England Diocese of the Armenian Apostolic Church: is founded in 1974 by the Pontifical letter of the Catholicos of All Armenians Vazgen I Balchian. Its primacy is the Church of Saint Sarkis in London. The first diocese was Nersess Archbishop Pozapalian (1974-82). The British-Armenian community, from the 19th century until 1965, has been part of the European Pontifical Delegation as a spiritual shepherd. In 1965-74 it united with the spiritual shepherd of the representatives of the Mother See of Holy Echmiadzin, and formed the Holy See of Canterbury and All England. The first spiritual shepherd of the community was Karapet Archimandrite Shahnazarian (1862–1866), who held the liturgy of Easter of 1863, in a rental chapel in Manchester. With his efforts in Manchester, the first Armenian book titled “The Earth” was published in England. 

In 1900-01 a book called “The Armenian Church” was published, after the 11th verse it was turned into “Armenians Church” Theo-religious magazine (the editor was: pastor Toros Isahakian). The first Armenian Church in England was the Holy Trinity Church; built in Manchester in 1870, by the efforts of Archimandrite Khoren Kyuroian. The church has its primacy and library, one of its halls is dedicated for the Women’s Society (founded in 1908) and the Armenian Centre (founded in 1988). It also has a Sunday school (since 1984), where more than 130 student receives Armenian education. Since 1975, The Holy Trinity Church of Manchester has no permanent pastor. The spiritual needs of the church takes care the visitor pastor from London. The first rental chapel of London was opened by the initiation of Yesayi Archimandrite Astvatzatrian in 1885 and served until 1901. In 1922 the church of Saint Sarkis was founded by the sponsorship of Calouste Gulbenkian, and consecrated by January of 1923, it is located in the central part of the city of London, particularly on Kensington Street. In 2000, the Armenian Church of Saint Peter of London, which dates back to 1975, was bought by the sponsorship of Vatche Manoukian. It was consecrated in 11th of January 2001, by his Holiness Catholicos of All Armenians Garegin II. There is a Sunday school beside the church, which have been serving since 1978. The pastor of the saint Yeghishe Church is Nesess Archimandrite Nersissian since 2000. Back in 1967-78 a national Sunday school named after Sahak Partev and Mesrop Mashtots was in service. Since 1986 the representative body of British-Armenian community is the local church council. It is consisted of 23 members, it has its own regulation; approved in 1989 by the Catholicos of All Armenians Vazgen I. The council monitors the religious community, the educational board and other activities; they also cooperate with all other associations and organizations. The council congregations are chaired by the Prim diocese, who is also the representative of the Mother See of Holy Echmiadzin in the circle of the Archbishopric of Canterbury and All England. The prim diocese of the England Diocese is Nathan Archbishop Hovhannisian since 2000.                     




Source: Encyclopedia of «Christian Armenia», editor in chief Hovhannes Ayvazyan, Yerevan, 2002, page 59-60. (in Armenian).

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