But one thing I know is that things will change, for better or worse. How do I know? I don’t see the change, I’m living the change.
HRANT DINK (1954-2007)
The prominent British journalist, correspondent of the London ‘INDEPENDENT’ in the Middle East, Robert Fisk, described Hrant Dink as the 1,500,001st victim of the Armenian Genocide.
The shock was overwhelming even for Turkish society. So much that a hundred thousand of them walked at the procession of his funeral, carrying signs, banners and placards reading “we are all Hrant Dink,” “we are all Armenians.”
Hrant Dink was a shining star among the students. After contributing to the building of Camp Armen in Tuzla he grew up to take a leadership role in the Gedik Pasa Armenian Evangelical Church after the seizure of the Camp by the Turkish authorities and Guzelian’s arrest and exile.
A study of Hrant Dink’s life reveals that the story of the Tuzla Camp, its creation and its seizure by the Turkish authorities, the childhood labor invested and the earthly heaven (Hrant’s ATLANTIS) created there, left a deep scar on his psyche that went on to be the driving force in his years of struggle for the return of Camp Armen, for justice, fairness, freedom of expression, minority rights and true democracy for all Turkish citizens under Turkish law.
On January 19, 2007 Hrant Dink was slain.
The 17 year old teenager assassin, Ogun Samast, was the trigger man. But the murder was committed by the forces of darkness, by Turkish penal code 301, by Deep State in the Republic of Turkey.
Hrant’s struggle partially paid off. On October 27, 2015 Camp Armen was returned to the Gedik Pasa Armenian Evangelical Church in Istanbul.
But 101 years after the Genocide and 10 years after Dink’s assassination the Turkish State still lies in a deep coma of denial.
We share Dink’s values of justice, fairness, freedom of expressions and true democracy in the land he justifiably called home.
We thank God for the legacy and bow to the memory of the martyred hero.
We firmly believe that his blood was not shed in vain and his voice will never be silenced!
AMAA Executive Director/CEO
Hrant Dink’s 11/05/06 Address United Armenian Congregational Church, Hollywood, CA
Տարեգլուխ է կրկին:
Մարդկային կեանքի եւ պատմութեան անիւի հոլովոյթով, անհատապէս եւ ազգովին տարի մը եւս բոլորած ըլլալու խոկումի եւ խորհրդածութեան հայելիին առջեւ կը գտնուինք: Հետեւաբար անյարիր չէ մտքերը հրապարակաւ արտայայտել: Քննարկման անհրաժեշտութեան հրամայականը մտքի մարզանք չէ այլ յենած տարուայ մը եւս փոrձաութեան վրայ, ազգային ուղեւորութեան ճանապարհին յարկ եղած բարեփոխումներու ձգտումին գիտակցութիւն է:
Աշխարհագրականօրէն Հայ ժողովուրդի պատմութեան այս հանգրուանի ծանօթ երեք յենարաններն են՝ Հայաստանի Հանրապետութիւնը, Արցախի Հանրապետութիւնը եւ տարաշխարհով տարտղնուած Սփիւռքահայութիւնը:
Ահաւասիկ համառօտ ակնարկ մը սոյն յենարաններուն:
Ա. 2016ը Հայաստանի երրորդ հանրապետութեան անկախութեան քսանհինգամեակն էր: Պատշաճօրէն՝ հայրենիքի եւ սփիւռքի տարածքին տպաւորիչ զինուորական տողանցքով եւ բազմաթիւ փայլուն հանդիսութիւններով յիշատակուեցաւ պատմականօրէն մանուկ այս հանրապետութեան տարեդարձը: Սեպտեմբեր 21ի երեկոյան Երեւանի մարզահամալիրի փառաւոր հանդիսութեան, ՀՀ Նախագահի արտասանած խօսքը անզուգական նկարագրութիւն մըն էր այն իտեալ հայրենիքին զոր բոլորս կը փաղձանք: Հայաստանի քաղաքացիին իրաւունքներու եւ ազատութիւններու նկարագրութիւնը մարմին փշաքաղող դասագրքային շարահիւսութիւն էր: Իրականացնելու համար ժողովրդավար եւ զարգացած երկրի մը մէջ անհրաժեշտութիւն եղող ընկերային արդարութիւնը եւ տնտեսական բարեկեցութիւնը, կը մնայ հաւաքական ջանքերով եւ պահանջքներով իրականացնել բոլոր այդ գեղեցիկ իրաւունքներու կիրարկումը երկրին մէջ: Երկրի նոր վարչապէտը այդ իրաւունքներու ցանկէն անպայման օրինակ մը ունենալու է իր գրասեղանին վրայ: Քաղաքացին, պայքարելու եւ պահանջելու հարկանդրանքին տակ գտնուելու չէ վայելելու համար սահամանադրականօրէն իրը եղող որեւէ իրաւունք: Հայրենիքի պաշտպանութեան համար սահմանները հսկող եւ կամ իր արիւնը յեղող քաղաքացին տէր է այդ իրաւունքին: Նմանապէս իր հարկերը կանոնաւորապէս վճառող քաղաքացիին բնական իրաւունքն է հեզասահ կերպով վայելել մարդկային իրաւունքներու գեղեցիկ փունջը զոր երկրի սահմանադրութիւնը ապահոված: Այս իրաւունքներու ծիրին մէջ է նաեւ օրէնքի արդար եւ հաւասար կիրարկումը բոլոր քաղաքացիներու վրայ առանց խտրականութեան զոր կաշառակերութեան, փտածութեան եւ ինքնահարստացման դէմ պայքարի առաջնահերթ միջոցն է:
Հայրենիքի հողին վրայ գտնուող ամէնաթանկագին հարստութիւնը երկրի քաղաքացին է: Անոր գոհունակութիւնը, պատիւն ու արժանապատուութիւնը երաշխիքն է հայրենիքի յարատեւութեան, գոյութեան եւ զարգացման: Պետութեան կողքին, հզօր հայրենիքի մը ապահով սահմաններուն մէջ գոհունակ քաղաքացիութեան մը ապահովումը նաեւ իմ եւ քու պարտաւորութիւնն է, մեր հաւաքական յանձնառութիւնը եւ աշխատանքը զոր մեզմէ կը պահանջուի առանց պայմանի, առեւտուրի կամ վարձատրութեան:
Ուրիշ ելք չկա’յ:
Բ. 2016ին Արցախի Հանրապետութիւնը եւս յիշատակեց իր անկախութեան քսանհինգամեակը: Հակառակ տօնախմբութեան մթնոլորտին եւ ոգիին, Արցախը՝ Ապրիլեան քառօրեայ պատերազմի փորձառութեամբ նորոգուած ցաւով կը մնայ խոցելի: Արեւելեան ճակատի ոսոխին անակնկալ եւ վայրագ յարձակումին պատճառած աղետը երկար դարմանումի կարօտ է: Ամէնափոքր վնասն եւ մէկ զոհն իսկ շատ է մեզի համար: Համահայկական ընդոստ նեցուկը թէեւ մխիթարական է, սակայն թշնամիին նենգ եւ դաւադիր դիրքը կը մնայ լուրջ սպառնալիք: Արցախը մեր անսակարկելի ճակատն է, արժանի ամէն զոհողութեան եւ նեցուկի: Արցախը մեր Աւարայրն ու Սարտարապատն է: Արցախեան ճակատը, Հայաստանի գոյութեան, հզօրութեան եւ գերիշխանութեան գրաւականն է, անսասան թումբը եւ անխախտելի գիծը: Մեր բոլորին բնական եւ տրամաբանական ակնկալութիւնն է որ Պետութիւն եւ իշխանութիւն ի Հայաստան եւ Արցախ պէտք եղած բարեփոխութիւնները կատարելագործած ըլլան Ապրիլեան ճակատումի որպէս արդիւնք ի յայտ եկած եւ սերտուած բացթողումներու փոռձարութենէն:
Գիտակից ենք թէ վերջերս Արցախեան տագնապը լուծելու փորձերը աշխուժացած իսկ ճնշումները հայկական կողմին վրայ ուժեղացած են: Ճշմարիտ է նաեւ թէ սերունդներ շարունակ պատերազմի սպառնալիքին տակ պահելը անփաղձալի է: Այդ վիճակը կրնայ ժողովուրդի մը ստեղծագործելու եւ արդիւնաբերելու կարողականութիւնը ջլատել իսկ անոր Աստուածատուր խաղաղ եւ արժանավայել կեանք մը ապրելու արդար իրաւունքը զլանալ: Ամէն սակարկութիւն սակայն եւ ակնկալուած զիջում ազգային ռազմագիտական անկիւնէ սահմանուած գին մը ունի որը կարելի չէ խախտել: Մեր երկրի ղեկավարները պարտին գիտնալ զոհողութեան եւ զիջումի այդ սահմանը եւ այդ գիտակցութեամբ մտնեն բանակցութեան տաղաւարը: Խաղաղութեան ճանապարհը սուրբ է եւ փշոտ: Հարկ է սրբութեամբ մօտենալ այդ ճանապարհին վրայ մեր կարողականութեան համոզումին եւ կարելիութիւններու եւ միջոցարումներու ինքնավստահութեան: Արցախեան ազատագրութեան ճանապարհը որոգուած է նահատակ ազատամարտիկներու արիւնով, որեւէ լուծում այդ զոհողութեան արդար գինը նժարի վրայ դնելու է:
Հաւաքաբար պատրաստ պէտք է ըլլանք տագնապի լուծման արդար գինը պարտադրող լուծումին:
Ուրիշ ելք չկա’յ:
Գ. Սփիւռքահայութեան կազմաւորման, հաւաքական կարողականութեան, հայապահապանումի, ֆիզիքական գոյութեան պայքարի, ստեղծուած նոր գաղութներու, լեզուի եւ մշակոյթի պահպանումի, հայրենիքի եւ Արցախի նկատմամբ նուիրագործուած միաձոյլ ճակատ մը կազմելու եւ այլ մտահոգութիւններու տուն տուող հարցերը բազմաթիւ են: Թաւալող տագնապներ՝ որոնք կը ժառանգուին սերունդէ սերունդ:
Հինգ տարի է սակայն որ հայ ժողովուրդը կ’ապրի եւ կը դիմագրաւէ Սփիւռքահայութեան արմատները խախտող եւ գոյութեան սպառնացող յետ Եղեռնեան ամէնամեծ Ազգային Աղէտը: Սուրիահայութեան տագնապին, Սփիւռքահայ Մայր Գաղութի անդամահատումին եւ Սուրիահայ հոծ գաղթականներու անյոյս եւ անմխիթար վիճակին՝ մենք հաւանաբար հարկ եղած լրջութեամբ չմօտեցանք: Այո՝ գոյութիւն քաշքշող սնունդ մը կարողացանք հայթայթել կրակի տակ գտնուողներուն: Գորովագին օժանդակութեամբ թեթեւցուցինք Հայրենիք ապաստան գտնող անկողմնացոյց գաղթականներու ցաւը: Սակայն չկրցանք մեծ պատկերը տեսնել եւ գաղութի քայքայումէն փխած նուազագոյն օգուտը քաղել: Որովհետեւ՝ Սուրիահայութեան տագնապէն փխած բոլոր չարիքներուն դիմաց միայն մէկ մխիթարութիւն եւ ազգային շահ կրնայ ըլլալ՝ անոնց հայրենիք հաստատուիլը եւ հայրենիքը մարդուժով, տաղանդով, մասնագիտութեամբ եւ կարողականութեամբ հարստացնելը: Սուրիան եւ Սուրիահայութիւնը, փրկութեան կարօտ ոգեղէն Արեւմտահայաստանն է եւ մենք եր՞բ որոշեցինք պատմութեան կորսուած էջերուն յանձնել Արեւմտահայաստանը:
Վտանգի նուազումի եւ յարաբերական ապահովութեան վերադարձի մշուշոտ յոյսեր կ’երեւան Սուրիական հորիզոնի վրայ: Հալէպը մանաւանդ, ազատագրուելու վերջին հանգրուանի վրայ ըլլալ կը թուի: Մենք երախտապարտ ենք Սուրիական հայրենիքին՝ որ դար մը շարունակ ապահով ապաստան եւ հովանի պարգեւեց առաջին ցեղասպանութենէն փրկուած հայու բեկորներուն եւ այդ բեկորները իրենց կարգին, երկրագունդի վրայ արտակարգօրէն ծաւալած Սփիւռքահայութեան զարթօնքի աւիշն ու արիւնը հանդիսացան:
Այսօր այդ գաղութի զաւակներէն ոմանք, հաւատարիմ նոր հայրենիքին, հաստատ եւ գիտակից կերպով թերեւս փափաքին շարունակել իրենց կեանքը, վերջ ի վերջոյ օր մը, խելայեղօրէն զարգացումի, վերաշինութեան եւ վերականգնումի ենթակայ ծննդավայրի մը մէջ: Եւ մենք, յարգելով անոնց կամքն ու որոշումը, մղուած մարդկային եւ ազգային պարտաւորութիւններէ, պարտինք սատարել անոնց վերականգնումին: Ժողովուրդի մը կեանքին մէջ սակայն, մի քանի սերունդի բաժանումով անկողմնացոյց երկու բռնագաղթ անկրկնելի մնալու է եւ ուրեմն հարկ է հաւաքուիլ հարազատ հողամասի մը վրայ ուր աւելի տրամաբնօրէն ապահովելի է աղետի անկրկնելիութիւնը:
Հայ Սփիւռքը ընդհանրապէս եւ Սուրիահայ Սփիւռքը յատկապէս հարկ է հաւաքել ապահով, հիւրընկալ եւ գուրգուրալից հայրենիքի մը հողին վրայ:
Ուրիշ ելք չկա՛յ:
Դեկտեմբեր 31, 2016
Քրիստոս ծնաւ եւ յայտնեցաւ
Ձեզի, մեզի, Մեծ Աւետիս
Paramus, NJ – In the fall of 2015, the Armenian Missionary Association of America (AMAA), as part of its Syria Relief efforts, established the Syria LifeLine program to help willing individuals and families who are victims of the war in Syria to resettle in Armenia. These families had little or no money. The AMAA provided them with all the financial and logistical assistance for ground transportation to Lebanon and subsequently a flight to the safety of the Homeland. To date, through AMAA’s Syria LifeLine, 113 Syrian Armenians have arrived at Zvartnotz Airport in Yerevan, where they were welcomed by AMAA-Armenia staff and social workers and escorted to temporary homes and shelters.
