FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
The Coptic Orthodox Diocese of New York & New England Issues a Statement on the 100th anniversary of the Arminian Genocide.
STONY POINT, NY (April 22, 2015) We commemorate the 100th anniversary of one of the most tragic events in modern history: the genocide that claimed the lives of one and a half million Armenians in their historic homeland. Although this mass martyrdom and displacement is commonly held to have begun on the 24th of April, it was preceded by centuries of persecution, culminating in a ruthless and systematic campaign of ethnic cleansing of this ancient indigenous community. As Pope Francis pointed out, there is no Armenian family that was left untouched by this tragedy.
In the century that has passed since this horrific massacre, our sister Church, the Armenian Orthodox, and the Armenian community at large, have exemplified the courage and dignity inherent in a community that has remained steadfast in its faith in the face of untold suffering. In this experience, our communities are inextricably bound, and made stronger by our shared faith — as gold refined by fire. Thus, we are each called upon to witness to the atrocities that befell our Armenian brothers and sisters during the “Metz Yeghern,” the “Great Evil,” and, indeed, to the persecution of all innocents that continue in this present day. It is our duty as Christians to preserve the memory of this tragic event and to heed its lessons.
May this solemn anniversary serve as a time of prayer and reflection. We pray that the Lord gives comfort and strength to our brothers and sisters in the Armenian community, and to all who have been victimized by violent acts borne of cowardice and intolerance. As a Diocese and a community, we remain united in prayer for an end to all violence, and in gratitude to our Lord Jesus Christ who, through His love, has endowed us with a spirit of triumph over evil.
About the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of New York & New England
The Coptic Orthodox Church is the largest Christian Church in Egypt and the Middle East. It is one of the oldest Christian churches in the world; the Coptic Orthodox Church began in approximately 55 AD when Saint Mark the Apostle arrived in Egypt. Today there are an estimated over 12 million Copts worldwide. The Coptic Orthodox diocese of NY & NE was established in November 16, 2014. The Diocese is presided over by His Grace Bishop David.