Diocesan Primate Bishop Daniel welcomed His Beatitude Archbishop Nourhan Manougian, the Armenian Patriarch of Jerusalem, to the Diocesan Center in New York on Wednesday, December 18, for a luncheon and meeting with Diocesan clergy.
In his welcoming remarks, Bishop Daniel thanked Patriarch Nourhan for his visit and for the opportunity to meet with him. “Jerusalem has been a critically important center for Armenian Christians for centuries, and a great influence over our church’s vision, theology, and liturgy,” he said. “Even today, traveling to Jerusalem changes the lives of countless Armenian pilgrims, and it honors us to be in the company of the leader of our Patriarchate today.”
He added: “We pray for the ongoing ministry and health of Patriarch Nourhan, and for the courage he shows in defense of the Armenian presence in the Holy Land.”
Spiritual and Cultural Wealth
Patriarch Nourhan spoke about recent developments at the Jerusalem Patriarchate, emphasizing the importance of bringing the Armenian faithful to the city in order to witness the spiritual and cultural wealth of the Armenian presence in the Holy Land.
He acknowledged that these are uncertain times for all Christians in the region. Nevertheless, the Patriarchate is moving forward on a number of projects: fortifying the physical structure of the monastery; modernizing its pilgrims’ quarters; renovating Armenian sanctuaries in the Holy Land; upgrading the museum and library containing numerous precious artifacts and manuscripts; among other endeavors. He noted that the Patriarchal seminary currently has 35 students.
The Patriarch expressed gratitude to the faithful and clergy of the Eastern Diocese for their moral and material support, and announced a newly-formed organization, the “Knights of St. James,” which will be dedicated to the welfare and upkeep of the Sts. James Armenian Patriarchate.
Meeting in the tahlij of the Diocesan Center, the Patriarch and Primate were joined by 13 clergymen from the Metro New York, New England, and Mid-Atlantic regions.