Blessing and Grand Opening of Garo and Alice Gureghian Armenian Cultural Center in Fresno


On Saturday, March 11, 2017, H.E. Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian, Prelate, traveled to Fresno to conduct the blessing of the newly renovated Garo and Alice Gureghian Armenian Cultural Center. Representatives of the ARF Central Committee, Soghomon Tehlirian Gomideh, Executive Council, Holy Trinity Church, the sponsors, and community members participated in the ceremony.

The ceremony began with the blessing of the new center by the Prelate followed by the ribbon cutting. His Eminence was assisted by Rev. Fr. Ashod Kambourian and Deacon Mark Shirin. A reception followed inside during which guests were invited to view the center. The official program was MC’d by Tatevik Ekizian and featured remarks by ARF Western US Central Committee Chairman Daron Der Khachadourian, Soghomon Tehlirian Gomideh Chairman Khatchig Havatian and member Raffi Chekherdemian. Elected officials presented proclamations on this occasion.

The Prelate delivered his congratulatory remarks in which he highlighted the importance of the church, school, and cultural center trinity as the pillars of our communities worldwide, stating “These three together, as one entity, have been key to upholding and advancing our heritage for generations in these far-away lands of the Diaspora, and will be key to ensuring the survival of our religious and national values and traditions for generations to come.” In light of the “Year of Renewal,” His Eminence highlighted also the importance of renewal in our individual and collective lives, noting that the Armenian-American community of the Central Valley, where we had our first Armenian Church, the beautiful historic landmark that is Holy Trinity Church, as well as our first newspaper, Asbarez, has survived and thrived for over a century while maintaining that which makes us unique by evolving and undergoing renewal with the times. Noting the importance of the cultural center as a second home where our youth can safely gather and where their national identity will be reinforced, the Prelate thanked and commended Mr. and Mrs. Gureghian for the generosity and the efforts of the Soghomon Tehlirian Gomideh and all those involved in the successful completion of the project and concluded by urging the youth to draw near to our church, school, and community organizations, and for the elders to guide our youth in their path of service.

Following the official program, the dedication of the ARS office sponsored by Mr.
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and Mrs. Vahan and Anoush Chamlian was conducted.

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