July 21, 2016
His Holiness Aram I sent a letter of condolence to the President of France, Francois Hollande, following the tragic attack in Nice during the French National Day celebrations. The Catholicos deplored the act of violence perpetrated on a large crowd of people celebrating the July 14 holiday. His Holiness stated that violence is a global evil that transcends religion, nation, and boundaries.
His Holiness assured the President and the French people of his prayers for those who died. He wished for a quick recovery for all of those injured and expressed the solidarity of the Armenian Church and people with the people of France.
A three-day youth conference in Antelias, Lebanon, concluded on Saturday. The conference took place in the reception hall of the Cilicia Museum under the auspices and guidance of His Holiness Aram I. Very Rev. Fr. Bedros Manuelian opened the conference and noted that “the theme of the conference, ‘Armenian Youth and Social Media,’ demonstrates the determination of the Catholicos to strengthen reciprocity between the youth and the church through the new technology.”
In his introductory address His Holiness told the participants that because modern technologies of communication have become very powerful, users of social media must consider how they use that power. He advised participants to be aware when they write on social media that they have the potential to influence others. He cautioned them not to fall into the easy expressions of the dominant global culture, but rather to keep their identity strong and work to preserve Armenian culture and identity based on the spiritual values of the church.
Plenary presentations included: “Social Media and Education,” by Shaghig Kandaharian-Koudaverdian; “The Positive and Negative Impact of Social Media,” by Tamar Hasheolian; “Social Media and identity,” by Dr. Antranig Dakessian. Three other speakers, Christine Arzoumanian-Ghazarian, Araz Kojayan, and Aram Somounjian addressed the following topics: branding, content creation, blogs, and photography.
In the final plenary session, participants heard a lecture on “Social Media and the Armenian Cause,” presented by Hrag Avedanian and Shiraz Djerdjian. Citing the example of the aggression by Azerbaijan on Karabagh in March 2016, they pointed out the misuse of technology for propaganda purposes.
At the conclusion of the conference the participants adopted a statement that briefly stated some of the conclusions of the conference.
Editor’s Note: Nevair Oranjian from St. Sarkis Church of Douglaston, New York and Tro Panosian from St. Illuminator’s Cathedral of New York City participated in the conference. The following is their reflection about the trip.
The purpose of the conference was to engage the youth of the Diaspora, and to create a forum for youth to share ideas and concerns in the evolving Armenian Diaspora.
As a group, we met with the Vehapar, received his blessing, and visited the Armenian Orthodox Monastery in Bikfaya. Lecture topics included the lawsuit for the return of the Catholicosate in Sis, the role of social media in maintaining the Diaspora, and closing the gap between the youth and the Armenian Church.
Amid the lectures were trips to the Cilicia Museum, the Seminary at Bikfaya, The Birds’ Nest  in Jbail, and a boat ride on the Mediterranean at Byblos. This trip was an enlightening opportunity for our youth community members to connect with young Armenian global leaders, position our New York youth community for closer ties with the church, and harness the wisdom of the Church for guidance in our personal and community-related activities.
For both of us, the most significant aspect of the conference was the opportunity to connect with church leaders and other Armenians. It was a uniquely refreshing experience to spend time with the clergy in Antelias and connect with them on a personal level. Seeing the love and compassion they put into their service to God, as well as their understanding of the Armenian youth, brought each of us closer to the church. From surprising conference attendees with a birthday cake, taking our group out to a local café, and being available to speak about any topic, we all established a deep bond with them. Furthermore, connecting with other young Armenians was significant, as the bridges between our youth will allow the seamless transfer of ideas going forward. The friendships formed will undoubtedly strengthen not only our commitment to service, but also the power of our individual communities.
The more than two decades of visionary leadership of His Holiness Aram I, Catholicos of the Holy See of the Great House of Cilicia, will be marked on Sunday, October 9. The celebratory day will begin with a Pontifical Divine Liturgy at Sts. Vartanantz Church in Ridgefield, New Jersey, celebrated by His Holiness. In the afternoon a special cultural program prepared specifically for this occasion will take place at the Marriott at Glenpointe in Teaneck, New Jersey, that will be followed with a banquet and anniversary celebration at the same venue. This event will be the one and only celebration honoring His Holiness within the Eastern Prelacy.