AMAA’s Syria Relief efforts are directed to four areas:
- Aid to those who wish to stay in Syria and need assistance
- In conjunction with Armenian Evangelical churches in the communities, aid to those who have found refuge outside the borders of Syria, such as Lebanon and Canada
- Help to those who are forced to leave Syria and willfully wish to relocate in the Homeland
Help settle all those who have arrived in the Homeland.
AMAA’s Relief Programs in Syria provide:
- Food, water, heating and other basic necessities
- Medical assistance
- Educational assistance
- Resettlement in Armenia
AMAA’s Relief Programs in Armenia provide:
- Temporary housing and rent subsidies
- Medical and Dental assistance
- Infant formula
- Entrepreneurship training and job placement support
To coordinate its relief efforts In Armenia, the AMAA cooperates with the Ministry of Diaspora, the Aleppo Compatriotic Union, the Center for Coordination of SyrArmenians’ issues, and the social services departments of the Administrative Districts of the City of Yerevan.
To date, the AMAA has provided over two million dollars for its Syria Relief efforts around the globe. Financial assistance is still needed to ensure our continuous efforts to reach out and help those who are still in Syria and those who are struggling daily to settle in Armenia and re-establish their lives. Your caring gift, no matter how large or small, will help provide much needed relief to these families who have undergone so much suffering and unrest. They are also in need of your daily prayers.
Ամերիկայի Հայ Աւետարանչական Ընկերակցութեան “Syria LifeLine” Ծրագիրը կը հովանաւորէ 113 Սուրիահայերու տեղափոխումը դէպի Հայրենիք
Բըրէմըս, Նիւ Ճըրզի – 2015-ի աշնան, Ամերիկայի Հայ Աւետարանչական Ընկերակցութիւնը (ԱՀԱԸ), Սուրիահայերու Օգնութեան իր ծրագրի ոլորտին, ստեղծեց Syria LifeLine ծրագիրը, օժանդակելու բոլոր անոնց, որոնք Սուրիոյ պատերազմին պատճառով, կամովին կը փափաքէին հաստատուիլ Հայրենիքի մէջ։ Այս ընտանիքները կարիքը ունէին նիւթական օգնութեան իրականացնելու իրենց փափաքն ու երազը։ ԱՀԱԸ-ը օժանդակեց այս ընտանիքներուն նիւթապէս, ինչպէս նաեւ մատուցեց յատուկ կարգադրութիւններ անոնց ցամաքի ճամբով դէպի Լիբանան ուղեւորութեան եւ ապա ապահովելով դէպի Մայր Հայրենիք չուերթը։ Մինչեւ օրս, ԱՀԱԸ-ի սոյն ծրագրին միջոցով 113 Սուրիահայեր արդէն հասած են Երեւանի Զուարթնոց Օդակայանը, ուր շատեր դիմաւորուած են ԱՀԱԸ-ի Հայաստանի մասնաճիւղի պաշտօնեաներուն կողմէ եւ առաջնորդուած ժամանակաւոր բնակարաններ կամ հանրակացարաններ։
ԱՀԱԸ-ի Սուրիահայերու Օգնութեան ջանքերը ուղղուած են՝
- Օժանդակութիւն բոլոր անոնց որոնք կառչած կը մնան Սուրիական հայրենիքին
- Հայ Աւետարանական Եկեղեցիներու հետ համատեղ՝ տուեալ համայնքներու մէջ նիւթապէս եւ
- բարոյապէս օգնել բոլոր անոնց՝ որոնք ապաստան գտած են Սուրիոյ սահմաններէն դուրս այլ
- երկիրներու մէջ՝ ինչպէս Լիբանան եւ Գանատա
- Օժանդակել բոլոր անոնց, որոնք անապահով պայմաններու բերումով կը ձգենՍուրիան եւ կը
- փափաքին հաստատուիլ Հայրենիքի մէջ
- Օժանդակել բոլոր անոնց, որոնք ապաստան գտած են Հայրենիքի մէջ
ԱՀԱԸ-ի Բարեսիրական Ծրագիրը Սուրիոյ մէջ կ՚ապահովէ
- Սնունդ, ջուր, ջեռուցում եւ այլ հիմնական կարիքներ
- Բժշկական ծառայութիւն
- Վերաբնակեցում Հայաստանի մէջ
ԱՀԱԸ-ի Բարեսիրական Ծրագիրը Հայաստանի մէջ կ՚ապահովէ
- Ժամանակաւոր բնակարաններ եւ տան վարձք
- Բժշկական եւ ատամնաբուժական ծառայութիւն
- Մանուկներու յատուկ սնունդ
- Այլեւայլ կարիքներ
- ձեռնարկատիրութեան դասընթացքներ եւ աշխատանքի տեղաւորման աջակցութիւն
Համակարգելու համար Սուրիահայութեան ուղղուած իր բարեսիրական ծրագիրները Հայաստանի մէջ, ԱՀԱԸ-ը կը համագործակցի Սփիւռքի Նախարարութեան, թաղապետարաններու, Սիրիահայերի Հիմնախնդիրները Համակարգող Կեդրոնի եւ ՀԱԼԷՊ Հայրենակցական Բարեսիրական Միութեան հետ։
Ցայսօր՝ ԱՀԱԸ-ը տրամադրած է աւելի քան երկու միլիոն տոլար Սուրիահայերու Օգնութեան իր ծրագիրներուն։ Հակառակ Հալէպի ազատագրման եւ տեղացող մահաբեր ռումբերու անմիջական վտանգի խաբանման, Սուրիահայ գաղութը մեր սիրոյ եւ հոգածութեան կարիքը ունի դիմանալու երկրի մէջ տիրող տնտեսական սուր տագնապին եւ պատրաստուելու վերանորոգման աշխատանքներու մեկնարկին։ Օժանդակութեան կարիքը ունին նաեւ բոլոր անոնք, որոնք տեղափոխուած են Հայաստան, ուր կը պայքարին վերահաստատելու իրենց կեանքը Հայրենիքի մէջ։ Մեր բոլորին նիւթական աջակցութիւնը, հոգ չէ թէ մեծ կամ փոքր, մեծապէս պիտի նպաստէ բոլոր անոնց, որոնք տակաւին կարիքը ունին մեր աջակցութեան՝ ընտանիքներ եւ անհատներ՝ որոնք խիզախօրէն դիմագրաւած են տագնապը եւ տակաւին կը շարունակեն տառապիլ՝ քաղաքական անկայունութիւններու պատճառով։ Վերջապէս, մեր եղբայրները եւ քոյրերը կարիքը ունին նաեւ մեր ամէնօրեայ աղօթքներուն։ Առատաձեռնօրէն շարունակենք նպաստել Սուրիահայ Մայր Գաղութի զաւակներուն՝ կանգուն պահելու համար Եղեռնէն յարութիւն առնող մեր ժողովուրդի առաջին ապաստանարանը։
This Christmas celebrate your connections to the AMAA. Make a gift to remember a loved one, commemorate a special occasion or honor a special person in your life.
As you plan your charitable Christmas giving there are many ways you can support the AMAA. We encourage you to visit our Giving section for the various options.
In the history of the world it is known that the greatest gift ever given is one which is still celebrated today, well over 2,000 years later. Celebrating the birth of Jesus, the light who came into the world, homes are prepared to be filled with love and laughter among family and friends. But for countless individuals, young and old, all over the world, their homes remain unlit and cold.
For many, joy stems from a belief that through faith trouble does not last. Through some of our own experiences, and those of our ancestors, faith encourages us to persevere and experience His blessings of renewal, finding the oasis after many days of having walked through the desert. Faith is the anchor to the cycle of life, knowing that once the long hours of the night’s darkness pass there is hope knowing sunrise will break on the horizon.
It is to situations like this that we are called. The Armenian Missionary Association of America (AMAA) remains a beacon of light, carrying forth the promise of joy and hope to those who need to be uplifted. Your support to our annual Christmas appeal is instrumental. Every dollar received is one more student to whom the AMAA can offer a quality education, one more family the AMAA helps leave behind the destruction of Syria and onward to a new life, one more villager provided a livelihood, and one more individual who receives the Good News.
Help us distribute the gifts of love, joy and hope to the individuals served through our programs and services. May we be reminded of our one true hope, as God’s love was revealed among us ”
He sent His one and only Son into the world, so that we might live through Him.” (1 John 4:9) We all have much to celebrate this Season because of God’s extravagant love. May we continue to be His messengers to all those in need.
