Mission Statement

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St. John’s Armenian Church
Mission Statement:
The mission of the Armenian Apostolic Orthodox Church is to preach the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and to proclaim its message of salvation. This mission is realized through Worship, Education, Witness, Service, and a Common Life in Christ as expressed in the distinctive faith-experience of the Armenian people. All members of the Armenian Church—both clergy and lay—are called to participate fully in this mission.
The faith experience of the Armenian Church comprises:
The sharing of the body and blood of Christ in the Holy Eucharist is central to all worship. All dimensions of a life in Christ depend upon this. Only through corporate worship and sacramental celebrations of the entire community does the Church truly become the Body of Christ. Continued participation in these unique liturgical experiences of the Armenian Church enables all believers to enter into union with God and one another.
The educational ministry of the Armenian Church:

Transmits all aspects of its faith-tradition which includes: Holy Scripture, sacraments, the writings of the Holy Fathers, dogma, theology, liturgy, history, canon law, art, architecture, and sacred music;

nurtures spiritual growth;

prepares to fulfill our Christian vocation in the world; and
disseminates the unique story and heritage of the Armenian people.
This is a life-long process in which we strive to understand more clearly, believe more strongly, and live more faithfully in accordance with the will of God.
Members of the Armenian Church are baptized into the priesthood of all believers. As inheritors of his gift from the Holy Spirit we are called to a life of holiness, commitment, and justice, rooted in the Commandments of God and the precepts of Holy Scripture. Our lives in all aspects should reflect this witness.

As members of the Armenian Church and stewards of God’s creation, we are called to serve all people, both within our church and in the world. Christ came not to be served, but to serve, teaching us to do the same.
The sharing of the gifts that God has given to each of us is one of the principal joys and obligations of being a Christian. We should use these gifts and talents for the glory of God in all aspects of life. One important expression of service is being kind, just, and merciful as Christ was when he walked among the sick, the poor, and the downtrodden and extended his Holy hand to them. It is only by loving and serving one another that we truly become the image and likeness of God and an active part of the ministry of the Church.
The Community of believers draws upon its shared experience of the Eucharist as the foundation for a common life in Christ. Commitment to the distinctive faith-experience, culture, and traditions of the Armenian people strengthens both the life of the individual and that of the Church. The shared life of each parish community reflects the presence of Christ and the Kingdom of God in the world and the ongoing action of the Holy Spirit.
Pastors of St. John’s
Very Rev. Fr. Sahag Vartabed Nazaretian (1913-1922)

Rev. Fr. Bedros Mapreian (intermittently, 1922-1930)

Rev. Fr. Khachig Kroozian (1922-1924)

Very Rev. Fr. Vahram Vartabed Nazaretian (1924-1928)

Rev. Fr. Atig Dsotsigian (1930-1934)

Very Rev. Fr. Vartan Vartabed Kasparian (1934-1937)

Rev. Fr. Vahan Jelalian (1937-1941)

Rev. Fr. Nerses Odian (1941-1947)

Rt. Rev. Bishop Sion Manoogian (Vicar General of the Midwest, 1945-1952)

Very Rev. Fr. Isahag Vartabed Ghazarian (1948-1951)

Rev. Fr. Arnak Kasparian (1951-1962)

Rev. Fr. Diran Papazian (1962-1972)

Very Rev. Fr. Yeghishe Dz. Vartabed Gizirian (1965-1969)

Very Rev. Fr. Paren Dz. Vartabed Avedikian (1972-1992)

Very Rev. Fr. Baret Dz. Vartabed Yeretzian (1993—Present)

There are between eight and ten million Armenians in the world.
There are between 500,000 and one million Armenians in the United States, with between 30,000 and 50,000 in the metropolitan Detroit area.
The city of Yerevan was founded over 2,700 years ago. Only a few other cities, which include Jerusalem and Damascus, are older and still inhabited.
Armenia was the first country to be officially converted to Christianity.
Armenian was the eighth language in which the Bible, either in full or in part was written (following Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek, Syriac, Coptic, Gothic, and Latin).
Armenians built churches in a gothic style of architecture a century before it first appeared in Europe.
The best man at Richard the Lionhearted’s wedding on Cyprus during the Third Crusade was Armenian (Levon/Leon Rubenid).
Armenian was the tenth language to be printed on the moveable type press (in 1511 or 1512, following Latin, German, Greek, Czech, Hebrew, French, Dutch, English, and Italian).
782 B.C.: Erebuni (now Yerevan) is founded.
95-55 B.C.: Reign of Tigran II the Great.
Latter half of first century A.D.: The Apostles Thaddeus and Bartholomew preach the Gospel (and are martyred) in Armenia. Somehow their relics ended up at the Vatican, from which they were returned to Armenia on April 22, 1994.
301: Armenia becomes the first Christian state in the world.
325: The Armenian Church participates in the Ecumenical Council of Nicea.
381: The Armenian Church participates in the Ecumenical Council of Constantinople.
404: St. Mesrop Mashtots, with the patronage of Caholicos St. Sahak I the Great and divine intercession, devises the written Armenian alphabet. Soon after, the Bible is translated into Armenian, and the “Golden Age of Armenian Literature” begins.
431: The Armenian Church participates in the Ecumenical Council of Ephesus.
451: Battle of Avarayr.
484: Treaty of Nvarsak.
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