SAM representatives Chris Parnagian (left) and Antranig Kasparian with Archbishop Anoushavan at Eastern Prelacy offices.
On Wednesday, August 24, His Eminence Archbishop Anoushavan, Prelate, received the visit of Antranig J. Kasbarian and Christopher P. Parnagian to discuss the progress to date and near-term plans of Save Armenian Monuments (SAM). The meeting covered the last few months of SAM activity, including church site cleanup and maintenance work in Artsakh, monument-related educational tools distributed by SAM to Eastern Prelacy parishes, SAM participation in the 2022 International Religious Freedom (IRF) Summit at Washington, D.C., and contemplated Fall 2022 and Spring 2023 initiatives of SAM. The Prelate inquired as to the status of prior attempted pilgrimages by SAM to religious sites in Artsakh and was brought up-to-date on the challenges and opportunities in that regard.
Founded in 2020, SAM is a subsidiary of the Eastern Prelacy and pursues the safeguarding of in situ Armenian Christian heritage at risk, in particular the safeguarding and awareness-building of at-risk churches, monasteries, gravesites, stone crosses, and other sacred sites and structures located in Artsakh and the wider region. Dr. Kasbarian serves as an advisor to SAM and Mr. Parnagian is its general counsel; Virginia Davies is SAM’s founder and president; Simon Maghakyan serves as its executive director. Additional SAM advisors include Prof. Christina Maranci, Mr. Raffi Tanielian, Rev. Fr. Nareg Terterian, and Prof. Heghnar Watenpaugh.