May God bless you and your family during this Christmas season.
Քրիստոս ծնաւ եւ յայտնեցաւ. ձեզի, մեզի Մեծ Աւետիս!
Krisdos dzenav yev haydnetzav, tsezee, mezee Medz Avedis!
(Christ is born and is revealed, good tidings to you and to us!)
AMAA Executive Director/CEO
The most positive outcome is that drinking water is in the taps since 2012!
In spite of the mentioned developments, shells continue to fall in western Aleppo and especially in the predominantly Christian and non-Christian neighborhoods of Ferkan, Jabriye, Seif Aldawle, Azizieh, Telephone Hawai, Maysalun and Halab Jdide districts.
We are praying for an end to this war and that we will continue to be able to live together as Syrians and not as people belonging to a certain community with little contact with other communities. As Christian believers we need to work on this and continue to be open to all others. We were all created in the image of God.
Rev. Haroutune Selimian, President
Armenian Protestant Community in Syria
Saturday, December 17th at Bloomingdale’s Glendale & South Coast Plaza, CA
In remembrance, we pay tribute to the thousands who perished on that fateful day, 28 years ago, when the northern regions of Armenia shook at 11:41 am from a devastating earthquake.
We thank God for the ability to rebuild and redevelop the affected regions and continue working toward a full recovery. On the occasion of this anniversary, we present AMAA Gyumri Office Manager Mr. Karen Manukyan’s thoughts and reflections, as one who survived this natural disaster.
Today, we’re back on our feet; the devastated towns and villages are lively and vivacious, we hang on to life, continue to create and move ahead. The Lord is our rock and fortress, we trust in Him.
1988 թ… Հայաստանի Հանրապետությունը թևակոխում էր մի ծանր ժամանակաշրջան, պայքարում էր իր փոքր եղբոր՝ Լեռնային Ղարաբաղի անկախության ու ժողովրդի ազատագրման համար: Փորձում էր ինքնուրույնություն ձեռք բերել անծայրածիր թվացող հզոր պետությունների կողքին: Եվ ահա 1988թ., դեկտեմբերի 7, ժամը 11:41, թվում է սովորական ձմեռային կիսացուրտ օր, մարդիկ տարված իրենց առօրյա հոգսերով ապրում են. մեկն իր փոքրիկին տարել է նախակրթարան ու շտապում է աշխատանքի, մյուսներն արդեն պատրաստվում են ընդմիջման գնալ, շատ դպրոցականներ սպասում են, թե երբ է զրնգալու այդքան սպասված դասամիջոցի զանգը, որն այդպես էլ չհնչեց, շատ երիտասարդներ քննություններ են հանձնում բարձրագույն ուսումնական հաստատություններում, շատերը սպասում են, թե երբ են տուն վերադառնալու և ընտանիքի անդամների հետ իրենց տաքուկ հյուրասենյակներում ճաշելու և համեղ զրույց ծավալելու օրվա ընթացքի շուրջ: Բայց ավաղ, 1988թ. դեկտեմբերի 7-ին Շիրակի և Լոռու մարզի բնակիչները զրկվեցին համեղ զրույցից, զրկվեցին իրենց բնակարաններից, զրկվեցին իրենց ընտանիքներից, զրկվեցին իրենց ամենաթանկ և հարազատ մարդկանցից, զրկվեցին երազանքներից:
Armenian Children’s Milk Fund Continues to Make a Lifelong Impact
When it comes to choosing the best source of nutrition for an infant, it is always an individual journey. The Armenian Children’s Milk Fund has assisted thousands of families with their individual circumstances. Purchasing formula can quickly become a financial hardship and the ACMF is committed to helping to ease this burden by providing monthly allotments or on an as-needed basis.
With the support of caring members, such as you, the AMAA can sustain this special program and continue giving a gift of love which lasts a lifetime.
Make Your Gift of Love Today
And Help Give Infants a Healthy Start to Life
Support the Armenian Children’s Milk Fund program at the AMAA. A gift of $25 will feed one infant for one month; $300 will feed a child for one year.
Checks can be made payable to the Armenian Missionary Association of America and sent to: AMAA 31 W. Century Road, Paramus, NJ 07652. memo: ACMF
AMAA's Boston area Orphan and Child Care Committee members
On September 29, the exquisite Wellesley Country Club was the setting for the AMAA Boston Area Orphan and Child Care Committee’s 25th Anniversary In The Spirit of Giving Gala.
Committee Chair Michele Simourian proudly welcomed the largest crowd ever for this event. The elegant dining room was decorated with tables all in gold and white, lit by softly gleaming chandeliers, and bedecked with flowers. Esteemed national Co-Chair of the Orphan and Child Care Committee Joyce Stein then inspired guests with her very personal memories of the children and families who have been helped over the years by the AMAA.
Following a delicious dinner, Committee member Joyce Janjigian introduced talented celebrity guest auctioneer and WBZ and WCCO radio talk show host Jordan Rich, who kept the laughter flowing. Among the items auctioned were tickets to the Boston Pops Christmas, the Boston Ballet Nutcracker, a tour of the State House with Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker, lunch with County Sheriff Peter Koutoujian, Bruins and Red Sox tickets, and exciting hotel stays. The wine pull delighted the vast majority, and quite a few lucky ladies left the event eager to wear their Armenian silk scarves designed by Anet.
The event closed with a heartfelt thanks to all the Committee members who were presented with gifts of beautiful Armenian artwork and elegant beaded scarves. These items were donated by the family of an Armenian survivor and orphan, who like so many, truly value and appreciate the continuing efforts of the AMAA Orphan and Child Care Committee.
Below is the most recent update the AMAA has received from Rev. Haroutune Selimian, President of the Armenian Protestant Community in Syria. We ask that you continue to keep our brothers and sisters in your prayers.
Since the month of April 2016, Aleppo has been going through a hellish war, which just seems to be getting worse and worse.
I’m writing this, as we see shells continue falling on civilian areas where there is not a single gun pointing at anybody. This has been the case for long and we have been through far too many funerals and seen too many people leave for safer areas. Five days ago the shelling didn’t stop for a minute and we actually sent all our students back to their homes as the schools were being targeted.
With the continuous aid from the West the ‘anti-government forces’ are getting more and more sophisticated weapons, although that area is supposed to be under siege. We wonder!
Latest developments: Syrian Army and rebels were locked in fierce clashes Sunday on the western edges of Aleppo, where 38 civilians have been killed in two days of opposition rocket fire. Among those killed over the two-day period were 14 children.
Another 250 civilians have been wounded in heavy bombardment by anti-government factions since Friday morning. The barrage is part of a major assault by rebels and allied jihadists to break a three-month government siege of Aleppo’s Eastern half, where more than 250,000 people still live. Rebel fighters have launched hundreds of rockets and shells onto the Western districts from positions inside the city and on its Western edges.
The rebels were trying to push East from the Dhaiyet al-Assad district –most of which they seized in the first day of the onslaught –towards Hamdaniyeh. (Hamdaniyeh is a regime-held district directly adjacent to opposition controlled Eastern neighborhoods.)
Fighting lasted all night and into Sunday morning, with air strikes and artillery fire along the western battlefronts heard even in the eastern districts.
Plumes of smoke could be seen snaking up from the city’s skyline. The offensive has seen an estimated 1,500 opposition fighters mass on the Western edges of Aleppo since Friday. They include local Aleppo rebels and reinforcements from Idlib province to the West, among them the jihadist Fateh al-Sham Front, which changed its name from Al-Nusra Front after breaking ties with Al-Qaeda.
We stick to our faith and work for peace in our country and a future for our people. We continue to pray that the violence will cease and the reconciliation process will start.
We want to continue to live in this wonderful country and we want to see the country re-established as soon as possible. We love Syria! We do not want to see the country destroyed. We believe that we can build a new Aleppo and a new Syria on a strong foundation. We continue to hope and pray.
We look forward to seeing the world cry out for peace in the Middle East. We certainly need one!
Rev. Haroutune Selimian, President
Armenian Protestant Community in Syria
Syrian ‘Lifeline’ Families Arriving in Yerevan
The AMAA’s focal point rests in our ‘Syria Lifeline’ to help families resettle in Armenia.
We have resettled dozens of Syrian Armenian families to the safety of the Homeland and continue to do so.
AMAA Sponsorship Program at the Khoren and Shooshanig Avedisian School
Milena’s favorite subject at school is math. She is a first grader attending the Khoren and Shooshanig Avedisian School. Coming to school every day is a joy for her.
Her father, a deliveryman, suffers from severe joint pain and is unable to fully provide for the family of seven who all live in a partially built one floor home, which is in need of extensive renovations. Her mother is unemployed and is the primary caretaker of the children and grandparents.
Constructed in the impoverished sector of Yerevan (Malatya-Sepastya), the School provides free education to 368 students in grades 1-11 and 50 kindergarteners. In June 2017 the School will be graduating its first class of eleventh graders bound for University or other higher education.Over the years, the school has won multiple academic awards, a testament to its excellence in education. Noteworthy recent accomplishments include: four students placing second in the 10th Chess Olympiad for Armenian schoolchildren, essay of Zaven Antonyan (9th grade) was selected and sent to the Universal Postal Union in a competition of essays titled Write a letter to you at the age of 45 and the Avedisian School hosting a European Youth Parliament session.
Clockwise from middle left to right: Joseph and Joyce Stein, Sona Khanjian and AMAA Executive Director/CEO Zaven Khanjian, ROA Ambassador Grigor Hovhannissian, AMAA President, Dr. Nazareth Darakjian, Haigazian University Trustee Chair, Dr. Ani Darakjian, founding President of Haigazian University Honoree Rev. Dr. John and Mrs. Inge Markarian
AMAA 97th ANNUAL MEETING BANQUET: FAITHFUL TO OUR LEGACY
After a few days of 97th Annual Meeting related activities, hosted by the Armenian Martyrs’ Congregational Church in Havertown, PA, the Armenian Missionary Association of America (AMAA) held its 97th Annual Meeting Banquet on Saturday, October 22nd, honoring three distinguished individuals: Albert Momjian, Esq., former President of the AMAA (posthumously), Honorable Set Momjian, former US Representative to the United Nations and Rev. Dr. John Markarian, founding President of Haigazian University.
Leading the program, Master of Ceremonies, Mark A. Momjian, Esq. brought a unique sense of humor and warmth to the event, welcoming the nearly 200 guests and acknowledging the legacy each honoree and the AMAA has left over the past 97 years throughout the world. Special video presentations were made, providing a glimpse of the very full lives of each honoree. Another video, produced by Tina Stein Segel, highlighted one of the AMAA’s newer ministries, the ‘Shogh Day Center’ program the AMAA runs in Armenia which illustrated its work in action.
The Honorable ROA Ambassador Grigor Hovhannissian made a special presentation, encouraging the efforts of the AMAA to continue and he warmly recognized another pillar of the community, Ms. Wilma Cholakian, Administrative Dean at Haigazian University from 1985-1995.
Throughout the evening, musical entertainment was provided by the very lovely and gifted soprano Anush Avetisyan who performed Armenian and classical opera pieces.
AMAA President Dr. Nazareth Darakjian and Zaven Khanjian, Executive Director/CEO thank Rev. Nishan Bakalian, Committee Co-chairs Thomas Momjian, Esq. and Eileen Chopourian Stephey, Ed.D, Committee Members and all delegates of the Armenian Evangelical Churches, Unions, Armenian Evangelical World Council, AMAA Committees and affiliated organizations for their hard work and support in making this another successful and memorable affair!
