Deacon Yervant Kutchukian, surrounded by a crowd of almost two hundred people including fellow classmates from St. Nersess as well as other seminary alumni, was ordained a Deacon at St. Peter Armenian Church in Watervliet, NY last Sunday.
During the moving ceremony that had Dn. Yervant crawling on his knees to be blessed before the Bishop, the community attested to his worthiness "to wear the yoke of this order [of the diaconate]"
Presiding over the ordination on Sunday, October 18 at St. Peter Armenian Church was His Eminence Archbishop Khajag Barsamian, Primate of the Eastern Diocese of America. Srpazan Hayr celebrated the Divine Liturgy, conducted the ordination service, and preached on the theme, The Year of Vocations: A Call to Serve. Also in attendance was the Rev Fr. Garen Gdanian, Pastor Emeritus of St. Peter Armenian Church and the Rev. Fr. Stepanos Doudoukjian, St. Nersess Director of Youth and Vocations and former pastor of St. Peter Armenian Church. Seminarians Justin Ajamian and Ben Rith-Najarian as well as recent alumni, Dn. Ryan Tellalian and Megan Jendian were on hand for the celebration.
During the lavish banquet, provided by members of the community, Deacon Yervant spoke about the theme of service and related it to his ordination to the diaconate. To be a deacon in the Armenian Church means to be a dedicated servant of God and a servant to God's people; it is obvious that Yervant epitomizes the role of a deacon.
Yervant graduated from St. Nersess in 2005 and is currently working full time as a chaplain at Albany Medical Center in the Pastoral Care unit. Our prayer for Dn Yervant is the prayer that was sung during the ordination rite, Asdvadzayin yev yergnayin shnorh... "The divine and heavenly gift that ever fulfills the necessities of the apostolic church, now calls Yervant from the sub-diaconate to the diaconate for the service of the holy church, according to his own and to all the people's testimony."