December 5, 2019
This week, Nishan Baljian of St. Gregory Armenian Apostolic Church of Merrimack Valley, MA reads the 11th prayer of St. Nerses Shnorhali's In Faith I Confess.


In this season of giving thanks, a celebratory and inspiring event initiated by the Eastern Prelate Archbishop Anoushavan Tanielian, and organized by the Eastern Prelacy took place on Sunday afternoon, November 17. It was joyfully festive, as well as significantly serious in its dedication to future commitments.     

“We thank all our parishioners who have faithfully supported us over the last six decades in helping us to achieve our mission of service for the welfare of the Armenian community at home, in the diaspora and in the homeland”, said the Prelate.

This was the powerful theme of the Eastern Prelacy’s first annual Thanksgiving banquet. This special event honored the “St. Nerses the Great Charitable and Social Organization’s 25 plus One Anniversary” at Flushing, New York’s Terrace on the Park. It followed a Thanksgiving Divine Liturgy celebrated by Archbishop Anoushavan at St. Sarkis Armenian Church in Douglaston, New York. 

This invaluable mission, the St. Nerses the Great Charitable and Social Organization ( Medsn Nerses ) named for Catholicos Nerses the Great (373 A.D.), had actually begun 31 years ago right after the 1988 catastrophic earthquake under the direction of then Prelate Archbishop Mesrob Ashjian, with its priority being to provide immediate help for earthquake survivors. Soon thereafter the Orphan Sponsorship Program emerged as a priority benefitting thousands of children. During the tenure of Archbishop Oshagan Choloyan, Medsn Nerses was expanded with a new office in Yerevan.

The programs have grown and blossomed greatly, and now also include aid to orphanages, schools, students, the elderly, disabled servicemen, and a summer camp.        

Before the banquet, held in the elegant flower-decorated ballroom, close to 200 attendees enthusiastically greeted each other during a sumptuous reception, renewing acquaintances, and making new friends. 

Opening the banquet program, Archbishop Anoushavan offered a meditative invocation, after which the Pontifical Message of His Holiness Aram I, Catholicos of the Great House of Cilicia, was read by the Vicar of the Prelacy, Very Rev. Fr. Sahag Yemishian.

Master of Ceremonies Jack Mardoian, Chairman of the Prelacy Executive Council, warmly welcomed the crowd, and hard-working Banquet Chairwoman Susan Chitjian Erickson expressed appreciation to the committee members and all who had made this event possible.

Armenia’s Ambassador to the United Nations, Mher Margaryan, congratulated the Prelate, and expressed the Motherland’s deep appreciation for the Prelacy’s devotion to Armenia’s orphans and the other programs supported by the St. Nerses the Great Charity Organization.

His Eminence Archbishop Anoushavan Tanielian offers the invocation to the guests of the Thanksgiving Banquet.
Archbishop Anoushavan joined by guests and supporters of the Eastern Prelacy.
A scene from the Divine Liturgy on the morning of the Eastern Prelacy's Thanksgiving Banquet.
His Eminence Archbishop Anoushavan joined by clergy members of the Eastern Prelacy. From left to right: Rev. Fr. Mesrob Lakissian and Yn. Ojeen Lakissian, Yn. Annie Terterian and Rev. Fr. Nareg Terterian, Archbishop Anoushavan, Very Rev. Fr. Sahag Yemishian, Rev. Fr. Vahan Kouyoumdjian and Yn. Maggie Kouyoumdjian.
Archbishop Anoushavan stands alongside the talented young performers of the "Giving Thanks" banquet. From left to right: Ms. Karina Vartanian, Ms. Siran Tchorbajian, Archbishop Anoushavan, Ms. Anahid Indzhigulyan, and Mr. Aren Arakelian.
Archbishop Anoushavan with members of the Religious and Lay Councils of the Eastern Prelacy, past and present.
The Eastern Prelacy's First Annual "Giving Thanks" Banquet committee joined together for a photo.

The Holy See of Cilicia is offering $70,000 in aid to needy Armenian families as a political and financial crisis deepens in Lebanon. His Holiness Aram I made the announcement on Dec. 2 at a meeting with community leaders and cultural figures at the monastery of Antelias, during which attendees also discussed the state of affairs in Armenia and the Diaspora.

