In the evening of October 25, 2008, His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, presided over the annual banquet of the La Canada and Crescenta Valley Parish which was held in the Nazareth and Sima Kalaydjian Banquet Hall of the Arshag and Eleanor Dickranian Diocesan Complex.
October 2008 Archive
On Sunday, October 26, 2008, Faithful gathered in St. John Armenian Church of Hollywood to participate in the celebration of the Divine Liturgy and pay heed to the sermon by Archpriest Fr. Manoog Markarian, Parish Priest, in light of the feast day of the ‘Discovery of the Holy Cross,’ which coincided with the 35th anniversary of St. John Armenian Church in Hollywood, California.
On October 23, 2008, Archpriest Fr. Arshen Aivasian, Pastor of St. Paul Armenian Church of Fresno, and Mr. Jim Morgenroth, Regional Director of the Youth Bible Curriculum Program, offered inspirational speeches to a luncheon gathering at the World Vision Headquarters in Seattle, Washington. Yeretsgin Sirarpi also works with the World Vision organization.
On October 22, 2008, more than 1000 people gathered in the Alex Theatre of Glendale to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the declaration of sisterhood between Glendale and Ghapan. According to the Glendale News-press: “The City Council vote in 2002 to confirm Ghapan, also known as Kapan, as Glendale’s fifth sister city was touted as a perfect match, considering this city’s sizable Armenian population and that city’s eagerness to form stronger ties with an established democracy” (“Celebrating with Ghapan,” Wednesday, October 22, 2008).
On October 23-24, 2008, His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, paid a pastoral visit to the Armenian Church of Seattle, Washington, and met with Fr. Yeghia Isayan, Parish Priest, and the members of the Parish Council. Different aspects of the construction of the church building, including the architectural aspects and other issues, were discussed during this meeting.
Documentarian J. Michael Hagopian has recently completed the final film in his "The Witnesses" trilogy, The River Ran Red. The 60-minute documentary premiered at the Arpa International Film Festival on October 24, 2008, at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood.
The Western Diocese and the Glendale Memorial Hospital have developed a close working relationship throughout the years in providing spiritual care to the sheer number of Armenian-patients in the hospital.
On October 26, 2008, Fr. Avedis Abovian, Youth Director of the Western Diocese, celebrated the Divine Liturgy, delivered the sermon and introduced the newly ordained Parish Priest, Fr. Nerses Hayrapetyan to the faithful in attendance at the Armenian Church of Santa Clarita.
On October 20, 2008, His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian presided over the Parish Council meeting of the St. Gregory the Illuminator Armenian Church in Pasadena. The meeting was conducted by Mr. Avo Margarian, Chair of the Parish Assembly. Very Rev. Fr. Baret Dz. V. Yeretsian is the Pastor of St. Gregory the Illuminator Armenian Church in Pasadena.
On Sunday, October 26, 2008, His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, paid a pastoral visit to St. Paul Armenian Church – Fresno, which coincided with the feast day of the Discovery of the Holy Cross, and celebrated the Divine Liturgy and delivered the sermon. Priesthood-Candidate Dn. Guzh Khachikyan and other deacons from the parish assisted the Primate at the holy altar during the celebration of the Divine Liturgy. Meanwhile, Haik Boyadjian was pronounced a Forth-Degree Acolyte of the Armenian Church, and Ari Adams received the permission to become a Stole-Bearer by the Primate of the Western Diocese of the Armenian Church during the celebration of the Divine Liturgy on the feast of the Discovery of the Holy Cross.
Hamazgayin – Western Region Educational and Cultural organization marked its 80th anniversary, during a banquet held on October 26, 2008, in Montebello, California.
The Armenian Center for National and International Studies (ACNIS) kicks off this fall a yearlong celebration of its fifteenth year at the helm of Armenia’s public policy research.
On October 20, 2008, the Primate presided over the LAC meeting at the Diocesan Headquarters. Mrs. Cindy Norian, Chair of the LAC, Conducted the meeting. The committee is to raise $100,000 during the next year for the construction project of the Mother Cathedral. During the meeting, the Primate lauded the efforts of the LAC, and expressed his confidence in the ability of LAC to meet its set fundraising goal for the upcoming year.
