EASTERN PRELACY’S NATIONAL REPRESENTATIVE ASSEMBLY CONCLUDES; ELECTION OF PRELATE WILL TAKE PLACE IN SEPTEMBER
Blogger's Note - We will be posting a series of write-ups from Crossroads, the weekly e-bulletin of the Armenian Prelacy, on the 2018 National Representative Assembly, which was hosted by our parish from May 9-12; these write-ups constitute the official coverage of the event by the Prelacy and appeared over several successive issues of Crossroads. We will also post a photo album covering all the events.
The 2018 National Representative Assembly of the Eastern Prelacy of the Armenian Apostolic Church of America; Archbishop Oshagan Choloyan, Prelate, is pictured with National Representatives, Executive Council, Prelacy Clergy, Yeretsgins & Representatives to the National Association of Ladies' Guilds
Photos courtesy of the Armenian Prelacy
The Eastern Prelacy concluded its 2018 National Representative Assembly (NRA) last weekend. Clergy and Lay delegates representing our parishes joined the Executive Councils (Religious and Lay) at St. Gregory the Illuminator Church of Merrimack Valley in North Andover, Massachusetts.
His Holiness Aram I, Catholicos of the Holy See of Cilicia, has formally requested that the election of a new prelate be postponed until September 2018, and has asked His Eminence Archbishop Oshagan to continue serving as Prelate of the Eastern Prelacy until the election that is scheduled to take place on September 22, 2018 at a special meeting of the National Representative Assembly. Jack Mardoian, chairman of the Executive Council, made the announcement to the NRA, and after discussion the delegates unanimously agreed to accept His Holiness’s request.
In his keynote address Archbishop Oshagan thanked the host community and praised their dedication. He reminded the delegates and guests, “Twenty years ago, by the election and invitation of the Prelacy of the Eastern United States and Canada, I assumed my office as Prelate and after being re-elected for five terms, now today, other priorities become reason for me to stand before this honorable assembly and submit my resignation from my religious and administrative duties, with my best wishes for the continued success for the Prelacy’s mission and service.”
Archbishop Oshagan expressed his greetings and blessings to the newly elected Primate of the Eastern Diocese of the Armenian Church, Very Reverend Father Daniel Findikyan. Departing from his prepared remarks, His Eminence also expressed his best wishes to Archbishop Khajag Barsamian, who served as Primate for the past 28 years. He described the positive relationship he had with Archbishop Barsamian, and expressed his trust that the warm relationship would continue between the new Primate and new Prelate.
His Eminence acknowledged the important progress made during the tenure of his predecessor Archbishop Mesrob Ashjian, of blessed memory. “The fruit of his all-grateful dedication was taking the Prelacy, together with its communities, from a modest condition into newer and newer accomplishments.”
Speaking about the progress during his tenure Archbishop Oshagan said, “The most noteworthy work that I accomplished, with the support of the Executive Council, was the preparation of clergy. Our clergy ranks were facing serious concerns and needs. It was essential to have capable individuals with western values who could meet the needs of our Church and faithful.”
The Prelate then spoke about recent successful initiatives noting “let the work speak for itself.” Modestly he attributed the success “to our collective efforts that were made with sacrifice and faithfulness to principles, by the people and the diligent work of the administration, staff, and especially the dedication and loyalty of our people. And the failures, that were for sure unwilling, can be attributed to me and my short-sightedness for not seeing the questions exactly or clearly. However, I know very well, it is only the industrious person who makes mistakes or errors. Our collective memory must not lament when we look back. On the contrary, when we look back it must stimulate our abilities for new accomplishments,” Archbishop Oshagan said.
His Eminence ended with words of heartfelt thanks. “I feel it my heartfelt duty to extend my sincere thanks to all, without exception: to the Prelacy’s Vicar, to our Clergy, to my Assembly co-workers, to the Prelacy staff, benefactors, to all our compatriots of the church and nation. I beseech all of you to be With each other and for each other. I end with the farewell words of our Lord Jesus Christ. ‘Love each other. Love our Church, our Fatherland, and People.’ ”
The clergy of the Eastern Prelacy; Front row (left to right): Archpriest Aram Stepanian, Archpriest Antranig Baljian, Very Rev. Fr. Zareh Sarkissian, Very Rev. Fr. Sahag Yemishian, Archbishop Oshagan, Very Rev. Fr. Ghevont Pentezian, Archpriest Vazken Bekiarian (Retired), Archpriest Nerses Manoogian, Archpriest Gomidas Baghsarian (Retired). Back row: Rev. Fr. Mikael Der Khosrofian, Rev. Fr. Hrant Kevorkian, Rev. Fr. Nareg Terterian, Rev. Fr. Sarkis Aktavoukian, Rev. Fr. Hovnan Bozoian, Rev. Fr. Bedros Shetlilian, Rev. Fr. Mesrob Lakissian, Rev. Fr. Stephan Baljian, Rev. Fr. Torkom Chorbajian, Rev. Fr. Kapriel Nazarian. Absent from photo: Bishop Anoushavan Tanielian (Vicar General), Archpriest Zareh Sahakian (Retired), Archpriest Daron Stepanian
Executive (Religious & Lay) Council of the Eastern Prelacy (left to right): Mr. Harry Seouylemezian, Mrs. Susan Chtijian Erickson, Very Rev. Fr. Sahag Yemishian, Mr. Jack Mardoian Esq., Archbishop Oshagan, Archpriest Nerses Manoogian, Rev. Fr. Nareg Terterian, Ms. Karen Jehanian, Mr. Mark Phillips, Mr. Veh Bezdikian. Absent from photo: Mr. Raffi Ourlian