November 29, 2018
We are pleased to announce that His Holiness Aram I, Catholicos of the Holy See of the Great House of Cilicia, issued an encyclical dated November 22, 2018, elevating our Prelate, Bishop Anoushavan Tanielian, to the rank of Archbishop. In his encyclical His Holiness wrote:

            “We have closely followed your many years of activities at the Eastern Prelacy, as Vicar General and Ecumenical Officer, and we have seen in you a loyal and dedicated member of our Church and the Brotherhood of our Holy See.
           “Hence, in appreciation for your years of dedicated services and as encouragement for the new opportunities of service that will open up before you, with this Pontifical Encyclical, we bestow upon you the honor and the title of Archbishop.
           “We are confident that this new title will give you new impetus to carry out the mission entrusted to you with renewed faith and total dedication within the ministry of our Holy See.”             

This Sunday’s celebration has turned into a dual celebration of Srpazan’s election as Prelate and elevation. His Eminence will celebrate the Divine Liturgy and deliver the sermon this Sunday, December 2, at St. Illuminator Cathedral in New York City. The Liturgy will begin at 10 am. A celebratory banquet will take place after services at the Terrace on the Park in Flushing Meadows, New York. The banquet was sold-out nearly two weeks ago.
A requiem service for Archbishop Mesrob Ashjian, former Prelate of the Eastern Prelacy, will take place this Sunday, December 2, at St. Illuminator Cathedral, 221 East 27 th Street, New York City. Archbishop Mesrob passed away fifteen years ago, on December 2, 2003, during a visit to the United States. He served as Prelate for twenty years, from 1978 to 1998, after which he relocated to Armenia, where he directed the 1700 th anniversary commemorative committee and later organized innumerable charitable and educational programs for the benefit of the people in Armenia and Artsakh.
Bishop Anoushavan and Rev. Fr. Hrant Kevorkian surrounded by deacons, acolytes, and choir members at St. Sarkis Church, Dearborn.
Anoushavan Srpazan visited St. Sarkis Church in Dearborn, Michigan, where on Sunday, November 18 he celebrated the Divine Liturgy and delivered the sermon on the occasion of the parish’s 54 th anniversary at the current location. Following the services a lavish mezze was offered in the church hall and parishioners had the opportunity to meet and greet the Prelate.

The Scouts at attention.
The Prelate with Der Gomidas and Der Kapriel, altar servers, and choir members at Sts. Vartanantz Church in Providence.
Last Sunday, the Sts. Vartanantz Church community of Providence, Rhode Island joyously welcomed the Prelate, who celebrated the Divine Liturgy and delivered an inspirational sermon about Thanksgiving and the importance as Christians to always offer thanks to God. Assisting on the altar were Archpriest Fr. Gomidas Baghsarian and Rev. Fr. Kapriel Nazarian. Following the Divine Liturgy, Anoushavan Srpazan was the guest of honor at a special luncheon reception prepared by the Ladies’ Guild. The Prelate was warmly greeted by all the parishioners in attendance as he made special visits to each table.

Anoushavan Srpazan with Der Gomidas, Der Kapriel, and members of the Providence Homenetmen Scouts.
Rev. Fr. Hovnan Bozoian, representing the Prelate, with His Holiness Moran Mar Paulos II and Metropolitan Zachariah Mar Nicholovos.
Rev. Fr. Hovnan Bozoian, pastor of Sts. Vartanantz Church in New Jersey, represented the Prelate at a banquet on November 17 in honor of His Eminence Metropolitan Zachariah Mar Nicholovos of the Northeast American Diocese of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church, on the occasion of the 25 th anniversary of his Episcopal ordination. Der Hovnan congratulated Metropolitan Zachariah and greeted His Holiness Moran Mar Paulos II on behalf of Bishop Anoushavan.

