Stepanos Avetisian

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Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin, Information Services
Address: Vagharshapat, Republic of Armenia
Contact: Rev. Fr. Ktrij Devejian
Tel: (374 10) 517 163
Fax: (374 10) 517 301
E-Mail: ktrij @
September 19, 2005

Seven New Priests Ordained in Holy Etchmiadzin

On Saturday, September 10, the evening prior to the Feast of the Holy Cross, seven young deacons, all graduates of the Gevorkian Theological Seminary of Holy Etchmiadzin, were called to serve the Holy Armenian Apostolic Church as married clergymen. Their sponsoring priest was Rev. Fr. Mushegh Babayan, a member of the Brotherhood of Holy Etchmiadzin.

The following morning, on the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, His Eminence Archbishop Mesrob Krikorian, Pontifical Legate to Central Europe, celebrated Divine Liturgy in the Mother Cathedral of Holy Etchmiadzin. During the liturgy, he ordained the seven deacons to the rank of priesthood.

As he anointed the forehead, right and left hand of each young man, Abp. Mesrob called them by their new priestly names: Deacon Vazgen Kesablian was renamed Father Khatchatur; Deacon Manuk Ghalachian became Father Sebeos; Deacon Davit Mikaelian was renamed Father Derenik; Deacon Gor Grigorian became Father Grigor; Deacon Andranik Hakobian was renamed Father Mashtots; Deacon Armen Mkrtchian became Father Mesrop; and Deacon Vardan Avetisian was renamed Father Stepanos.

Following the ordinations, Abp. Mesrob addressed his sermon to the newly ordained, "The priesthood, dear ones, is not simply offering the services of our Church. Worship is very important, the Holy Sacraments are very important, but these are not the only responsibilities of the clergyman. The words of the Gospel are equally as holy and as vital. We are the servants of the Gospel, and therefore we transmit the holy words of the Gospel to the people. We must bring it to them in the orthodox way, explaining it to them and sealing these words on the hearts of our people."

The same day in Yerevan, at the Saint Gregory the Illuminator Mother Cathedral, Bishop Arakel Karamian, Primate of the Diocese of Kotayk, ordained ten graduates of the Accelerated Course for Priesthood to the rank of deacon.