At the gathering, the Catholicos gave an update on the lawsuit filed by the Holy See against Turkey for the return of the Catholicosate of Sis. Nora Bayrakdarian, a member of the legal team, explained the importance of the latest developments in the case.

Turning to the second topic on the agenda, His Holiness said the reorganization of the prelacies of the Holy See of Cilicia was under way, as part of a broader reform in the Diaspora, with the goal of strengthening Armenia, Artsakh and the national consciousness. 

Attendees analyzed the current financial crisis in Lebanon, with a focus on its implications for the Lebanese Armenian community life. Catholicos Aram summarized the conclusions, saying:

  • The Lebanese Armenian community plays a key role in the Diaspora: no effort should be spared to ensure its proper functioning.
  • Lebanese Armenians inevitably endure the consequences of the country’s financial crisis. Lending a helping hand to community organizations and families is of vital importance.  
The Holy See is putting $70,000 at the disposal of the Armenian Prelacy of Lebanon to provide immediate relief to needy families. Another $7,000 are being given to “Ararat,” “Aztag” and “Zartonk” newspapers in recognition and support of their endeavors. 

His Holiness called on Armenian businessmen to avoid laying off their Armenian employees as a way to help their families. He also urged wealthy Lebanese Armenians to support community organizations, schools and families in need. 

Catholicos Aram encouraged Lebanese Armenian religious, political, educational and social groups to cooperate and explore a common approach to tackle the challenges the community faces. Diaspora communities should take an active role in helping their brethren in Lebanon, His Holiness said.  

The Christian Education department of the Holy See of Cilicia, under the patronage of His Holiness, Aram I, is planning to provide aid to around 200 Lebanese Armenian families in need as the country is going through a period of turmoil.

The department is seeking to hand out canned food, vegetables, meat and cleaning supplies, among other necessity goods. The aid will be distributed during the Holidays as we share our joy with our brothers and sisters.

Just like last year, the chair of the Christian Education Department of the Catholicosate of Cilicia, Very Rev. Fr. Zareh Sarkissian, has appealed to the Eastern Prelacy to ask our parishioners to support this humanitarian initiative, showing solidarity with the Lebanese Armenian community in these trying days. A $100 donation will provide the package of basic items described above to an entire family. You may also contribute other amounts.
This donation on occasion of the Holidays will be greatly appreciated.

Please send your checks to the following address:

Armenian Prelacy, 138 East 39 th   Street, New York, NY 10016։
Please make checks payable to the Armenian Apostolic Church of America,
writing “Gift for the Needy” in the memo line.

Your donation is tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law.

Archbishop Anoushavan this weekend is visiting the Armenian community of Granite City, IL, where he will celebrate Holy Liturgy at St. Gregory the Illuminator Armenian Apostolic Church on Sunday, December 8. Following the service, congregants will gather for a luncheon to mark the 65 th anniversary of the church. 

Saturday, December 7, marks the 31 st anniversary of the catastrophic earthquake in Armenia. The forces unleashed by nature caused devastation in northern Armenia, leaving tens of thousands of casualties and massive damages in the main cities of the affected area: Leninakan (now Gyumri), Kirovakan (now Vanadzor), Spitak and Stepanavan, as well as the neighboring districts. Archbishop Anoushavan Tanielian, Prelate, has directed all Eastern Prelacy churches to hold a requiem service for the earthquake victims on Sunday, December 8.

On Sunday, December 1, His Eminence Archbishop Anoushavan Tanielian, Prelate, officiated the Divine Liturgy and gave the sermon at St. Sarkis Armenian Apostolic Church in Douglaston, New York. During the Divine Liturgy, Archbishop Anoushavan ordained Subdeacon Roland Telfeyan to the rank of Deacon.
Archbishop Anoushavan and Rev. Fr. Mesrob Lakissian with deacons, acolytes and choir members
Following the Divine Liturgy, the congregation and guests filled the John Pashalian Hall to enjoy the annual Thanksgiving luncheon organized by the St. Illuminator's Ladies Guild.
Rev. Fr. Mesrob Lakissian welcomed the attendees and thanked the community for its support. Archbishop Anoushavan then offered an opening prayer and Thanksgiving message.
The program featured Mr. Gagik Ginosyan, who presented a detailed explanation of traditional Armenian dance elements. Later, he illustrated the steps and invited attendees to dance. Mr. Ginosyan is an Armenian folk dance specialist and the Artistic Director of the Karin Folk Song and Dance Ensemble in Armenia.
At the end of the program, the parishioners, led by Mrs. Ani Piranian, chairlady of the Ladies Guild, congratulated Der Mesrob on the 14 th anniversary of his ordination. In his remarks, Der Mesrob thanked everyone who volunteers their time to serve the St. Illuminator's Cathedral and community, and wished a happy, healthy, and blessed Thanksgiving to everyone.

