Armenian Church

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Armenian Church,

autonomous Christian church, sometimes also called the Gregorian Church. Its head, a primate of honor only, is the catholicos of Yejmiadzin, Armenia; Karekin II became catholicos in 1999. His rule is shared by the patriarchs of Jerusalem and Constantinople and by the catholicos of Sis (Cilicia). In general, Armenian practices resemble those of other Eastern churches; the priests may marry and communion is distributed in both bread and wine, although the use of unleavened bread is a Western practice. The liturgical language is classical Armenian. Armenia became Christian at the end of the 3d cent. through the missionary work of St. Gregory the IlluminatorGregory the Illuminator, Saint,
d. c.330, churchman, called the Apostle of Armenia. He was the first metropolitan of Armenia and is revered as founder of the Armenian Church. Feast: Sept. 30.
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. In the next century the young church made itself autonomous, apparently because of the efforts of the metropolitan bishop of Caesarea, St. Basil the Great, to impose certain reforms. After the Council of Chalcedon the Armenians rejected the orthodox position; this adoption, at least tacit, of MonophysitismMonophysitism
[Gr.,=belief in one nature], a heresy of the 5th and 6th cent., which grew out of a reaction against Nestorianism. It was anticipated by Apollinarianism and was continuous with the principles of Eutyches, whose doctrine had been rejected in 451 at Chalcedon (see
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 completed the isolation of the Armenian Church from the rest of Christendom. Part of the Armenian Church reunited with Rome temporarily in the 13th and 14th cent., and missionary work by the Roman Church in the 14th cent. resulted in many converts. In 1740 the Catholic Armenian rite was officially organized, in communion with the pope but under its own patriarch. Today there are Armenian churches in every continent.


See P. C. Gulesserian, The Armenian Church (tr. 1939, repr. 1970); D. Attwater, The Christian Churches of the East (2 vol., rev. ed. 1961).

References in periodicals archive ?
The WCC and its member churches will continue to participate in the ongoing centennial commemorations this year by the Armenian diaspora, including with the Armenian Church Holy See of Cilicia in Antelias, Lebanon, on 18-19 July.
As the Iranian government prepares for the restoration, the Armenian church system suggested Armenian experts be included in the planning.
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Extended negotiations between the Government and the Armenian Church resulted in a 2000 framework for the two sides to negotiate a concordat.
The hosts were Bishop Bagrat Galstanian, primate of the Armenian church in Canada, and his assistant, Deacon Hagop Arslanian.
This text treats such themes as the date of Christmas, Baptism of Our Lord and Annunciation, the Christological formula "one nature", the preparation of the Sacrament of Holy Myron in the Armenian Church, the fasting periods, the mixture of wine and water within the liturgy, and the corruptibility of the Body of Christ.
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Instead, Christian Life Church and Christ Armenian Church worshipped together, in an inspiring bilingual service.
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Gazer's study describes the reflections and proposals of the chief proponents of reform in the Armenian Church between 1869 and World War II.

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