of the Brotherhood of Holy Etchmiadzin,
and visiting clergy from a number of dioceses, as they ascended
the bema and conveyed their congratulations by kissing the anointed
foreheads and hands of the new priests. In attendance for the service
were Their Eminences Archbishop Datev Sarkissian and Archbishop David
Sahakian of the Mother See; Archbishop Grigoris Buniatian, Primate
of the Armenian Diocese of the Ukraine; Archbishop Mesrob Krikorian,
Pontifical Legate to Central Europe; His Grace Bishop Arakel Karamian,
Primate of the Diocese of Kotayk; Very Rev. Fr. Derenik Davitian, Locum
Tenens of the Diocese of Gegharkunik; Rev. Fr. Archpriest Yeghishé
Sargisian, Dean of the Gevorkian Theological Seminary; Rev. Fr.
Mkrtich Proshian, Dean of the Vaskenian Seminary of Lake Sevan;
members of the Brotherhood of Holy Etchmiadzin; visiting Armenian
priests from the United States and Europe; visiting clergymen from
sister Churches and denominations; deacons and seminarians.

Also in attendance for this special occasion were benefactors of the
Mother See, Mr. and Mrs. Haroutiun Arslanian, from Beirut, Lebanon,
as well as the “Holy Etchmiadzin Ladies Society” of Beirut, Lebanon.

* * *

Emil Lazarian

“I should like to see any power of the world destroy this race, this small tribe of unimportant people, whose wars have all been fought and lost, whose structures have crumbled, literature is unread, music is unheard, and prayers are no more answered. Go ahead, destroy Armenia . See if you can do it. Send them into the desert without bread or water. Burn their homes and churches. Then see if they will not laugh, sing and pray again. For when two of them meet anywhere in the world, see if they will not create a New Armenia.” - WS