By Louisa Janbazian
PARAMUS, NJ – After an absence of five years, the Armenian Missionary Association of America’s (AMAA) Annual Meeting and Banquet returned to Paramus, New Jersey where its main headquarters are located on 31 West Century Road, Paramus, NJ. The AMAA’s 103rd Annual Meeting was held on Saturday, October 22, 2022, at the Sanctuary of the Armenian Presbyterian Church of Paramus, NJ.
In the absence of AMAA President Nazareth Darakjian, M.D. due to an emergency, the meeting was presided over by the Association’s Vice President Gary Phillips, Esq. Rev. Hovhannes Hovsepyan, Senior Pastor of Evangelical Church of Armenia in the Motherland, offered a prayer and a short devotion. His devotional was based on Isaiah 40:1-3. Rev. Hovsepyan focused on the situation today faced by the Armenian people and said: “In times of uncertainty, loss, economic crisis, when things happen out of our control, in times of war, instability, when powerful countries keep silent or interfere only for their benefit, when it seems there is no hope and no one is going to help, when it seems this is the end, God speaks to His people through His faithful prophet and reminds us the Good News.” And he challenged all “In these times of uncertainty, in these times of wilderness of unknown future, to be the voice that speaks tenderly to the ones who are lost; cry loudly and proclaim the Good News, the Gospel to those, who are suffering and prepare the way of the Lord in the wilderness of our time.”
During the meeting AMAA Executive Director/CEO Zaven Khanjian presented his report covering the Association’s activities during the 2021-2022 Fiscal Year. Reports were also received from the AMAA Officers, Directors and Committee Chairs, as well as Representatives of the Armenian Evangelical Unions, the Armenian Evangelical World Council, and affiliated organizations, who shared their joys and concerns and praised God for another successful year post COVID pandemic era.
The AMAA’s general membership elected the following nine members to the Board of Directors Class of 2025 for a term of three years: LindaKay Abdulian, Bryan Agbabian, Gregory Bilezikian, Phyllis Dohanian, Rev. Dr. Haig Kherlopian, Nurhan Helvacian, Ph.D., Mark Kassabian, Esq., Arda Melkonian and Michèle Simourian.
The AMAA’s 103rd Annual Meeting concluded with a closing prayer offered by Rev. Joël Mikaélian, President of the Armenian Evangelical World Council and Pastor of the Armenian Evangelical Church of Issy-les-Moulineaux, France.
In conjunction with the AMAA Annual Meeting, the AMAA Board of Directors and the Armenian Evangelical World Council held their meetings on October 20-21.
On Sunday, October 23, members, and guests joined the Armenian Presbyterian Church of Paramus, NJ for a special Worship Service. Mihran Jizmejian offered the Armenian sermon and Rev. Dr. Haig Kherlopian offered the English sermon. A special prayer was offered by Rev. Harut Khachatryan, Senior Pastor of the United Armenian Congregational Church of Los Angeles, in memory of AMAA members and friends who made the transition from this life-to-Life Eternal during the past year. Rev. Dr. Vahan H. Tootikian, the Executive Director of the Armenian Evangelical World Council officiated the installation of the members and officers of the AMAA Board of Directors.
“We take this opportunity to thank the members of the Armenian Presbyterian Church of Paramus and its Pastor Rev. Joseph Garabedian for hosting the Annual Meeting and welcoming us with great warmth and hospitality. We pray that God will continue to bless this congregation and their ministry abundantly in the Bergen County area of NJ,” said Mr. Khanjian.