Archbishop Anoushavan delivers his Thanksgiving message, accompanied by Der Mesrob.
Der Mesrob poses with members of the Ladies Guild and a celebratory cake to mark the 14 th year of his ordination. 
Archbishop Anoushavan and Der Mesrob share the table with members of the Board of Trustees. 

On Thursday, December 5, Archbishop Anoushavan, Prelate, together with Dr. Vartan Matiossian, Executive Director, received the visit of Mr. Raffi Doudaklian, Executive Director of the Tufenkian Foundation, who was accompanied by Rev. Fr. Mesrob Lakissian, Pastor of St. Illuminator’s Cathedral, at the Prelacy offices. The activities of the Tufenkian Foundation in Artsakh and various other issues were among the topics covered in the conversation.
Tonight, December 5, at 7:00 pm, the Eastern Prelacy will host a presentation of a new publication in Armenian and English, “Gomidas – 150,” at its headquarters (138 E. 39 th Street, New York City).

“Gomidas – 150,” published by the Prelacy, is a brief collection of articles, letters and memoirs by and about the Father of Armenian Music, compiled and translated by Dr. Vartan Matiossian. Most of these materials appear for the first time in book format and in English.

If you cannot make it, copies of the book are available from the Prelacy Bookstore. Call (212) 689-7810 and talk to Rita, or email 

The Eastern Prelacy will host a presentation of a new book  The Doctor of Mercy: The Sacred Treasures of St. Gregory of Narek,  by Michael Papazian on Thursday, December 19 at the Prelacy offices in New York City at 7 pm.
The author will be present and will speak about the genesis of his interest in the life of this Armenian poet and theologian, especially after Pope Francis named him a Doctor of the Church. Gregory has the distinction of being the only Catholic Doctor who lived his entire life outside the visible communion of the Catholic Church.
The Doctor of Mercy  provides an introduction to Gregory’s literary works, theology, and spirituality and shows the contemporary relevance of his writings.
Dr. Papazian is Professor of Philosophy at Berry College in Rome, Georgia, since 1998 where he teaches a broad range of courses in philosophy as well as New Testament Greek.. He received his bachelor’s degree from Johns Hopkins University and his master’s and Ph.D. from the University of Virginia. In order to research the early Armenian translations of and commentaries on Greek philosophical texts, he studied the classical Armenian language at Oxford University where he received a Master of Studies degree in classical Armenian in 1995. He has published many articles and studies on ancient Greek philosophy and medieval Armenian theology.
Copies of his new book will be available for purchase. Two earlier books,  Light from Light: An Introduction to the History and Theology of the Armenian Church , and his translation of the  Commentary on the Four Evangelists by Stepanos Siwnetsi  will also be available.
For more information and to RSVP call 212-689-7810.
Bible readings for  Sunday, December 8, Third Sunday of Advent (Eve of the fast of St. Hagop); Conception of the Holy Virgin Mary are: Isaiah 37:14-38; 2 Thessalonians 1:1-12; Luke 14:12-24.

