Армянская католическая Церковь Св. Марка (Филадельфия, США)
|Армянская католическая Церковь Св. Марка (Филадельфия, США)|
|St. Marks Armenian Catholic Church (Philadelphia, USA)|
|Руководитель:||Преп. Арменак Бедросян|
|Конфессии:||Армянская католическая церковь|
ИсторияТекст на английском языке
On December 15, 1923, our founding pastor, Rev. Stephen Stepanian, arrived in Philadelphia to establish the first Armenian Catholic parish in the "New World"
Through the benevolence of the pastor of St. Columba's Church on Lehigh Avenue, Father Stepanian accepted the use of the basement of the lovely church for his chapel. Three years later, after learning the language and familiarizing himself with the ways of America, Father Stepanian was ready to venture out on his own. History of St. Marks Armenian Catholic Church
With the blessings of the Archbishop of Philadelphia, His Eminence Dennis Cardinal Dougherty, and a generous check from him in the amount of $5,000 Father Stepanian opened the chapel and the adjoining rectory in a humble row house at 142 North Robinson Street on April 5, 1926... Easter Sunday. The Armenian Catholics of Philadelphia could now claim a spiritual home of their own.
For the next twenty years, Father Stepanian worked diligently to cultivate the Armenian Catholic community. bringing his scattered flock together and solidifying his parish. The depression years were an economic strain on the newly founded parish, but through prayers and dedication to his mission the young priest overcame all obstacles. Sunday school classes and a choir were formed, and spiritual, cultural and social activities were organized. The response from the parishioners was encouraging, and St. Mark's was on its way.
By 1944, the Armenian Catholic community had outgrown its modest chapel, and in his quest for a larger facility Father Stepanian had discovered a spacious, vacant bank building located at 6014 Market Street. The substantial structure with high ceilings was ideal for conversion into a church in the Armenian tradition, and the building behind it was suitable for a parish hall.
Fundraising efforts began, and response and support from parishioners and friends of St. Mark's was overwhelming. Along with another generous check for $5,000 from Cardinal Dougherty, the total purchase price of $27,500 was fully realized. As an added good fortune, the adjacent building was donated to St. Mark's by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia so that its priests could have 'decent and convenient housing." History of St. Marks Armenian Catholic Church
On Sunday May 11,1946, the new church was officially dedicated and blessed by Cardinal Dougherty. The solemn dignity of the ancient Armenain liturgy was enhanced by the rendition of Armenian liturgical music by the magnificent Immaculata College choir specially trained for the occasion.
Father Joseph Kalajian was the first assistant to Msgr. Stepanian until he was appointed pastor of the Armenian Catholic community of Detroit, MI. Msgr. Joseph Kalajian is presently pastor Emeritus of that community.
It was not until December 23, 1951, however, that the Church was consecrated at an inspiring Pontifical Mass celebrated by His Eminence Cardinal Patriarch Gregory XV Agagianian, and assisted by his vicar, Archbishop Ignatius Batanian, during His Eminence's long awaited pastoral visit to Philadelphia. The joyous occasion was followed by a gala reception at the Warwick Hotel. Christmas, 1951 remains a memorable event in the history of St. Mark's Church. History of St. Marks Armenian Catholic Church
For the next twenty-nine years, St. Mark's flourished. Marriages were blessed; babies were born and baptized; children received their First Holy Communion; Saturday Armenian classes were conducted; assistant pastors were assigned to relieve Monsignor of his many duties. In the meantime, on December 6, 1953, our respected pastor was elevated to the rank of Domestic Prelate, which entitled him to be addressed as Monsignor, and he was named Patriarchal Vicar to Gregory Peter XV Cardinal Agagianian The Rev. Gregory Guerguerian was named our second pastor.
In his innate wisdom, Monsignor recognized the need in our community for an Armenian day school to perpetuate our beautiful language and cultural heritage, and it was through his initiative that the Armenian Sisters Academy was established in October 1967.
In 1968, after more than fifty years of dedicated service to the Lord and the Armenian people, Msgr. Stepanian retired from his duties but retained the position of Patriarchal Vicar.
In time, the area around the Church began to deteriorate, parking became impossible, and the majority of the parishioners had scattered more and more into the suburbs. With the approval of our blessed pastor, Msgr. Leo Sarian, support from parishioners. and a mortgage loan from the Archdiocese, St. Mark's Church was relocated to its present site on Haverford Road in Wynnewood. The small but well-appointed Church houses a rectory, parish hall, office and conference room, and provides ample parking space and landscaped grounds for outdoor activities. The new Church was dedicated on December 7, 1975 by His Eminence, John Cardinal Krol, Archbishop of Philadelphia.
