St. Vartan Armenian Cathedral was the location for a joyous celebration on Sunday, February 11, 2007. Dn. Jason Demerjian, a recent graduate of St. Nersess Armenian Seminary, was ordained into the Dioconate by the hand of Abp. Khajag Barsamian, Primate of the Diocese of the Armenian Church (Eastern).
Ordination into the Diaconate
Numerous family members and friends of Deacon Jason and his wife Anna, were present for the ordination, as were Abp. Yeghishe Gizirian and Fr. Arnak Kasparian, who watched from the chancel. Many of Deacon Jason's classmates at St. Nersess were honored to be able to serve with him. Shortly after the singing of Soorp Asdvadz, the Divine Liturgy, celebrated by Rev. Fr. Bedros Kadehjian, was paused so that the Ordination Service could begin.
Abp. Khajag Barsamian was vested in his Episcopal garments and proceeded to ascend the cathedral altar to begin the ordination of this newest candidate.
Fr. Daniel Findikyan, Dean of St. Nersess Armenian Seminary, and sponsoring priest for Dn. Jason, led him up the same altar stairs that he was led up for his priestly ordination exactly 10 years before. During the service, as Dn. Jason faced the faithful with raised hands, the choir sang he is worthy.
During his message to the faithful, Khajag Srpazan spoke of the major steps that Jason took throughout his life that brought him to his day of ordination. He noted that Deacon Jason grew up in the St. James parish of Watertown, MA, and later related how he was led to Armenia, where he became immersed in the culture and life of the country. He served for two years in the U.S. Peace Corps, and later founded the Armenian Volunteer Corps, which continues to bring volunteers from the Diaspora to serve in Armenia. Jason eventually met his wife Anna there, and was married at the monastery church of Lake Sevan. He returned to the United States and earned a Master of Divinity degree from Harvard University, before helping to establish, and serving as the Coordinator for, the Dept. of College Ministry at the Diocesan Headquarters in New York.
Abp. Khajag was happy that Deacon Jason decided to complete his Armenian studies at St. Nersess Armenian Seminary and looked forward to the day when he would have the opportunity to ordain Jason as a priest of the Armenian Apostolic Church.