The Prelates of the Eastern Prelacy, His Eminence Archbishop Anoushavan; the Canadian Prelacy, His Eminence Archbishop Papken, and the Western Prelacy, His Grace Bishop Torkom met Wednesday, October 6, in the offices of the Armenian Prelacy of New York, following up on their online meeting earlier this year.
Following the opening prayer, His Holiness Catholicos Aram I joined in the meeting by videoconference. His Holiness praised highly the dedication of the Prelates to overcome through joint efforts the effects of the coronavirus pandemic. He also lauded the material and moral support for our Lebanese Armenian brethren displayed by the faithful in our North American communities as Lebanon faces an unprecedented crisis.
The Catholicos pointed out that the growth of parishes and winning over our youth must be the focal point of the joint efforts. He said that soon four young priests would be arriving in North America to assist the local clergy and expand the spiritual mission of our Church. His Holiness concluded by expressing his wishes for a productive meeting.
The Prelates listened to presentations about religious and Armenian education, as well as activities carried out within the parishes. They also examined the unprecedented situation created by the coronavirus pandemic.
Therefore, the Prelates:
- On behalf of the clergy, the lay leadership and the faithful of the prelacies, expressed their loyalty to the Catholicosate of the Great House of Cilicia, that is called upon to serve unconditionally our people, and their filial gratitude to the Catholicos of the Great House of Cilicia who leads our people through extremely difficult circumstances with God-given wisdom, energy and vision, and opens new horizons with his fatherly exhortations.
- In response to Catholicos Aram I’s appeal, they continue to support the Lebanese Armenian community, focusing their efforts on schools and students at this stage.
- The Prelates have decided to:
- Relaunch His Holiness’ ten-year action plan for the Prelacies.
- Re-examine the pastoral guidelines for matters of liturgy, sacraments, education, meetings, discipline, and public relations.
- Hold the next year the joint clergy conference of the three Prelacies convention of clergymen, which was began in 2000 and had to be interrupted because of Covid-19.
- Extend until further notice the liturgical changes adopted as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
- Create a joint committee for Christian education which, taking advantage of the modern resources employed in the Prelacies, make the Church present in the life of young people.
- Making use of modern technological resources, impulse joint educational and editorial programs for the three Prelacies.
- Hold periodically such meetings with the blessings of His Holiness in order to contribute to the success of joint efforts.
The Prelates hope that the execution of the decisions adopted in the meeting will contribute to give new value to the mission of the Church in Armenian life for the glory of God.
SECRETARIAT OF THE EASTERN, WESTERN, AND CANADIAN PRELACIES