He said also to the one who had invited him, “When you give a luncheon or a dinner, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbors, in case they may invite you in return, and you would be repaid. But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind. And you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you, for you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”
One of the dinner guests, on hearing this, said to him, “Blessed is anyone who will eat bread in the kingdom of God!” Then Jesus said to him, “Someone gave a great dinner and invited many. At the time for the dinner he sent his slave to say to those who had been invited, ‘Come; for everything is ready now.’ But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said to him, ‘I have bought a piece of land, and I must go out and see it; please accept my regrets. Another said, ‘I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I am going to try them out; please accept my regrets.’ Another said, ‘I have just been married, and therefore I cannot come.’
So the slave returned and reported this to his master. Then the owner of the house became angry and said to his slave, ‘Go out at once into the streets and lanes of the town and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind, and the lame.’ And the slave said, ‘Sir, what you ordered has been done, and there is still room.’ Then the master said to the slave, ‘Go out into the roads and lanes, and compel people to come in, so that my house may be filled. For I tell you, none of those who were invited will taste my dinner.’” (Luke 14:12-24)
Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy, To the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace to you and peace from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
We are bound to give thanks to God always for you, brethren, as is fitting, because your faith is growing abundantly, and the love of every one of you for one another is increasing. Therefore, we ourselves boast of you in the churches of God for your steadfastness and faith in all your persecutions and in the afflictions which you are enduring.
This is evidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be made worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you are suffering—since indeed God deems it just to repay with affliction those who afflict you, and to grant rest with us to you who are afflicted, when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with his mighty angels in flaming fire, inflicting vengeance upon those who do not know God and upon those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They shall suffer the punishment of eternal destruction and exclusion from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might, when he comes on that day to be glorified in his saints, and to be marveled at in all who have believed, because our testimony to you was believed. To this end we always pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his call, and may fulfil every good resolve and work of faith by his power, so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ. (2 Thessalonians 1:1-12)

For a listing of the coming week’s Bible readings click here .

Monday, December 9, is the Feast of the Conception of the Holy Virgin Mary. This is one of the eight feast days devoted to the Holy Virgin in the Armenian Church’s liturgical calendar. This feast is always celebrated on December 9, and is part of the Church’s preparation for Christmas. The faithful rejoice in the event that celebrates Mary’s conception in fulfillment of the prayers of her parents and who was nurtured to become the mother of the Messiah. Bible readings for this Feast are: Song of Songs 6:3-8; Malachi 3:1-2; Galatians 3:24-29; Luke 1:39-56.

This Sunday (December 8) is the eve ( paregentan ) of the Fast of St. James (Hagop) of Nisibus. This five-day fast, Monday to Friday, leads us to the Feast of St. James, which is next Sunday. Traditionally the entire fifty-day period of Advent was a period of fasting, similar to Great Lent. In modern times, three week-long (Monday to Friday) fasts are observed during Advent: Fast of Advent ( Hisnagats Bahk ); Fast of St. James ( Sourp Hagopee Bahk ), and the Fast of the Nativity ( Dznuntyan Bahk ).

This Sunday (December 8) is the third Sunday of Advent, a season of anticipation for the coming of Christ that gives us purpose to live in hope regardless of the many challenges and vicissitudes that face us. John the Baptist is the greatest Advent figure (read Matthew, Chapter 3 and Luke, Chapter 3). In the Armenian Church tradition this period of waiting is known as Hisnag —the fifty day period that leads to the celebration of Christ’s Nativity and Epiphany on January 6.

This Saturday (December 7) the Armenian Church remembers St. Nicholas the Wonderworker, a fourth century Bishop of Myra, Lycia in Asia Minor (modern-day Turkey). He was a defender of orthodoxy and because of many miracles attributed to his intercession he is called “the Wonderworker.” He was a secret and generous giver of gifts and some believe him to be the model for Santa Claus.

Saints also remembered this week:
St. Cornelius the Centurion and St. Polycarp of Smyrna (Tuesday, December 10)

Hamasdegh teachers flank the school’s youngest and brightest.
Hamasdegh School is delighted to report that its student enrollment this year grew to 110. This milestone comes in addition to more news that are enlivening school life at the Washington D.C. institution affiliated with Soorp Khatch Armenian Apostolic Church. A new kindergarten class called Dzil (“Sprout”) is welcoming children ages 4 and younger, so the little ones will no longer have any reason to cry as their older siblings leave for school every day. To top it all, in a year that is ending on a bright note, students are now taking Armenian dance lessons under the expert tutelage of Alex Avanesi Zade. 
St. Hagop’s parishioners and guests at the Thanksgiving banquet
On November 28, the Racine Armenian Coalition sponsored a Thanksgiving banquet open to this Wisconsin community at St. Hagop Armenian Apostolic Church. Attended by over 50 parishioners and guests, the dinner featured roast turkey with all the trimmings plus Armenian appetizers and desserts. The program was organized by John Buchaklian, Dr. Nick Akgulian, and Melanie Buchaklian. Entertainment was provided by Archdeacon Stepan Fronjian.