A special commemorative booklet is being prepared on this occasion that will chronicle the many accomplishments of His Holiness in different fields of his distinguished service to church and nation.
His Holiness was consecrated Catholicos of Cilicia on July 1, 1995. During the past twenty-one years under his leadership a new page in the history of the ancient Holy See of Cilicia has been filled with many accomplishments that include new initiatives for educational religious and cultural programs, strengthening the Diaspora and the Homeland, promoting and supporting ecumenism and interfaith relations, defending the Armenian Cause, and nurturing the physical and spiritual growth of the Cilician See.
Archbishop Oshagan and Bishop Anoushavan visited the 11th annual St. Sarkis Church Summer Camp in Douglaston, New York today. Campers happily greeted them and sang songs they had learned in the past days. Father Nareg Terterian, Pastor of St. Sarkis Church, welcomed the Prelate and Vicar and spoke about the highlights of the program. Archbishop Oshagan encouraged the campers to keep this program strong. Following the program both Srpazans shared a meal with the campers.
Archbishop Oshagan, Bishop Anoushavan, and Rev. Fr. Nareg with campers and staff members at St. Sarkis Church, Douglaston, New York.
Bible readings for Sunday, July 24, Fourth Sunday of Transfiguration of Our Lord Jesus Christ, are Isaiah 58:13-59:7; 1 Timothy 4:12-5:10; John 3:13-21.  
No one has ascended into heaven except the one who descended from heaven, the Son of Man. And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.  
For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.  
Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Those who believe in him are not condemned; but those who do not believe are condemned already, because they have not believed in the name of the only Son of God. And this is the judgment, that the light has come into the world, and people loved darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil. For all who do evil hate the light and do not come to the light, because their deeds may not be exposed. But those who do what is true come to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that their deeds have been done in God. (John 3:13-21)  
For a listing of the coming week’s Bible readings Click Here.
Some of the impressions of students who attended this year’s St. Gregory of Datev Summer Institute Summer Program, held at St. Mary of Providence Center, in Elverson, Pennsylvania, July 3-10, 2016:  
I had a lot of fun and I learned a lot from the classes. I also made many new friends. I hope to come again next year. Nerses Donoyan (1st year student)  
The classes are very interesting and they give us plenty of free time to have fun. Overall Datev is a great place and I look forward to coming back next year. Cedric Nahas (2nd year student)  
Datev is always a wonderful getaway from our busy summers to come together as a unified community. Every year all of the teachers and students are respectful, patient, and create a great learning environment. No matter what age or year you’re in, Datev is a great place to make friends and to learn about our Armenian faith! Katherine Jemian (3rd year student)  
Datev is not like any summer camp. It’s a place of education, worship, and fun. Being a Datevastsi is a huge privilege and every year it gets better and better. Not only do I feel closer to God, but I have made lasting relationship with fellow Datevatsis. Datev is like a second home for me. It is a place where I can grow in my faith, learn about my heritage and make memories that will last a lifetime. I hope to come back next year. Aleen Takvorian (4th year student)  
I’ve learned so much about Armenian history. I didn’t know that there were six kingdoms of Armenia, and that they were all lead by powerful rulers. I also didn’t know how healthy the Armenian empire was back then, that we have traded with the Europeans, Russians and Chinese. Learning my Armenian history has taught me how much my people have endured and how we should seek justice for the crimes committed against us. Karina Bayrakdarian (4th year student)  
I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to return as a post grad and to continue to learn more about my faith and have a closer relationship with God. I look forward to coming again next year. Deborah Agopian (5th year student)  
To read more impressions, please click here.
Although it is summer time and school is on vacation, plans are in progress for the 2016-2017 term of the Prelacy’s Siamanto Academy. The Academy, under the direction of the Armenian National Education Committee, presents classes on Armenian history, culture, and current issues. Classes take place at the Hovnanian School in New Milford, New Jersey, every second Saturday of the month beginning September 10. For information: ANEC@armenianprelacy.org or 212-689-7231.
