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(SAN DIEGO) – The Knights of Vartan, Gomidas Tahlij #43 of San Diego has donated a commissioned painting of St. Vartan and Ghevont Yeretz for the side altar of St. Sarkis Armenian Church, San Diego.

The painting by Armenian artist Tigran Hovumyan was dedicated and blessed by His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate of the Western Diocese, and parish priest Very Rev. Father Pakrad Dz. V Berjekian, on Sunday, February 5, 2023, as part of St. Sarkis’ First Anniversary Celebration.

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Help Lebanon

For over a century, ever since the 1915 genocide, Lebanon, particularly Beirut, has been a home for Armenians. Generations of our people have grown up, worked, married, and raised their families in Beirut. As a new niche and homeland, Lebanon and its people have shown great kindness to Armenians.

This past August the 4th, a devastating pair of ammonium nitrate explosions in Beirut’s Port District killed hundreds while leaving thousands more injured and homeless. Among the scores who died were Armenians. Many of their homes and schools in the city were also heavily damaged or obliterated.

Not willing to stand by as this tragedy unfolded, The Knights and Daughters of Vartan immediately began raising money to aid those Armenians in Beirut who were affected by the blasts. Many of our sisters and brothers grew up in Lebanon and still had families and friends living in the city.

In a very short time, Knights and Daughters of Vartan succeeded in raising more than 16-thousand dollars. The money was equally divided among our partner organizations, AGBU, AMAA, and ARS, all of which work directly with those affected on the ground in Beirut.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families who lost loved ones and those still suffering in Beirut. We hope the injured will recover swiftly from their wounds and that those parts of the city that were damaged or destroyed can and will be rebuilt.