On Friday, May 11, 2018, under the auspices of the Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern), clergy, family, guests, parishioners and friends came together to celebrate the Rev. Fr. Mampre A. Kouzouian’s 60th Anniversary of his Ordination to the Priesthood in the beautifully decorated Charles and Nevart Talanian Cultural Hall of Holy Trinity Armenian Church of Greater Boston. Among the 260 guests were four archbishops: His Eminence Archbishop Nathan Hovhannisian, representing His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians; His Eminence Archbishop Vatche Hovsepian, former Primate, Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Western), who was Fr. Mampre’s presenter at his Ordination to the Priesthood and best man at his wedding; His Eminence Archbishop Khajag Barsamian, former Primate, Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern); and His Eminence Archbishop Vicken Aykazian, Diocesan Legate and Ecumenical Director; as well as clergy from the Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern) and the Greater Boston area.
Gifts to Benefit the Homeless and Cancer-Stricken Children in Armenia
At Fr. Mampre’s request, funds raised from gifts on this occasion were earmarked to support two causes, “close to my heart”: the children at the Muratsan Chemotherapy Clinic of Yerevan State Medical University, a pediatric oncology clinic that treats children from all over Armenia, as well as homeless individuals and families in the Vagharshapat region surrounding Holy Etchmiadzin. Of the $221,000 gifted, $25,000 was designated to underwrite most of the banquet costs. On May 30, a check in the amount of $182,975.67 was sent to the Diocese for forwarding to His Holiness Karekin II for distribution for the intended purposes. As additional gifts are received, they will be forwarded to the Diocese for Holy Etchmiadzin.
James M. Kalustian served as Master of Ceremonies during the Banquet and with humor and anecdotes, introduced a Program that celebrated Fr. Mampre’s dedicated years of service and commitment to the Armenian Church and her people. Daniel K. Dorian, Jr., Parish Council Chair, in his Celebratory Toast, spoke of his own family’s (the Dorians) long association with Fr. Mampre from St. Mary’s Armenian Church in Irvington NJ, which was Fr. Mampre’s first pastoral assignment, to Holy Trinity Armenian Church, which was his last. On behalf of the Holy Trinity Parish, Dan, along with Parish Council Vice Chair, Gregory A. Kolligian, Jr., presented Fr. Mampre with a beautifully framed picture of Holy Trinity’s Sanctuary dome. All present raised their glasses to toast Fr. Mampre – “the epitome of a true clergyman, a priest who loves his Church and her people with his whole being, a true servant of the Lord; and a friend to all.” The Invocation was offered by His Eminence Archbishop Nathan Hovhannisian. The Program consisted of musical selections by Sammy Andonian, cellist; Joyce Arpie Kouzouian; and Yeghishe Manucharyan and Victoria Avetisyan; and a Poem, “Armenia,” by Baruyr Sevak, recited by Adelaida Balagyozian, Anna Margaryan and Amalia Petrosyan.
Nubar Kupelian, a classmate of Fr. Mampre’s at the Seminary of Antilias, offered the first Tribute of the evening, followed by remarks by Rev. Fr. Vasken A. Kouzouian, pastor of Holy Trinity Church and son of Fr. Mampre. In his remarks, Fr. Vasken stated that “this evening, we honor our longest serving pastor here at Holy Trinity, and a priest who gave his life, in every way imaginable, for the good of the people placed in his care and for the glory of God. Over the years of his service to the Armenian Church and people, he has been ‘a Rock of Faith,’ a steady presence and a constant shoulder for many of our lives.” Fr. Vasken spoke of the many accomplishments of Fr. Mampre’s sixty years of devoted service, while being “the rock” of his greatest ministry, raising a family, along with his late wife, Yn. Nuvart Kouzouian who journeyed every step of the way with Fr. Mampre.
Archbishop Vatche Hovsepian spoke of Fr. Mampre’s dedication to his parishioners, the Diocese and the entire Armenian Church stressing his deep involvement in the Ecumenical movement.
Fr. Mampre, in his remarks, thanked His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians, who planned to personally attend the Celebration but found it necessary to remain in Armenia, for the love and blessings he sent. Fr. Mampre also thanked all those present, including the Archbishops, clergy, family, guests and friends for attending and the Celebration Committee for all their hard work. He was grateful for the extreme generosity of friends, parishioners and former parishioners for their donations to help the homeless in Armenia and the Muratsan Chemotherapy Clinic of Yerevan.
Former Primate, Archbishop Khajag Barsamian spoke affectionately about Fr. Mampre’s service, wisdom, dedication and leadership to the Diocese and the worldwide Armenian Church.
His Eminence Archbishop Nathan Hovhannisian read a message from His Holiness Karekin II and place around Fr. Mampre’s neck the Vartabedagan Lanchakhach that His Holiness had sent from Holy Etchmaidzin in appreciation of Fr. Mampre’s 60 years of unselfish and devoted service to Our Lord and our people.
The Very Rev. Simeon Odabashian, Diocesan Vicar, read the letter from the Primate, The Very Rev. Fr. Daniel Findikyan, who stated that “Der Mampre Kouzouian is one of our visible examples of those foundational values and virtues, upon which the coming generation can build with confidence and conviction, for the advancement of our people, and for the glory of God.”
The Very Rev. Fr. Mesrop Parsamyan, Diocesan Director of Ministries, read the letter of Berj Setrakian, President of the AGBU.
The enjoyable and memorable evening came to a close with the Benediction offered by His Eminence Archbishop Vicken Aykazian.
Donations are still being accepted for the homeless and the caner-stricken children at the Muratsan Chemotherapy Clinic and may be made by contacting the Holy Trinity Church Office, 617.354.0632, or firstname.lastname@example.org.