On April 3, 1978 our beloved founding pastor, Msgr. Stepanian was called to his eternal reward. His spiritual presence remains with us along with his resolve to keep the dream alive. With God's blessings, our Church family has continued to grow stronger and to prosper. More weddings were blessed, more babies were baptized in our lovely Church. Many social events and functions have taken place in our Church hall, and delicious meals have been shared with families and friends in an intercommunal harmony in the warmest of settings, both indoors and out of doors in our beautiful picnic area.
In July 1981, the Armenian Catholic Exarchate of North America was created by His Holiness Pope John Paul II. This event established our identity as a part of the Catholic community of North America. The most Rev. Nerses Setian was appointed first Armenian Catholic Bishop of the United States and Canada. His Episcopal Ordination in December 1981 in the presence of the Armenian Catholic Patriarch, His Beatitude Hemaiagh Peter XVII Gedighian, along with many Armenian Catholic Bishops, His Eminence John Cardinal Krol and the Bishops of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia at the Sts. Peter and Paul Cathedral, was an inspiring and memorable religious event. Also present were many representatives of our sister churches of North America and also local Armenian and non-Armenian clergy and dignitaries. Bishop Setian had a special affection for our Church and community. He used St. Marks as his Episcopal Seat and residence for three years until a permanent Seat was established at St. Ann's Cathedral in Manhattan in September, 1983. Our third pastor, Msgr. Sarian, was called to his eternal reward in September, 1983. After a short tenure by Rev. Ghevont Khosdeghian as Parochial Vicar, Rev. Msgr. Sarkis Gabadian who was appointed Pastor of St. Mark's in August, 1985, served as our beloved shepherd until his death on September 4, 1999.
In May, 1991, His Beatitude John Peter XVIII Kasparian, the Armenian Catholic Patriarch to the United States made his first pastoral visit to Philadelphia and also visited all the parishes in the Exarchate. His visit to the City of Brotherly Love was nothing short of spectacular. It was filled with many joyous festivities, starting with a Pontifical Mass at Sts. Peter and Paul Cathedral and followed by a grand banquet at the Franklin Plaza Hotel in Philadelphia. His Beatitude made a special visit to the Armenian Sisters Academy, and he also met with civic and community leaders of Philadelphia, both Armenian and non-Armenian. His visit to Philadelphia ended with a reception and dinner in our Church hall where many members of our Church family and community had the opportunity to meet and converse with His Beatitude in a warm, family atmosphere. In March of 1992, the Reverend Armen Gharapetian was named Parochial Vicar for St. Mark's Church, until June 1993 when he was appointed pastor of Sacred Heart Church in Little Falls, NJ.
In the fall of 1992, the Holy Father bestowed Papal Honors on four members of St. Mark's family including J. Andre Garabedian, Simon Oulouhojian, John Sudjian (posthumously) and Patrick Dempsey. The honors were delivered by His Excellency Bishop Setian in a Pontifical Mass in our Church, followed by a banquet at the Radnor Hotel. That same year was capped by an all-important visit to St. Mark's by His Eminence Anthony Cardinal Bevilacqua, Archbishop of Philadelphia. His Emience emphasized in his homily the important role that St. Mark's had played in the Philadelphia Catholic community over the years.
In January of 1994, Papal Honors were bestowed upon three more members of our family: Diran Arslanian, Ovsanna Sajonian and Hagop Zarzatian in appreciation of their services to the Church and our community. The year 1998 was an important milestone in the history of the Order of our beloved Armenian Sisters of the Immaculate Conception ...the 150th anniversary of their founding. With great joy, a special Mass was celebrated at St. Mark's for their intentions followed by a warm reception in our Church hall. Celebrations were held in various countries where the Order has established schools. This event coincided with the 30th anniversary of the establishment of the Armenian Sisters Academy in Radnor. The Order has been instrumental in teaching the Armenian language and history and perpetuating our cultural heritage to many generations of Armenians.
In 1999 at the 75th anniversary of the founding of our Church, the parish celebrated with a solemn Mass by His Excellency Bishop Hovhannes Tertzakian, Exarch. The Church overflowed with parishioners and friends who participated in this momentous occasion. On September 4, 1999, Msgr. Sarkis Gabadian was called to his eternal reward while visiting his family in California. He is interred at Forest Lawn Cemetery.
The Most Reverend Manuel Batakian, D,D Apostolic Exarch of Armenian Catholics in The United States and Canada and Titular Bishop of Caesarea of Cappadoce was ordained December 8, 1954. He was appointed Vicar General of the Armenian Catholic Patriarchate January 6, 1995, and consecrated March 12, 1995.
He was appointed Apostolic Exarch for USA and Canada November 30, 2000, and installed on January 20,2001.
Reverend Antranik Atamian, our fifth pastor, who was at Saint Mark's for three years is currently in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Reverend Armenag Bedrossian is our current pastor.Our history is already rich with great moments and achievements that fill us with pride and joy. Our path has been difficult at times, but it has strengthened the ties between us and our Church. As we usher in the new millennium, we look forward to continued growth and spiritual enrichment.