The revived Holiday Fair attracted hundreds of attendees from the Racine community
The week had begun on an auspicious note for the community as the Auxiliary of St. Hagop revived its annual Holiday Fair. The fair, which took place on Saturday, November 23, was a huge success, with hundreds of attendees, who came for lunch, Armenian delicacies, pastries and sweets, as well as tables loaded with knick-knack items. Also available for sale were copies of “Cooking Like Mama,” the Auxiliary's best-selling Armenian cookbook which features short biographies and recipes from the first generation of our founding families.

Scenes from the first Thanksgiving banquet at the Whitinsville St. Asdvadzadzin Armenian Apostolic Church.
Parishioners and guests gathered at Soorp Asdvadzadzin in Whitinsville, MA, to mark Thanksgiving together at the first annual banquet organized by the church and hosted by Sunday School families. Following the opening prayer by Rev. Fr. Mikael Der Kosrofian, each attendee spoke briefly about the things they were grateful for and made a donation that went towards the 2019 Thanksgiving Day Telethon for Artsakh. 

Holy Trinity Armenian Church of Worcester, MA, was busy hosting its Annual Bazaar on November 22 and 23, repeating the success it enjoys every year. For over two months, the ladies of the community came together every week and prepared the delicious pastries and the gourmet meals that everyone hurried to buy, eat and enjoy. Families came and spent their time enjoying meals and the fellowship of friends they had not seen for a long time. 
The Prelacy’s Orphan Sponsorship program was established in 1993 and continues to be the central mission of the Prelacy’s programs in Armenia and Artsakh. As part of the program, letters are received regularly from sponsored children addressed to their sponsors. We are pleased to share some of these letters through Crossroads .
This week’s letter is from Alik* who is sponsored by the Keoseyan Family 
Dear Mrs. Talar,
I am doing very well and hope that you are too. Everything is OK in our household and they all send you their best. 
I am now in 11 th grade in high school. Yesterday, our basketball team participated in a regional school competition and we got the second place.
Our village school got renovated and now we have two afterschool sport programs in heavyweight lifting and soccer. Now our school became more fun for me.
We just finished gathering our grape crop and it’s time to make wine and homemade vodka ( oghi ). 
On the first day of winter, December 1 st , I will be 17 years old and in one year after that I will be called for my military service in the Armenian Army.
With warmest wishes,

October 4, 2019

* In order to protect the privacy of the children we use only their first names.
Currently there are children on the waiting list for the Prelacy’s Sponsorship Program. If you would like to sponsor a child please click here for quick and easy online sponsorship. You may also contact the Prelacy by email ( ) or telephone (212-689-7810), ask for Sophie. 
(DECEMBER 9, 1970)
Both brothers were famous for different reasons. Artem Mikoyan was a famous aircraft designer and the younger brother of Anastas Mikoyan, the statesman whose career encompassed fifty years of the Soviet regime.

Artem (Anoushavan) Mikoyan was born in the village of Sanahin (Lori, in Eastern Armenia), on August 5, 1905. He also had one other brother and two sisters. He started his elementary studies at the village school, and, after his father’s death, his mother sent him to Tiflis, where he graduated from a local Armenian school. 

In 1923 he moved to Rostov-on-the Don, along his elder brother Anastas. He took a work as a machine tool-operator, but a year later he moved to Moscow, working in a similar position in the “Dynamo” factory until 1928 before being conscripted into military service. In 1931 he joined the Zhukovsky Air Force Academy, where he created his first plane. Following graduation in 1937, he worked with Nikolai Polikarpov before being named head of a new aircraft design bureau in December 1939. Together with Mikhail Gurevich, Mikoyan formed the Mikoyan-Gurevich design bureau, producing a series of fighter aircraft. The first MiGs were not that successful. In 1941, however, he won the first of his six Stalin Prizes (the next ones would come in 1947, 1948, 1949, 1952, and 1953), which would be renamed USSR State Prize after the death of Joseph Stalin in 1953.
Early post-war designs were based on captured German jet fighters and information provided by Great Britain or the United States. The first production model was the MiG-9 of 1946. The I-270 prototype based on German ideas and a British engine became the MiG-15, which despite its mixed origins, it had excellent performance and formed the basis for future fighters, with over 18,000 MiG-15s manufactured. In 1953 came the MiG-17, which reached the speed of sound, followed by the famous MiG-19, the first serial Soviet supersonic fighter.