His Eminence Archbishp Hovnan Derderian, Primate, Western Diocese of the Armenian Church of North America, is pleased to announce that the Honorable Dennis P. Zine, Los Angeles City Councilman, representing the Third District, will be the Guest Speaker at a Prayer Breakfast on Saturday, November 22nd at 9:30 a.m. The Prayer Breakfast, to be held at the Diocesan Complex in the Armen and Gloria Hampar Reception Room, will afford members of the Armenian community an opportunity to hear firsthand from Councilman Dennis Zine his priorities, goals and objectives as a representative of the residents of San Fernando Valley.
The purpose of this pilgrimage is to bring the Ladies’ Societies of the Western Diocese together at the Diocesan Headquarters to witness the rise of the Mother Cathedral. The program will include Morning Service; presentation and a tour of construction site of the Mother Cathedral led by the Primate, group picture and a delicious luncheon prepared by the Ladies’ Central Council. Please confirm your participation at this memorable event by contacting the Diocesan office at 818-558-7474, BY NOVEMBER 6, 2008.
In honor of the brave Armenian men and women who have served in the United States Armed Forces, this year’s “Historic Tribute to Armenian Veterans” will be held on Sunday, November 9, 2008, at 2 p.m., in the Ararat Home’s Sheen (Goevkalayjian) Chapel, 15105 Mission Road, Mission Hills, CA 91345.
On October 21, 2008, His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, accompanied by several members of the Central Council of the Ladies Society of the Western Diocese, namely, Mrs. Araxie Boyamian, Chair, Mrs. Lena Simonian, Vice Chair, Mrs. Meline Agagianian, Advisor, and Mrs. Elizabet Maronyan, Advisor, as well as Fr. Khajag Shahbazyan, Burbank Parish Priest, visited several churches and parochial schools in the greater Los Angeles area.
In exploring the weekend's deeply spiritual theme, instructors Fr. Avedis, and Dn. Matthew used sources ranging for the Psalms and the Gospels to Opera, and Internet video. During classes participants were challenged to expand their notions of the Lord, and comprehend the awesomeness of his love and patience. Much credit goes to the youth for actively engaging in this difficult topic.
The discussions at the meeting revolved around the construction of the Mother Cathedral and other agenda items, namely, the recent Blessing of Holy Muron in the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin and the ensuing blessing of water ceremonies throughout the Diocese, and the successful Priesthood ordination ceremonies on October 15th and 16th, at the St. Gregory the Illuminator Armenian Church of Pasadena.
On October 18, 2008, during a special meeting with the former president of Artsakh, Mr. Arkadi Ghokasyan, organized by Armenia Fund, in preparation for the upcoming 2008 telethon, the Vicar General of the Western Diocese, Very Rev. Fr. Dajad Dz. V. Yardemian, representing the Primate, met with the former president and other participants.
Celebration of the Divine Liturgy in Armenian will mark the beginning of this year’s contest. It is important to note that this joint effort of the sister churches is not a mere fun activity for the youth, but an attempt to effectively address the issues of Christian education in our Sunday School programs.
On Sunday, October 19, 2008, His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, paid a pastoral visit to the St. Andrew Armenian Church of Santa Clara. After the celebration of the Divine Liturgy and deliverance of the sermon, the Primate performed the blessing rite of the Sunday School students and the scouts. The Children received small crosses from the Primate on the occasion. A significant number of faithful received Holy Communion from His Eminence after the ceremonies.
Mr. Alexandri, a former civilian employee of the Glendale Fire Department, reached an agreement with Captain Tom Propst to arrange a recruitment program for volunteer English-Armenian translators from Glendale Parishes to assist the fire department in cases of community emergencies, such as earthquakes and wildfires in the city.
On October 12, 2008, community members from the area gathered in Robert E. Gross Park in Burbank for the Burbank Community Festival. Dn. Hagop Nalbandian and Mr. Andre Shamlian represented the Primate at this event.
On October 16, 2008, the Chairperson of USA Armenia Fund Western Region, Mrs. Maria Mehranian, visited His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, at the Diocesan Headquarters and briefed the Primate on the upcoming Armenia Fund telethon.
On October 19, 2008, Very Rev. Fr. Dajad Dz. V. Yardemian, Vicar General, accompanied by the newly ordained Parish Priest Fr. Nerses Hayrapetyan visited the Sunday School program and met with teachers and students.
