April 12, 2018
The Prelacy’s reception for the recently published book, The Sins of the Fathers: Turkish Denialism and the Armenian Genocide, by Professor Siobhan Nash-Marshall, of Manhattanville College, took place last Friday at St. Illuminator Cathedral, in New York City. The book and author were introduced by Dr. Herand Markarian, after introductory remarks by Dr. Vartan Matiossian.

The humanitarian work of the Christians In Need Foundation was presented by its Executive Director Stephanie Havens, and closing remarks were offered by H.E. Zohrab Mnatsakanian, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Armenia to the United Nations.
H. G. Bishop Anoushavan will present Professor Siobhan Nash-Marshall’s book this Sunday at St. Sarkis Church in Douglaston, New York after the Divine Liturgy. Professor Nash-Marshall is professor of philosophy and the Mary T. Clark Chair of Christian Philosophy at Manhattanville College, where she is also chair of the philosophy department. She holds PhDs from Fordham University and the Universita Cattolica di Milano, as well as a L.M. from the Universita di Padova and a B.A. from New York University. Her specializations are metaphysics, epistemology, and medieval philosophy. In recent years, she has devoted attention to genocide and genocide negationism. The Sins of the Fathers is her first book-length treatment of the topic. 

From left, Tamara Tokadjian, Barbara Mnatzakanian, Nanik Yacubian, event co-chair, Principal Houry Boyamian, PTO Chair Taline Kebadjian, Talin Abidian and Seza Seraderian event co-chair.
School Board member, Ara Balikian Esq. addressing the attendees. 
Each spring the Parent-Teacher Organization of St. Stephen’s Armenian Elementary School (SSAES) in Watertown, Massachusetts holds a fund-raising event to benefit the school. For the second consecutive year, the event was held at Stonehurst, the Robert Paine Estate, in Waltham. The vibrant attendance was testimony to the support and love the Armenian community of Greater Boston has for the School and the School’s longstanding vital role in the community. The attendees enjoyed the music of Ken Field Jazz Trio, the delicious food catered by Anoush’Ella Saj Kitchen and wines from all over the world. Guest Artist GP Vahan attracted a great deal of attention with his live painting that was auctioned at the end of the event. School board member, Ara Balikian, Esq. thanked the “Taste of Spring” Committee headed by Seza Seraderian and Nanik Yacubian, the Parent Teacher Organization, the School Board, the Principal, Staff and Faculty for their collective efforts in making St. Stephen’s a highly successful school. He invited the community-at- large to follow their lead in supporting the school, reminding everyone that SSAES is the only Armenian day school in all of New England. 
The AYF "Hyortik" Chapter of New York asks you to join the  #GenocideMarch  on April 24th, 2018!

10:30AM Divine Liturgy at  St. Illuminator's Armenian Apostolic Cathedral 
12:30PM March to the Turkish Consulate!
A Note about the Readings:  Beginning on Monday April 9 and continuing until Pentecost (May 20) each day the four Gospels are read in the following order: 1) Morning—Luke; 2) Midday—John; 3) Evening—Matthew; 4) Evening dismissal—Mark. By Pentecost the four gospels are read up to the passion narratives.

Bible readings for Sunday, April 15 , Green Sunday , are: (1) Luke 6:12-49 ;( 2) Acts 9:23-31; 1 (Peter 2:1-10; John 2:23-3:12; (3) Matthew 8:18-9:8; (4) Mark 3:6-12.

Rid yourselves, therefore, of all malice, and all guile, insincerity, envy, and all slander. Like newborn infants, long for the pure, spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow into salvation—if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good.

Come to him, a living stone, though rejected by mortals yet chosen and precious in God’s sight, and like living stones, let yourselves be built into a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. For it stands in scripture: “See, I am laying in Zion a stone, a cornerstone chosen and precious; and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame.” To you then who believe, he is precious; but for those who do not believe, “The stone that the builders rejected has become the very head of the corner,” and “A stone that makes them stumble, and a rock that makes them fall.” They stumble because they disobey the word, as they were destined to do.