Anoushavan Srpazan with Sandra Vartanian and Maryanne Bonjuklian.
On Tuesday afternoon, Archbishop Anoushavan met with Armenian Relief Society Eastern U.S. Regional board members Sandra Vartanian and Maryanne Bonjuklian at the Prelacy offices. They spoke about educational and cultural programs and issues that are of mutual concern to the Prelacy and the ARS. They pledged to continue working together for the benefit and advancement of the Armenian community.

Bible readings for Sunday, December 2, Second Sunday of Advent, are: Isaiah 36:22-37:11; 1 Thessalonians 4:1-11; Luke 13:1-9.

At that very time were some present who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. He asked them, “Do you think that because these Galileans suffered in this way they were worse sinners than all other Galileans? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish as they did. Or those eighteen who were killed when the tower of Siloam fell on them—do you think that they were worse offenders than all the other living in Jerusalem? No, I tell you but unless you repent, you will all perish just as they did.”
Then he told the parable: “A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard; and he came looking for fruit on it and found none. So he said to the gardener, ‘See here! For three years I have come looking for fruit on this fig tree, and still I find none. Cut it down! Why should it be wasting the soil?’ He replied, ‘Sir, let it alone for one more year, until I dig around it and put manure on it. If it bears fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down.’” (Luke 13:1-9)
Finally, brethren, we beseech and exhort you in the Lord Jesus, that as you learned from us how you ought to live and to please God, just as you are doing, you do so more and more. For you know what instructions we gave you through the Lord Jesus. For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from immorality; that each one of you know how to control his own body in holiness and honor, not in the passion of lust like heathen who do not know God; that no man transgress, and wrong his brother in this matter, because the Lord is an avenger in all these things, as we solemnly forewarned you. For God has not called us for uncleanness, but in holiness. Therefore whoever disregards this, disregards not man but God, who gives his Holy Spirit to you.
But concerning love of the brethren you have no need to have any one write to you, for you yourselves have been taught by God to love one another; and indeed you do love all the brethren throughout Macedonia. But we exhort you, brethren, to do so more and more, to aspire to live quietly, to mind your own affairs, and to work with your hands, as we charged you. (1 Thessalonians 4:1-11)

This Saturday, December 1, the Armenian Church commemorates Saints Thaddeus and Bartholomew, two of the twelve apostles who were the first evangelizers of Armenia, and were martyred there, giving the Armenian Church its apostolic identity and earning them the title, “First Enlighteners of Armenia.”
Thaddeus came to Armenia about 43 AD to preach Christianity. He was martyred in southeastern Armenia. His tomb lies in the Armenian monastery of St. Thaddeus (Iran) where a chapel was built in the third century. Bartholomew is believed to have arrived in Armenia about 66 AD. He was martyred in Hadamakert, southeast of Lake Van.
An apostle is “someone who is sent,”—an emissary or ambassador of the Kingdom of God, sent to announce the Kingdom’s coming in Jesus Christ, and authorized to claim men and women’s allegiance to him. “We are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We beseech you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God,” (2 Corinthians 5:20)
Also remembered this week:
           St. Clement of Rome (November 29)
           St. Gennaro (December 3)
           St. Apkar, 1 st Christian King (December 4)

Parishioners of St. Gregory, North Andover and St. Illuminator, New York
On Sunday, November 11, with the blessing of His Grace Bishop Anoushavan Tanielian, 45 parishioners from Saint Gregory Church in North Andover, Massachusetts, traveled to New York City. Led by their pastor, Rev. Fr. Stephan Baljian, they attended Divine Liturgy at Saint Illuminator's, where they were warmly welcomed by Rev. Fr. Mesrob Lakissian and the entire Cathedral community.

A luncheon followed in Pashalian Hall. Both Der Hayrs had an opportunity to address those present. Der Mesrob welcomed the pilgrims from North Andover on behalf of the Prelate, the Board of Trustees and the entire community. He also remarked that the 2018 National Representative Assembly that took place in North Andover earlier this year was one of the best he had attended in all his years as a priest.