On October 19, 2008, Fr. Khajag Shahbazyan, Burbank Parish Priest, celebrated the Divine Liturgy and delivered the sermon at the Armenian Church of La Verne. Upon the conclusion of liturgy, Fr. Mikael Kyureghian, Parish Priest, introduced the newly ordained priest Fr. Diran Avagyan to the faithful of the Armenian Church of La Verne. Fr.
On Friday, October 16, 2008, the Western Diocese, represented by Archpreist Fr. Arshag Khatchadourian and Dn. Matthew Ash, participated in a luncheon event where Dr. Michael Kinnamon, president of the National Council of Churches, spoke on the state of ecumenism in the 21st Century. The event was hosted by the Southern California Ecumenical Council, an organization with which the Diocese is an active member. The event was well attended with many representatives from the Southern California's largest Christian communities.
A gala reception and photo exhibition celebrating the William Saroyan Centennial, organized by the Dickran Tevrizian Fellowship Program and the USC Institute of Armenian Studies, and hosted by Neighborhood Legal Services of Los Angeles County was held on October 19, 2008. Archpriest Fr. Dr. Zaven Arzoumanian represented the Primate at this event.
The Armenian Professionals Network (APN) of the Western Diocese of the Armenian Church of North America, together with the Ararat Home of Los Angeles’ Ararat-Eskijian Museum and Valley Guild, invite the public to honor Armenian Veterans who have served in the United States Armed Forces. This special event will be held on Sunday, November 9, 2008, at 2 p.m., in the Ararat Home’s Sheen (Goevkalayjian) Chapel, 15105 Mission Road, Mission Hills, CA 91345. A reception will follow the program in the Ararat-Eskijian Museum.
The Western Diocese is holding a book event for Fr. Arshen Aivazian’s latest book: “Echoes of Faith” – published in separate English and Armenian editions – on Tuesday, October 28, 2008, starting at 7:30 PM, in the Nazareth and Sima Kalaydjian Hall of the Arshag and Eleanor Dickranian Diocesan Complex, in Burbank, California.
• T.C.A. Arshag Dickranian Armenian School: Archpriest Fr. Manoog Markarian. • St. Gregory Armenian Alfred and Marguerite Hovsepian School: Dn. Grigor Avagyan. • Little Angeles Art School: Dn. Guzh Khachikyan • A.G.B.U. Manoogian-Demirjian School: Mr. Mashdots Jobanian • A.G.B.U. Manoogian-Demirjian School (Pasadena): Mashdots Jobanian
Celebrations for the 50th anniversary of the establishment of St. Peter Armenian Church of Van Nuys are underway this year. In the evening of October 8, 2008, during a special ceremony on the joyous occasion of the 50th anniversary of the establishment of the church, in the sanctuary of St. Peter Armenian Church – Van Nuys, His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, assisted by Archpriest Fr. Shnork Demirjian, Parish Priest, and Archpriest Fr. Zaven Demirjian consecrated several holy images and stain glasses which are to adorn the sanctuary. The donors and other faithful members enthusiastically followed the consecration ceremony.
On October 10, 2008, the Armenia Fund 2008 telethon logo was unveiled during a reception held at the residence of Mr. Armen Khachatourian and Mrs. Maria Mehranian. Mr. Arkadi Ghokasyan, former President of the Republic of Nagorno-Karabakh was present during this event.
The Vicar General thanked the faithful for their enthusiasm. On behalf of His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, Very Rev. Fr. Dajad Dz. V. Yardemian congratulated Fr. Yeghia Isayan on the fifteenth anniversary of his ordination and consecration to the Priesthood and then read the Primate’s encouraging message to the parishioners in both Armenian and English:
On October 15th and 16th, St. Gregory the Illuminator Church of Pasadena hosted the calling rite, the ordination and the consecration to the Priesthood of Fr. Diran and Fr. Nerses by His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate. Diocesan clergy joined by guest clergy from the Eastern Diocese and Australia accompanied and assisted the Primate during the Priesthood calling, ordination and consecration rites. Faithful members gathered on both days under the high dome of St. Gregory the Illuminator Church of Pasadena to observe the ceremonies.
Plans and preparations are underway for the Fifth Annual Christmas Ball under the auspices of His Eminence Archbishiop Hovnan Derderian, Primate of the Western Diocese of the Armenian Church of North America to be held on Saturday, December 6, 2008 at the Nazaret and Sima Kalaydjian Hall of the Arshag and Eleanor Dickranian Diocesan Complex, 3325 North Glenoaks Blvd., Burbank.
