Catholicos Karekin II Visits Future Site of Seminary
When His Holiness Karekin II, the Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians, traveled to New York shortly before Thanksgiving, he toured the future site of St. Nersess Seminary in the company of the main benefactors of the seminary project, Mr. and Mrs. Haig and Elza Didizian.
His Holiness Karekin II arrived at the site in Armonk, N.Y.—which is currently under construction—with the Didizians and seminary board members Haig Ariyan, Michael Haratunian, Hagop Kouyoumdjian, and Kevork Toroyan.
Having viewed the beautiful property (which is located a short distance from the seminary’s current home in New Rochelle, N.Y.) and having reviewed the ambitious plans for developing it as center of learning for future clergy and lay leaders of the Armenian Church, His Holiness, the Didizians, and the board members traveled to the Diocesan Center in Manhattan, where they were welcomed by Diocesan Primate Archbishop Khajag Barsamian and new seminary dean the Rev. Fr. Mardiros Chevian.
Catholicos Karekin II with Mr. and Mrs. Haig and Elza Didizian and seminary board members
Kevork Toroyan, Hagop Kouyoumdjian, Michael Haratunian, and Haig Ariyan.
In the formal reception room of the Diocesan Center, Fr. Chevian presented St. Nersess Seminary’s expanded mission to Catholicos Karekin II. The new dean and the board members emphasized their hope to strengthen the enduring relationships between St. Nersess Seminary and the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadizin, as well as with the Armenian Patriarchate of Jerusalem.
After listening to the presentation, His Holiness offered his own recommendations, commending the plans and assuring the others that Holy Etchmiadzin and the Catholicos himself would be supportive of them.
He added that it was his great wish to see St. Nersess succeed in its mission for the Armenian Church and its dioceses in America.
The Catholicos offered a special blessing upon the Didizians, for undertaking another worthy project-one of their many benefactions which have advanced the mission of the church in Armenia, America, and abroad.
The Didizians, who reside in the United Kingdom, are the main benefactors of the seminary project. Through their generosity the new seminary complex will include the His Holiness Karekin I Theological Center, and a chapel. In addition, there are three existing structures on the new property which will be renovated and expanded to include housing for single and married students and faculty, a Dean’s residence, youth center, and a small workout and exercise facility, with an anticipated completion date of 2014. Donors will have naming opportunities for the renovation projects and the campus grounds.