But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s own people, in order that you may proclaim the mighty acts of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy. (1 Peter 2:1-10)
When he was in Jerusalem during the Passover festival, many believed in his name because they saw the signs that he was doing. But Jesus on his part would not entrust himself to them, because he knew all people and needed no one to testify about anyone, for he himself knew what was in everyone.

Now there was a Pharisee named Nicodemus, a leader of the Jews. He came to Jesus by night and said to him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God; for no one can do these signs that you do apart from the presence of God.” Jesus answered him, “Very truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above.” Nicodemus said to him, “How can anyone be born after having grown old? Can one enter a second time into the mother’s womb and be born?” Jesus answered, “Very truly, I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and Spirit. What is born of the flesh is flesh, and what is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not be astonished that I said to you, ‘You must be born from above.’ The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.” Nicodemus said to him, “How can these things be?” Jesus answered him, “Are you a teacher of Israel, and yet you do not understand these things? Very truly, I tell you, we speak of what we know and testify to what we have seen; yet you do not receive our testimony. If I have told you about earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you about heavenly things?” (John 2:23-3:12)

For a listing of the coming week’s Bible readings click here.
Easter Sunday is followed by a period of fifty days ( Hinook ). This period from the Resurrection to Pentecost ( Hokekaloost ) is dedicated to the glorification of the Resurrection. Each of the seven Sundays of Hinook has a special name. This Sunday (April 15) is Green Sunday ( Ganach Giragi ), also called Sunday of the World Church ( Ashkharhamadoor ), that commemorates the establishment in Jerusalem of the first Christian church where Christ met with the Apostles in the upper room.

Green Sunday most probably originates from an ancient holiday celebrating spring. Our forefathers, seeing mother earth bloom after long winter months, glorified the Creator with an act of thanksgiving and celebrated by decorating the church and themselves with greenery. The reawakening of nature is symbolic of the Resurrection. Green is the color of life, freshness, and promise. After a barren winter and with the Resurrection we are filled with hope, life, and love.

Green Sunday is the perfect time for us to remember and strengthen our obligations as good stewards of the earth and caretakers of the gifts given to us by God.

You nations, made worthy to be called to give glory to Christ our God, come, sing to the Lord a new song, rejoice and praise his name with a new praise with the voice of Joy. O Christ, we who believe in you with true confession bless the mystery of your divine, life-giving economy glorifying your wonderful and terrible name. O Lord, Lord great over all the earth. Holy Church, bride initiated into the heavenly mystery, rejoice to the glory of the all-HolyTrinity who has adorned you with all its gifts and who is to crown you with glory the divine light with all his saints.
(Canon of Green Sunday, Sunday of the World Church, according to the Liturgical Canons of the Armenian Church)
Plans are underway for the 32 nd annual St. Gregory of Datev Institute Summer Program, a unique Armenian Christian educational program for youth ages 13-18 to enrich their knowledge of the Christian faith in a wholesome and nurturing environment, with recreational activities and daily church services.

Sponsored by the Armenian Religious Education Council (AREC), the Program is scheduled to be held at the St. Mary of Providence Center in Elverson, Pennsylvania, from July 1-8, 2018. 

For information and registration click here.

The Eastern Prelacy’s National Representative Assembly will convene at St. Gregory Church in North Andover, Massachusetts, May 10 to 12. Friends near and far are invited to attend the Banquet that will take place Friday evening, May 11, at Harris’ Pelham Inn, Pelham, New Hampshire. Cocktail reception will begin at 6:30 pm with dinner at 7:30 pm. Tickets are $75 per person.

For more information about the National Representative Assembly click here

Birth of Anatole France (April 16, 1844)
Anatole France was a Nobel Prize winner and a member of the French Academy, but he also was a humanist, and as such, a staunch defender of the Armenian Cause.