There are currently ten priesthood-candidates (after the ordination of Fr. Khajag, Fr. Avedis, Dn. Grigor and Dn. Arsen) being prepared for ordination to the Priesthood and service throughout the Western Diocese. All priesthood-candidates are ordained-deacons of the Armenian Holy Apostolic Church. With the Grace of God and after completing their graduate degrees they will be ordained and begin their service in a pastoral capacity at the Diocese:
Editorial Staff member Dn. Allan Yeghia Jendian, who had spend countless hours to research and collect information and various pictures for this publication, described the laborious process of data collection for this publication along with the prevalent problems that the committee struggled with during the process.
• October 11-12, 2008: Very Rev. Fr. Dajad Dz. V. Yardemian, Vicar General, representing the Primate, travels to the Armenian Church-Seattle, Washington, to celebrate the Divine Liturgy, deliver the sermon and convey the message of His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate.
Ashot Nerssesian’s work, “Garo Sssouni” was presented and discussed during a forum, organized by the AGBU – Western District Office, at the Glendale Central Library, on October 3, 2008. Fr. Mikael Kyreghian represented the Primate at this event.
On October 5, 2008, His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, assisted by Parish Priest, Very Rev. Fr. Baret Dz. V. Yeretsian, and deacons, celebrated the Divine Liturgy and before delivering the sermon, presented the ‘St. Nersess the Graceful’ medal to Mr. and Mrs. Khajag and Arpi Konialian on behalf of His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians. The encyclical of the Pontiff was then read by Fr. Baret Dz. V. Yeretsian. Very Rev. Fr. Gegham Dz. V. Zacharian and Archpriest Fr. Dr. Zaven Arzoumanian were also present during the service.
On October 5, 2008, His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, accompanied by Archpriest Fr. Manoog Markarian, Archpriest Fr. Hovsep Hagopian, and Fr. Mampre Kesabyan, attended the 17th anniversary of the independence of the Republic of Armenia at the Beverly Hills Hotel. Mr. Larry Zarian, a former mayor of the City of Glendale who currently serves on the California Transportation Commission, was the Master of Ceremonies for the evening.
On October 5, 2008, His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian accompanied by Mr. Raffi Kendirjian attended ‘Pride of Heritage Annual Banquet,’ organized by the Lebanese Armenian Foundation, at the Beverly Hills Hotel.
The founding-father of the Western Diocese Endowment Fund Varnum Paul, Esq., passed away at age 100, after a short illness. The repose of the soul service of Varnum Paul, Esq., was held in the evening of October 5, 2008, at the St. John Armenian Church of San Francisco, presided over by the Parish Priest, Archpriest Fr. Sarkis Petoyan.
The Stewardship Committee meeting was held at the Diocesan Headquarters on October 6, 2008. Dr. Vahram Biricik, Chair of the Stewardship Committee, conducted the meeting. The Diocesan priesthood-candidate recruitment and preparation program is funded by the Stewardship Committee.
On October 6, 2008, His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian met with the Diocesan priesthood candidates. His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian offered some advice and wished them success in their studies.
On October 7, 2008, His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, presided over the repose of the soul service of Mr. Greg Boyajian, held at the St. Peter Armenian Church – Van Nuys.
On October 7, 2008, Parish Priests from the greater Los Angeles area gathered in the Diocesan Headquarters for the distribution of Holy Muron by His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, following his return from the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin. His Eminence is the Chair of the Muron Committee and by the invitation of His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Chatholicos of All Armenians, had traveled to Armenia earlier in September to participate in the September 28th ‘Blessing of Muron’ at the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin.
On September 14, 2008, during ‘the Rise of the Mother Cathedral’ banquet, the president of the Iraqi Armenian Association of Los Angeles, Mr. Khatchig Janoyan, pledged $5000 on behalf of the organization towards the construction of the Mother Cathedral of the Western Diocese.
A unique three day festival of Armenian culture took place on the lovely grounds of the Armenian Home in Fresno, This event commenced on Friday, September 26 thru Sunday, the 28th. Prpoor refers to the extract of grape juice which is boiled in order to produce molasses. Traditionally, this is made by Armenian farmers who have vineyards.