Benefiting from Rev. Haroutune Selimian’ s visit to Paramus, NJ, the Armenian Missionary Association of America (AMAA) organized an event on October 26, 2016 at the Armenian Presbyterian Church in Paramus, NJ to hear updates on Aleppo.
Rev. Selimian is the President of the Armenian Evangelical Community in Syria and Pastor of the Armenian Evangelical Bethel Church in Aleppo.
During the five-year war, which continues to be in escalation mode, Rev. Selimian has been with his flock suffering together the hardship and supporting them morally and spiritually every day.
Rev. Berj Gulleyan, Pastor of the Armenian Presbyterian Church, opened the evening with a prayer.
In his opening remarks, Zaven Khanjian, Executive Director/CEO of the AMAA, noted that the Western mainstream media recently hyped the reporting of the agony of the 250,000 Syrians living in Aleppo’s East side under the control of extremists. The media however ignored the five-year plight of the 1,250,000 people under government control who suffer from the daily barrages of rockets and mortars with no running water and no power.
Mr. Khanjian noted “now that we know ‘Where is Aleppo’ and ‘What is Aleppo’ it may be time to ask the question ‘How is Aleppo, all of Aleppo?’” He mentioned the continuous financial help that the AMAA has been extending to the Armenian community in Aleppo since the economic machine stopped because of the conflict.
He added that for those Syrian Armenians who are willing and unable, the AMAA has introduced the ‘Syria Lifeline’ program which manages their move and covers all transportation costs to the Homeland. Mr. Khanjian commended Rev. Selimian’s courage and sacrifice daily risking his life shepherding the flock in the divided war torn city.
A video followed the presentation. The first part depicted ‘before and after’ pictures of institutions, structures, buildings, Armenian churches and schools in Aleppo, Kessab and Der Zor which show the horrible destruction. This part of the video also showed pictures of many Armenian victims of the war.
The second part was an illustration of the fervent life of the faithful at Sunday Church services, Sunday schools, children’s choir, youth groups and ladies’ guild activities as well as Kindergarten, Elementary and Secondary students in classrooms and at leisure. The video concluded with pictures of social services; food and water distribution, household essentials, cooking gas, clothing and shoes, monetary subsidies to families in need, Christmas and Easter packages, pajamas and toys to children and the Bethel Polytechnic, family visitations by the pastor, visitation to the Armenian old aged home, the orphanage, etc.
Rev. Selimian then spoke and reminded the guests that this is not the first time that the Armenian nation has endured a catastrophe like this. He said these experiences make people stronger in their faith and get closer to each other
He stated that without the help of the AMAA, none of the good shown in the video would happen. Because of the AMAA aid, institutional structural damage is immediately repaired, teachers are paid their full salary and bonuses to cover currency devaluation and the children’s’ tuition is paid.
Rev. Selimian elaborated on all the programs that were shown in the video. He stated that Christians believe that all people are created with the image of God. With this conviction some help is also distributed to local neighbors who suffer under the circumstances. He said ministers extend a shoulder for people to cry on, visit families of victims and perform funeral after funeral. Rev. Selimian expressed confidence that someday we shall see the Armenian churches rebuilt with the return of peace as there is always the hope of sunrise after darkness.
Mr. Khanjian ended the evening stressing that the vibrant and peaceful oasis amidst the desert of death and destruction in Aleppo is only achieved through the grace of God. He appealed to the audience to continue their steadfast support of the Armenian community in Aleppo. He said, “It is our spiritual, national and humanitarian duty to do so.”
Following Rev. Gulleyan’s closing prayer a reception followed.
The AMAA is thankful to all those who responded to Mr. Khanjian’s call for support; $12,000 was raised for needy Syrian Armenian families. A special thank you to George Khorozian, who donated $10,000 which was raised in honor of his 70th birthday.
Come and Learn How Aleppo is Coping
Wednesday, October 26th
Rev. Haroutune Selimian is the President of the Armenian Evangelical Community in Syria and has lived through the Syrian crisis for the past five years.
Rev. Selimian is the courageous leader shepherding the flock, injecting hope and overlooking the safety and well-being of the community.
His seat is in Aleppo, the crucified war torn city, center of worldwide attention and cradle of the vibrant Syrian Armenian community, descendants of the survivors of the Genocide in 1915.
All members and friends welcome – please share and extend invitation to any and all who are interested!
Rev. Haroutune Selimian
President of the Armenian Evangelical Community in Syria
CHILD AND ORPHAN CARE COMMITTEE HONORED
By Joyce Abdulian & Phyllis Hamo
On Saturday, October 8 at the Jonathan Club of Los Angeles, more than 300 guests gathered to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the Child and Orphan Care Committee of the Armenian Missionary Association of America.
Co-Chairs Gary Phillips and Jack Muncherian welcomed the audience and introduced Master of Ceremonies Paul Kalemkiarian, Jr. who led the evening in celebration. Generous sponsors contributed $3.4M.
Dr. Lisa Karamardian’s heartfelt devotional and prayer were followed by a summary of AMAA outreach programs by President Dr. Nazareth Darakjian who outlined this kick-off event of the AMAA Centennial Celebration and its $20M Campaign. He mentioned that, through the efforts of the AMAA’s Child & Orphan Care Committee, the physical, mental, and spiritual needs of the orphans were being met and that schools and educational programs were a top priority.
Musical entertainment was provided by the Greg Hosharian Quartet which performed original and electrifying renditions of Armenian classic and folk music. A video, produced by Tina Stein Segel, highlighted and recognized the founding members of the AMAA Orphan and Child Care Committee, established in 1991. The founders honored were Joyce Abdulian, Elizabeth Agbabian, Hermine Janoyan, Grace Kurkjian, Mary Najarian, Joyce Stein, and Savey Tufenkian of Los Angeles, Juliette Abdulian of Chicago, Rosette Tootikian of Detroit, Michele Simourian of Boston and Mary Jane (MJ) Hekemian of New Jersey.
AMAA Executive Director/CEO Zaven Khanjian reported significant donations to the AMAA of three million dollars toward the Centennial Kick Off Campaign–—one million dollars each by Drs. Nazareth and Ani Darakjian, The Stephen Philibosian and Conte Foundations, and a donor establishing “The Papken and Helen Mugrditchian Endowment Fund.”
Mr. Khanjian noted that the future of the Homeland is in the hands of the orphans we have supported. He expressed his appreciation to the founding ladies: “…whose determined action 25 years ago made history, embarking on a major change in the direction of the AMAA and our Homeland, Armenia.” He added, “It was the reputable, credible, and righteous foundation on which, through the 25 years of Armenia’s independence, the AMAA has built an empire of benevolence all over the country.”
National Co-Chair of the Child and Orphan Care Committee, Joyce Stein, shared her personal testimony and family history with the AMAA, stating that the first AMAA Endowment was established by her father, Stephen Philibosian, in 1950. She expressed her appreciation for the multi-talented young women on the committee, and commended their extraordinary efforts for the highly successful annual Child and Orphan Care Children’s Fashion Show/Silent Auction fund-raiser. More than five million dollars has been raised over the past 25 years. Members of the event committee, Lori Muncherian and Arsine Phillips, honored the Child and Orphan Care volunteers with framed, original paintings created by children of Armenia.
The program concluded with the benediction song, “God Bless America,” and the evening emerged a rousing success. It was a solid kick-off for the AMAA Centennial campaign.
L to R: Drs. Nurhan and Celeste Helvacian, Zaven Khanjian, Victoria and Ambassador Grigor Hovhannissian, Sona Khanjian, Gary and Arine Phillips
On September 28, representatives of AMAA participated in the Celebration of Armenia’s 25th Independence Day at the Hall of the Americas in Washington, DC, organized by the Embassy of Armenia to the United States under the auspices of the Armenia Fund. Over 400 guests attended the event representing various Armenian and non-Armenian organization and churches.
Armenian Ambassador to the U.S. Grigor Hovhannissian welcomed the guests and spoke about the key role of those who paved the way for U.S.-Armenia relations. Armenia Fund President Maria Mehranian served as the Master of Ceremonies, with special remarks from Armenian Caucus Co-Chairs Representatives Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) and Jackie Speier (D-CA), as well as Chairman of the House Democratic Caucus Rep. Xavier Becerra (D-CA).
By Rev. Dr. Paul Hadostian
On the occasion of the 170th anniversary of the Armenian Evangelical Church an all-Armenian Evangelical Pastors’ Retreat took place on September 22-24, 2016 at the AMAA’s Sheen-Shoghig Conference Center in Hankavan, Armenia, attended by 80 pastors from North America, Europe, the Middle East Armenia, Karabagh and Russia. The task of coordination and leadership of the conference was ably executed by Rev. Mgrdich Melkonian and assisting pastors in Armenia.
The title of the conference “Our Relationships” focused on the challenges of I Thessalonians 5:24. The program included worship and fellowship hours, prayer times, lectures and cultural programs. One such example was the special performance of the Armenian dance group of the Armenian Evangelical Church of Vanatzor, with poetry by Pastor Senig Saripekyan, vocal performance by Maretta Antonyan and the praise team of the church.
The preacher at the opening worship was Rev. George Dabbo, and a special greeting was given by the CEO/Executive Director of the AMAA, Mr. Zaven Khanjian, and the concluding communion service was led by Rev. Mgrdich Melkonian and Rev. Dr. Vahan Tootikian.
The five sub-themes of the conference were as follows: Rev. Mgrdich Karagoezian spoke on the “Pastor’s Relationship with the Church”; Rev. Dr. Avedis Boynerian spoke on the “Pastor’s Relationship with other Pastors”; Rev. Berdj Jambazian spoke on the “Pastor’s Relationship with his Mission”; Rev. Dr. Paul Haidostian spoke on the “Pastor’s Relationship with his Surroundings”; Rev. Joel Mikaélian spoke on the “Pastor’s Relationship with his Family”; and finally Rev. Mgrdich Melkonian, who spoke on the “Pastor’s Relationship with God”.
The participants valued the new friendships developed, the prayerful learning that took place, the common identity formation that was fostered, and the brotherly atmosphere that was created.
At its Annual Banquet, to be held Saturday, October 22 at 6:00 p.m. at the Philadelphia Marriott West, 111 Crawford Avenue, West Conshohocken, PA, the Armenian Missionary Association of America (AMAA) will honor three distinguished individuals, Albert Momjian, Esq. (posthumously), Set Momjian and Rev. Dr. John Markarian, for their many years of faithful and dedicated service to the Armenian Community. The theme of the AMAA Banquet will be Faithful to the Legacy.
Albert Momjian, Esq., who passed away July 11, 2016, served the AMAA as a member of the Board, on various committees and as Board President. His astute and wise leadership, dedicated and sacrificial service, focused and undivided attention, uncountable gratuitous professional services and boundless Christian love all contributed to the recent history of the AMAA. The AMAA is what it is and where it is today because of his towering presence at the helm of the organization for so long.
For many years, Set Momjian audaciously served the Armenian Community at large in the United States. His love of Christ and his people was instrumental in raising Armenian national interest to the highest levels of attention in the White House and to the political leadership of the country. His service as the U.S. Representative to the United Nations General Assembly, as the White House Representative to the Human Rights Commission in Geneva, as a member of the United States Holocaust Memorial Council and his fervent struggle as a human rights activist have earned him the reverence and respect of his people all across the globe.
