1. From left, Fr. Vasken Kouzouian, Rev. Antranig Baljian and Rev. Krikor Sabounjian

Armenian Couples Get Lessons on Happier Marriages


By Yeretzgeen Joanna Baghsarian

NATICK, Mass. — Friday, April 13, was a lucky night for couples who filled the banquet room of the Boston-Natick Crowne Plaza to capacity for a program focusing on building strong marriages.

The electrifying sound of camaraderie, laughter and joy greeted guests. This, combined with the soft, melodic Armenian and Christian selections of John Baboian’s Ovation guitar, blended in perfect harmony and spilled out into the long corridor.

I attended with my husband, Rev. Gomidas Baghsarian. We crossed the threshold and entered into another dimension. From a personal perspective, this writer was keenly aware of her surroundings. People from all walks of life and political persuasion were engaged in animated conversation. Friends and clergy from across Armenian religious life embraced with ecumenical warmth. Spring tulips — gifted by Dr. and Mrs. Seth Bilazarian — dotted the center of each table. This splash of color on white linen reminded me that renewal – in more ways than one – was waiting to happen.

Visionaries Rev. Dr. Avedis Boynerian, pastor of the Armenian Memorial Church in Watertown, his wife Dr. Arpi Boynerian, and Yeretzgeen LuAnn Sabounjian of the Holy Translators Metro West Armenian Apostolic Church organized the event and with a team of clergy, community leaders and parishioners, successfully implemented the first ever “Armenian Couples Night.”

Rev. Boynerian opened the program with “I love you” – three words that set the tone for the evening. He then invited Rev. Antranig Baljian from St. Stephen’s Armenian Apostolic Church of Watertown to bless the meal and the speakers.

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Married couples came from near and far to listen to guest speakers Drs. Paul and Virginia Friesen deliver the message of togetherness and faithfulness. The Friesens have written several books and have travelled throughout the world sharing this knowledge. They equip and encourage couples to live out healthy relationships. For many couples, the differences divide rather than unite. They taught ways to enrich our lives as a couple and as a family yet keep our identities as we pursue our personal dreams. Guests were challenged on how to change their hearts and embrace their differences from two very diverse educators whose temperaments are wired differently. And they accomplished this with class, humor and Godly wisdom.

2. From left, Yn. Luann Sabounjan, Dr.Virgina Friesen, Dr. Paul Friesen, Rev. Dr. Avedis Boynerian, Yn. Dr. Arpi Boynerian

At the end, Rev. Boynerian invited the eight clergy representing the Armenian Apostolic, Protestant and Catholic denominations to come forward and lead everyone in the Lord’s Prayer. This was the moment of Christian unity that will be remembered by everyone present. Rev. Vasken Kouzouian , Pastor of the Holy Trinity Armenian Church of Greater Boston, sealed the evening with a heartfelt prayer for everyone to depart in peace with God’s Agape Love and blessings.