April 20, 2017


Parishes throughout the Eastern Prelacy reported exceptional attendance during Holy Week and Easter. Archbishop Oshagan celebrated the Easter Divine Liturgy at St. Illuminator’s Cathedral in New York City. Bishop Anoushavan celebrated the Easter Divine Liturgy at St. Sarkis Church in Douglaston, New York.

Archbishop Oshagan delivers the sermon on Easter at St. Illuminator’s Cathedral, New York City.

The congregation listens intently at St. Illuminator’s Cathedral.

Bishop Anoushavan celebrated the Divine Liturgy on Easter at St. Sarkis Church, Douglaston, New York.

Bishop Anoushavan at Sts. Vartanantz Church, Ridgefield, New Jersey, on Maundy Thursday.

Bishop Anoushavan at Good Friday services at St. Illuminator’s Cathedral.

The clergy visited the Hovnanian School in New Milford, New Jersey, during Holy Week. From left, Rev. Fr. Hovnan Bozoian, Bishop Anoushavan, Archbishop Oshagan, Very Rev. Fr. Zareh Sarkissian, Rev. Fr. Mesrob Lakissian, and Deacon Kevork Hadjian.

Hovnanian School students perform for the visitors.

Archbishop Oshagan leads a Home Blessing service at the Armenian Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Emerson, New Jersey.

Residents enjoy the clergy visit.

Palm Sunday services at Soorp Khatch Church, Bethesda, Maryland.


Archbishop Oshagan awarded the Prelacy’s Queen Zabel Award to Azadouhi Zarukian following Easter services at St. Illuminator’s Cathedral, in appreciation of her support of St. Illuminator’s Cathedral and charitable endeavors. The Queen Zabel award is one of two high awards granted by the Prelacy for outstanding service.  The award is named after Queen Zabel of the Cilician period who was very socially aware and advanced for her time. Her primary concern was for the well-being of her subject people. She was responsible for many social programs that benefitted the general population and she founded hospitals and orphanages, as well as other charitable institutions.

Archbishop Oshagan presents the Queen Zabel award to Azadouhi Zarukian.

Bible readings for Sunday, April 23 , New Sunday , are: Luke 4:14-30; Acts 5:31-6:7; James 3:1-12; John 1:1-17; Evening Gospels: John  21: 15-25; Matthew 27:60-61; John  20:26-31.

God exalted him at his right hand as Leader and Savior that he might give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins. And we are witnesses to these things, and so is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey him.”
When they heard this, they were enraged and wanted to kill them. But a Pharisee in the council named Gamaliel, a teacher of the law, respected by all the people, stood up and ordered the men to be put outside for a short time. Then he said to them, “Fellow Israelites, consider carefully what you propose to do to these men. For some time ago Theudas rose up, claiming to be somebody, and a number of men, about four hundred, joined him; but he was killed, and all who followed him were dispersed and disappeared. After him Judas the Galilean rose up at the time of the census and got people to follow him; he also perished, and all who followed him were scattered. So in the present case, I tell you, keep away from these men and let them alone; because if this plan or this undertaking is of human origin, it will fail; but if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow them—in that case you may even be found fighting against God!”
They were convinced by him, and when they had called in the apostles, they had them flogged. Then they ordered them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. As they left the council, they rejoiced that they were considered worthy to suffer dishonor for the sake of the name. And every day in the temple and at home they did not cease to teach and proclaim Jesus as the Messiah.
Now during those days, when the disciples were increasing in number, the Hellenists complained against the Hebrews because their widows were being neglected in the daily distribution of food. And the twelve called together the whole community of the disciples and said, “It is not right that we should neglect the word of God in order to wait on tables. Therefore, friends, select from among yourselves seven men of good standing, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we may appoint to this task, while we, for our part, will devote ourselves to prayer and to serving the word.” What they said pleased the whole community, and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and the Holy Spirit, together with Phillip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolaus, a proselyte of Antioch. They had these men stand before the apostles, who prayed and laid their hands on them.
The word of God continued to spread; the number of the disciples increased greatly in Jerusalem, and great many of the priests became obedient to the faith. (Acts 5:31-6:7)


In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.
There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light. The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.
He was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. He came to what was his own, and his own people did not accept him.

But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God.
And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth. (John testified to him and cried out, “This was he of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me ranks ahead of me because he was before me.’” From his fullness we have all received grace upon grace. The law indeed was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. (John 1:1-17)
For a listing of the coming week’s Bible readings Click Here.
A Note about the Readings:  Beginning Monday and continuing until Pentecost (June 4) 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.


