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Six new chapters in 2009

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Six New Chapters This Year

During the remainder of the meeting, members of the ACYOA Central Council delivered an organization-wide report, highlighting the success of activities such as the Armenia Service Program, the summer pilgrimage to the Holy Land, participation in the international ACYO meeting at the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin, the blood drives organized at local chapters to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the 1988 earthquake in Armenia, and the Pan-North American Retreat held in the fall with the Western and Canadian Dioceses.

Other accomplishments include the continued expansion of the Young Adult Leadership Conference, which marked its 10th anniversary last March, and the launching of the Mission Service Project, which gives ACYOA members the opportunity to assist with the training of altar servers and choir singers at the mission parishes.

In the past year, the ACYOA saw the addition of six new chapters, bringing the Diocesan-wide total to 23 chapters.

Delegates at the assembly also heard Jennifer Morris, Youth Outreach coordinator at the Diocese, speak about Diocesan Summer Camp programs, where many ACYOA members serve as counselors. Julie Hoplamazian, College Ministry facilitator at the Diocese, highlighted resources available to college students and young professionals.

Delegates reviewed the findings of the auditing committee, approved a new budget for 2010, and passed a proposal to publish and distribute an annual report prior to future assemblies. They thanked the Primate and the ACYOA Executive Secretary Nancy Basmajian for their support of the organization’s initiatives.

During the traditional Primate’s Luncheon on Friday, Archbishop Barsamian presented all delegates with a personalized copy of the Diocese’s newly-published Armenian Canon Bible, which contains the entire canon of scriptural books considered authoritative in the Armenian Church, in English translation. Central Council members announced the recipients of five service awards.

Dn. Sarkis Altunian, of St. Sarkis Church in Dallas, received the “Fr. Haroutiun Dagley Award” in recognition of his many contributions to various ACYOA programs.

The Very Rev. Fr. Daniel Findikyan, dean of St. Nersess Seminary, was presented with the “Fr. Haigazoun Melkonian Award” in honor of his leadership and dedication to the youth of the Armenian Church.

Laurie Odabashian received the “Sam Nersessian Award,” given to individuals who display the Christian values of love, patience, humility and understanding.

Lydia Kurkjian received the “Gregory Arpajian Award” for her leadership and contributions to the Armenian Church.

“The Chapter ‘A’ Award,” given to the best all-around chapter, went out to St. John’s Church of Detroit, Mich.