Reception Pays Tribute to Bishop Haigazoun

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Named Pontifical Legate of Central Europe, Sweden

NEW YORK — Recently, a reception was held in honor of Bishop Haigazoun Najarian, who was recently elevated to this rank and was appointed pontifical legate of Central Europe and Sweden.

Najarian has served the Armenian Church for more than two decades at the Eastern Diocese of the United States. When he was in New York in late December, Hagop Vartivarian, the Tekeyan Cultural Association of New York and New Jersey chair, and his wife, Maria, hosted a reception in honor of the newly-appointed bishop.

Amongst the notable attendees, were the United States Eastern Diocese Primate; Khajag Barsamian and a few of the Tekeyan Cultural Association committee members and friends.

Najarian attended the Vahan Tekeyan School in Beirut and then the Hovagimian-Manougian secondary school. He then immigrated to Armenia and graduated from Echmiadzin’s Gevorgian Theological Seminar, and he became consecrated an apegha or celibate priest in London in 1975, after graduating from a high level Kings Theology college in England. Upon his graduation, he served as pastor for three years of the St. Peter Armenian Church in London. In 1981, he returned to Armenia to become the assistant director of Echmiadzin’s Theological Seminary, then he became a vartabed (a higher level of celibate priest) in 1983, a few years later, he advanced his rank to Dzayrakouyn Vartabed and became the director of the theological Seminary. He was invited to New York, in 1994, by Archbishop Torkom Manougian, who was the primate of the Eastern Diocese at the time, to continue his education and fill the position of vicar general, at the Diocese. He also served parishes in New Jersey, Texas and Pennsylvania. The latter years at the US he has held the position of second to the Primate of the Diocese of New York.

He has stayed a cordial friend of the TCA and ADL, upholding his nationalistic religious service to the Armenian Church. He has always encouraged and has been present and participated at TCA programs and events, in all the countries where he has served.

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The host of the reception, Hagop Vartivarian, gave his heartfelt congratulatory speech and presented the Primate with a special work of art that depicted a church in the background, by the talented Lebanese-Armenian painter Krikor Norigian.

Archbishop Yeghiché Gizirian and Diocesan Council members Papken Megerian and Dr. Raffy Hovanessian, also expressed their heartfelt congratulations to the newly-appointed bishop, and wishing him success in his religious community endeavors, in Europe, where he will be very much appreciated.

Najarian was touched greatly and with great emotion, expressed his appreciation for this intimate reception, surrounded by genuine friends, he reminisced and noted some of his special memories from his years of service in America and he thanked Archbishop Khajag Barsamian for his big brotherly advice, that had helped him in the past years and lastly, he specifically thanked Catholicos of All Armenians Karekin for his ordination.

Barsamian expressed his feeling of great contentment, when he was personally present at the Najarian’s elevation to the rank of pontificial legate of Central Europe and Sweden, he noted the noble, spiritual soul of service that Najarian possesses and his qualifications as a religious compatriot, endowed with an extensive education and a loyal servant to the Mother See of Echmiadzin.

 

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