From 1952, Mikoyan also designed missile systems to particularly suit his aircraft, such as the famous MiG-21. He continued to produce high performance fighters through the 1950s and 1960s, including the MiG-25, the fastest and the highest-flying fighter. The MiGs have been a part of air forces for decades. His fighters scored 55 world records. In particular, the MiG-15 and MiG-29 held records of speed and height for a long time.
The MiG-15s were the jets used during the Korean War by Communist forces. U.S. Air Force pilots named “MiG Alley” the northwestern portion of North Korea where the Yalu River empties into the Yellow Sea. During the war, it was the site of numerous air battles between U.S. fighter jets and those of Communist forces, particularly the Soviet Union.
Mikoyan was twice awarded the highest civilian honor, the Hero of Socialist Labor, and was a deputy in six Supreme Soviets. He also earned other honors, such as the Order of Lenin (six times), the Order of the Red Banner, the Order of the Patriotic War 1st class, the Order of the Red Star (twice), and the Lenin Prize (1962). In 1968 he was elected a member of the USSR Academy of Sciences.
After a stroke in 1969, Artem Mikoyan passed away on December 9, 1970, and was buried in the Novodevichy Cemetery in Moscow. After his death, the name of the design bureau was changed from Mikoyan-Gurevich to simply Mikoyan. However, the designator remained MiG. Many more designs came from the design bureau such as the MiG-23, MiG-29, and MiG-35.
Mikoyan was inducted into the International Air and Space Hall of Fame at the San Diego Air and Space Museum in 1996. There is a string of places that remember him in Armenia: a high school and a monument at the Erebuni airport of Yerevan; a military unit placed in Gyumri; a monument at the Mikoyan Brothers Museum in Sanahin, their birthplace, and a memorial in the same town.
Previous entries in “This Week in Armenian History” are on the Prelacy’s web site ( ). 

The In-Laws Who Care
A reader wrote the other day:
“What is the Armenian of  խնամի  ( khunami )?”
It is hard to say why  khunami  sounds like a foreign word. Perhaps people are so used to fill their conversation with foreign words (Turkish, Arabic, English, French, on the Western Armenian side; Russian, on the Eastern Armenian side) that sometimes they may get confused about what they are talking.
Because the Armenian of  khunami  is…  khunami.
Let’s clarify for those who do not speak the language that this is the Armenian word for someone related by marriage. Or, in other words, “in-law.”
Khunami  has a wider reach than its English counterpart. Firstly, you can use it in plural ( խնամիներ / khunaminer ), while “in-law” is an artificial construct (Armenian-English dictionaries do not have it as a direct translation of  khunami ), derived from its use for terms of kinship (father-in-law, daughter-in law, etc.). Most importantly, we can use it to address someone:
« Խնամի, ե՞րբ պիտի հանդիպինք»  ( Khunami, yerp bidi hantibink? ) which means “ Khunami,  when will we meet?”
(We dare you to find the exact English translation of  khunami  in this sentence.)
Now, let’s go to the origins of  khunami . This word should ring a bell to anyone knowledgeable in Armenian, including our reader: it sounds suspiciously similar to the word  խնամք  ( khunamk  “care”).
If it does ring such a bell, then you are on the right track. While the origin of the root  խնամ  ( khunam )   remains unknown, we have a gallery of names derived from it that have existed in writing since the fifth century A.D. A few of them are  խնամել  ( khunamel  “to care”),  խնամակալ (khunamagal  “caregiver”), and  նախախնամութիւն (nakhakhunamootioon  “providence”). From  khunami,  which is also a word attested in the fifth century, we have  խնամութիւն (khunamootioon  “relation by marriage”) and  խնամախօս  ( khunamakhos  “matchmaker”). After fifteen centuries, it is hard to say that, whatever the actual origin of the root  khunam , it is not an Armenian word by now.
What does “care” have to do with in-laws? If you think in terms of the English language, nothing. But you would be comparing apples and oranges. The idea behind the explanation for khunami is the following: if you care about a person, then you also care about those you are related to by way of marriage.
Eastern Armenian provides an interesting parallel. The word  բարեկամ  ( paregam  “friend”), which literally means “good will” ( բարի/pari  “good” +  կամ(ք)/gam(k)  “will”), is used in colloquial language with the meaning of “relative.”
Whoever truly cares, shows good will. Blood or legal relation aside, that is what should matter. 
Previous entries in “Armenian Language Corner” are on the Prelacy’s web site ( ). 
This week’s archive photograph takes us back 31 years to December 7, 1988, and the massive and devastating earthquake that struck Armenia. The Eastern Prelacy, thanks to the untiring efforts of the Prelate Archbishop Mesrob Ashjian, responded immediately to concentrated efforts to mobilize the relief effort, and to bring worldwide awareness to the catastrophe that had totally destroyed parts of Armenia with more than 25,000 casualties.