In 1955, the AMAA, with the collaboration of the Union of the Armenian Evangelical Churches in the Near East, established Haigazian University in Beirut, Lebanon. Rev. Dr. John Markarian’s pioneer leadership as the founding President of this jewel educational institution, the one and only Armenian University in the Diaspora, had a tremendous role in the overwhelming success of this beacon of light, educating young men and women, preparing a leadership in the Middle East, exporting well rounded professionals across the oceans and dispersing ignorance and darkness wherever its rays rested upon.
The Banquet’s Master of Ceremonies will be Mark Momjian, Esq. Mr. Momjian is a graduate of Columbia Law School. He is an active leader in the Armenian-American community, having served on boards with the Armenian Assembly of America, the Armenian Missionary Association of America, and the Armenian Sisters Academy. For the past four years, Mr. Momjian has served as a member of the United States Advisory Committee of the Jinishian Memorial Program.
The Banquet will also feature Soprano Anush Avetisyan, a third-year Resident Artist at the prestigious Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia studying with Voice Instructor Bill Schuman. Ms. Avetisyan has performed internationally throughout North America, Europe and the Middle East.
The 97th Annual Meeting of the AMAA will be held on Saturday, October 22 at 9:30 a.m. at the Armenian Martyrs’ Congregational Church of Havertown, PA. All AMAA members are encouraged to participate and to review both the activities and the financial reports of the Association.
The Annual Meeting Worship of Praise will be held on Sunday, October 23, at the Armenia Martyrs’ Congregational Church of Havertown, PA at 11:00 a.m. The service will include a moment of remembrance dedicated to those AMAA members who concluded their earthly pilgrimage during the past year and joined the heavenly audience. The service will conclude with the installation of the newly elected Board Members.
The Armenian Missionary Association of America (AMAA) serves the spiritual, educational and social needs of Armenian communities around the world. The AMAA was founded in 1918 in Worcester, MA and was incorporated in New York in 1920. The AMAA is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
Those who are interested in attending the AMAA Banquet or participating in the Annual Meeting activities may contact AMAA Headquarters at 201-265-2607.
On September 22, RA Minister of Diaspora Hranush Hakobyan received the delegation of the Armenian Evangelical World Council and the Armenian Missionary Association of America (AMAA), who were in Armenia to attend the celebrations of the 25th anniversary of the Independence of Armenia and to celebrate the 170th Anniversary of the Armenian Evangelical Church in the Motherland.
Minister Hakobyan welcomed the guests and extended congratulations on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of Armenia’s independence and the 170th anniversary of the Armenian Evangelical Church. She said: “I am glad that you are in Armenia these days when we proudly celebrate the 25th anniversary of our independence. In the achievements during the 25 years of our independence, I would like to stress three of them. The first is the existence of the two Armenian Republics, the second is our powerful military establishment, and the third, the creation of institutional structures that have been successfully cooperating with international organizations.”
Minister Hakobyan highly appreciated the invaluable role of the Diaspora during the difficult days of the establishment of an independent statehood and expressed her gratitude for the contribution of the Armenian Evangelical Church. The Minister also stressed the huge role of Haigazian University, the only Armenian institution of higher education in the Diaspora.
Rev. Megrditch Karagoezian, the President of the Armenian Evangelical World Council thanked the Minister for her warm words of appreciation and said: “More than obligation, it’s a joy for the members of the Armenian Evangelical Church to help the Homeland. We are seeing the tangible achievements during the past 25 years, and the dedication and the efforts of the young generation in keeping the Homeland with their blood and sweat.”
Zaven Khanjian, Executive Director/CEO of AMAA said: “The Armenian Missionary Association of America has an undivided and enduring commitment towards Armenia and is ready to do everything possible in order to achieve as quick as possible to a strong Homeland that we all dream of.”
Rev. Dr. Vahan Tootikian, the Executive Director of the Armenian Evangelical World Council, Rev. Dr. Paul Haidostian, President of Haigazian University, Rev. Haroutune Selimian, the President of the Armenian Evangelical Community in Syria and others also expressed their appreciation.
In closing, Minister Hakobyan wished success to the jubilee Celebration of the 170th Anniversary of the Armenian Evangelical Church, which will take place in the Aram Khachadourian Music Hall on Sunday, September 25.
The newly constructed Bezjian Family Building at the C & E Merdinian Armenian Evangelical School in Sherman Oaks, California opened its doors to students for the first time on August 18, 2016. This beautiful 6,840 sq. ft. modern building offers state-of-the-art facilities to the School’s students. It encompasses five classrooms, a library, science lab, art room and an office for the athletic coach. Children and teachers alike were very excited to see their new, tastefully decorated classrooms. Each classroom is in the process of being equipped with the latest in technology to enhance the students’ learning experience.
On July 19, 2016, benefactors Mr. Albert and Mrs. Terry Bezjian who were visiting from Michigan, toured the newly completed building and were impressed with its quality of construction, functionality and elegance.
The School is pleased to offer its supporters with the opportunity to name classrooms in honor of loved ones. For information, please contact Board Members Dr. Ivan Shnorhokian at (412) 759-2020, or Dr. Vahe Nalbandian at (818) 507-9848.
Founded in 1982 and located in Sherman Oaks, CA, C & E Merdinian Armenian Evangelical School is the first Armenian Evangelical educational institution in the United States. Over the past thirty-four years, the dream of a few visionary Armenian Evangelicals has grown into a preschool through eighth grade middle school.
The Merdinian School believes that the integration of the educational efforts of the home, the church, and the school is basic to the development of each child’s fullest potential. To learn more about the School visit their website at www.merdinianschool.com
It is with deep sorrow that we share the sad news of the passing of Rev. Emmanuel Darakjian, father of Dr. Nazareth Darakjian, AMAA President, on Monday evening, August 22, 2016 at his home in Chicago, IL.
Rev. Emmanuel Darakjian has served the Lord for many decades as an educator and minister in Syria and Lebanon. He moved to the United States with his family in 1975 and settled in Chicago. Rev. Darakjian was featured in the “Meet our Veteran Pastors” segment of the Jan-Feb-March 2016 AMAA News. (Click here to View Article – page 5)
Those who wish to convey their condolences to the Darakjian family in person are welcome to do so at one of the following services:
Visitation, 9:00 am on Friday, August 26, 2016 followed by the
Funeral service, 10:00 am on Friday, August 26, 2016
Chicago Armenian Evangelical Church
Mount Prospect, IL 60056
Mr. Curtis and Mrs. Arpy Sahakian, Skokie, IL
Drs. Nazareth and Ani Darakjian, La Canada, IL
-Drs. Hrair and Nadia Darakjian, Tarzana, CA
-Ms. Suzy Darakjian, Chicago, IL
and by his brother and his wife: Rev. & Mrs. Barkev and Agnes Darakjian of Glendale, CA
As we mourn the passing of Rev. Emmanuel Darakjian, we rejoice in his life and find consolation in the Hope of the Resurrection.
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
2 Timothy 4:7
It is with deep sorrow that we share the sad news of the passing of Past Board Member Charles (Chuck) Bilezikian, of Osterville and Boston, MA and Palm Beach, FL, on July 26, 2016.
Mr. Bilezikian faithfully served the Armenian Missionary Association of America as a Board Member and benefactor.
The funeral service will be held 11:00 am on Friday, July 29th at:
Belmont, MA 02478
The burial will follow the worship service at Newton Cemetery, Newton, MA.
A memorial luncheon will take place in the First Armenian Church Hall right after the burial service.
A celebration of Chuck’s life will be held 11:00 am on Thursday, August 18th, at the First Congregational Church, 329 Route 6A, Yarmouthport, MA.
He was the loving and devoted husband of Doreen (Portnoy) Bilezikian to whom he was married for 52 years. Chuck attended the public schools in Newton, MA and graduated from Suffolk University. Following graduation he began a lifelong career in retail. In 1970 he bought a small seasonal business on Cape Cod called The Christmas Tree Shops as a means of supporting his young family. He and his family worked long hours to make the company grow from a small seasonal company to a thriving year-round business which grew to become one of the premiere shopping destinations in the Northeast.
Chuck lived life joyfully and to the fullest. He was inquisitive about everything and everyone around him. He was devoted to his family. He and Doreen traveled the world together. He loved to celebrate his birthday and he especially loved Christmas. He was engaging, enthusiastic, thoughtful, loyal and generous. He was loved by all who knew him and admired for his honesty, integrity and humor. His handshake was his word. His family was his life. His love and special legacy will live on in the countless memories his family and his many friends will carry in their hearts.
Chuck is survived by his wife Doreen, a son Gregory of Hyannisport, MA and his children Lindsay, Kate, Chad and Mia; and a son Jeffrey, and his wife Nancy, of Watertown, MA and Osterville, MA and their children Beatrice and Frieda, along with nieces Krista, Kelly and Kim and nephew Jay.
The Bilezikian Family have been long-standing supporters of AMAA’s mission and projects, in Armenia & Karabagh, including: the Krikor and Beatrice Bilezikian Kindergarten in Shoushi, the Krikor and Beatrice Bilezikian Elementary Building at the Khoren & Shooshanig Avedisian School and Community Center in Yerevan, Camp Sheen-Shoghig in Hankavan, AMAA Dental Clinic and the renovation of the Margaryan Hospital.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made by check to: The Charles Bilezikian Memorial Fund, c/o The Cape Cod Foundation, 259 Willow Street, Yarmouthport, MA 02675 or online at CapeCodFoundation.org and mention The Charles Bilezikian Memorial Fund.
In The Spirit of Giving Gala to Benefit Children in Crisis
The Boston Area Orphan and Child Care Committee of the Armenian Missionary Association of America (AMAA) will Celebrate the 25th Anniversary of its In the Spirit of Giving Gala, a Wine and Dine Fundraising Event. The event will take place on Thursday, September 29, 2016, 7 pm at the Wellesley Country Club, Wellesley, MA. The Dinner will feature a Live Auction, Wine Pull and Bling Raffle, with special performance by renowned pianist Levon Hovsepian. All proceeds from the event will benefit Armenian children in crisis. Individuals or businesses wishing to donate goods or services, or those wishing to purchase tickets for the event may do so by contacting Dianne Chilingerian at email@example.com
Founded in 1918, the AMAA is a nonprofit, charitable organization that provides services to underprivileged youth through education, relief and mission ministries. AMAA is a nonsectarian Christian organization that renders its services to those in need without discrimination. AMAA operates in twenty four countries and often partners with other relief agencies to aid disaster stricken areas throughout the world. For additional information, you may visit www.amaa.org
What a blessing to be of service to the people of Armenia for the last eight years and we thank the Lord for all who have ventured along with us.
This year we had an enormous Medical Mission Team with 45 individuals from the US and Canada and nine Armenian translators. This was the largest team to date and although we were a bit apprehensive about the size and the ability to handle such a large group, we knew God had a plan. Little did we know that the fledging Evangelical Church congregation of Sisian had been praying that the medical team would come to their city. At the same time, three new physicians contacted us and said they were interested in joining the team after we had closed the application process. We couldn’t say no as these additional physicians allowed us to go to another region in southern Armenia. We had wanted to do this in prior years, but found that we didn’t have the manpower to split into two teams. Through God’s divine intervention the Sisian church prayers helped our dream become a reality. This year’s team included nine physicians, two dentists, a chiropractor, a pharmacist, three nurses and a very willing group of ancillary workers eager to serve the Armenian people.
