Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin – August 2016
On 17 August, His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians; arrived in the Republic of India; to visit the Armenian College and Philanthropic Academy in Calcutta. Currently, 55 students from Iran, Iraq and Armenia study there.
Staff and students of the Academy were waiting for the visit of the Armenian Pontiff with great enthusiasm and excitement. On this joyous occasion, an event and reception was held. The event was opened with Lord’s Prayer, and then the anthems of the Republic of India, Republic of Armenia and the Armenian College and Philanthropic Academy in Calcutta were performed.
Very Rev. Fr. Movses Sargsyan; Manager of the Armenian College and Philanthropic Academy in Calcutta, greeted and expressed deep gratitude to His Holiness, on behalf of the staff, academics and students, for His constant attention and careful attitude towards the Armenian College and Philanthropic Academy in Calcutta.
Rev. Fr. Movses presented a report on the activity and achievements of the students of the College; which was established in 1821 and is the oldest college in the Diaspora. During the event, the students of the academy gave a beautiful performance of national songs and dances.
At the conclusion of the event, the Catholicos of All Armenians extended his blessings to the staff, students and guests.
His Holiness expressed His personal appreciation to Rev. Fr. Movses, the spiritual pastor in India and Manager of the Armenian College and Philanthropic Academy in Calcutta board members of the Church Committee of Holy Nazareth of Calcutta, staff of the seminary, academics and students; noting with satisfaction the achievements and progress that have been recorded in the seminary’s life since the last pontifical visit.
His Holiness placed great emphasis on the mission of the historic educational institution, in the patriotic education of the younger generation, urging them to continue with the same zeal and diligence that forged the fame of the Armenian College and Philanthropic Academy in Calcutta; and grant patriotic and church-devoted Armenian sons and daughters to the Armenian nation.
On August 18 His Holiness met privately with the administration and faculty staff of the Seminary. His Holiness urged them to make every effort to provide the highest level of education for the school.
On the same day, His Holiness held informal meetings with students, talking about their daily life, educational process and issues of concern. The Pontiff urged them to accumulate knowledge with more diligence and be faithful to the native traditions in order to become worthy children of the Armenian nation.
The Catholicos of All Armenians, accompanied by Rev. Fr. Movses and Deacon Varazdat Khocharyan; toured the living quarters of the school in detail, giving instructions on the necessary steps for improvement.
During the visit His Holiness was accompanied by Warden Ms. Susan Reuben and Warden Mr. Sunil Sobti, Senior board members of the Church Committee of Holy Nazareth of Calcutta.