1958-2008: 50 YEAR CHRONOLOGY OF SOURP HAGOP ARMENIAN CHURCH

 

  1. The number of Armenians settled in Montreal was not important from the late 19th century until the 1950s. Since the 1950s, consecutive waves of Armenian migrants from Greece, Turkey, France, Egypt, Syria, Palestine, Lebanon, Iran, Iraq and Armenia have quickly increased the number of Armenians in Quebec, to bring it to around 30,000.

 

  1. The Sourp Hagop Church holds its first meeting on July18, 1958 when it establishes an executive body which should secures an old church on St. Zotique and purchases it for the community.

 

  1. In 1959, during construction, the executive body inaugurated the Saturday school as part of its commitments.

 

  1. In 1960, the patriarchal vicar, Archbishop Hrant Khatchadourian made the anointing of the church, giving it the name of Sourp Hagop. Until then, the church was known as the “First Armenian Apostolic Church of Montreal.”

 

  1. In 1961, the executive body of the Church is called “Board of Directors of the Sourp Hagop Armenian Apostolic Church.”

 

  1. The church building was not spacious enough. In 1963, the meeting of the Board of Directors proposes to expand the building or to look for a new one.

 

  1. In 1969, the Catholicos Khoren I made the anointing ceremony of the first stone of the new Sourp Hagop Church.

 

  1. The construction work was coming to an end in 1973, while the old church building would be sold at the end of the same year.

 

  1. In 1971, “Ararat summer camp” is launched.

 

  1. Despite the intentions, anointing of the church scheduled for 1973 is postponed for different reasons.

 

  1. In the 1973-1974 years, the Sourp Hagop Church inaugurates the center of early childhood of the Armenian Relief Cross.

 

  1. During the 1974-75 school year, the Sourp Hagop primary school opened. In 1983, the school inaugurated the high school; by the years 1988-1989, secondary education classes are fully formed. After a period of wandering, the Sourp Hagop daily school starts operating in its current building at 3400 rue Nadon in Montreal starting from the 1987-88 school year. In 1993, the primary pavilion is dedicated to Mr. and Mrs. Vartkes and Asdghig Sarafian.

 

  1. In 1978, the Prelate Archbishop Mesrob Achdjian anoints the church accompanied by the inspector from the Catholicosate of Cilicia Dprevank, Archbishop Artavazd Trtrian.

 

  1. In 1979, additional works made in the Armenian Community Centre are completed.

 

  1. The Sunday school of Sourp Hagop Church was founded in 1980.

 

  1. In 1985, the church began discussing the need to establish educational institutions for the community and especially a fund for Sourp Hagop daily school. It was in 1987 that the fund is named Sourp Hagop. The 1989-1990 school year marks the beginning of the implementation of the funds collected. Until the purchase of Sourp Hagop school building, that is to say, the year 2002, the fund must have already collected enough money part of which would be used. During the establishment of the Sourp Hagop fund, the fund of benefactors Vartkes Astghig Sarafian was added.

 

  1. In 1988, the earthquake measuring 6.9 on the Richter scale strikes the towns and villages of the northern regions of Armenia: Kirovakan (former Karakilisa), Leninakan and Gyumri (formerly Alexandropol), Spitak (former Hamamloun). Kirovakan is devastated 50 percent, Gyumri 75 percent, and Spitak completely. The Armenian people mourn the death of the thousands of victims.

 

  1. The Artsakh Movement is launched in 1988, and all Armenians around the world unite in this struggle.

 

  1. In 1991, the Nagorno-Karabakh declares independence. Soon after, Armenia declares its independence.

 

  1. In 1994, the prelate of the Prelacy Archbishop Mesrob Achdjian and the national representatives committee declare Sourp Hagop Churche as "Cathedral-Church."

 

  1. In 1993, the residents of Laval send a letter to the bishop and the national representatives committee asking them to give to Laval a parish status. In 1994, it announced the launch of the Sourp Kevork community of Laval.

 

  1. In 1995, the laying of the foundation stone ceremony of the monument to the genocide is organized in the Marcelin-Wilson Garden that is located in the Cartierville neighbourhood of Montreal, that is largely populated by Armenians. After a lot of efforts, the “Nemesis” monument dedicated to all genocides of the 20th century is erected in 1998.

 

  1. In 2002, the Sourp Hagop school building became the church property. The benefactor Hagop Pastermadjian has greatly contributed to this success with his very generous donation. In tribute to its benefactor and his brothers Hrant and Yervant, the Pastor and the school board decided to dedicate the secondary pavilion to be called “Pastermadjian Pavilion”.

 

  1. In 2002, Canada became an independent prelatucy; this separation of the Prelacy of the Armenian church of Eastern North America materialized following an internal reorganization within the Prelacy; that is to say, that the Prelacy since 1958, covering Eastern North America and Canada is divided into two different administrative prelacies taking into account local concerns and practices. Canada's representatives meeting elected Archbishop Khajag Hagopian as the first prelate.

 

  1. In 2004, the Sourp Hagop Armenian Church became a Cathedral.

 

  1. In 2004, the church blessed the ground given to the Prelacy near the Sourp Hagop complex. The construction work of the National Prelacy building moves very fast.

 

  1. In 2004, the Parliament of Canada recognizes the Armenian Genocide, calling it as a “crime against humanity”. Another very important act by Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper follows this recognition. The head of the Government of Canada made a statement recognizing the Armenian Genocide.

 

  1. In 2007, “Mr. and Mrs. Aram and Berdjouhie Markarian” kindergarten opens.

 

  1. This is what the Catholicos Aram Said in his “Blessing Book” written on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of Sourp Hagop: “The 50 years of Sourp Hagop Church history can be rightly termed mission, sacred task whose implementation required the active participation of a large number of clerics, secular figures, national institutions and agencies, as well as benefactors. It is a mission to the prosperity of the Church and nation building whose fruits have enriched the lives of our people. The Sourp Hagop Church in Montreal who always plays a particularly important role in the life of the Armenian community of Canada, continues today also with vision and dedication, sacred mission of 50 years and his service to the Armenian people.”