We began the week setting up a complete ambulatory clinic within the Evangelical Church in Vanadzor. The clinic provided a laboratory and diagnostic testing with an ultrasound and EKG. Other services included a reading glasses station and medical education by our nurses. Our dentists educated the youth on dental hygiene and treated them with fluoride. After a two-day stay in Vanadzor, we divided the team into two groups with half going to Stepanavan and the other half to Sisian.
The overall success of our mission can be measured in many ways. First, we saw and treated over 1,400 patients in four days at the clinic. Second, over 400 children received fluoride dental treatments from our dentists. Third, we were able to bless patients with free medications, some that would last them for a year of treatment. Fourth, each physician team prayed with every patient who walked through the clinic offering more healing than just medication. Fifth, patients who had never been to church were able to attend church services that were held between the morning and afternoon clinic. And finally, we received word that because of our mission, more families are now coming to church and are growing in their faith.
We are thankful to those who were praying for us and the Medical Mission Team. This year was especially difficult with many personal trials that Sue and I endured just prior to leaving. Yet God is faithful and gave us the strength that only can come from Him. We are thankful for the monetary support that the Armenian Missionary Association of America provided, allowing us to distribute free medication and supplies to hundreds of Armenians. We are humbled to see how God has grown the medical mission over the years. We can assure you that your generous donations to the AMAA earmarked for the medical mission go directly to the Armenian people and are only used for medications and supplies. Please consider joining us next year if you have the desire to serve God in Armenia. See our website link on amaa.org for more information.
Dr. Al and Sue Phillips
Khoren & Shooshanig Avedisian School Graduation
This year, graduation at the Khoren and Shooshanig Avedisian High School was extra special. The students decided to present for the first time “Avedisian” Awards and recognize the benefactors and all the teachers of the School.
The ‘Most Patriotic Director’ award was given to Principal Melanya Geghamyan and “Avedisian” prizes were awarded to the Armenian Missionary Association of Armenia Representative -Mr. Harout Nercessian, Armenia Tree Project Executive Director -Ms. Jeanmarie Papelian, School Benefactor -Mr. Charles P. Bilezikian, President of the American University of Armenia -Dr. Armen Der Kiureghian and others. The motto of the awards stem from the phrase:
Երազի՛ր, Աշխատի՛ր, Վայելի՛ր, Գնահատի՛ր – “Yerazi’r, ashkhati’r, vayeli’r and gnahati’r”
The students of the School have been taught to live by this principle. They have learned to dream about a good education, pride in their country and to dream for the future. In order to achieve these dreams, hard work and contribution to the changing world around them is required.
The School’s benefactor, Edward Avedisian, praised the children’s knowledge and instruction and efforts by the teachers, all aimed at preserving the national spirit. He thanked and encouraged them to continue to maintain a high level of education for the advancement of the nation. Mr. Avedisian said that our students will have a bright and brilliant future.
In his speech, Dr. Armen Der Kiureghian -President of the American University of Armenia, recalled how two years ago he attended the opening ceremony of the School, and was especially impressed by the dedication and desire to succeed by everyone; from administrators and teachers to the student body. Mr. Der Kiureghian happily added that he was left with the same impression today. He offered some advice on learning by offering graduates to higher education if they wish to continue the American University of Armenia.
We wish all our teachers and students a good summer break as preparations are being made for the upcoming 2016-17 school year.
Avedisian School Elementary Graduation
The Graduation Ceremony of the Elementary Section (4th graders) of the Khoren and Shooshanig Avedisian School (housed in the Krikor and Beatrice Bilezikian Building) was held on Thursday, June 16. The Elementary students transformed to golden winged bees, delicate flowers, precursor birds and shining stars presented a beautiful program of songs and recitations. They expressed their gratitude to their teachers, who taught them to love and appreciate books and the Armenian language, promising them to study well and be good citizens of their Motherland.
We thank God for the opportunities created at the Khoren and Shooshanig Avedisian School for the children of Armenia. The passionate spirit to create an appealing and attractive atmosphere in an educational institution where students would love to excel and propel themselves forward has always been in the minds of the benefactors and the Armenian Missionary Association of America, who brought forth this unique educational institution.
It is with deep sorrow that we share the sad news of the passing of Past AMAA President and Board Member Albert Momjian on July 11, 2016 after a brief illness.
For many decades, Albert Momjian faithfully served the Armenian Missionary Association of America, sitting on its Board of Directors, acting as its Solicitor, and serving as its President from 1993-1997. A long-time Trustee of the Stephen Philibosian Foundation, Albert was also a lifetime Trustee of Haigazian University, having served as its Solicitor.
He was also very active in the Armenian Evangelical World Council, serving as its Treasurer for many years. In addition, for more than a generation, Albert was active in the Armenian Assembly of America and the Armenian Sisters Academy, serving as Solicitor and on the Boards of both organizations.
A funeral service will be held at 11:00 a.m.
(visiting hours 9:30 – 11:00 a.m.) on Saturday, July 16th at
Armenian Martyrs’ Congregational Church
100 N. Edmonds Avenue, Havertown, PA 19083
to be followed by a private interment service.
Albert is survived by his beloved wife, Esther, of Huntington Valley, PA, his children, AMAA Board Member & Co-Recording Secretary Tom Momjian (click on link to send Tom an email), Mark and Melineh Momjian and Carol and Michael Hanamirian, and five grandsons.
As we mourn the passing of Mr. Albert Momjian, we rejoice in his life and find consolation in the Hope of the Resurrection.
Donations may be made in Mr. Momjian’s memory to the AMAA or Armenian Martyrs’ Congregational Church in Havertown, PA.
It is with deep sorrow that we share the sad news of the passing of Past AMAA Board Member Harry Balukjian on June 29, 2016 at home in Gaithersburg, MD.
Harry was proud of his Armenian heritage and helped people and institutions in need in Armenia, the Middle East and beyond, through generous donations to the Armenian Missionary Association of America, while serving on the AMAA board for two decades. Mr. Balukjian was instrumental in introducing Dr. John Markarian as a candidate for Founding President of Haigazian University.
A private funeral will be held on July 14th with a private graveyard service at Arlington Cemetery in Upper Darby, PA. The date of a public memorial service is yet to be determined.
Harry is survived by his brother, Robert, of Havertown, PA, the children of his sister Marion Sarian (deceased): nephews David Sarian (Linda) of Parkesburg, PA and Dan Sarian (Rebecca) of Littleton, CO, and niece Susan Hein (Gary), also of Littleton, along with six grandnephews/nieces.
As we mourn the passing of Mr. Harry Balukjian, we rejoice in his life and find consolation in the Hope of the Resurrection.
Donations be made in Mr. Balukjian’s memory to the AMAA or Armenian Martyrs’ Congregational Church, Havertown, PA.
Last week, Rev. Kirkor Ağabaloğlu, Pastor of the Armenian Evangelical Church of Gedik Pasa, Istanbul was in Armenia, along with a delegation comprised of members of the committee for the construction and rehabilitation of Istanbul’s CAMP ARMEN (Kamp Armen), including engineer Nazareth Binatli, architects Aleen Pontioglu, Zhan Gavrilov, representative of the Hrant Dink Foundation, Delal Dink (Hrant Dink’s daughter) and benefactors Harout and Dalar Khorozoglus.
Rev. Kirkor Ağabaloğlu spoke about all the difficulties that they went through last year for the return of CAMP ARMEN to its right owner, the Armenian Evangelical Church of Gedik Pasa.
On July 1, 1846 in Constantinople (current day Istanbul), a spiritual awakening of thirty-seven men and three women formed a Society of the Pious which led them to declare their independence in the name of Jesus Christ through a reform movement.
Today, there are 150 or more Armenian Evangelical organized churches and fellowships in the Republic of Armenia and 23 other countries.
During his historic visit to the first Christian country, Armenia, from June 24-26, His Holiness Pope Francis met with many religious, political and public figures.
On June 25, he visited Tzidzernagaberd, the Armenian Genocide Memorial Complex and Museum, reminding the world once again that the Armenian Genocide should never be forgotten or repeated. In the Memorial’s Guest Book he wrote: “Here I pray with sorrow in my heart, so that a tragedy like this never again occurs, so that humanity will never forget and will know how to defeat evil with good. May God protect the memory of the Armenian people. Memory should never be watered-down or forgotten. Memory is the source of peace and the future.”
Later that afternoon, His Holiness Pope Francis visited Gyumri and in the Vartanants Square of the city celebrated a Holy Mass and gave a powerful message to the thousands who had gathered to welcome him. “Faith is not a thing of the past, like an artifact in a museum. Rather, it is kept alive through continuous encounters with Christ,” he said. “Once it is locked up in the archives of history, faith loses its power to transform, its living beauty, its positive openness to all.
Pope Francis along with His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians held an Ecumenical Ceremony and Prayer for Peace at Republic Square of Yerevan, later in the evening . Pope Francis concluded his message saying, “May God bless your future and grant that the people of Armenia and Turkey take up again the path of reconciliation, and may peace also spring forth in Nagorno-Karabakh…”
At the conclusion of his two day visit, Pope Francis participated in the Sunday morning Mass at Etchmiadzin, which was held outdoors on the grounds of the Cathedral, where thousands of people had gathered to listen to his final message before his return to Rome.
On the occasion of Pope Francis’ visit, thousands of Armenians and guests from different countries and denominations were present in Armenia. The Armenian Missionary Association of America (AMAA), expresses gratitude to the Catholicos of All Armenians Karekin II, for the invitation extended to its leadership to participate in the Papal visit reception and ceremonies. The Armenian Evangelical Community was represented by Rev. Haroutune Selimian, President of the Armenian Evangelical Community in Syria.
“Pope Francis is a champion of Truth and Justice. He is a man of Peace,” said Zaven Khanjian, AMAA Executive Director/CEO. “His words spoken on Armenia’s soil will long resonate in the ears of mankind and inject Hope to the poor, the oppressed and the destitute.”
Over the course of this historic Papal visit, June 24-26, Pope Francis will visit with numerous religious, governmental and civic figures in addition to addressing the public at various services. The Armenian Missionary Association of America is thankful to Catholicos Karekin II for welcoming and including Armenian Evangelical leadership to participate in reception ceremonies. Armenian Evangelicals were represented by Rev. Harout Selimian, President, Armenian Protestant Community in Syria.
In advance of his trip, Pope Francis conveyed his anticipation as a pilgrim to ‘visit to the first Christian country.’ (Vatican Radio’s English translation of the original Italian is below in full.)
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
In a few days I will have the joy to be with you, in Armenia. Even now, I invite you to pray for this Apostolic journey.With the help of God, I come among you to fulfil, as the motto of the trip says, a “visit to the first Christian country”. I come as a pilgrim, in this Jubilee Year, to draw on the ancient wisdom of your people and to steep myself the sources of your faith, which is steadfast as your famous crosses carved in stone.
I come to the mystical heights of Armenia as your brother, animated by the desire to see your faces, to pray with you and to share the gift of friendship. Your history and the events of your beloved people stir in me admiration and sorrow: admiration, for you have found in Jesus’ Cross and in your own wits, the wherewithal ever to pick yourselves up and start anew – even after sufferings that are among the most terrible in human memory; pain, for the tragedies that your fathers have lived in their flesh.
Let us not allow the painful memories to take possession of our hearts; even in the face of the repeated assaults of evil, let us not give ourselves up. Let us rather do as Noah, who, after the flood, never tired of looking to heaven and releasing the dove again and again, until one day it came back to him, bringing a tender olive leaf (Gen. 8:11): it was the sign that life could resume and [that] hope must rise.
