On September 25, His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians arrived in India as part of the pontifical visit to the Far East.
As reports the information system of the Mother See, on the same day His Holiness visited the St. Nazareth Armenian Church of Calcutta with the accompaniment of spiritual pastor of the Armenians of India, head of the Armenian Humanitarian Lyceum of Calcutta, Father Zaven Yazichyan; Director of the Inter-Church Relations Office of the Divan of the Mother See, Father Paruyr Avetisyan, as well as members of the church council Susan Ruben, Sunil Sobti and guests. At the cemetery adjacent to the church a prayer was said for the souls of the deceased to rest in peace.
Afterwards, the Supreme Patriarch visited the St. Gregory the Illuminator Church where he had a meeting with members of the Indian-Armenian community. His Holiness also gave his blessing and said a prayer for the elderly staying at the convalescent home. The meeting was followed by a Requiem Mass in memory of the Armenians who had lived in India.
On the same day, the Catholicos of All Armenians visited the Armenian Humanitarian Lyceum of Calcutta where the students and administration greeted His Holiness with salt and bread and led him to the lyceum’s hall.
The ceremony began with the Lord’s Prayer and the national anthems of Armenia, India and the Lyceum. The Supreme Patriarch greeted head of the lyceum, Father Zaven Yazichyan and voiced hope that the visit of His Holiness would excite the representatives of the lyceum and make them study better in India.
During the ceremony, the lyceum’s choir performed remarkable Armenian, Indian and Bengal songs, performed dances and recited poet Gevorg Emin’s poem “Dance of the Sasuntsis”. The teachers were also excited about the visit of His Holiness, and Soma Sarkar peformed a Bengal song on this special occasion.
The event also included a presentation of the history of Indian-Armenians starting from the 17th century.
The ceremony ended with the blessing of Catholicos of All Armenians Karekin II. His Holiness congratulated the community, the lyceum’s students and administration on their successes and advancement. His Holiness also urged the teachers to continue their kind and sincere mission to educate the new generation of Armenians and called on the students to appreciate and use their knowledge to the fullest.
In the end, the students, teachers and guests participated ina banquet held on the occasion of the Supreme Patriarch’s visit.