Arachnortaran Model on Display

A replica of the new Arachnortaran or Diocesan Centre is now on display in the Primate’s office at the Armenian Apostolic Church of Holy Resurrection (10 Macquarie St, Chatswood). The model captures the imposing characteristics of the building and puts into perspective the Architect’s plans and drawings.

We invite our community members to take a personal interest in the construction of the Diocesan Centre as it will be a dignifying building which reflects the respect of the faithful towards their church.

For a private viewing or information on how you can partner with us in the Diocese project with your donation or pledge, please contact Nishan Basmajian on 9419-8056 or by email

Feast of St Stephen the Protomartyr

The Armenian ecclesiastical calendar marks December 25th as the feast day of St Stephen.

St Stephen was an early Christian convert, one of the original seven deacons ordained by the Apostles. Due to his passion for spreading the word of Christ, he directed his attention towards synagogues, preaching often. His preaching was confirmed by many miracles.

He became the first martyr of the Orthodox Church after being stoned for upholding the Christian cause. Further historical details about St Stephen’s life are recorded in Chapters 6 and 7 of the Acts of the Apostles.

As such, this feast in the Armenian Church is appropriately dedicated to all current deacons. They serve the altar on that day adorned with their finest orarion (stole – Ourar) and are also granted the privilege to wear a crown (Saghavard).

The Advent Gospels

Advent (Hisnag), 50 days counted back from Christmas celebrated on January 6, is a time to prepare ourselves for the arrival of our Lord Jesus Christ. Similarly to the 40 day Lenten period in preparation for Easter, a unique set of Gospels are read on the six Sundays in the Armenian Church.

These are essential readings to reflect on our Christian walk to remind us how God wants us to share the goodness of His provision in our lives.

All the Gospels come from the Book of St Luke and the message from each talks about our response to Christ, specifically how we respond to those in need identified by Christ – the poor, the meek, the needy. We are also reminded of the foolishness of attaching too much importance to wealth, how faith must bear fruit and warned about excuses, idleness and pride.

1st Sunday:   Luke 12:13-31 – The Parable of the Rich Fool
2nd Sunday: Luke 13:1-9 – Jesus Calls People to Repent or Perish
3rd Sunday:  Luke 14:12-24 – The Parable of the Great Feast
4th Sunday:  Luke 17:1-10 – Jesus Tells About Forgiveness and Faith
5th Sunday:  Luke 18:9-14 – The Parable of the Two Men Who Prayed
6th Sunday:  Luke 19:12-28 – The Parable of the King’s Ten Servants

Primate Returns from New York

His Grace Bishop Haigazoun Najarian returned from the United States on Wednesday having participated in the Supreme Spiritual Council meeting under the presidency of His Holiness Karekin II, hosted at the headquarters of the US Eastern Diocese in New York City. This was the first time the body had met outside of Armenia.

On October 31 and November 1, His Holiness and the 17 members of the Council convened a joint meeting with the executive bodies of the Eastern, Western, and Canadian dioceses and the AGBU, under the theme, “Bringing the Church to the People: Reaching Out to the Armenians of North America”. The meeting examined the emerging realities within the Armenian-American community, and the prospects for expanding the church’s ministry. From 2-3 November, the Supreme Spiritual Council reconvened to address ongoing matters of governance and ministry in the worldwide Armenian Church.

A highlight of Bishop Najarian’s visit back to the U.S. was celebrating the Divine Liturgy at St Sahag & St Mesrob Church in Philadelphia after nine years, where he had once served as the parish pastor from 2002-2007.

Sins of the Tongue

“For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and creature of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by mankind. But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.” – James 3:7-8

We usually think that sins are inherently physical actions that we are tempted to partake in. But there are occasions which we overlook the words we say and are not in control of the sins we commit.

We are acting against God when we communicate with lies, hatefulness or cursing since we are using our own tongue to spread poison. Instead, with the very tongue that spreads evil, we should control to purify our speech and bring praise to God.

Honouring Church Service

Our annual church gathering of servants brings with it opportunities to celebrate milestone anniversaries and tribute the different aspects of service in our Church that resemble the various parts of the body functioning together.

This year was no exception as we celebrated together with 160 church volunteers, the forty years of service to the diaconate of Deacon Haroutiun Hanimian and similarly in years, the dedication of Miss Sonia Berberian to church life as she was bestowed Honorary Life Membership.

Both honourees were deservedly introduced as faithful servants who give tirelessly of their time and talent, each in their own capacity with humility and a heart for God fulfilling the Christian mission,

Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.” (1Peter 4:10)

Rookwood Cemetery Armenian Section

In its mission to serve the faithful of our community, over the past months, the Chancellery of the Diocese has been negotiating with the Rookwood General Cemeteries Trust to expand the Armenian Lawn section of Rookwood Cemetery which has reached its capacity.

In this endeavour, we are pleased to announce the Diocese has been able to secure a new section adjacent to the old and a ground-blessing service will take place on Saturday 26 November at 12.00 p.m. with the participation of Armenian clergy from all the denominations. The ground-blessing is open to our community and will be followed by a reception.

Outreach Mission to Adelaide

On Friday, Bishop Najarian accompanied by Reverend Father Avetis Hambardzumyan will make a pastoral visit to the mission parish of Adelaide where they will meet with members of the small Armenian community. With recently arrived migrants from Syria, the visit aims to welcome the new families to the Diocese and reconnect those who are longer term residents.
The outreach missions of the Diocese extend throughout the pocket communities of Perth to Auckland and Wellington, New Zealand. Such pastoral visits by our Primate and the clergy expands the ministry of the Armenian Apostolic Church demonstrating their love, care and concern for the spiritual nourishment and guidance of our community faithful.
If you would like get involved with the Diocese by supporting the Outreach Ministry, please contact the Chancellery at

The Arachnortaran Construction Commences

These are exciting times for our Armenian Community and we are pleased to announce the commencement of the construction of the Diocesan Centre at 11 Chatswood Ave, Schenk Construction Group were the successful tenderer.
Schenk Construction Grup Pty Ltd is in the early stages of pre-construction and is well advanced in satisfying authority approvals. Authority approval and Site Establishment should be completed by mid-November which will allow works to commence and we expect that concrete foundations and inground services will be well advanced by the end of the year.
The target date for completion is December 2017.

Feast of All Saints – Known & Unknown

By this feast the Armenian Apostolic Church commemorates the memory of all those saints, whose names are not included in the Church Calendar but whose names are registered in the sacred book of the Heavenly Kingdom.

Many people have been subjected to severe torments and martyred during the wars for the sake of faith. As their names are not known, this feast was established in the Armenian Church Calendar to commemorate their memory as persons who have shed their blood for the sake of Christ and His Church.