This Week In Armenian History
Prepared by the Armenian National Education Committee (ANEC)
The Ottoman Revolution (July 23, 1908)
1908 was a break it or make it year for the Ottoman Empire, which was on the brink of collapse. Its interrupted process of modernizations was to be resumed.
The process of internal reform initiated with the imperial edicts of 1839 and 1856 led to the promulgation of the Constitution of 1876, which ushered the First Constitutional Era. Sultan Abdul Hamid II (1876-1908), who had sanctioned the Constitution, suspended it in 1878 and launched his thirty-year long tyrannical rule.
The conservative politics of Abdul Hamid went against the current of social reform and more liberal environment. His tightened rule dismissed all claims by minorities. His repressive policies peaked with the massacre of Armenians in 1894-1896, which cost the life of some 300,000 people.
The Committee of Union and Progress (CUP), an underground organization founded in 1889, functioned as an umbrella party for the movement of the Young Turks, which sought to end with the rule of Abdul Hamid and to prevent the collapse of the empire. To this goal, they looked forward to an alliance with the revolutionary forces that functioned within the ethnic minorities, including the Armenians, in two opposition congresses convened in 1902 and 1907. The Hunchakian party rejected to cooperate on the grounds that the CUP tried to impose its Ottomanist plan and leave aside any particular concern or demand from the minorities. On the other hand, the Armenian Revolutionary Federation accepted the offer, considering a priority the overthrow of Abdul Hamid’s regime. Different methods of civil disobedience were anticipated, with an armed rebellion anticipated for October 1908.
The CUP had moved its headquarters to Salonica (Thessalonika in Macedonia, now part of Greece) in 1906. Military officers gained to the cause of the Young Turks accelerated the revolt after a meeting of King Edward VII of England and Czar Nicholas II of Russia in the Baltic port of Reval (now Tallinn, the capital of Estonia) in June 1908. During the meeting, new reforms were drafted for the region of Macedonia, which in the end would be detached from the Ottoman Empire after the Balkan War of 1912.
The fear that the meeting was a prologue to the separation of Macedonia led to the mutiny against the sultan, which was initiated by major Ahmed Niyazi on July 3 with a demand to restore the constitution. The movement spread rapidly throughout Macedonia. The attempt by Abdul Hamid to suppress the uprising failed, with the garrisons of Constantinople and Asia Minor being also favorable to the rebels. The sultan capitulated and on the night of July 23-24 the restoration of the Ottoman Constitution of 1876 was announced. Abdul Hamid II became a nominal ruler and the power went to the revolutionaries. Decrees establishing freedom of speech and press, and a general amnesty were soon issued.
General elections were held in November and December 1908, and the CUP won a majority in the Parliament. The election was marred with fraud and threats in places where Armenian candidates were on the ballot. As a result, only 12 Armenian deputies were elected out of a total of 230.  The Senate reconvened on December 17, 1908, and the Chamber of Deputies held its first session on January 30, 1909.
Armenian hopes that the motto of “equality, fraternity, freedom, justice” carried by the revolution would turn into real change were soon dashed.
In April 1909 Abdul Hamid attempted to seize his power back with promises to restore the sharia-based system and eliminate secular policies. He attracted the support of masses of theological students and clerics, as well as army units, which revolted on April 13, 1909. The Liberation Army coming from Macedonia and commanded by Mahmud Shevket Pasha restored the status quo and quashed the counterrevolutionary movement on April 24, 1909. However, in the meantime, the double massacre of Adana and surroundings, with its catastrophic sequel, was carried both by representatives of the “ancien regime” and the local Young Turks on April 13-15 and April 25-27, 1909, with an outcome of up to 30,000 Armenians, as well as Assyrians and Greeks massacred. The failure of the Ottoman government to prosecute and thoroughly punish the culprits of the massacre created profound disillusionment among Armenians. By 1910-1911 the revolutionary movement, caught in the conflict within the CUP among conservatives and liberals, was finished. The Libya war of 1911 and the Balkan War of 1912 essentially threw the empire out of Africa and Europe, and led to the coup d’état of January 1913 and the establishment of the government headed by the triumvirate of Talaat, Enver, and Jemal. World War I and the Armenian Genocide were not very far ahead.
Previous entries in “This Week in Armenian History” are on the Prelacy’s web site (www.armenianprelacy.org).
