Rev. Berdj Djambazian
Rev. Berdj Djambazian was born in St. James Armenian Convent in the old city of Jerusalem to Hampartzoum and Mary Djambazian, survivors of the Armenian Genocide and active members of the Second Armenian Evangelical Church of Marash, pastored by Rev. Siragan Agbabian. Rev. Berdj received his primary education in Jerusalem, Amman, and Beirut and in 1962, he attended Beatenberg Theological Seminary in Switzerland, graduating in 1967.
From 1967-1973, Rev. Berdj pastored two Armenian Evangelical Churches in Biver and St. Antoine in Marseille, France. While pastoring, he attended the National Conservatory of Music in Marseille for vocal training from 1968-1972. He continued his theological studies at NEST (1975-1977) taking classes from Professor Kenneth Bailey, and former hostage in Lebanon Dr. Benjamin Weir.
From 1973-1981, Rev. Berdj served as an educator, pastor, and relief worker in the Armenian Evangelical Church of Nor Marash in Bourdj Hammoud, Lebanon, and the Armenian Evangelical Shamlian Tatigian Secondary School with 900 students. While in Bourj Hammoud with his late brother Rev. Hagop, they committed themselves to humanitarian efforts geared toward helping the most vulnerable. They established a medical clinic with six doctors, providing surgical, dental, and pharmaceutical services, as well as the only ambulance service in the area available for families in Bourj Hammoud.
In 1981, the United Armenian Congregational Church in Los Angeles invited him to serve as its Association Pastor, and from 1983-1993, served as the Senior Pastor of the Church. Rev. Djambazian was instrumental in establishing three new congregations; one of which was co-founded with Rev. Dr. Ara Chakerian. From 1997-2007, he served as the Associate Pastor of World Missions and Adult Education at Glendale Presbyterian Church, and led more than 40 relief, evangelism and outreach teams to Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Egypt, Sudan, Turkey, and Armenia. Communicating with six languages including Armenian, German, French, Arabic, Turkish, and English and being equipped with the gift of cultural knowledge and understanding, made his trips impactful.
In 1993, Rev. Berdj was invited by the late Vehapar Vazken I of Echmiadzin to teach over 75 priests at the Kevorkian Seminary. He taught classes on homiletics and classes on “How to encounter the Sectarian movements in Armenia.” Last year he celebrated the 30th anniversary of his weekly TV program “Nor Huys,” reaching out to the Armenian community at large with the gospel of Jesus Christ. He has authored a book called “Hayazartnoum.”
From 2005-2008, Rev. Berdj made several trips to the Sudan delivering relief to Darfurian Genocide survivors. He was instrumental in building the largest church on the east side of the Nile. After the 1988 earthquake in Armenia, he made more than 25 trips to the earthquake-stricken region delivering multiple medical and relief support. Believing that all mentally challenged children are true gifts from God, he committed himself to Armenia to provide relief in the areas of food, clothing and medical supplies ensuring that these children receive the right to live a dignified quality of life.
In September 2015, Rev. Berdj Djambazian was appointed Minister to the Armenian Evangelical Union of North America. Rev. Djambazian served in this capacity until his retirement in 2021 with much dedication, giving all the time, attention and love it demands and deserves. His past experiences and background enhanced his ability to discharge his duties with professional competence and a compassionate heart, embodying a Christ-like character in action and decision.
For his dedication to human rights and immense integrity as a leader of the Armenian Evangelical Church, on September 25, 2022, the Western Region of the Armenian National Committee of America awarded Rev. Djambazian with the “Khrimian Hairig” Award, during its Annual Gala.
Currently Rev. Djambazian is working on two books – “Megnapanoutune 150 Saghmosneroo” (Commentary on 150 Psalms – A guide to each Psalm) which will be published in a few months and “Yergrbakoutune Ar Asdvadz” (Worship to God).
Rev. Berdj is married to Shoghig (Balekian), and they have been blessed with three children Daniel, Helen, and Pauline, who is married to Dr. Gerrard Andonian and are blessed with two children, Julian and Lauren.