This Sunday, April 23, is New Sunday (Nor Giragi). Easter Sunday is followed by a period of fifty days (Hinook) from the Resurrection to Pentecost (Hokekaloost) dedicated to the glorification of the Resurrection. Each of the seven Sundays of Hinook has a special name. It is also called Second Easter (Grgnazadig), which literally means “Easter repeated,” because it is the eighth day of Easter and a day similar to Easter.


This Monday, April 24, the Armenian Church commemorates the Feast of the Holy Martyrs of the Armenian Genocide.  In 2015 the martyrs of the Armenian Genocide were canonized as saints of the Armenian Church.  Now each year April 24 is designated as the Feast of the Holy Martyrs of the Armenian Genocide on the Armenian Church’s Liturgical Calendar.

“And now, Holy Martyrs, remembering you eternally, in prayerful supplication, we appeal to you: Receive our prayers and intercede for us so that we too, with fearless love, may also continually glorify the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Now and always and unto the ages of ages. Amen.”
(From the canonization service that took place on April 23, 2015, in Holy Etchmiadzin, officiated by His Holiness Karekin II and His Holiness Aram I)


The 31st annual St. Gregory of Datev Institute summer program for youth ages 13-18 is scheduled to be held at the St. Mary of Providence Center in Elverson, Pennsylvania, from July 2-9, 2017. Sponsored by the Prelacy’s Armenian Religious Education Council (AREC), the summer program offers a unique weeklong Christian educational program for youth. It aims to instill and nurture the Armenian Christian faith and identity in our youth through a variety of educational activities, coupled with daily church services and communal recreational activities. For information and registration, please visit the Prelacy’s website or contact the AREC office by email (arec@armenianprelacy.org) or telephone (212-689-7810). 

Click the picture below to visit the Datev Webpage for all information and reservations.


The premiere weekend of the movie “The Promise” is here and now it’s up to us. As the saying goes, “Put some money where your mouth is.”  Go see the movie. Buy tickets for your family and friends. And then see it again. Here is an interesting clip from CBS This Morning:


“Remembering the Armenian Genocide,” the annual commemoration of Armenian Martyrs day will take place this Sunday, April 23, at 2 pm, at Times Square, 43rd Street and Broadway, New York City. Sponsored by the Knights and Daughters of Vartan; co-sponsored and with the participation of  more than 15 organizations. Free bus transportation to and from Times Square. New York buses call Sam Melkonian at 516-352-2587; Brooklyn, NY (corner of Coney Island Avenue and Brighton Beach Avenue) call Tigran Sahakyan at 347-291-7754; New Jersey Armenian Churches call Leo Manuelian at 917-418-3940 (cell) or 201-746-0409 (home).


St. Illuminator's Cathedral and the Armenian National Education Committee (ANEC) co-sponsored a lecture on Tuesday, April 18. After welcoming words by Rev. Fr. Mesrob Lakissian, ANEC Director Dr. Vartan Matiossian introduced Dr. Talin Suciyan, Assistant Professor of Turkish Studies at  Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich (Germany), who spoke about "The Armenians in Modern Turkey." Dr. Suciyan, who wrote her Ph.D. dissertation on the subject (published in 2015), presented some of the main features of what she called a "post-genocidal habitus," showing how the process of destruction of the Armenians in  the Ottoman Empire was continued during the initial years of the Republic of Turkey (1923-1950). State policies were directed towards the liquidation of the pockets of Armenian population remaining in the interior of Turkey, forcing Armenians to migrate to Istanbul and abroad. An interesting question and answer period followed the presentation. The lecturer also signed copies of her book.

Prepared by the Armenian National Education Committee (ANEC)
Birth of Henry Morgenthau, Sr. (April 26, 1856)

Righteous men were a plenty during the years of the Armenian Genocide, and Henry Morgenthau, Sr., Ambassador of the United States to the Ottoman Empire, was the prominent American name among them.

Morgenthau was born in Mannheim (Germany) on April 26, 1856. He was the ninth of eleven children to a Jewish family. His father, Lazarus Morgenthau, was a prosperous manufacturer and merchant, who bought tobacco from the United States and sold it back as cigars. However, the American Civil War hit him severely: German cigar exports ceased after a tariff on tobacco imports was set in 1862. Four years later, the family migrated to New York. Despite his father’s unsuccessful attempts to re-establish himself in business, Henry Morgenthau—who knew no English on his arrival at the age of ten—graduated from City College in 1874 and from Columbia Law School in 1876. Beginning a career as a successful lawyer, he would later make a substantial fortune in real estate investments. He married Josephine Sykes in 1882 and had four children. He served as a leader of the Reform Jewish community in New York.

