Rev. Abraham Chaparian
Rev. Abraham Chaparian was born in 1935 in Azes, Syria to the family of Abraham and Lucine Chaparian. His birth name was Hampartsum, but later he assumed his father’s name. He attended Sahakian Elementary School in Azes. Then the Chaparians moved to Beirut, Lebanon.
In 1953 at the age of 18, Abraham accepted Jesus Christ as his personal Savior and God called him into Christian ministry. He attended the Nazarene Bible School in Beirut, Lebanon for three years – from 1956 to 1959. While in School, he was elected President of the student body and was involved in the ministry of the local Church. After graduation, from 1959-1960, he served the Lord as full-time Minister, visiting and preaching in Nazarene churches in Syria, Lebanon and Jordan. From 1961 to 1967, he served as Pastor of Sin-El-Fil Armenian Church of the Nazarene. During Rev. Chaparian’s ministry, the Church moved from a rented facility to a new church building, which was constructed during his ministry there. He was ordained on April 24, 1967.
To further his education, Rev. Chaparian immigrated to the United States in 1967. He attended and graduated from Point Loma Nazarene University (formerly Point Loma Nazarene College) with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Religion. Later, in 1982, he received his Master of Arts degree in counseling from the same Institution.
Rev. Chaparian was called to ministry in Hollywood, CA in 1981. Sunday services at 4:00 p.m. had already been in process in January 1981 during Rev. Abraham Jizmejian’s interim ministry in Hollywood. He started to lead the ministry in April 1981. In May 1982, with a charter membership of forty, the Fellowship was organized into a Church and named the Armenian Evangelical Church of Hollywood. Later that same year, at the Biennial Assembly of the Armenian Evangelical Union of North America (AEUNA) held in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, the Church was officially accepted by the Union.
The year 1988 was the turning point in the Church’s history. The congregation was worshipping in a Baptist Church. As the Armenian Evangelical Church of Hollywood grew, the host Church could not accommodate it any longer. A few months later, a church building was found, and the congregation relocated to the new building on Franklin Avenue in Los Angeles.
The Church began to use the facilities in 1989. The Church has a very effective ministry as a whole. One of the outreach programs the Church initiated in 1993 was called “New Direction for Armenian Youth.” The program not only helped at risk youth and their families, but also served as an effective tool of evangelism in the Community. The Church’s ministry also includes Saturday Armenian School, neighborhood Bible Studies, leaders training classes, men and women’s fellowships, Junior High and High School Bible studies, College and Career Bible studies, midweek prayer and Bible Study, and summertime Vacation Bible School.
Rev. Chaparian’s outreach ministry included Armenia, where he visited several times, preaching, teaching and holding very large evangelistic meetings throughout the country. On two of his visits, 10 or more young people from the Church joined him as well.
Rev. Chaparian has also been active in AEUNA programs. He has served on the Board in the capacity of Chairperson to Ministry and Church Planting. He was instrumental in establishing a church in Las Vegas, which he visited faithfully for more than four years, holding worship services once a month, and for more than a year, holding those services once a week. Many of the church young people would accompany him and help out with the worship service on several occasions.
Rev. Chaparian married Mary Youssefian in 1961. They were blessed with four children, three daughters and a son, and six grandchildren. They currently reside in Pasadena, CA.
This biography is an amended version of Rev. Abraham Chaparian’s biography in Rev. Dr. Vahan H. Tootikian’s book “Fifty Years of Christian Service,” 2000, pages 61-62.