PARAMUS, NJ —The biennial meeting of the Armenian Evangelical World Council (AEWC) was held at the Armenian Missionary Association of America (AMAA) headquarters from October 20-21, 2022.
Following the written and oral reports of the officers of the Council and the representatives of church unions and organizations, the board dealt with ecclesiastical and missions’ issues on the meeting’s agenda and made decisions accordingly.
A general review and evaluation was made on the 175th anniversary celebrations of the Armenian Evangelical church, which were held in Armenia from July 1 to 7, 2022. The Council commended the steering committee for planning and executing all the activities of the 175th anniversary celebrations.
A committee of eight members was selected to study the subjects and issues emanating from the 175th anniversary conference and to submit its resolutions to the executive committee of AEWC meeting to be held in 2023.
Elections for the cabinet (divan) of AEWC were held as follows: Dr. Nazareth Darakjian, president; Rev. Albert Paytyan, vice president; Rev. Dr. Haroutune Selimian, secretary; Dr. Nurhan Helvacian, treasurer; and Rev. Dr. Vahan H. Tootikian, executive director.
The Council paid its respects to the Armenian victims of Azeri aggression of September 12, 2022 in the southern towns of Armenia. The Council also condemned the Azeri government for its unprovoked aggression against the peaceful Armenian population and indiscriminate shelling of contact towns and villages. AEWC appeals to the international community to condemn Azerbaijan’s continuous violation of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Republic of Armenia.
The Council also discussed the status of Armenian communities in the Middle East, particularly in Syria, Lebanon and Iraq. In spite of the harsh economic realities, the severe devaluation of the local currencies and a number of unfavorable circumstances, the Union of the Armenian Evangelical Churches in the Near East rose above many obstacles, challenging experiences and marched forward.
The Council extended its appreciation to the church unions and missionary organizations, including Hope for Armenia, Stephen Philibosian Foundation and the AMAA for extending financial assistance to these Armenian communities. The Council also pledged to continue its moral and financial support as needed.
Because at the present time both the Republics of Armenia and Artsakh are in one of the fateful stages of our recent history, the AEWC calls all Armenians worldwide to recognize the gravity of the moment, to lay aside their political and ideological differences and unite around the Armenian nation reclaiming our destiny together for the sake of the freedom and security of our fatherland.