St. Stephen’s Armenian Apostolic Church of Hartford and New Britain celebrated their 90th Anniversary this past Sunday November 15th. This is the second oldest Armenian Church in the United States, according to Hartford Curant.
In celebration of this event, His Eminence Archbishop Oshagan Choloyan Primate of the Eastern Prelacy, and His Grace Anoushavan Tanielian, Vicar General celebrated the Ancient Mass of the Armenian Church. Armenia was the first nation to adopt Christianity in the year 301A.D.
The Mass was followed by a banquet at the Farmington Club with a large number of members in attendance. A Proclamation was read from Governor Dannel Malloy as well as a citation from Sixth District Senator Terry Gerrantana.
The Archbishop and Bishop welcomed the new Godparents of the church, Mr. and Mrs. Garabed Tovmassian of Worcester, MA.
St Stephen’s Church was dedicated in 1926, however it fell into foreclosure during the great depression. Four men stepped forward, pledging their personal assets to save the Church. In honor of these men His Eminence, the Archbishop presented awards to their descendants who were in attendance. Susan Kochunas received an award as the daughter of Karekin Kevorkian, Godfather of the Church, who named it after the church he left in Cyprus, before coming to America. Lucy Horenian received the citation for her father Mr Avedis Atashian. The other two men were Mr Amrah Bayram and Mr Harry Parparian.
Following the citations, children of the church presented a gift to the Pastor, Archpriest Aram Stepanian to be given to the orphaned children of Armenia.