He was born François-Anatole Thibault on April 16, 1844 in Paris. He was the son of a bookseller, who also became a bibliophile. He studied at the Collège Stanislas, a private Catholic school, and after graduation he worked at his father’s bookstore, specialized in books and papers on the French Revolution, and frequented by many notable writers and scholars. He later secured the position of cataloguer at various libraries, and was appointed librarian for the French Senate in 1876. The next year, he married Valérie Guérin de Sauville. They had a daughter in 1881 and would get divorced in 1893. He would have various relationships and affairs, and finally he married his governess, Emma Laprévotte, in 1920.

He started his literary career in 1867, writing articles and poetry with the pseudonym Anatole France. He became famous with his novel The Crime of Sylvestre Bonnard (1881) , which earned him a prize from the French Academy. Other novels cemented his fame, and he was elected as one of the “forty immortals” of the French Academy in 1896, at the age of fifty-two.

In 1896 the country was rocked by the Dreyfus affair; Alfred Dreyfus was a Jewish army officer who had been falsely convicted of espionage in a case that had anti-Semitic overtones. France fought along another fellow novelist, Émile Zola—the author of a famous piece, “J’accuse” (I Accuse)--in defense of Dreyfus. He wrote about the affair in his 1901 novel Monsieur Bergeret. The scandal ended with Dreyfus being proven innocent.

In the aftermath of the Hamidian massacres of 1895-1896, Anatole France, always an activist for human rights and just causes joined the pro-Armenian movement and raised his voice to condemn Sultan Abdul Hamid II and defend the Armenian rights. In 1901 was one of the co-founders of the periodical Pro-Armenia, sponsored by the Armenian Revolutionary Federation, and continued his speeches and political rallies in favor of Armenian until 1907. Anatole France also had a close friendship with famous writer Arshag Tchobanian and painter Edgar Chahine.

In 1908 France published his novel Penguin Island, which satirizes human nature by depicting the transformation of penguins into humans, after the animals were baptized by mistake by a nearsighted ecclesiastic. It was actually a satirical history of France from the Medieval time to the novelist’s own time, concluding with a dystopian future. Another celebrated novel, The Gods Are Thirst (1912), was a wake-up call against political and ideological fanaticism. It depicted a true-believing follower of revolutionary Maximilien Robespierre and his contribution to the bloody events of the Reign of Terror of 1793-1794, following the French Revolution of 1789. He published his most profound novel, Revolt of the Angels (1914), at the age of eighty. It was loosely based on the Christian understanding of the War in Heaven, and told the story of a guardian angel who fell in love and joined the revolutionary movement of angels.

After the beginning of World War I and the Armenian Genocide, Anatole France returned to the political scene and was one of the keynote speakers at the April 1916 “Homage to Armenia” held at the Sorbonne amphitheater with the assistance of 3,000 people. In his speech, France included the much-quoted passage: “Armenia is dying, but it will survive. The little blood that is left is precious blood that will give birth to a heroic generation. A nation that does not want to die, does not die.”

Anatole France was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1921 in recognition of his brilliant literary achievements, characterized as they are by a nobility of style, a profound human sympathy, grace, and a true Gallic temperament.” He passed away on October 12, 1924, and his funeral was attended by a crowd of two hundred thousand people. He is buried in the Neuilly-sur-Seine cemetery near Paris. A few days ago, on March 30, 2018, the French International School in Armenia, founded in 2007 in Yerevan, was renamed after him.

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Last Sunday we celebrated New Sunday (Nor Giragi), the week following the Feast of the Resurrection of our Lord and Savior. In this Prelacy Reflection, Deacon Stephen Sherokey of Holy Cross Armenian Apostolic Church of Troy and St. Gregory Armenian Church, Indian Orchard MA discusses the Gospel reading for New Sunday, John 1:1-17.

Most scholars agree that chess originated in India during the first centuries of the Christian era with the name chaturanga, which translates as “four divisions (of the military),” today symbolized by the pawn, knight, bishop, and rook.

The game went to Persia, where the name became chatrang and they started calling shah (“king”) when attacking the opponent’s king, and shah mat (“the king is helpless”) when the king could not escape from an attack. The call became known worldwide, and today we say “check” and “check mate” in English.