On the occasion of St. Peter Armenian Church’s 50th Anniversary, Mrs. Rose Ketchoyan has generously donated $25,000 to the church. Mr. and Mrs. John and Rose Ketchoyan became involved with St. Peter Church in 1957 and were very active not only with St. Peter Church, but also with the Western Diocese and the church camp in specific. After Mr. Ketchoyan’s passing in 2005, Mrs. Ketchoyan still remains involved with many church functions and is currently the St. Peter Ladies’ Society Treasurer. St. Peter Church is blessed to have parishioners like Mrs. Ketchoyan to help keep the church thriving.
The newly blessed Muron brought back home by His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, was used in all churches of the Western Diocese, on Sunday, October 12, 2008, during the special blessing of water ceremonies. The blessed water was then distributed among the faithful upon the conclusion of the Divine Liturgy in all churches of the Western Diocese. The Holy Muron serves as a bridge between the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin and Armenian churches spread all over the world.
Dn. Arsen Hayrapetyan was born on July 7, 1981, in Ararat, Armenia. From 1988 to 1998, he attended the local elementary and secondary schools. In 1998, he was admitted to the Vazkenian Theological Seminary in the province of Sevan, Armenia. After graduation, he pursued his advanced theological studies at the Kevorkian Theological Seminary in the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin. In September 2008, under the instruction of His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate of the Western Diocese of the Armenian Church of North America, Dn. Arsen Hayrapetyan was enrolled in a Master of Arts program for religious studies at the Claremont School of Theology and is expected to graduate in three years. After ordination and consecration to the Priesthood, he will resume his service in a pastoral capacity for the Armenian churches of Santa Clarita and Antelope Valley.
On September 30, under the presidency of His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians, a Bishop Conference was held in the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin. Following an opening prayer, His Holiness welcomed the Bishops residing in the Mother See and the Diocesan Primates who traveled to the Mother See on the occasion of the Blessing of the Holy Muron, wishing that God grant them support
With the blessings of His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians, a collection of writings about the late Catholicos Vazken I of blessed memory on the occasion of the centennial celebrations of the beloved pontiff has been published by the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin.
In the Name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen. "You shall prepare oil for holy annointing… It is sacred, and therefore should remain sacred for you." (Exodus 30:25-32) Dear pious Armenian pilgrims, From the heights of heaven, holiness descends once more today and disperses blessing, grace and exuberance over our homeland, within our souls, and throughout the whole of Armenian life. In the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin, with the prayerful participation of the sons and daughters of our nation dispersed throughout the world, we bless the Holy Muron (Chrism) according to the words granted from our Lord. Glory, unending praise and thanks to our all-provident God.
With the blessings of His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians, a photography exhibition by Datevik Melkonian, held at the Old Pontifical Residence, began on September 25, 2008 and lasted until September 29.
The baptismal-font was constructed through generosity of Mr. Armen Sargisian. The Pontiff awarded Mr. Sargisian with the medal of Gregory the Illuminator afterwards.
On 26 September, His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians, presided over the opening ceremony of the new "Shoghakat" TV Studios. The new building was renovated through the generosity of the national benefactors Mr. and Mrs. Vatche and Tamar Manoukian.
On 27 September His All Holiness Bartholomew I, Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, arrived in Armenia to take part in the celebration of the Blessing of the Holy Muron. His Holiness Bartholomew had been invited to come to Armenia by His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians. His Holiness Bartholomew I led a delegation of representatives from the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Constantinople. The Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople is the Archbishop of Constantinople, ranking as "first among equals" in the Eastern Orthodox Churches.
President Sargisan expressed his deep appreciation to His-All Holiness Bartholomew I and his delegation for traveling to Armenia to participate in the Blessing of Holy Muron ceremonies.
On 27 September His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians and His All Holiness Bartholomew I, Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople presided over the Ecumenical Prayer service in the St. Gregory the Illuminator Mother Cathedral in Yerevan. During the Ecumenical ceremony the Catholicos of All Armenians addressed his message of blessing to the faithful, expressing His joy that representatives of Sister-Churches and international ecumenical organizations had come to the Mother See for a joint prayer and in support of the Armenian Church and nation.
We are pleased to announce that upon the decision of His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, Dn. Razmik Sargissian and Dn. Samuel Safaryan have been recently recruited as priesthood-candidates and will join the Diocese in the near future. In the recent years, under the leadership of His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, several new parishes have been established and a number of the existing parishes have been reorganized or expanded. Meanwhile, several clergy and priesthood-candidates have been recruited by the Western Diocese to meet the spiritual needs of the large number of our faithful throughout the Diocese. There is an increase in the number of deacons and acolytes ordained throughout the Diocese, and after many years new priests are being ordained and consecrated in the Western Diocese.