Prepared by the Armenian National Education Committee (ANEC)
When Speakers Invent New Words
People apparently tend to think that the diphthongs yoo (իւ) and ioo (իու) are pronounced in the same way, and that the fact that their spelling is different is nothing more than a quirky twist of the language (think of the English words cheese, please, sleaze, and freeze). Therefore, the two diphthongs in the word miootyoon (միութիւն “union”) are pronounced in the same way. But they should not be. The failure to understand this difference has led to common twists in pronunciation.
You have the case of diphthongs being inverted, as if the speakers were affected by dyslexia:
  1.       haryoor (հարիւր “hundred”) => hayroor (հայրուր)
  2.       aryoon (արիւն “blood”) => ayroon (այրուն).
Then we have some diphthongs where the sound yoo is turned by the magic wand into ooy:
  1.       myoos (միւս “other”) => mooys (մույս)
  2.       tzyoon (ձիւն “snow”) => tzooyn (ձույն)
  3.       kyood (գիւտ “invention, discovery”) Ü kooyd (գույտ)
  4.       pyoor (բիւր “many”) => pooyr (բույր)
(Note: the word pooyr (correctly spelled բոյր means “fragrance”)
And vice versa:
  • (ողջոյն “greetings”) => voghchyoon (ողջիւն)
To close the gallery, it is worth mentioning a case where the uncomplicated sound oo becomes yoo:
  • (փետուր “feather) => pedyoor (փետիւր)
Those speakers of the English language who are of Spanish or Italian origin always have difficulty to properly pronounce, for instance, ship and sheep. If you go and check the writing of the above mentioned Armenian words, you will notice that there is no such problem: you pronounce what you read. If you can’t, then you may need... to get glasses.
Armenian families from Syria who are currently living in Armenia received humanitarian aid provided by the Prelacy’s “St. Nerses the Great Charitable Fund: (Metsn Nerses). The aid was distributed through the Aleppo Compatriotic Charitable Organization in Yerevan (ACCO). The ACCO expressed deepest gratitude to the Metsn Nerses charitable organization for the donated goods. The latest distribution included 600 pairs of new shoes.  
The ACCO’s objective is to provide emergency relief assistance to vulnerable Syrian families and individuals and to assist in their settlement in Armenia. The organization was registered in Armenia in 2013, and in the United States in 2014 as a non-governmental organization (NGO).  
The Prelacy’s St. Nerses the Great Charitable Organization was established in 1993. All of the Prelacy’s programs in Armenia, including administrative costs, are financed through donations, sponsorships, and designated endowment funds.
The crisis in Syria requires our financial assistance.
Please keep this community in your prayers, your hearts, and your pocketbooks.  
Armenian Prelacy
138 E. 39th Street
New York, NY 10016
Checks payable to: Armenian Apostolic Church of America
(Memo: Syrian Armenian Relief)  
Thank you for your help.


A Documentary Film
"Map of Salvation” is a documentary film about the Armenian Genocide that tells the story of five European missionaries who witnessed the horrors of the Armenian Genocide in 1915 and saved thousands of Armenian orphans. The missionaries featured are: Maria Jakobsen, Karen Eppe, Bodil Bjorn, Alma Johansson, and Hedwig Bul. All left their comfortable lives in Europe and devoted themselves selflessly and unconditionally to the survivors.
“Map of Salvation,” 88 minutes, $15.00 plus shipping & handling
To order contact the Bookstore by email (books@armenianprelacy.org) or telephone (212-689-7810).
July 30—Armenian American Night, Harry Chapin Lakeside Theater, Eisenhower Park, East Meadow, New York. Armenian entertainment at its best. Sponsored by Nassau County Department of Parks, Recreation and Museums. For information: 516-761-0042 or 516-572-0355.
August 4—Armenians for Sheriff Peter J. Koutoujian reception, 7-9 pm, Holiday Inn, Tewksbury, off Route 133. Fundraiser to re-elect candidate as sheriff of Middlesex County. Persons can donate securely on-line at https://secure.actblue.com/contribute/page/mvarmenian.
August 14—Annual Picnic, Sts. Vartanantz Church, Ridgefield, New Jersey, at the Wild Duck Pond, Ridgewood, New Jersey, following the Badarak.