In his remarks, Der Stephan warmly greeted the Prelate, Der Mesrob, the Board of Trustees and all community organizations, and introduced several members of Saint Gregory's Board of Trustees that were present. On behalf of all, he thanked Der Mesrob and the community for opening their doors to them and for their warm hospitality. He reflected on Der Mesrob's role as an elder spiritual brother in his life, and that since the two fall next to each other in seniority, they can often be seen standing next to each other or walking side by side at official events. He expressed hope that they would also remain close spiritually in years to come as they serve the Lord together as fellow priests of the Armenian Church.

Following this, both the North Andover group and a small group from the Cathedral traveled to the Metropolitan Museum of Art to see the acclaimed "Armenia!" exhibit. The travelers then returned home to Massachusetts, enriched and satisfied by the experience.

Summer Youth Academy participants with Der Kapriel before their presentation. From left, Rachael Minassian, Carrie Minassian, Der Kapriel, Anna-Marie Danayan, and Sarkis Menissian. 
On a cold and wintry November night eager audience members gathered in Fermanian Fellowship Hall at Sts. Vartanantz Church in Providence, Rhode Island to welcome the church’s four participants of the Catholicosate’s Summer Youth Academy to share their experiences. Hosted by the Christian Education Committee and following an opening prayer by Der Kapriel Nazarian, the presentation focused on the reflections of Anna-Marie Danayan, Sarkis Menissian, Carrie Minassian, and Rachael Minassian. All four participants were very excited to share what they learned and experienced while in Lebanon. They prepared a beautiful PowerPoint presentation which included information such as special dedicated time spent with His Holiness Aram I, a typical day’s schedule while at the Academy, highlights of excursions they took, and the close bonds formed with their fellow participants.

All expressed their sincere appreciation to the Church, the Prelacy, and the Catholicosate for the opportunity to be a part of what they described as “a life-changing event.” They discussed how they felt closer to God, their faith, and their church after participating in the Summer Youth Academy. Being able to discuss contemporary issues of concern with Catholicos Aram I was of special note, as they were encouraged to ask questions and felt comfortable doing so. They also mentioned the warm and welcoming atmosphere created by the Hayr Soorps who were their guides and chaperones, which enhanced their experience.

Following their presentation, parishioners and friends were invited to ask questions and share thoughts. Anna-Marie, Sarkis, Carrie, and Rachael were very happy to oblige. All of them said in unison that they would eagerly attend a Summer Youth Academy again if given the opportunity. In fact, they expressed sincere wishes that this become a regular offering by the Catholicosate so other young adults are able to have such an important and inspirational opportunity. Der Hayr closed with prayer, and afterwards, everyone enjoyed a lovely fellowship with refreshments provided by the committee.
For this year’s annual field trip of the Sunday School of St. Illuminator Cathedral’s, the students decided to go to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York to visit the Armenia! exhibit. They were guided in a private tour through the exhibit by a historian who shared special highlights of the exhibit. The students observed how the relics, manuscripts, and artifacts relate to what they are learning in Sunday School. This year their study is focusing on Saints, so it was especially rewarding for them to see the Saints in various parts of the exhibit. Students and faculty expressed their thanks to Rev. Fr. Mesrob Lakissian and the Board of Trustees for permitting them to go on their wonderful field trip.
The artistic creations of the students are on display.
For the past two months students at the Haigazian Armenian School at St. Gregory Church in Philadelphia have been learning about two autumn holidays, namely, the Holy Translators and Thanksgiving. On the occasion of the Holy Translators the students learned of how the alphabet was founded and how it created Armenia’s golden age of literature. The students crafted their artistic creations that were displayed in the classrooms.
The Providence Sunday School hosts Family Breakfasts several times a year.
The students and parents made special necklaces for residents of a local nursing home.
For the fourth consecutive year, the Family Breakfasts hosted by the Sunday School of Sts. Vartanantz Church in Providence, Rhode Island, continues to be one of the Sunday School's favorite events! These Family Breakfasts, which focus on bringing the Sunday School families together to share in fellowship, special Bible message, and handicraft, are held several times during the school year. The parish expresses special thanks to Men’s Club member Armand Kibarian for always donating his time and preparing each and every breakfast.