In 1911 Morgenthau, then 55, left business to enter public service. He became an early supporter of President Woodrow Wilson’s election campaign in 1912. He had hoped for a cabinet post, but Wilson offered him the position of ambassador to the Ottoman Empire, with the assurance that it “was the point at which the interest of American Jews in the welfare of the Jews of Palestine is focused, and it is almost indispensable that I have a Jew in that post.” The encouragement of his friend, Rabbi Stephen Wise, led him to reconsider his decision and accept the offer, although Morgenthau was no Zionist himself.

The United States remained neutral after the beginning of World War I, and since the Allies had withdrawn their diplomatic missions following the outbreak of hostilities, both the American embassy and Morgenthau himself additionally represented their interests in Constantinople. American consuls in different parts of the Empire, from Trebizond to Aleppo, reported abundantly about the Armenian plight and documented the entire process of the Armenian Genocide. Morgenthau continuously kept the U.S. government informed of the ongoing annihilation and asked for its intervention. His telegram to the State Department, on July 16, 1915, described the massacres as a “campaign of race extermination.” He intervened upon the Young Turk leaders to stop the mass killings, although unsuccessfully. His friendship with Adolph Ochs, publisher of The New York Times, ensured a wide coverage of the Armenian atrocities throughout 1915.

Morgenthau reached out to his friend Cleveland H. Dodge, a prominent American businessman, who was instrumental in the foundation of the American Committee for Armenian and Syrian Relief in 1915 that would later become Near East Relief (nowadays the Near East Foundation). Finding “intolerable” his “further daily association with men . . . who were still reeking with the blood of nearly a million human beings,” as he wrote in his memoirs, he returned to the United States in February 1916 and campaigned to raise awareness and funds for the survivors, resigning from his position as ambassador two months later. In 1918 he published his memoirs, including his account of the genocide, as Ambassador Morgenthau’s Story (published in Great Britain as The Secrets of the Bosphorus).

He attended the Paris Peace Conference in 1919, and worked with various war-related charitable bodies. He also headed the American fact-finding mission to Poland in 1919 and was the American representative at the Geneva Conference in 1933. He died on November 25, 1946, in New York City, at the age of 90, following a cerebral hemorrhage, and was buried in Hawthorne, New York. Morgenthau was the father of Henry Morgenthau, Jr., Secretary of the Treasury during the administration of Franklin Roosevelt, and the grandfather of Robert Morgenthau, long-time District Attorney in Manhattan, and historian Barbara Tuchman. He appeared in “Ravished Armenia,” the film based on the memoirs of survivor Aurora Mardiganian, commissioned by the Near East Relief. One of his dialogues with Talaat is portrayed in the forthcoming film The Promise. 

Previous entries in “This Week in Armenian History” are on the Prelacy’s web page ( www.armenianprelacy. org ).
Prepared by the Armenian National Education Committee (ANEC)

You Can Return, but not Again

You probably have heard (or even used) tautologies a million times, but perhaps did not know their actual name. Here is a very common one:

“Let’s all work together, everyone, as a team.”

You will notice here a whole chain of repetitions; the Greek word tautós (ταὐτός) means “identical.” Do you need to put “all” and “everyone” in the same sentence? If you are a group of people, aren’t you a team?

This is why the same idea is accurately conveyed by simply saying “let’s work together.”

Tautologies are also galore in Armenian. One such case is furnished by the use of the prefix վերա (vera “re-”), as in վերադառնալ (veratarnal “to return”). The case is similar to English return “to come or go to a place again.” The prefix re suffices to ensure the repetition embodied by the word “again.” If you have traveled and come back home, you just return, but do not “return again,” which would be a tautology (even though a cursory Internet search revealed five books published between 1940 and 2012 and using “return again” in their titles). 

In Armenian, then, if you have traveled and come back home, the sentence «Ես նորէն Միացեալ Նահանգներ վերադարձայ» (Yes noren Miatsial Nahankner veratartza “I returned again to the United States”) is a tautology, since the word noren is superfluous. You just say Yes Miatsial Nahankner veratartza.

Of course, there are other verbs starting with vera- (“re-”), where the use of “again” (whether noren/նորէն, gurgeen/կրկին, or tartsyal/դարձեալ) is stylistically wrong. If you are a lawyer and you are going through a document you had already read, you cannot say «Ես փաստաթուղթը դարձեալ վերանայեցայ» (Yes pasdatooghtuh tartsyal veranayetsa “I revised again the document”). Նայիլ (nayeel) means “to look” and վերանայիլ (veranayeel) “to revise,” which etymologically is… “to look again.”

The examples can be multiplied. We will leave others for the future.

