Rev. Fr. Arakel Vardazaryan
St. Mary Armenian Church
Rev. Fr. Arakel Vardazaryan was born in 1984 in Yerevan, Armenia. In 2000, he graduated with high honors from the Levon Arisyan High School-College with a concentration in economics, and the following year enrolled in the Vaskenian Theological Seminary of Lake Sevan.
At the seminary, he was one of the organizers of a religious radio program for youth called Avedis. He also taught Bible classes at the Kharberd and Nubarashen orphanages for two years.
After completing his studies at the Vaskenian Seminary, he continued his work at the Gevorkian Theological Seminary and in the Internet Department at Holy Etchmiadzin.
On July 19, 2009, he was ordained to the holy priesthood by Archbishop Khajag Barsamian, Primate of the Eastern Diocese of the Armenian Church of America, during the Divine Liturgy of the Feast of Transfiguration. Following his ordination, he continued working at Holy Etchmiadzin until October 2010, when he received an invitation from Archbishop Barsamian to travel to the United States.
Fr. Arakel served as an intern priest with the Rev. Fr. Karekin Kasparian, pastor of St. Gregory the Enlightener Church of White Plains, NY. He also studied at Manhattanville College, and completed his Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) program at Westchester Medical Center in Valhalla, NY. In 2012, he became the pastor of St. Mary Church of Livingston, NJ.
Fr. Arakel is married to Yn. Anush, and they have a son, Raffi.