Armenian Apostolic Church

(redirected from Armenian Apostolic)
Also found in: Wikipedia.

Armenian Apostolic Church

 

one of the oldest Christian churches. Christianity began to be disseminated in Armenia in the early centuries of the Christian era. In A.D. 301 KingTiridates III proclaimed Christianity the state religion, thus differentiating himself with regard to religion from Sassanid Iran, which was trying to subjugate Armenia. In A.D. 303 a cathedral was built at Echmiadzin (near Yerevan), which became the religious center of all Armenians and the seat of the supreme patriarch and catholicos of all Armenians. The Armenian Apostolic Church is sometimes called Gregorian from the name of the first catholicos, Grigorii Parte v.

In the fourth century the Armenian Apostolic Church became a powerful economic and ideological organization, with large landholdings in its possession. At the Council of Dwin in 506 the church, reflecting the desire of the ruling classes of Armenia to oppose Byzantine aggression, definitively separated itself from the Byzantine Church and became autocephalous.

The Armenian Apostolic Church, in contrast to the Orthodox and Catholic churches, acknowledges the divinity and humanity of Christ within a single nature; for this reason it is considered Monophysite.

In the fourth to 11th centuries various heresies were widespread in Armenia: the Borboriani, the Messalians (fourth and fifth centuries), the Paulicians (sixth to ninth centuries), the Thondraki (from the ninth through the mid-11th centuries), and others. In these heresies the protest of the popular masses against feudal and clerical oppression was reflected under the guise of religion. The official church, with the support of the state, savagely suppressed these movements. Beginning in the 13th century the Catholic Church tried to spread its influence in Armenia; however, it was unsuccessful. After the loss of Armenia’s state form in the 14th century, the church remained as a centralized national organization. In time Echmiadzin ceased to be the center of the church. The center shifted consecutively to the cities of Dwin, Ani, Hromkla, and Sis. In 1441, Echmiadzin again became the residence of the church and has remained so to the present day. In the 17th and 18th centuries the Armenians were increasingly attracted toward Russia, from which they hoped to receive aid in their struggle against the rule of the Turkish and Iranian conquerors. Reflecting these moods, the Armenian catholicos tried to establish relations with Russia. Archbishop Iosif Argutinskii played a prominent role in the development of Russo-Armenian ties in the second half of the 18th century.

Under the circumstances of Armenia’s enslavement by foreigners, the Armenian Apostolic Church served as the center of culture and scholarship in Armenia. In the monastery schools there was instruction in rhetoric, grammar, philosophy, mathematics, and painting, as well as religion. Books and manuscripts were copied in the monasteries.

After the incorporation of Armenia into Russia in 1828, the tsarist government confirmed the basic privileges of the Armenian Apostolic Church. The rising Armenian bourgeoisie forced the church to serve its purposes and to fight against the revolutionary movement of the masses. Like other churches, the Armenian Apostolic Church took a hostile attitude toward the October Socialist Revolution. After the rise of the bourgeois Armenian republic of the Dashnaks (1918–20), the Armenian Apostolic Church supported the counterrevolutionary nationalist government of the Dashnaks. After the establishment of Soviet power in Armenia in 1920, the church was separated from the state, and the schools were separated from the church. The victory of socialism in the USSR inevitably caused a sharp decline in the influence of the Armenian Apostolic Church on the toiling masses. At the present time the church maintains a position of loyalty to Soviet power and participates in the struggle for peace. Since 1955 the head of the Armenian Apostolic Church has been Catholicos Vazgen I. At his residence in Echmiadzin there is a special theological seminary, and a regular monthly magazine entitled Echmiadzin is published there. Within the church the Echmiadzin catholicate has authority over the Cilician catholicate (Antelyas), the patriarchates of Jerusalem and Constantinople, and the various eparchial administrative subdivisions of the church—in the United States (the California and North American eparchies), South America, Western Europe (with its center in Paris), the Near and Middle East (the eparchies of Iran-Azerbaijan, Tehran, Isfahan, Iraq, and Egypt), the Far East (the Indian and Far Eastern eparchy), and the Balkans (the Rumanian, Bulgarian, and Greek eparchies).

REFERENCES

Ormanian, M. Armianskaia tserkov’: Ee istoriia, uchenie, upravlenie, vnutrenii stroi, liturgiia, literatura, ee nastoiashchee. Moscow, 1913. (Translated from French.)
Ocherki istorii SSSR, III-IX vv. Moscow, 1958. Pages 167–228, 408–502

S. N. OVANESIAN

References in periodicals archive ?
The service was jointly organized by both main Canadian sections of the orthodox Armenian Apostolic Church, the Armenian Catholic Church and the Armenian Evangelical Church.
The funeral will be held on Monday, May 11 from CALLAHAN FAY CASWELL Funeral Home, 61 Myrtle Street, Worcester with a Funeral Service at 11:00 am at Holy Trinity Armenian Apostolic Church, 635 Grove Street, Worcester.
A full-fledged internal debate started in 1989 when the two branches of the Armenian Apostolic Church held an ecumenical gathering and, a year later, which coincided with the 75th anniversary of the Armenian Massacres, preparatory work started to fulfill the required religious canonization processes.
Later on Thursday, a prayer was held at the Archbishopric of the Dioceses of the Armenian Apostolic Church in Old Damascus city commemorating the anniversary.
His Beatitude, Aram I Keshishian Catholicos of the Holy See of Cilicia of the Armenian Apostolic Church
The UAF is the joint effort of the Armenian General Benevolent Union, Armenian Missionary Association of America, Armenian Relief Society, Diocese of the Armenian Church of America, and Prelacy of the Armenian Apostolic Church of America.
The first and only Armenian Apostolic Church is located in Sharjah in Yarmook.
Gregory The Illuminator Armenian Apostolic Church in San Francisco, which has hosted the festival annually since 1957.
During a meeting in Amman with Archbishop Nurhan Manougian, the Armenian Apostolic Patriarch of Jerusalem and Jordan, His Majesty stressed the need to preserve the Arab, Islamic and Christian identity of Jerusalem, support Jerusalemites and help them in the face of challenges and difficult times they are living through.
Plevneliev met Thursday with representatives of several major religious communities in Bulgaria a Orthodox Christians, Muslims, Jews, Catholics, Evangelists and members of the Armenian Apostolic Church.
A number of high-ranking Armenian officials attended the sermon, held by head of the Catholicosate of the Great House of Cilicia and Catholicos of the Holy See of Cilicia of the Armenian Apostolic Church, most notably representative of Speaker of the House, MP Hagop Pakradounian.
Makarios) monastery for the fourth time this year as a pilgrimage to one of the holiest shrines of the Armenian Apostolic church.

Full browser ?