One of the programs that brought much publicity to the plight of the people was a Children for Children Letter and Poetry Contest. Through the efforts of Michael Mirakian, principal of Concord High School in New York, Archbishop Mesrob and a delegation from the Prelacy and the Armenian National Education Committee met with Dr. Richard Green, Chancellor of the New York City Schools, to ask for his help organize a fund-raising project in the city’s 1,200 schools involving nearly one million children. The Chancellor gave his enthusiastic approval and the project was launched on January 13 at Public School 11 in Woodside, Queens. The overall project included a three-day lesson plan about Armenia, a poetry and letter writing contest, and a 24-page curriculum guide that was prepared and distributed to the city’s schools in record time.

In this photograph Chancellor Green launches the program along with Archbishop Mesrob, Rev. Fr. Moughesh Der Kaloustian, and New York City students in traditional Armenian dress.

Please send your inquiries and comments (English and/or Armenian) to . Please remember that the deadline for submitting items for Crossroads is on Wednesdays at noon.

All parish news, photographs, and calendar items should also be emailed to .

Comments received may be shared from time to time. We are looking forward to yours.
( Calendar items may be edited to conform to space and style )
December 5 —Presentation of “Gomidas—150,” a publication of the Armenian Prelacy. Details to follow.

December 7— Soorp Asdvadzadzin Church Annual Bazaar in Whitinsville, Massachusetts at the Pleasant Street Christian Reform Church Hall, 25 Cross Street, Whitinsville, 10:00-4:30, dinners served at 11:30.

December 14 —Club 27, featuring Onnik Dinkjian, Raffi Massoyan, Steve Vosbikian, Jim Kzirian, and Ara Dinkjian. John Pashalian Hall at St. Illuminator’s Cathedral, New York City. Admission: $25.00.

December 15 —Presentation of the newly published book, “Praying with the Armenian Apostolic Orthodox Church,” by Archdeacon Shant Kazanjian, immediately after the Divine Liturgy at St. Illuminator’s Cathedral, 221 East 27 th Street, New York City.

December 19 —Presentation of newly published book “The Doctor of Mercy: The Sacred Treasures of St. Gregory of Narek,” by Michael Papazian. Details will follow.

December 22 —Christmas Concert at 2 pm, organized by the Board of Trustees of St. Illuminator’s Cathedral, New York City, under the auspices of H.E. Archbishop Anoushavan, Prelate of the Eastern Prelacy, featuring Anahit Zakaryan, Hayk Arsenyan, and Anahit Indzhiguyan.

December 31 —Save the date. Sts. Vartanantz Church, Ridgefield, New Jersey, New Year’s Eve dinner/dance.

March 15, 2020 —Save the date and watch for details for the Eastern Prelacy’s 37 th annual Musical Armenia concert, 2 pm at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, West 57 th Street at Seventh Avenue, New York City.

March 28, 2020 —“Faith Building Women 2020 Symposium,” A daylong conference to heighten awareness of women in the Bible, organized by the Adult Christian Education department of St. Peter Armenian Church. The Symposium will take place at Holy Trinity Armenian Church, Cambridge, Massachusetts. Keynote speakers Dr. Roberta Ervine and Arpi Nakashian.

May 13-16, 2020 —National Representative Assembly (NRA) of the Eastern Prelacy hosted by St. Gregory the Illuminator Church of Philadelphia. The Clergy Conference will begin on Wednesday, May 13; the full Assembly will convene on Thursday, May 14 and conclude on Saturday, May 16.

May 31, 2020 —Save the Date. St. Sarkis Church, Douglaston, New York, 30 th Anniversary Banquet.
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