August 14—St. Sarkis Church, Dearborn, Michigan, Annual Church Picnic at Kensington Park, 4570 Huron River Parkway, Milford, Michigan 48380. Lunch beginning at 12 noon includes delicious kebabs and refreshments. Blessing of the Grapes at 3 pm. Armenian music, picnic games, kids area, and much more, rain or shine. For information: Church office (313) 336-6200.
August 14—Sts. Vartanantz Church, Providence, Rhode Island, Annual Picnic under auspices of Archbishop Oshagan Choloyan, at Camp Haiastan, Franklin, Massachusetts starting at 12 noon. Shish, losh, and chicken kebob dinners served all day. Armenian pastries and choreg available. Frenchies popcorn and apples. Blessing of the Grapes and Madagh at 3:30 pm. Music by Mike Gregian and Ensemble with guest Joe Zeitounian. All New England churches and communities are invited to attend. Rain or shine. For information: church office (401) 831-6399.
August 22—St. Sarkis Church, Dearborn, Michigan, 41st Annual Golf and Tennis Classic at Tam-O-Shanter Country Club. Golf and dinner $250. Dinner only $125. For information: Church office (313) 336-6200.
September 11—Picnic Festival sponsored by St. Gregory Church, of Merrimack Valley, noon to 5:30 pm, 158 Main Street, North Andover, Massachusetts. Music by Leon Janikian, John Berberian, Jason Naroian, and John Arzigian. Celebrating Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross. Shish, losh, chicken kebab, vegetarian dinners, take-out; family games and activities. Information: www.saintgregory.org or 978-685-5038.
October 6—SAVE THE DATE. Shadoyan Fashion Show “Exclusive Collection” of Evening Gowns and “Reincarnation” Armenian National Costumes. Sponsored by ARS Eastern USA. Details to follow.
October 9—SAVE THE DATE. Special event celebrating the 20th anniversary of the enthronement of His Holiness Aram I, Catholicos of the Great House of Cilicia. Details will follow.
October 22—SAVE THE DATE. Armenian Friends of America presents Hye Kef 5, a 5-hour dance, 7 pm to midnight with buffet; Andover Windham, 123 Old River Road, featuring musicians Onnik and Ara Dinkjian, Johnny Berberian, Mal Barsamian, Jason Naroian and Paul Mooradian, with proceeds benefiting area Armenian churches. Advance tickets before September 1, $55, call either John Arzigian (603) 560-3826; Sharke Der Apkarian, (978) 808-0598; Lucy Sirmaian, (978) 683-9121, or Peter Gulezian, (978) 375-1616.
October 23—Opening reception of joint photograph exhibit titled, “East Meets West,” compiled by Tom Vartabedian and Sona (Dulgarian) Gevorkian, featuring eclectic pictures of Armenia and Artsakh, 2-5 pm, at Armenian Museum of America (AMA), 65 Main Street, Watertown, Massachusetts, co-sponsored by Project SAVE Armenian Photograph Archives. Exhibit will be displayed through November.
November 4, 5, 6—Annual Bazaar and Food Festival of Sts. Vartanantz Church, 461 Bergen Boulevard, Ridgefield, New Jersey. Live entertainment Friday and Saturday; children’s activities; vendors; homemade Manti, Kufte, Sou Buereg, Choreg, and more. Traditional Khavourma dinner on Sunday. Extensive Messe and dessert menu for your Thanksgiving table available for take-out.
November 12 and 13—Armenian Fest 2016, Sts. Vartanantz Armenian Church, Providence, Rhode Island, presents Armenian Food Festival at Rhodes on the Pawtuxet, Broad Street, Cranston, Rhode Island. Chicken, losh, and shish kebab and kufta dinners. Armenian delicacies, dancing to live music, arts and crafts, flea market, gift baskets, children’s corner, country store, jewelry, hourly raffles. Armenian Dance Group will perform on Saturday and Sunday at 5 pm. Armenian food and pastry available all day. Saturday, noon to 9 pm; Sunday, noon to 8 pm. For information: www.armenianfestri.com/ or church office, (401) 831-6399.
138 East 39th Street | New York, NY 10016 US
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