On Sunday, November 18, all the children and their families gathered together to partake in this special morning. After prayers, a wonderful breakfast was enjoyed by all. Following breakfast, all the families took part in making special necklaces which will be presented during an upcoming Christmas Outreach program to be held on Sunday, December 9 at Cedar Crest Nursing Home. This Christmas program will focus on sharing the Christmas message of love and hope in Jesus as the children, their families, and their friends sing traditional Christmas carols and tell the story of the birth of Jesus to more than 50 residents. After the program, a personal Christmas card and necklace holding a beautiful picture of Mother Mary and Baby Jesus will be gifted to each of the residents.

The children listen to the lesson.
The three Armenian churches of Rhode Island joined together for their annual joint Sunday School on Sunday, October 28. This year’s event was hosted by the Armenian Evangelical Church and was well attended by students and their families from Sts. Vartanantz Church and Sts. Sahag and Mesrob Church. All of the students met in the sanctuary for the beginning of the service. A special object lesson about how we are all different and each of us comprise the church was given by Badveli Ara Heghinian of the Armenian Evangelical Church. The students and their parents went to the lower level where they took part in a lesson given by Melanie Zeitounian, Director of the Armenian Evangelical Church Sunday School. The children then enjoyed a period of fellowship together.
Death of Zareh Vorpouni
(December 1, 1980 )
The best figures of Armenian literature in the Diaspora gathered in France in the late 1920s and early 1930s. Besides Shahan Shahnour, Nigoghos Sarafian, and Vazken Shousanian, the name of Zareh Vorpouni, although much less known to the general public, managed to gain some critical attention until the 1970s.

He was born Zareh Euksuzian on May 24, 1902, in Ordu (Turkey), a city on the southeastern shore of the Black Sea. He studied at the local Movsesian school. His father was killed during the genocide, but his mother managed to flee to Crimea with her family. At the end of the war, the family moved to Constantinople, where Zareh attended the Berberian School from 1919-1922. He published his first literary pieces in the newspaper Joghovourti Tzayne, which he signed Zareh Vorpouni ( vorp “orphan” is the Armenian translation of Turkish öksüz ).

Like thousands of Armenians leaving the Ottoman Empire as refugees during the turmoil of the Kemalist massacres before the founding of the Turkish Republic, Vorpouni and his family departed for France in August 1922. They settled in Marseilles, where they lived for two years. In 1924 the aspiring writer moved to Paris. In the same year, he jointly edited the short-lived literary periodical Nor Havadk with another aspiring writer, Bedros Zaroyan (1903-1986). From his early days in France, he was an avid reader who acquainted himself with European intellectual trends and prominent works of French literature. He would also enter the French Communist Party, which he left in the 1930s.

Vorpouni, who started publishing short stories and essays in the French-Armenian press, soon conceived a cycle of novels entitled The Persecuted. The first volume, The Attempt, would be published in 1929. It depicted the hard life of an Armenian immigrant family transplanted to Marseilles, where they endured the impact of a totally strange environment.

The novelist entered the group Menk (We), which included a number of young intellectuals (also called “the Paris boys”), mostly genocide survivors, bound to achieve a renewal of Armenian literature by reflecting the social, cultural, and psychological distress undergone by the newly-formed Diaspora and the perils of identity loss. They published the journal Menk from 1931-1932 and then scattered away. Vorpouni moved to Strasbourg from 1930-1937 and, upon his return to Paris, he co-edited another short-lived journal with Zaroyan, Lousapatz (1938-1939). He printed a volume of short stories, Room for Rent (1939), which was only distributed after the end of World War II. Drafted by the French army at the outbreak of the war, he was captured by the Germans and held as prisoner of war in Magdeburg until 1945.