But how did “chess” and “check” come into English? Arabs took up the game everywhere, including the calls, and the word shah entered Medieval Latin as scaccus . It went from here to Old French eschec, which meant both “game of chess” and “checkmate,” and its plural eschés (in Modern French, “chess” is échecs , in plural, while the singular word échec means “defeat”). As it happened with most English vocabulary, both Old French words entered Middle English: the plural eschés became “chess,” and the singular eschec became chek, chekke, and then “check.” While in most of Europe the name of the game came from shah, the Persian name chatrang, modified after the Islamic conquest of Persia as shatranj, went to North Africa, where the Moors turned it into shaterej. The word entered Spanish ( ajedrez ), Portuguese ( xadrez ), and Greek ( zatrikion ).

What happened in Armenian? Here, of course, because of Persian influence, the route was much straightforward. The word chatrang became ճատրակ ( chatrak in Classical Armenian), and this is how we call it in Western Armenian (pronounced jadrag ) to this day. Interestingly, St. Krikor Datevatsi (fifteenth century) had the word սատրիճ ( satrij ), which was derived from Arabic shatranj, but this did not enter the literary language and remained in some dialects as satrinj .

Armenians have revealed themselves, as we know, brilliant chess players since the twentieth century. Suffice it to mention the names of Tigran Petrosian and Garry Kasparov. It is an intriguing fact that the name of the game in Eastern Armenian went on a completely different road. A Russian-Eastern Armenian dictionary published in Tiflis (1876) listed jadrag and satrinj as translation for the Russian word shakhmat (“chess game,” which also means “chessboard”) , which was a borrowing from German Schachmatt (“checkmate”). However, it appears that in the twentieth century the loanword from Russian շախմատ ( shakhmat “chess game”) totally overtook jadrag, becoming the term of choice in Eastern Armenian to this day. Even if Armenian modern dictionaries list jadrag and shakhmat as synonyms, Western Armenians consider jadrag an authentic Armenian word and shakhmat a loanword, which is not far from the truth, since the former, despite being also a foreign word, entered the Armenian language a thousand years ago or so.
Pacem in Terris (Peace on Earth) the papal encyclical issued by Pope John XXIII fifty-five years ago on April 11, 1963, was the final encyclical issued by the charismatic Pope who set in motion many changes that reverberate to this day. Pope John died two months after issuing Pacem in terris . The full title of the encyclical is “On Establishing Universal Peace in Truth, Justice, Charity and Liberty.” The short title is taken from the beginning phrase of the encyclical:
“Pacem in terris, quam homines universi cupidissime quovis tempore appetiverunt, condi confirmarique non posse constat, nisi ordine, quem Deus constituit, sancte servato."
"Peace on earth, for which all men of every era have most eagerly yearned, cannot be firmly established unless the order which God laid down is dutifully observed."

The encyclical became much more than a normal papal encyclical. It was described as “the voice of the conscience of the world.” It influenced not only teaching on war and peace, but on church-state relations, human rights, justice, religious freedom, and other major issues affecting all human beings. It was the first papal encyclical to be published in full in the New York Times and the first addressed to all rather than only Catholics. It prompted a host of conferences and symposia devoted to its content and meaning and is still remembered and discussed fifty-five years later.
SIAMANTO ACADEMY— Meets every second Saturday of the month at the Hovnanian School, 817 River Road, New Milford, New Jersey. For information: anec@armenianprelacy.org or 212-689-7810..

April 14 —Exploring the Eucharist (Soorp Badarak), a seminar (10:30am-3pm), at St. Gregory Church, 135 Goodwin Street, Indian Orchard, Massachusetts, conducted by Dn. Shant Kazanjian, Director of the Armenian Religious Education Council (AREC) of the Eastern Prelacy. For info contact the church office at stgregorymass@yahoo.com or call (413) 543-4763.

April 21 —The Shnorhali Armenian Choir, alongside the Children's choir of New Jersey, and various young guest artists will perform at Queens Theater, 14 United Nations Avenue S, Corona, Queens, NY  from 7:00pm-8:45pm. Come and enjoy a pleasant culturally charged evening of beautiful music. For tickets, contact Harry & Juliette Milian: 718 454 5210. Tickets: $35, and $45. 

