Seminary Campus Donors Honored
On a brisk autumn evening on November 10, over 75 guests gathered at St. Nersess Armenian Seminary for the consecration of an exterior cross, two dedications, and a celebratory dinner. It was also the one-year anniversary of the consecration of the Armonk campus by His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians.
Before a crowd of naming donors, board members, seminary faculty and staff, seminarians, and clergy, His Eminence Archbishop Khajag Barsamian, Primate of the Eastern Diocese and President of the St. Nersess Board of Directors, blessed and consecrated the new exterior cross as part of the seminary’s campus. The cross was donated by Ms. Carol DerBoghosian in loving memory of Artur Kosian.
Following the consecration, the guests walked to the Founders Garden which was donated by the late Dn. Charles Pinajian and his wife Grace. Mrs. Pinajian was present with her son and daughter, Paul Pinajian and Lynn Beylerian and her family, and together they witnessed Khajag Srpazan officially dedicate and bless the garden, which honors the late Archbishop Tiran Nersoyan, the founder of St. Nersess. Lynn later shared her feelings about the evening, saying: “We are so proud of our new St. Nersess Seminary campus and happy to have been able to help. This evening was a wonderful tribute to many. Our sincere gratitude to Der Mardiros for his outstanding leadership.”
Finally, the guests traveled to the Faculty and Guest Apartments in the Hekimian Building, where Apartment 2 was dedicated and blessed by the Primate. This studio apartment was donated by George Papalian and his late wife Catherine. Mr. Papalian was present with his son, Richard and his family, for the ribbon cutting and blessing.
Following the consecration and dedications, everyone gathered in the Arsen Keleshian Dining Hall for a reception before making their way to the Theological Center atrium where dinner was served. The Rev. Fr. Mardiros Chevian, Dean, welcomed the guests and thanked the naming donors for their contributions to St. Nersess. “If not for you, we would not be where we are today,” commented Fr. Mardiros. “Everyone here is like a stockholder who has made an investment in this institution,” he added.
After Fr. Mardiros briefly described how the seminarians are being trained for service in the global Armenian Church, Richard Papalian who is the Treasurer of the Board of Directors, gave a financial summary of the seminary. “We would like to grow our donor base for the seminary, including increasing our Leadership Circle and Planned Giving Society donors,” said Richard.
After a robust question and answer period, the evening ended with Abp. Khajag’s closing remarks. He thanked the board members, the faculty members, and everyone present for supporting the seminary. “We are securing the future of the Armenian Church for the younger generations to come,” he stated.
The cheerful guests departed feeling positive about their contributions to St. Nersess. “It’s great to see the new campus fulfilling the vision of those who helped plan it, along with the donors and workers who helped make it possible. The future is bright for St. Nersess, and I encourage those who have not yet been able to visit the Armonk campus to do so,” proclaimed Stephen Mekenian, a former board member and campus donor.