Returning to Paris, in 1946 Vorpouni visited Soviet Armenia upon an invitation to participate in the Second Congress of Soviet Armenian Writers. He published his impressions in a volume, Toward the Country (1948). He returned to literature with a new collection of short stories, Rainy Days (1958), which was followed by another collection, Koharig and Other Stories , in 1966. He explored the psychological features of his characters and identity disintegration, with the trauma of genocide subtly felt through these narratives.

In the 1960s Vorpouni also resumed his novelistic project after a hiatus of more than thirty years. After publishing And There Was Man (1964), which was independent of his cycle of novels, he wrote and published the following three novels of The Persecuted in the space of seven years: The Candidate (1967), Asphalt (1972), and An Ordinary Day (1974). The Candidate presented the main character, Vahakn, embodying the tormented young generation that bore the psychological trauma of the genocide and remained its victim through their actions. The next two volumes probed the sources for the anguish of their main characters. An anthology containing The Attempt, And There Was a Man, and some short stories was published in Yerevan in 1967.

Vorpouni passed away on December 1, 1980, in Bagneux, a suburb of Paris. Two of the last three novels of The Persecuted were posthumously published in literary journals in 1980 ( Death Notice ) and 1982 ( For Thine Is the Power ), while the seventh novel remains unpublished. An English translation of The Candidate, by Jennifer Manoukian and Ishkhan Jinbashian, appeared in 2016.

Previous entries in “This Week in Armenian History” are on the Prelacy’s website ( ).
The fighting and bombs have stopped. Now the difficult process of rebuilding has started.
Please continue to keep the Armenian community in Syria in your prayers and pocket books.


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

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SIAMANTO ACADEMY— Meets every second Saturday of the month at the Hovnanian School, 817 River Road, New Milford, New Jersey. For information: or 212-689-7810.

Now through 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 25 through December 13 (Thursdays) —Seven-part Bible Study on The Book of Revelation, at St. Illuminator’s Cathedral, 221 East 27 th Street, New York City, presented by Dn. Shant Kazanjian, Director of Christian Education (Eastern Prelacy). For information please contact the church office by email ( ) or telephone (212-689-5880).

December 2 —Banquet in honor of His Eminence Archbishop Anoushavan Tanielian, newly-elected Prelate of the Eastern Prelacy at Terrace on the Park, 52-11 111 th Street, Flushing Meadows Park, New York. Reception 2:30 pm; dinner and program 3:30 pm.

December 9 —“What’s in a Name? The Etymology of Armenian Surnames,” a lecture by writer and editor C. K. Garabed, 1 pm in Pashalian Hall at St. Illuminator’s Cathedral, 221 East 27 th Street, New York City, sponsored by Hamazkayin Armenian Educational & Cultural Society—Regional Executive and St. Illuminator’s Cathedral. Light refreshments; free admission.

December 16 —St. Sarkis Church, Dearborn, Michigan, Sunday School Christmas Pageant in Arakelian Fellowship Hall, following church services.

December 31 —New Year’s Eve Dinner Dance (BYOB) sponsored by Sts. Vartanantz Church, 461 Bergen Boulevard, Ridgefield, New Jersey to welcome year 2019. Celebration begins at 8 pm, with Champagne celebration at midnight. Entertainment by Jaq Hagopian, Vicken Makoushian and Paul Maksoud. Adults $85; Children 7-15, $35; under 7 free. For more information and reservations contact church office: 201-943-2950.

January 5 —St. Sarkis Church, Dearborn, Michigan, Family Worship, Armenian Christmas Eve.

March 17 —Annual Musical Armenia concert sponsored by Eastern Prelacy, 2 pm, at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall. Watch for details.

May 5 —60 th anniversary of Sts. Vartanantz Church, Ridgefield, New Jersey. SAVE THE DATE.
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