April 22 —Remembering the Armenian Genocide, Annual Gathering at Times Square, 2 pm, 43 rd Street and Broadway, New York City. Free bus transportation to and from Times Square. Sponsored by the Knights and Daughters of Vartan; co-sponsored by Armenian General Benevolent Union, Armenian Assembly of America, Armenian National Committee of America, ADL-Ramagavars, Armenian National Council, and with the participation of community-wide churches and organizations. Contacts: New York , Sam Melkonian 516-352-2587; Brooklyn , Tigran Sahakyan 347-291-7765; New Jersey , Leo Manuelian 917-418-3940 or 201-746-0409
April 29 —“History and Future of the Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh) Conflict" -- Guest Speaker: Anna Astvatsaturian-Turcotte, Author of "Nowhere, A Story of Exile." Under the auspices of His Eminence Archbishop Oshagan Choloyan, Prelate.  1:30 p.m. St. Sarkis Armenian Church, 38-65 234th Street, Douglaston, NY.  A book signing will take place after the lecture. For more information, please call 718-224-2275.

April 29 —The Armenian Martyrs’ Memorial Committee of Rhode Island will commemorate the 103 rd Anniversary of the 1915 Armenian Genocide on Sunday, April 29, at 12:45 pm at the Martyrs’ Monument site in North Burial Ground, Branch Avenue, Providence. The clergy of the three Armenian churches will perform services in memory of the Holy Martyrs. Chris Bohjalian will be the keynote speaker. His newest book, “The Flight Attendant” is on the NY Times best- selling list. Federal, state and local officials will also be in attendance. The public is cordially invited to attend this important day in memory of our Holy Martyrs and survivors of the Armenian Genocide.

May 3 —NYC Fundraiser for the Women's Support Center of the Tufenkian Foundation. 7-9 p.m. Almayass, 24 E. 21st Street, NY, NY. $45 at the door or with advance purchase (ticket includes 1 complimentary glass of wine and small appetizers). Tickets can be purchased via: https://goo.gl/xSw2th . For more information, contact Vartan Badalian at badalivs93@gmail.com. 

May 9-12 —Eastern Prelacy’s National Representative Assembly, hosted by St. Gregory Church, North Andover, Massachusetts. The one-day clergy conference and Conference of Yeretzgeens will take place on Wednesday, May 9. The full Assembly will convene on Thursday, May 10, at 11 am and will conclude on Saturday, May 12, at noon. The National Association of Ladies Guilds Meeting convenes during this time as well. For more information go to www.saintgregory/nra-2018.

May 11 --National Representative Assembly Banquet Celebration hosted by St. Gregory Church, North Andover, Massachusetts, at the Harris Pelham Inn, 65 Ledge Road, Pelham, New Hampshire. Cocktail reception at 6:30 pm; dinner & program at 7:30 pm. Tickets $75. To purchase tickets online click here.

June 24 --Ways to Wellness: A Panel Discussion on Mental Health -- 1:30 p.m. -- St. Sarkis Armenian Church, 38-65 234th Street, Douglaston, NY. For more information, please contact Anahid at anahide@aol.com (Lecture rescheduled from an earlier date).

July 1-8, 2018 – Datev Summer Program for youth ages 13-18-- The 32 nd annual St. Gregory of Datev Institute Summer Christian Studies Program will take place at the St. Mary of Providence Center in Elverson, Pennsylvania, sponsored by the Armenian Religious Education Council (AREC). For information and registration, contact the AREC office – 212-689-7810 or arec@armenianprelacy.org or click here.

September 21, 2018 to January 13, 2019 —“Armenia!” a large exhibition dedicated to the medieval period of Armenian history and culture at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City. The exhibit is the first at the Met dedicated solely to Armenia. Curated by Dr. Helen C. Evans.

October 20 —Armenian Friends America, Inc., Sixth Annual HYE KEF 5, featuring world famous Onnik Dinkjian and the All Stars. Double Tree Hotel, Andover, Massachusetts. Details to follow. www.ArmenianFriendsofAmerica.org .
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