Remarks of His Holiness Karekin II at President Serzh Sargsyan’s inauguration


Yerevan, April 9, 2013

 Your Excellency, Mr. President,
Your Excellency, Mr. President of the Republic of Nagorno Karabagh,
Honored President of the National Assembly,
Your Eminences and Your Graces,
Honored State Officials, Representatives of Diplomatic Missions,
Dear Guests and Attendees,

With prayer and appeals for the radiant life of the homeland on our lips, we greet and extend our Pontifical blessings to you on the occasion of the inauguration of the President of the Republic of Armenia.

We offer praise and thanksgiving to the Almighty for the unfathomable graces granted to our people, with which we have lived, created and struggled; and today, steadfast and optimistic, create the new day of our free life with the love of the homeland.

Since the reestablishment of independent statehood, our country has overcome terrible difficulties; it has traversed the demanding path of rebuilding and reformation.  At this time, we remember with appreciation and prayer, all sons and daughters of the nation who have brought their devoted service to the foundation and establishment of native independent statehood.  Mr. President, You have made significant contributions to the course of building the state, as one of the framers of this hopeful era of our history.  Your dedicated service to the homeland and people has led you to the public office of highest responsibility.   You assumed the office of president five years ago under difficult circumstancs of internal tension in the country. Nevertheless, with a determined will and steadfast steps, you implemented all efforts to maintain stability; so that reforms and the natural course of progress of our homeland continues.  The period of your presidency was a struggle and service to face difficulties and challenges, the peaceful and just resolution of the Nagorno Karabagh dispute, and in the sphere of foreign policy, the reinforcement of relations and effective collaboration with other nations.

Today, by taking the oath of office on the “Vehamayr” Gospel and the Constitution of the Republic of Armenia, you renewed your oath of service to the nation and the homeland.  A new presidential term begins, with certain new demands and expectations.  Despite positive trends and beneficial results in our country in previous years, there remain many concerns and issues that are of vital significance and yearn for decisions, which today once again require the conscientious efforts of our authorities and all our people, to protect our peaceful and secure life, and the hope and outlook for progress.  It is our common vision that the path of our independent state bear the fruits of a blossoming and cheerful life, full of goodness and well-being, with a developing economy, science and culture.  With the high mission of the presidency, you are called to lead this vision to its realization.  It is undeniable that the wellbeing of a people, the preeminence of law and rights, the progress of a societal life with spiritual and moral values will bring greater resilience to our country, increase the standing of our state’s reputation, and further reinforce our national life.  As always, our Church will bring its support to the native state and to you in the work to fulfill your homeland-building and nation-devoted mission.

On this occasion of the inauguration, we extend our exhortation to our people in the homeland and the diaspora, to implement unified efforts with the authorities of our country, for the sake of our homeland, the vibrancy of our national life and the manifestation of our hopes.  Let us aspire with one will and one mind to greater carry out that which is our cherished debt and responsibility for our nation and native land. Let us not falter before difficulties. According to the words of the Apostle, “… stir up one another to love and good works” (Hebrews 10:24), so that our homeland will grow and prosper day by day, remaining the strong rampart and source of strength for Armenians dispersed throughout the world, today and always.

We offer prayers up to God in heaven with an appeal to keep our homeland unshaken and for the peaceful and joyful life of our people.  We pray for you, Mr. President.  May the blessing of the Most High and the guidance of the Holy Spirit be with you always, reinforce you, keep you steadfast and determined to bring to life your and our people’s benevolent expectations and hopes.  May the Lord bless our nation in dispersion, always keep them under His graces, to appeal with faith, “O Lord our God, lead us and instruct us to walk with righteousness on Your paths, keep our life in peace and our course pleasing to You. Amen.” (Armenian Book of Hours – Breviary).

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