Grigor Avagyan was born on March 8, 1983, in Yerevan, Armenia. In his teen years, he served as the Chairman of the ACYO – Nork Branch, from 1998 to 1999, organizing various activities and programs. In 1999, He was admitted to the Armenian Seminary of Jerusalem. In September 2008, under the directive of His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, Dn. Grigor Avagyan was enrolled in a Master of Arts program for religious studies at the Claremont School of Theology and is expected to graduate in three years. After ordination and consecration to the Priesthood, he will resume his service in a pastoral capacity for the Armenian Church of La Verne.
During the meeting the Catholicos of All Armenians gave each Primate a container, shaped in the form of the Holy Lance, filled with the newly blessed Muron. He wished for the powers of the Holy Spirit to make them stronger in their missions for the flourishing of the Holy Armenian Church and the prosperity of the Armenian people.
During the meeting, His Holiness asked His Eminence Cardinal Leonardo Sandri to convey his message of appreciation to His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI for his brotherly love and attention toward the Armenian Holy Apostolic Church. His Eminence Cardinal Leonardo in his remarks lauded the excellent relationship between the Catholic and Armenian Churches.
In continuation of the apostolic chain, intertwined with the foundation of our church, and as a symbol of unity for our people, His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, upon his return from his trip to the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin for the Blessing of the Holy Muron, which takes place once every seven years, has brought a portion of the newly blessed Muron back to the Western Diocese, which will be used during the special blessing of water ceremonies throughout the Diocese on Sunday, October 12, 2008. The blessed water then will be offered to the faithful during the celebration of the Divine Liturgy in all churches of the Western Diocese. The Holy Muron serves as a bridge between the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin and Armenian churches spread all over the world.
The Spiritual Retreat of St. John Armenian Church of San Diego, sponsored by the Ladies’ Central Council of the Western Diocese, and hosted by the St. John Ladies’ Society of San Diego, was held following a similar retreat held a few days earlier in St. Paul Armenian Church of Fresno. The Very Rev. Fr. Dajad Dz. V. Yardemian, Vicar General, represented the Primate at the retreat. “The Role of the Holy Spirit in our Daily Lives” was the theme of the retreat lectures and dialogue.
Opening remarks were offered by Mrs. Araxie Boyamian, Chair of the Ladies Society Central Council, and the opening prayer was offered by the pastor of the hosting parish, Archpriest Fr. Arshen Aivazian, who spoke briefly on the retreat’s theme. The workshop was conducted by Dn. Ash, who spoke in depth about the importance of allowing the Holy Spirit to enter our lives, and about the Fruits of the Spirit. Following lunch, and a Q&A session, a closing prayer was offered by the Very Rev. Fr. Dajad Yademian.
With great sadness, we report the passing of Varnum Paul, Esq., at age 100, after a short illness. The repose of the soul service of Varnum Paul, Esq., will be held in the evening of October 5, 2008, at St. John Armenian Church of San Francisco, by Parish Priest Archpriest Fr. Sarkis Petoyan. His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, will preside over the funeral service of Varnum Paul, Esq., on October 6, 2008.
Chicago, Il – On Friday, September 26 members of the ACYO Central Council arrived at Chicago’s Midway Airport, excited to be participating in the 4th Annual ACYO Pan North American Retreat (PNAR). The retreat’s theme was “8 Days a Week,” a reference not only to the famous Beetles song, but to living Christ’s message throughout our lives, and looking forward to God’s kingdom. The retreat was run by the Rev. Fr. Stepanos Doudoukjian, with workshops and sessions offered by himself, seminarian sDn. Ben Rith-Najarian, Julie Hoplamazian, Dn. Matthew Ash, and Dn. Levon Karamian
In the afternoon of Sunday September 28, 2008, Archpriest Fr. Dr. Zaven Arzoumanian and Yertsgin Joyce, representing His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, attended the joyous celebration of the installation of the Rev. Kurt Robert Christenson as the Senior Pastor of the Salem Lutheran Church in Glendale.
In 1957, a group of Armenians from Arizona held their first official gathering, which marked the beginning of the Armenian community. There had been articles in the local newspapers indicating Armenian presence in the Valley of the Sun, dated back as early as 1800’s.