As servant of the Gospel and a messenger of peace I desire to come among you, to support [your] every effort towards peace – and I would share our steps on the pathway of reconciliation, which generates hope.
May the great saints of your people, especially the Doctor of the Church, Gregory of Narek, bless our meetings, to which I look forward with tender longing. In particular, I look forward to embracing my Brother, Karekin, and, along with him, to give fresh impetus to our path towards full unity.
Last year, from several countries, you came to Rome, and at the tomb of St. Peter, we prayed together. Now I come to your blessed land to strengthen our communion, to advance along the path of reconciliation, and to allow ourselves together to be animated by hope.
During his recent visit to Istanbul Turkey in early June, Zaven Khanjian, AMAA Executive Director/CEO met with The Camp ARMEN Reconstruction Committee, visited the Hrant Dink Foundation, the offices of Nor Zartonk as well as the Armenian Patriarchate of Istanbul.
Agos Newspaper of Istanbul, founded by the late Hrant Dink, interviewed Mr. Khanjian who reflected upon the mission of the AMAA and its support for the reconstruction of Camp ARMEN. Interview in Turkish on Agos
Translation of interview:
AMAA Supports Camp ARMEN
Karin Bal 13.06.2016
The Armenian Missionary Association of America (AMAA) was established in 1918 to provide moral and material support to genocide survivors, orphans, and homeless families. AMAA director Zaven Khanjian, was in Istanbul in order to initiate Camp Armen’s reconstruction.
The Armenian Missionary Association of America (AMAA) was established in 1918 to provide moral and material support to the Genocide survivors, orphans, and homeless families. Today, AMAA maintains projects around the world extending a helping hand to Armenians in need. After a long struggle in 2015, Camp Armen was returned to the Armenian people. AMAA Executive Director/CEO, Zaven Khanjian came to Istanbul in order to rebuild the Camp. We talked to Khanjian to discuss this and AMAA’s other projects.
Zaven Khanjian, originally from Aleppo, Syria, emigrated to the United States in 1979. The purpose of his visit to Istanbul, summarizes as follows, “As Executive Director of AMAA, I want to help Armenians living around the world. I came to Istanbul, first to visit Camp ARMEN and to see its physical conditions. Then to exchange ideas with leading figures of the Armenian Community in Istanbul on the future plans of the Camp, reconstruction of the Camp and what can we do to return to the old days. We will meet with the Hrant Dink Foundation, in conjunction with a group of architects, and Pastor Kirkor Ağabaloğlu of the Armenian Evangelical Church of Gedik Paşa.“
Camp ARMEN’s mission is still valid
“Once reconstructed, AMAA wants the Camp to return to the old day.” said Khanjian, “Bringing Camp ARMEN to our children living in Anatolia who struggle with spiritual challenges and language, in order to teach them about their culture and religion was a very important mission. I believe that this tradition is still valid. Our children are still living in Anatolia with the same fate. Camp ARMEN can also serve a different purpose,” underscored Khanjian. “For example, this may be a cultural and educational institution not only for Armenian children living in Turkey, but around the world,” he said.
Khanjian stressed that education is very important for the progress of the society. He said, “Our main areas of mission are churches, clergy, and schools in the United States, Syria, Lebanon, and in Armenia. In addition we work on all kinds of issues related to housing. We help and provide in any ways we can help. We support our students attending universities with scholarships. We also do humanitarian work. For example we provided assistance to the victims of the earthquake in Armenia. Today we have a team working to help the victims of the violence in Syria. One of our main focus now is Syria. We help the basic needs of those who have migrated from there.”
Of special interest
The AMAA with donations and support of the Armenians in Diaspora sponsors several camps in Armenia and maintain five school in Karabakh. All projects AMAA carries out is about the legacy of Christianity. It provides internship programs to Armenian youth both in the United States and Armenia. Babies who cannot get milk from their mothers are provided with milk. Each year a team of 40 visit remote villages and settlements in Armenia to meet people’s health and medical needs.
2018 is the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the Armenian Missionary Association of America
The Pastors of the Union of the Armenian Evangelical Churches in Eurasia (Moscow & Sochi in Russia, Akhalkalak, Akhaltzke, Goumbourdou and Tbilisi in Georgia) held a five day long retreat-conference from June 13-17 in the city of Sochi of the Krasnodar region of Russia, under the leadership of Rev. Dr. René Leonian, President of UAECE.
Հայ Ավետարանական Եկեղեցիների Եվրասիական միություն
Հունիսի 13-ից 17-ը ՌԴ Կրասնոդարի երկրամասի Սոչի քաղաքում տեղի ունեցավ Եվրասիական միության բոլոր Հայ Ավետարանական եկեղեցիներ հովիվների համագումար:
Elementary School Graduation Ceremony and Year End Program at Avedisian School
The Graduation Ceremony of the Elementary Section (4th graders) of Khoren and Shooshanig Avedisian School was held on Thursday, June 16. The Elementary students transformed to golden winged bees, delicate flowers, precursor birds and shining stars presented a beautiful program of songs and recitations. They expressed their gratitude to their teachers, who taught them to love and appreciate books and the Armenian language, promising them to study well and be good citizens of their Motherland.
Members of the Haigazian University Board of Trustees coming from the United States and joining their Lebanese counterparts, successfully concluded their two-day annual meetings in Beirut, which took place on May 27 and 28, 2016.
In parallel, a fellowship dinner brought together the Haigazian University family and its friends at the recently renovated Hotel Le Bristol in Hamra, Beirut. Among the attendees, also were present, Ambassadors of the USA, Richard Jones, and of Armenia, Samvel Mgrdchyan.
On this special occasion, and in line with its core commitments and values, University President, Rev. Dr. Paul Haidostian announced the launching of a new undergraduate major in “Special Education”.
Haidostian reiterated the purpose of the B.A. in Education with Emphasis in Special Education, as being the “track that provides tomorrow’s educators with a more comprehensive academic coverage in line with the global focus on acceptance of diversity and tolerance of differences.”
-On Saturday April the 2nd, the Mathematical and Computer Sciences Division organized its First Annual Programming Cup for High School Students, with the participation of more than 50 secondary students from 20 different Lebanese schools from all over Lebanon, and on April 7th, Haigazian University hosted an “Oil and Gas student conference-debate” organized by Front Page Communication in collaboration with the Forum for National Dialogue (FFND) and the 90-minute conference was broadcasted live on the Lebanese Broadcasting Corporation (LBCI). Later in April, the Faculty of Business and Economics organized a one day seminar on “Family Businesses”.
-The Armenian Diaspora Research Center organized an international conference on the “Armenians of Jordan”, and the Campus Ministry organized a two day seminar on the “Interreligious and Intercultural Relations in a time of Conflict and Migration in the MENA Region” in cooperation with the College of St. Benedict and St. John’s University in Minnesota.
Your Support Makes the Difference
This Eastern Mediterranean Liberal Arts Institution was established on October 17, 1955 by the joint endeavors of the Armenian Missionary Association of America (AMAA) and the Union of the Armenian Evangelical Churches in the Near East (UAECNE).
On June 2, RA Minister of Diaspora Hranush Hakobyan received the delegation of the Armenian Missionary Association of America, which was composed of Executive Director Zaven Khanjian, Armenia’s representative Harutyun Nersisyan and Head of the Department of Media and Publications Andranik Mardoyan.
Minister Hranush Hakobyan greeted the guests, appreciated the pro-Armenian activities of the Armenian Missionary Association and mentioned the appreciable activities that have been carried out over the past few years.
During the meeting, the sides touched upon the current issues facing the Armenian people, including the struggle for Artsakh and the issues facing Syrian-Armenians, as well as discussed and indicated the future actions.
Zaven Khanjian expressed gratitude for the reception and stressed that “the Armenian Missionary Association, within the framework of programs for support to Syrian-Armenians and with the motto “Armenia is the only one”, has declared that it supports Syrian-Armenians wishing to visit Armenia.”
President Serzh Sargsyan sent a congratulatory message on the occasion of the 170th anniversary of the Armenian Evangelical Church: “I congratulate the Armenian Evangelical Church on the 170th anniversary of its foundation.
The Armenian Evangelical Movement and the Armenian Evangelical Church were established on July 1, 1846, and are an integral part of our history, contributing to educational, religious and charitable activities for the past 170 years.
Since Armenia’s independence, the Armenian Evangelical Church participated actively in the homeland of Armenia and Artsakh, active in patriotic activities and the pursuit of the lawful national rights of the Armenian people.
I welcome the fact that the Armenian Evangelical Church is cooperating with the Armenian Apostolic Church and accepts her as the Mother Church.
I am sure with its 170 years of rich experience and great contributions to spirituality and nation building, it will continue in its mission for the benefit of strengthening the Armenian statehood, and universal spiritual revival of the Armenian people,” said the President in his message
AMAA EXTENDS CONGRATULATIONS TO BOARD MEMBER AND BENEFACTOR EDWARD AVEDISIAN
2016 Recipient of Ellis Island Medal of Honor
The Ellis Island Medal of Honor has been awarded each year since 1986. It recognizes individuals who have made it their mission to share with those less fortunate their wealth of knowledge, indomitable courage, boundless compassion, unique talents and selfless generosity; all the while maintaining the traditions of their ethnic heritage as they embody the American Dream.
This year, Edward Avedisian was not only one of the distinguished recipients of the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, but was one of a very select few invited to give his personal remarks at the ceremony. The ceremony was held on Ellis Island on Saturday, May 7.
The professional career of Mr. Avedisian spans four disciplines: a performing symphonic musician, teaching at the university level, arts administration, as well as investing and philanthropy. He retired after 30 years of service as clarinetist with the Boston Pops and 43 seasons with the Boston Ballet Orchestra. Outside of the United States, he has appeared as soloist with the Armenian State Philharmonic, the Armenian Radio and TV Orchestra and the National Chamber Orchestra of Armenia, and was visiting artist to Boston’s sister city of Hangzhou, China, in 1998.
His success as a private investor led him to establish endowments and award grants to a number of nonprofit organizations. At the American University of Armenia (AUA) he fully funded the Center for Health Studies & Research and the Center for Business Research & Development. He was principal benefactor and chair of the construction committee (2005-2009) of the new 100,000 sq. ft. Paramaz Avedisian Building and was appointed to the Presidential Search Committee for AUA by Dr. C. Judson King, former Provost of the University of California and Chair of the AUA Board of Trustees.
Others of note include the founder and principal benefactor of both the Khoren and Shooshanig Avedisian K-12 School and Community Center in Malatia-Sepastia, Armenia (a seven-building complex), and sole benefactor and chair of the AUA Oversight Committee for the Nork Marash Medical Center (bringing the Hospital up to U.S. standards in 2004-2005). Mr. Avedisian also serves as Trustee for the American University of Armenia, and as Board member of the Armenian Missionary Association of America. As a founder and sole supporter of the Friends of the American University of Armenia, his contributions include a complete renovation of the High School in Haghtanag Village (2008-2009) and the installation of a cluster of lights and trees at the Didzernaghapert Armenian Genocide Memorial. He has twice been awarded the Movses Khorentasi Medal by Armenia’s President Sargsyan for Contributions to Education, Culture, Literature and the Arts in 2008 and 2014. In the United States, key endeavors are: established the Paramaz Avedisian Pharmacy Scholarship at the University of Rhode Island, Boston University Medical School (Chobanian Professorship) and BU Tanglewood Scholarship, and an endowed chair for the Boston Ballet Orchestra.
