On 11th July, the 2013-2014 academic year closing ceremony of the Gevorkian Theological Seminary was held in the Events Auditorium, under the presidency of His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians.
We are happy to announce that high-ranking clergymen H.G. Bishop Hovakim Manukyan, Ecumenical Director of the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin; H.G. Bishop Hovnan Hakobyan, Grand Sacristan of the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin and the Very Rev. Fr. Mesrop Parsamyan, Locum Tenens of the Diocese of the Armenian Church in France are presently visiting the Western Diocese.
On July 18, 2014, Burbank Mayor Dr. David Gordon paid his first official visit to the Western Diocese. Dr. Gordon met with the Primate and Diocese’s Executive Director Harout Markarian. The history of cordial partnership between the Western Diocese and the City of Burbank and avenues to further enhance and strengthen the bond were discussed at length.
The Zorayan Museum Committee held its regular meeting on Thursday, July 17 at the Diocesan Headquarters in Burbank. Among the topics of discussion included the Centennial Commemoration of the Armenian Genocide. Four major events are planned in commemoration of the Genocide’s Centennial.
The Ladies Society Central Council held its first official meeting on July 17, 2014 at the Western Diocese. Archbishop Hovnan Derderian opened the meeting with a prayer after which chairlady Lena Simonian quoted the Epistle of St. Paul to the Philippians “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13). Mrs. Simonian said this will be the motto of this year’s activities.
Close to 65 friends and supporters of the Diocesan Etchmiadzin Children’s Fund (ECF) attended the fundraising mixer at Archbishop Hovnan Derderian’s residence in Burbank on Wednesday, July 16, 2014. The main purpose of this event was to attract new supporters and stir more excitement and enthusiasm before the Annual Gala, which is scheduled to take place on September 6, 2014. The Executive Committee, headed by Mr. Sayat Oruncakciel, this time targeted the younger generation inviting their peers and friends from school to participate. Among the guests were Bishop Hovnan Hakobyan from Etchmiadzin and Rev. Fr. Khajag Shahbazyan, the pastor of St. Leon Armenian Cathedral.
On July 14, 2014, the Primate paid a visit to “Abp. Vatche Hovsepian Summer Camp” where he met with campers and counselors. Along with Diocesan clergy Archpriest Fr. Nareg Matarian and Rev. Fr. Asoghig Jamgotchian and with the participation of the young campers, His Eminence led a prayer service and delivered a motivational sermon emphasizing the role of the Church in the life of the youth.
Under the auspices of His Eminence Abp. Hovnan Derderian, Primate of the Western Diocese of the Armenian Church of North America, a special 2-day Deacons’ training seminar was organized by the Rev. Fr. Haroutioun Tachejian, Pastor of St. James Armenian Church in Los Angeles.
Close to 100 people had gathered at the Hampar Hall of the Western Diocese on July 8 and were treated to an evening of classical music featuring young and promising musicians. The eveHeld under the auspices of Diocesan Primate Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, violinist Azat Fishyan and pianist Naira Vardanyan performed works by such classical giants as J.S. Bach, Johannes Brahms, Eugene Ysaye, Claude Debussy and Aram Khachaturian.
The Zvartnots Cultural Committee, under the Auspices of His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, Western Diocese of the Armenian Apostolic Church of North America, presented an evening in memory of Siamanto on July 9, 2014 at the Hampar Hall of the Western Diocese.
On June 28th, the 100th anniversary celebration of Istanbul’s “Zhamanak” newspaper took place in the Events Hall of the Gevorkian Theological Seminary of the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin, presided over by His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians. Present at the celebration were Vigen Sargsyan, the President of the Republic of Armenia’s chief of staff, Hasmik Poghosyan, the Minister of Culture of the Republic of Armenia, members of the Brotherhood of the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin, prominent figures from the fields of education and culture, and faculty and students of the Gevorkian Theological Seminary.
On July 5, 2014, the reopening ceremony of the Old Pontifical Residence took place at the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin, presided over by His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians. The renovations to the historic building were carried out through the generous sponsorship of Mr. Berge Setrakian, President of the Armenian General Benevolent Union, and his wife Mrs. Vera Setrakian.
The World Council of Churches (WCC) Central Committee convened their 64th meeting in Geneva, Switzerland, on July 2, 2014. With the blessings of His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians; His Eminence Archbishop Vicken Aykazian, Diocesan Legate and Ecumenical Officer of the Eastern Diocese of the Armenian Church of North America; and Ms. Paula Der Matoian, Director of Internet Development and Social Media at the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin; are serving as members of the Central Committee, representing the Armenian Church. His Grace Bishop Nareg Alemezian, and Ms. Teny Perri-Simonian are members representing the Catholicosate of the Great House of Cilicia.