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News

The Activities Of The Armenian Catholic Community



The diocese of Mardin of the Armenian Catholic See was, with its 22.000 believers, subjected to deportation in 1915. Primate Archbishop Ignatius Maloyan was arrested and killed on the deportation route with other 12 clergymen in the same year. The nuns of the Armenian Order of the Immaculate Conception, founded in Constantinople in 1847, also suffered losses in 1915, but all the remaining members of the congregation continued their orphan care work. They took over the care of 100 orphans in the orphanage opened by the Pope's Apostolic Delegate Angelo Dolci in the Shishli district of Constantinople in 1918. The orphanage was placed under the auspices of the Mkhitarist Congregation of Venice and was named after Pope Benedict XV. The orphans were moved to Galata, to the Austrian school of St. George, in 1919. Thanks to Dolci's mediation, the Mkhitarist Congregation assumed responsibility for the Galata orphanage in November 1920, when it was moved to Kadiköy Father Hakob Tiroyan assumed its directorship and had the support of Fr. Khoren Sinanyan and Fr. Yeprem Abrahamyan. 190 orphans were sheltered in the St. Anna orphanage in Pera thanks to the support of the Catholic Congregation. Another orphanage was opened in Samatia, sheltering 400 girl orphans, who, in December 1922, were moved to Italy. Pope Pius XI provided his country residence in Gandolfo as a shelter for them.

Another Catholic center, Zmmar monastery and its surrounding buildings sheltered a number of orphans from of Dort Yol and Mersin, while the remainder found shelter in Ashkut Monastery. These orphans were later moved to Beirut, where Father Boghos Aris, secretary of the National Union of Beirut, carried out work to place them in homes. Chairman of the Armenian National Union of Aleppo, Archpriest Gabriel Gaspar, set up two workshops in 1916. He also participated in the work, undertaken by compatriotic unions, of finding orphans and organized the transportation of Armenians from Aintab to Aleppo in 1921. The Catholic community also established orphanages in Aleppo and Damascus. The St. Odri orphanages set up by the Samsonyan sisters and the nuns of the Armenian Order of the Immaculate Conception functioned in Aleppo. During the Armenian Genocide the Armenian Catholic School in the Tilel district of Aleppo became a refuge and a hospital for Armenian refugees. The Catholic community had its representatives in National Relief, the Armenian Relief Committee of Mesopotamia. Armenian National Union and other organizations.







Narine Margaryan
Scientific-Secretary of Armenian Genocide Museum-Institute





The Scouts of Mekhitarist Orphanage in Constantinople, 1922
AGMI Collection






The Children of Samson Orphanage with their Mothers
Eplighatyan M., National Care: General Directory, Antelias, 1985






The Children of Pure Sisters’ Charity of Saint Ann Orphanage
Eplighatyan M., National Care: General Directory, Antelias, 1985






Armenian Catholic Patriarch of Cilicia Poghos-Petros Terzyan (XIII) with Orphans
Bzommars All Over the World, № 27, Bzommar, 2016






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