Mr. Avedisian was born in 1937 in Pawtucket, RI, where he attended public school and served as president of his graduating class. He furthered his education on a scholarship to Boston University where he earned his BM and MM degrees. Edward is married to Pamela Wood and they currently reside in Lexington, MA.
Over the course of two days, May 7-8, the National Debating Tournament semi-finals were held. Such a tournament brought together a total of 26 teams representing the different regions of Armenia. Ultimately, Teams “Etchmiadzin” and “Yerevan 1” (which had two Avedisian School students) progressed to the finals. Yerevan 1 was lead by Team Manager Arevik Khachtryan (who is also the Team Manager of the Avedisian School Debate Club) and featured 9th grade Avedisian School student Lusine Eghiazaryan.
On May 9th, the final debate between Etchmiadzin and Yerevan 1 took place. The topic for the debate “Current terrorist attacks are the result of the Great Powers’ policies,” elicited great discussion from both sides and contributed to an enthralling debate. It is with great pleasure we announce that Yerevan 1 took first position in the Tournament. We are also pleased to write that 9th grader Lusine Yeghiazaryan of the Avedisian School was awarded with a gold medal and a certifficate as the representative of the winning team.
AMAA would like to congratulate Yerevan 1 for their victory as well as the other teams who took part in the debating tournament.
While the adults guard the homeland, Karabagh, evacuated children from Martarkert region are sheltered at AMAA’s Bedrosian Camp in Shushi.
AMAA Participates in Unprecedented Cooperation for Martuni Village, Armenia
On the occasion of the Centennial of the Armenian Genocide, AMA-Armenia took the initiative to coordinate the formation of a Consortium of 6 NGOs (AMA-Armenia, Development Principles, “Shen” Charity NGO, World Vision Armenia, COAF, Fund for Armenia Relief) to join efforts in support of Martuni Village, in the Republic of Armenia.
- COAF financed the renovation of the health post of the Martuni community.
- World Vision presented their newly formed Engineering Club and its newly acquired Robotics lab of the school.
- “Shen” NGO showed the new Village website (www.martunigyugh.am) which presents the history of the Village, current conditions and a project which was also financed by Shen; the installation of water pipes providing drinking water for most of the villagers.
- AMA-Armenia helped the villagers acquire 2 brand new tractors and 10 gasoline powered harvesters. These will help villagers harvest hay to feed their cattle during the winter months and also cultivate their lands.
- FAR presented scholarships to Martuni Village high school students.
- Development Principles granted 13 pregnant cows to low income families within the community.
- AMA-Armenia partnered with Teach for Armenia to send a well-trained teacher to teach IT courses and help students develop leadership skills.
- The Partners also visited the computer lab which was provided by the WCC Armenian Round Table.
Martuni was formed in the 1920s by Genocide survivors. It has no dialect of its own because it consisted of people from various parts of Western Armenia. So, the only common language is literal Armenian.
Pictured L to R: Dr. H. Steven Aharonian, former AMAA Board President, Levon Filian, AMAA West Coast Executive Director, Ambassador Richar M. Mills, Jr, Zaven Khanjian, AMAA Executive Director/CEO and Dr. Nazareth Darakjian, AMAA Board President
AMAA Meets with U.S. Ambassador to Armenia at Town Hall Meeting in CA
On Tuesday, March 8, 2016, AMAA representatives attended a meeting with current U.S. Ambassador to Armenia, Mr. Richard M. Mills Jr.
Accompanied by Mr. Jeffrey Paretchan, USAID Regional Alliance Contact for Europe & Eurasia, the March 8th meeting at the Brand Library and Arts Center in Glendale, CA was one in a series of Ambassador Mills’ meetings with various representatives of the Armenian-American community around the country.
AMAA representatives in attendance were: Dr. Nazareth Darakjian, AMAA Board President, Dr. H. Steven Aharonian, former AMAA Board President, Zaven Khanjian, AMAA Executive Director/CEO and Levon Filian, AMAA West Coast Executive Director.
The Ambassador shared plans and priorities for the advancement of the country. He was also interested to learn more about AMAA’s global ministry, especially in Armenia.
Among topics discussed were current events in Armenia, security matters, influx of Armenians from war torn Syria, freedom of speech and religion, plans for a stronger economy, and expand help to residents of bordering villages of Armenia.
The AMAA welcomes the new U.S. Ambassador, Mr. Mills to Armenia, wishes him great success, and thanks him for his keen interest in helping our Homeland with the participation of the Armenian leadership in the Diaspora.
AMAA Summer Internship Program July 5-19, 2016
To: All Armenian Evangelical Churches Worldwide
Attention: Pastors and Youth Leaders
From: Rev. Dr. Avedis Boynerian, Pastor Arm. Memorial Church, Watertown, MA
Date: February 5, 2016
Greetings in the name and love of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
I am pleased to announce that the AMAA is organizing an Internship Program (July 5-19, 2016) to Armenia. This Program intends to give young adults from the United States, Canada, Europe and Middle East with an excellent opportunity to serve our people in Armenia with missions and ministries supported by the AMAA. The Program is designed to be a time for spiritual growth, a hands-on, practical ministry experience, as the interns participate in the missional work that the AMAA does in Armenia.
The Program is for young adults entering their senior year of high school to post-college age (mid-twenties). The major work will focus on spending time participating in day camps, summer camps, worship concerts, church programs and visitations. Also, the interns will travel together to significant historical and cultural sites.
I am asking you to help identify young adults, who may be interested in and can benefit from this Program, whose personal faith in Jesus motivates them to serve and work with others, and have a desire to grow in their Armenian heritage.
I will lead and head the Program, and also lead the interns in daily Bible study, discussion and prayer.
The cost of this Program will primarily be transportation costs (airfare), which might be approximately $1400-1600 for those who are traveling from North America, and less for those who are flying from other countries. It also depends on when the interns purchase their tickets. The interns are responsible to raise the funds of their tickets, passport, visa and their pocket money ($200). The AMAA will be responsible of the local expenses (food, housing and transportation in Armenia).
Time is of the essence. So, I kindly ask you to make a special effort to give these materials to prospective participants as soon as you can, announce and publicize the Program in your Sunday services, newsletters and electronic communications. The application deadline is March 11, 2016. I appreciate every assistance you can offer making this Program beneficial and meaningful.
Candidates will be selected on a first come first served basis. Those who are accepted into the Program, will receive notification by March 31, along with further information and instructions that will help prepare for this wonderful experience. Please, keep this Program in your prayers hoping that God will draw our young people closer to Him and inspire them with a lifelong vision and commitment to ministry in Jesus’ name.
For further information, please contact me firstname.lastname@example.org, 617-229-9252 (cell), 159 White Str., Belmont, MA 02478).
Grace and Peace to you from God our Father and from our Lord Jesus Christ!
It is my pleasure to announce the 2017 AMAA Summer Internship to Armenia from Monday, July 17th – Monday, July 31st. This annual program gathers young men and women from our local church communities to embark on a journey that will impact them for years to come. The aim of this internship is to expose individuals of the Armenian Evangelical diaspora to the important Christian ministry the AMAA is doing in our homeland. It extends the opportunity for participants to serve God through the AMAA and embrace the rich cultural heritage of their people. Interns will be working alongside churches and ministries supported by the AMAA to experience the work God is doing for His Kingdom there in Armenia. Interns will also have the opportunity to visit key cultural sites.
The primary cost to participate in the program is the cost of travel, which based on data from previous years estimates at around $1,400-$1,600 for those traveling from North America. This cost may be significantly lower for individuals flying from the Middle East. Once accepted, the intern is responsible to fundraise the money required for their travel expenses (Passport fees, airfare, pocket money etc.). Once in Armenia, the AMAA will cover the local expenses (Meals, housing, transportation etc.)
The program is open to a wide range of young adults; the AMAA will consider applicants entering their Senior year of High School all the way through Post-College (mid-20’s). There are 20 internship slots available and the applications are considered on a first come first serve basis. Only applications received on or before April 1, 2017 will be considered for the internship.
As the leader of this years AMAA Summer Internship, I am asking you to help identify young adults who might be interested in applying to this year’s internship program. We are seeking mature individuals with a vibrant Christian faith and a genuine desire to participate in the work of God’s Kingdom. This would be a particularly valuable experience for individuals in your church community who may be considering future work in the missionary field. I encourage you to share these details with your local church and to begin to announce the program in your regular publications.
Promotional materials will soon follow with applications for distribution. For inquiries, feel free to contact Rev. Jeremy Tovmassian at email@example.com or at (847) 758-7188.
Peace and Love,
Rev. Jeremy Tovmassian
More Info to Come
With the unification of the City of Aleppo and the departure of extremist militants from it, Aleppo has enjoyed a measure of safety since mid-December. Even though the barrage of shells, mortars and rockets have ceased, the trials of acquiring the basic necessities for a decent daily life remain. Running water and electricity in Aleppo have once again been cut-off. Unemployment, lack of vital services and inadequate medical care persist in plaguing war-torn Aleppo. The impoverished communities desperately need our help!
By Joyce Abdulian
Glendale, CA: The LARK Musical Society, under the auspices of the Armenian Missionary Association of America (AMAA) will present Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem – A performance dedicated to the memory of all Armenians in Syria and Artsakh who lost their lives in the recent wars – with the participation of the Tziatzan Treble Choir, The LARK Chorus, The LARK Grand and Chamber Orchestras and featuring Shoushik Barsoumian, Soprano; Yeghishe Manucharyan, Tenor; and Edward Levy, baritone. The Concert will take place on Saturday, March 4, 2017 at the First United Methodist Church, 500 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91101 at 7:00 pm, with a Pre-performance lecture by Doris Melkonian at 6:00 pm.
Reflecting on the War Requiem Maestro Vatsche Barsoumian said, “This season of Lent provides an opportunity to reflect on Christ’s journey of privation before his ultimate sacrifice and resurrection. It compels us to remember our own who have suffered deprivation, our own we have lost, our own who live on in our hearts and memories.”
A large-scale musical work requiring a massive ensemble, War Requiem was commissioned for the re-consecration of Coventry Cathedral in England on May 30th 1962. The original cathedral, called St. Michael’s, was built in the 14th century and had been destroyed in bombing raids during World War II. With the completion of the new St. Michael’s, built next to the ruins of its predecessor, Benjamin Britten was tasked with creating a work appropriate to the occasion.
His response, dedicated to four friends lost in the Great War, is the stunning War Requiem. Built on the traditional Latin Mass for the dead, Britten intertwines the traditional movements with nine poems about war by the renowned English Poet Wilfred Owen—regarded by many as the greatest poet of WW I.
Picture 1. The 1962 reconstruction of the destroyed Coventry Cathedral was the inspiration for Composer Benjamin Britten’s “War Requiem.”
Picture 2. The recently destroyed Fifteenth Century Forty Martyrs Armenian Cathedral in Aleppo, is but one testament to the scars violence continues to inflict on human life and spiritual values. Difficulties, humanity still must overcome.
“LARK is proud to partner with the AMAA to bring the War Requiem by Benjamin Britten to our community. While we live in peace here in Los Angeles, our hearts and minds cannot rest because victims continue to fall in Syria and Artsakh. It is fitting to join together on March 4th to experience a concert of such music, dedicated to loss, and together, pray for peace”, said Andy Torosyan, Chairman, Board of the Lark Musical Society.
Tickets are $50. For more reservation and for more information you may contact the Lark Musical Society at 818.500.9997.