Previous entries in “The Armenian Language Corner” are on the Prelacy’s web page (www.armenianprelacy.org).


The crisis in Syria requires our financial assistance.
Please keep this community in your prayers, your hearts, and your pocketbooks.






Armenian Prelacy
138 E. 39th Street
New York, NY 10016
Checks payable to: Armenian Apostolic Church of America
(Memo: Syrian Armenian Relief)

Thank you for your help.


The 50th anniversary of the ordination to the priesthood of His Eminence Archbishop Oshagan Choloyan will be celebrated on Sunday, November 19, 2017. Please save the date and watch for the exciting details of this inspiring milestone.


Last Sunday’s Reflection was offered by Rev. Fr. Kapriel Nazarian, Pastor of Sts. Vartanantz Church, Providence, Rhode Island.

Click Here to view this weeks reflection.


Memoirs of an Armenian Soldier in the Ottoman Turkish Army
by Yervant Alexanian
Edited by Adrienne G. Alexanian

This memoir recalls Yervant Alexanian’s death-defying experiences and eyewitness account of the massacre and dislocation of family and countrymen. He was conscripted into the Turkish army, but unlike others so conscripted, he survived. This edition was translated from Alexanian’s handwritten Armenian chronicle. There is a Foreword by Israel W. Charny and an Introduction by Sergio La Porta.

Forced into Genocide, 145 pages, hard cover, $34.95 plus shipping & handling.

Post-Genocide Society, Politics and History
by Talin Suciyan

This is a pioneering work about the Armenians who lived and worked in turkey after the Armenian genocide of 1915. The author explores the experiences of these communities utilizing archives, minutes, diaries, memoirs, oral histories, newspapers and periodicals.

The Armenians in Modern Turkey, 280 pages, hard cover, $60.00 plus shipping & handling

To order these or other books contact the Prelacy Bookstore by email ( books@armenianprelacy.org ) or telephone (212-689-7810).

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 22.  Connecticut Commemoration of the Armenian Genocide. Connecticut State Capitol, House Chamber.  11:00 a.m. Keynote speaker will be The Hon. John Marshall Evans, former U.S. Ambassador to Armenia. Reception in the Hall of Flags, following the commemoration.

April 22—“Remembrance, Witness and Resurrection,” an ecumenical commemoration of the Saints and Martyrs of the Armenian Genocide, hosted by His Eminence Metropolitan Methodios, Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Boston at the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral of New England, 514 Parker Street, Boston, Massachusetts, at 2 pm. With the participation of His Eminence Archbishop Khajag Barsamian, Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern); His Eminence Archbishop Oshagan Choloyan, Eastern Prelacy of the Armenian Apostolic Church of America; Armenian Catholic eparchy of the United States and Canada; Armenian Evangelical Union of North America.
April 22—William Saroyan’s The Human Comedy and Hello Out There, presented in partnership with the Anthropology Museum of the People of New York and the Armenian Cultural Resource Center at Queens College, 3 pm. Followed by Q&A with director Tim Armen O’Hanlen and cinematographer Saro Varjabedian. Ticket includes admission to the Museum galleries.

April 23—Remembering the Armenian Genocide, Gathering at Times Square, 2 pm (43rd and Broadway, New York City). Sponsored by Knights and Daughters of Vartan; co-sponsored and with the participation of all major Armenian organizations. Free bus transportation to and from Times Square. For information: www.KOFV.ORG/MAIN/APRIL232017.

April 23—Joint commemorative Badarak of the Armenian Genocide at St. Gregory Church of Granite City, Illinois, followed by  cultural/political event at St. Gregory Armenian Community Center.

May 7—Ladies Guild Fun Day, organized by the Ladies Guild of St. Gregory Church of Granite City, Illinois.

May 18-20—National Representative Assembly of the Eastern Prelacy hosted by All Saints Church, Glenview, Illinois.

May 21—St. Gregory Church of Merrimack Valley, North Andover, Massachusetts, 47th anniversary celebration and year-end hantes of church schools. Archbishop Oshagan will celebrate the Divine Liturgy and preside over the dedication of the Tom M. Vartabedian Library and anniversary/hantes.

November 19SAVE THE DATE. Celebrating the 50th anniversary of the ordination of His Eminence Archbishop Oshagan Choloyan.

December 5-8—World General Assembly of the Great House of Cilicia, at the Catholicosate in Antelias, Lebanon.

The Armenian Prelacy 
Tel: 212-689-7810 ♦ Fax: 212-689-7168 ♦ Email: email@armenianprelacy.org

Visit the Catholicosate webpage at http://www.armenianorthodoxchurch.org/en/