LOS ANGELES — Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate of the Western Diocese of the Armenian Church, paid a visit to TCA Arshag Dickranian School on Friday, October 1, during which he addressed the upper-grade students. The Primate was accompanied by the Very Rev. Manoug Markarian, parish priest of St. John Armenian Church, and Rev. Avedis Abovian, youth director of the Western Diocese.
The students had gathered at the Walter and Laurel Karabian Hall and taken their seats when the clerics arrived to meet with them.
Derderian first talked about the importance of a Christian education, calling on the students to attend church and make the teachings of the Armenian Church an essential part of their lives, learning and growth. During his interactive conversation he touched upon the kind of problems facing adolescents these days and emphasized that the church could help those who sought guidance.
“Sometimes it is hard to solve our problems on our own,” he said. “The church is here for you, please don’t hesitate to call on us.”
Markarian and Abovian then spoke about how the church may help students deal with worldly challenges they face, reciting their own past experiences. School Board Chairman George Mandossian addressed the students at the conclusion of the program, urging them to appreciate and apply the messages and advice given by the visiting clergy. “I am much older than all of you and I learned a lot from these discussions,” he said.
The students then split into three discussion groups gathering around Derderian, Markarian and Abovian to express their personal thoughts and discuss issues in more detail.