Pastoral Visit To Auckland, New Zealand

PRESS RELEASE
Diocese of the Armenian Church of Australia & New Zealand
10 Macquarie Street
Chatswood NSW 2067
AUSTRALIA

Contact: Laura Artinian
Tel: (02) 9419-8056
Fax: (02) 9904-8446
Email: [email protected]

10 June 2006

PASTORAL VISIT TO AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND

Each year the Armenian community of Auckland, New Zealand eagerly awaits the
pastoral visit of His Eminence Archbishop Aghan Baliozian, Primate of the
Diocese of the Armenian Church of Australia and New Zealand. It is this
special occasion that brings together the 100 or so Armenians to rekindle
fellowship and the Armenian spirit in this remote part of the world.

The Primate arrived in Auckland on Friday, 2nd June and met with community
members both young and old at a warm gathering typical of Armenian
hospitality. On Saturday, the Archbishop was accompanied to the local
cemetery by community members where he blessed graves and held a requiem
service for the souls of the dearly departed both interred in Auckland and
overseas. The same evening an official dinner was held in honour of
Archbishop Baliozian.

On Sunday, Holy Mass was celebrated by His Eminence at St Peter’s Anglican
Church in Takapuna. The sermon was devoted to the occasion of Pentecost, 50
days after the glorious Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. At
Pentecost, what seemed like tongues of fire came to rest on the faithful
congregated in the upper room. All were filled with the Holy Spirit and were
comforted. And so it was with the close-knit Armenian congregation of
Auckland this Sunday, who received spiritual comfort and nourishment by
partaking in the Divine Liturgy of their mother language and the day’s
sermon.

Following the church service, as is customary, the congregation gathered
together for supper. The Archbishop took the opportunity to speak to the
youth of which there were about 20 aged 10 to 25 years.

Throughout the course of his four days in Auckland, Archbishop Baliozian
visited the sick and elderly as well as other members of the Armenian
community. Monday evening saw the conclusion of the pastoral visit with a
farewell party before his safe passage home to Sydney early Tuesday morning.

For information on the Armenian Community of Auckland email Mr Ara
Ovanessoff Chairman of the Armenian Society of New Zealand at
[email protected] or the Diocesan Office at [email protected] .

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