Western Prelacy Family Celebrates Prelate’s Milestone Anniversaries

On Friday, September 29, 2017, members of the Western Prelacy family gathered at “Dikran and Zarouhie Der Ghazarian” Hall for a special celebration in honor of H.E. Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian, Prelate, on the occasion of his 40th anniversary of ordination to the priesthood, 20th anniversary of ordination as Bishop, more than two decades as Prelate, and his 60th birthday. The celebration was hosted by the Executive Council.

Guests included ARF Central Committee Chairman Mr. Daron Der Khatchadourian and Political Chair Mr. Avedik Izmirlian, Catholicosate Central Executive members Mr. Khajag Dikijian and Mr. Vahe Yacoubian, members of the Clergy, Executive Council, parishes Boards of Trustees Chairs, Ladies Auxiliary, and staff. Also in attendance were the Prelate’s Godparents of ordination, Mr. and Mrs. John and Asdghig Bedrosian, and family members.

Following a cocktail hour, the official program commenced with welcoming remarks by Archpriest Fr. Vazken Atmajian, who served as the evening’s Master of Ceremonies. The Prelate delivered the invocation. Executive Council Chair Mr. Vahe Hovaguimian congratulated the Prelate, praised his vast contributions to the Western Prelacy, and wished him continued success in his mission, stating, “The Prelate’s service within the Western Prelacy began in 1982. To this day, he serves with that same youthful energy and devotion.”

In honor of this occasion, artist Razmik Hajikian had painted a portrait of the Prelate, which he unveiled and gifted to His Eminence.

The MC read the Prelate’s biography, highlighting his four-decades of faithful service for the advancement of the Armenian Apostolic Church and community.

During dinner, guests enjoyed musical entertainment by Greg Hosharian on the piano and Salpy Kerkonian on the flute.

The program continued with the reading of His Holiness Catholicos Aram I’s Letter of Blessing. The Prelate and clergy, singing the hymn “Oorakh Ler,” proceeded to the stage to hear the message, which was read by Very Rev. Fr. Barouyr Shernezian.

His Holiness congratulated the Prelate’s significant milestones, noting that milestone anniversaries are memorable occasions but also an impetus in the life of a clergyman. “The meaning and path of a clergymen’s life is devoted and selfless service. Your life has been filled with service, enriched through service, and measured by service for the past forty years. As a member of the Holy See of Cilicia Brotherhood, you pledged a life of service to the Armenian Church and people, and indeed, service became a part of your essence, of your daily life, as you served with a keen sense of awareness and with initiative, from Antelias, to Greece, to the United States. Your service was always coupled with allegiance toward the Holy See of Cilicia and its supreme virtues. Your service has been marked by devotion, faithfulness, and also by hard work. Your tenure as Prelate has been distinguished by great accomplishments in church and school building, in particular the construction of the Western Prelacy headquarters. Under your leadership, and through the united efforts of consecutive Executive Councils and affiliated bodies, you have also achieved strides in Christian Education, cultural, organizational, and other arenas. Your role in where the Western Prelacy stands today is highly commendable,” wrote His Holiness, and concluded by wishing the Prelate a healthy and full life filled with continued service and successes.

Congratulatory remarks and expressions of well wishes continued after a solo performance by Archpriest Fr. Razmig Khatchadourian. On behalf of the clergy, Very Rev. Fr. Torkom Donoyan congratulated the Prelate and lauded his virtues and faithful pastoral service, referring to His Eminence as dynamic, diligent, methodical, focused, and a doer.

On behalf of the staff, Mrs. Knar Kortoshian congratulated the Prelate and attested to his diligent service as a staff member working closely with the Prelate on a daily basis.
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Mrs. Silva Sayabalian conveyed the Ladies Auxiliary’s congratulations and gratitude for the Prelate’s enduring wisdom and guidance.

Recalling their long-time friendship, Mr. John Bedrosian stated that he has always known the Prelate to be a visionary, industrious, go-getter, and strong-willed spiritual leaders, noting, “while this Western Prelacy headquarters was a dream to many, the Prelate turned it into reality with his foresight and diligence.”

On behalf of the Executive Council, Vice-Chair Mr. Garo Eshgian wished the Prelate many healthy years to come and stated, “The Prelate has faithfully devoted forty years of his life to serving the Armenian Church and nation, and has had invaluable input and contributions to the reorganization and expansion of our Prelacy. It has not always been a smooth process, but thanks to his hard-working nature, tact, and take-charge attitude, the Prelate has been able to overcome all challenges and bumps in the road, building an unparalleled legacy within our Prelacy.”

Mr. Khajag Dikijian congratulated the Prelate, lauding his impeccable record of pastoral service and stating that His Eminence has devoted a lifetime to our church and nation, approaching all duties and serving with indomitable will, prudence, wisdom, and passion, while maintain his eternal allegiance to the mission of the Holy See of Cilicia Brotherhood.

Afterward, the Executive Council gathered around the Prelate to present their gift and join in the cutting of the cake.

At last, the Prelate was invited to address the gathering. His Eminence first thanked God for the blessing of celebrating his milestone anniversaries together as one family. He expressed gratitude to His Holiness Catholicos Aram I for his Letter of Blessing and well wishes, greeted the guests, thanked the members of the Executive Council for graciously hosting the evening, and all the speakers for their kind and moving words. Speaking from forty years of experience, the Prelate stressed the importance of hard work and the futility of words without action. He highlighted also the importance of ongoing renewal, spiritual, intellectual, and in our service, for collective renewal can bring us closer to one another and strengthen one another. “In the past forty years, I have strived to serve faithfully for the glory of God, for the enhancement of our church, the splendor of the Holy See of Cilicia, the expansion of the Western Prelacy, and spiritual welfare of our people and collective life. This celebration is a great opportunity for reflection and renewal, to embark on future endeavors with renewed vigor, vitality, and zeal, and it is my hope and wish that we will continue our service with faith, mutual respect, understanding, and sincerity,” stated His Eminence. In conclusion, the Prelate reiterated a message he had delivered at a previous Representative Assembly, that “each accomplishment makes us realize that there is more to be done what has already been accomplished. Commendation must encourage us to strive for better, rather than lead us to be content with the status quo.”

The evening concluded with the benediction and “Cilicia.”

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