At the St. Nersess Board of Directors meeting on May 17, Rev. Fr. Mardiros Chevian, Dean, presented an acculturation program that has been established for new priests from abroad. This program will further prepare clergy in sacramental and pastoral practices, American culture and traditions, ecumenical and inter-church relations, youth ministry, and administrative practices within our diocesan parishes. The program has already received positive feedback from clergy who are from Armenia serving in our diocese. Click here to view the complete program.
On Friday, May 30, St. Nersess Armenian Seminary celebrated the graduation of Subdeacon Saro Kalayjian, who received a diploma in Armenian Church Studies from St. Nersess, and on the following day, a Master of Divinity degree from St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary.
The event began with a Vesper service in the chapel. Following the service, Rev. Fr. Mardiros Chevian, Seminary Dean, opened the graduation ceremony by welcoming all who were present. Presiding at the event was Abp. Yeghishe Gizirian, spiritual father of St. Nersess Armenian Seminary. A message received from Abp. Khajag Barsamian, Primate of the Eastern Diocese and President of the St. Nersess Board of Directors, was read by Very. Rev. Fr. Simeon Odabashian, Diocesan Vicar. Very Rev. Dr. Alexander Rentel represented St. Vladimir's Orthodox Theological Seminary. Very Rev. Fr. Daniel Findikyan, Professor of Liturgical Studies at St. Nersess, spoke on behalf of the St. Nersess faculty. Other faculty members present were Very Rev. Fr. Mamigon Kiledjian, Rev. Fr. Karekin Kasparian, Rev. Fr. Untzag Nalbandian, Dr. Roberta Ervine and Garen Karamyan. Seminarians Kathryn Ashbahian and Arpi Nakashian spoke in English and Armenian respectively on behalf of the student body, and Subdeacon Saro Kalayjian spoke on the occasion of his graduation.
Other clergy and guests in attendance were Abp. Avak Asadourian, Primate of the Diocese of Iraq and graduate of St. Nersess and St. Vladimir’s Seminaries; Very Rev. Fr. Vazken Karayan; Rev. Fr. Arnak Kasparian; Rev. Fr. Gomidas Zohrabian; Rev. Fr. Bedros Kadehjian; Rev. Fr. Abraham Malkhasyan; Rev. Fr. Sevak Gabrielyan; Rev. Fr. Thomas Garabedian and Rev. Fr. Vertanes and Yn. Anahid Kalayjian, parents of Subdeacon Saro.
Many family and friends of the graduate enjoyed a reception on the seminary grounds and had an opportunity to personally congratulate him on his accomplishment.
Members of the St. Nersess Board of Directors met on Saturday, May 17, for their semi-annual board meeting. The meeting was presided by His Eminence Abp. Khajag Barsamian, Primate of the Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern) and President of the St. Nersess Board. Representing the Western Diocese, board member Rev. Fr. Sarkis Petoyan was also in attendance.
During the morning meeting, the board reviewed the finances and construction progress of the new St. Nersess campus in Armonk, NY. A lengthy discussion took place on fundraising for the general operations of the seminary, and the status of the New Rochelle property was also reviewed. In his report, Rev. Fr. Mardiros Chevian, Dean, announced that two new students have been accepted and will join the St. Nersess student body for the fall semester, and that there are additional applicants yet to be considered. Fr. Mardiros presented an acculturation program that has been established for new priests from abroad. This program will further prepare clergy in sacramental and pastoral practices, American culture and traditions, ecumenical and inter-church relations, youth ministry, and administrative practices within our diocesan parishes. He also identified new continuing education topics for local clergy that will be offered by St. Nersess in the coming months: Preaching, Bereavement Counseling, Marriage Counseling, and Parish Administration. The budget was also considered and passed for 2014-15.
Two new members were elected to the board: Haig Deranian of Belmont, MA, and Glenn Ajamian of Wyckoff, NJ, who was elected treasurer. The board will gather again in the fall.