Preparing Leaders for Service in the Armenian Church since 1961
St. Nersess Deacons’ Training Offered in the Western Diocese
The St. Nersess Deacons’ Training Program is tailored to young men who would like to learn to participate in the liturgical services of the Armenian Church as deacons and altar servers. This type of program has been offered by the seminary for over 50 years and continues to be a popular conference every summer.

In addition, deacon and altar server one-day workshops have been offered at various parishes throughout the Eastern Diocese over the years. In the last two years, the seminary has also offered workshops in the Western Diocese, one at St. Peter Armenian Church in Van Nuys, CA, in March 2020, and the other last month at St. Leon (Ghevontiants) Armenian Cathedral in Burbank.

Last August, with the blessing of Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, a Deacons' Training Program, which was modeled after the one offered at the seminary, was presented in the Western Diocese at Hye Camp in Dunlap, CA. With the support of Bishop Daniel Findikyan, Primate of the Eastern Diocese, Fr. Mamigon Kiledjian, Eastern Diocese Instructor of Sacred Music, served as one of the instructors. Fr. Gomidas Zohrabian, pastor of St. Gregory the Illuminator Armenian Church in Fowler, organized and led the program. He has participated in deacons' training programs as an instructor before recently relocating his ministry to CA.
Daily morning and evening prayer services, classes and lectures, Bible studies, and Armenian language classes were offered to 10 participants who attended from parishes throughout the Western Diocese. These students already serve the Armenian Church as deacons, subdeacon and acolytes but attended the program to gain a deeper understanding of our church’s worship services and return to their home churches with polished liturgical skills.

Dn. Barlo DerMegurdichian, PhD taught Armenian language and history classes. He also taught a lecture on the conversion of Armenia to Christianity by St. Gregory the Illuminator and King Drtad, the creation of the Armenian alphabet by St. Mesrob Mashtots, with the support of St. Sahag and King Vramshapookh translation of the Bible, and Sts. Vartanantz.
Fr. Mamigon Kiledjian provided musical lessons of the deacons’ part of the Divine Liturgy through Zoom. Fr. Gomidas Zohrabian led deacons’ training classes, focusing on poorvar, kushots, Gospel procession, Veraperoom, Voghchooyn, Hokehankisd, and making nushkhar. He also presented a lecture about Komitas Vartabed. 

Instructors for the Bible studies and some deacons’ training classes included Fr. Zaven Markosyan, Fr. Mashdots Keshishian, Fr. Vazken Movsesian, Fr. Harutiun Tachjian, Fr. Yesayi Bedros, and Dn. Aris Sevak. They also participated in the prayer services. During the Holy Badarak, Fr. Yesayi Bedros was the guest celebrant and Dn. Andrew Hagopian played the organ and led the choir parts, while the students served on the altar under the guidance of Der Gomidas.
In the evenings, the group bonded by singing Armenian songs from the St. Nersess Songbook as Dn. Andrew accompanied on the keyboard. Everyone looked forward to singing together every night, especially the song “Mi Chinatsi.” Janice Hendrix, Yn. Roberta Hairabedian, and Salpy Adams volunteered as the kitchen crew for the program, and the participants enjoyed their homecooked Armenian meals, along with other delicious food.

Overall, the program was a great learning experience for both the participants and their mentors, who bonded over faith, heritage, and tradition. Most importantly, they shared the same love for serving God. The Western Diocese's Deacons’ Training Program was a success, and the participants are eager to return the summer of 2022!
St. Nersess Armenian Seminary
Spring 2022 Lecture Series

Dr. Jesse S. Arlen

An Overview of the Armenian Historical Tradition: Part II: Eleventh to Eighteenth Centuries
This two-part lecture series introduces the audience to the Armenian historical tradition, a rich and fascinating corpus of literature with texts produced continuously from the first century after the invention of the alphabet up until the modern period.

During Part I of this lecture series (offered in Fall 2021), we covered the Armenian histories written from the fifth to tenth centuries.

In Part II, we will look at histories beginning in the eleventh century, which respond to the Seljuk invasions and the many changes brought to Armenian life, and proceed up until the early modern period, when travel accounts covered the various diasporic and merchant colonies that were now spread across the globe. 

To register, click here. All are welcome. We look forward to you joining us!
Photo - The first 12 students to graduate from St. Nersess and St. Vladimir’s Seminaries and be ordained:
(back row) Fr. Garabed Kochakian (1976), Fr. Arakel Aljalian (1993), Fr. Yeprem Kelegian (1977), Fr. Sahak Kaishian (1993), Fr. Vasken Kouzouian (1994), Fr. Tavit Boyajian (1993), Fr. Stepanos Doudoukjian (1996), Fr. Shnork Demirjian (1991), Fr. Diran Bohajian (1993); (front row) Fr. Kevork Arakelian (1973), Fr. Karekin Kasparian, Bishop Daniel Findikyan, Fr. Mardiros Chevian (1985), Fr. Simeon Odabashian (1996).
Thank you for your continued support. As we wrap up our Christmas Appeal and 60th Anniversary celebration, we want to thank you for your generosity. There is still time to donate. Please click here to donate online.
Six Decades and Counting...

Sixty years of vision, commitment, new ideas, hard work, enthusiasm, prayers, and an abiding faith.

Sixty years of leadership, instruction, worship, and formation of seminarians.

Sixty years producing 50+ graduates serving the Armenian Church as bishops, priests, deacons and lay ministers here and abroad. The first 12 graduates were honored on November 13 (cover photo), with more celebrations planned to recognize ordained and lay alumni of St. Nersess Seminary.

Sixty years of gathering thousands of young people, who are offered an education, inspiration, and a better understanding of what it means to be an Armenian Christian. Many are now leading our Church as priests, deacons, teachers, parish council members, diocesan delegates, and diocesan council members.

Sixty years of remembrance of the pioneers of this institution, including Archbishop Tiran Nersoyan, founder and first dean.

Sixty years of support, financial and moral, that has come from you and three generations before you.

You have made it possible for us to enter the next decade of service and mission. Please consider making a donation to support the seminary.

May the Lord continue to bless and protect you and may His light continue to shine upon our beloved seminary.
New Leadership Circle Level Added

Our Leadership Circle of donors want the best for St. Nersess Armenian Seminary and the future of the Armenian Church in America. We appreciate how you help to motivate others, supply wisdom and experience, and provide the seminary with important financial support. Your moral and financial leadership empowers us to continue to strengthen our rich tradition of educating, engaging, and preparing leaders for service in the Armenian Church.

St. Nersess Seminary is important to the future of the Armenian Church in North America. The seminary provides a quality theological education that is firmly rooted in the faith and traditions of our Holy Armenian Church while fully utilizing the technological and financial resources of the 21st century. Through graduate-level education and spiritual formation, St. Nersess prepares priests for today’s Church and, as a seminary that welcomes women and men, St. Nersess prepares non-ordained ministers for service in youth ministry and education.

A new Protector level has been added to our Leadership Circle. Donors can now make a $2,500 annual donation. We also offer:







Gifts can be made on a quarterly or monthly basis. Thank you and God bless you for your support and commitment to St. Nersess Armenian Seminary. All donors are recognized on our website.