Karekin I Sanctifies Church in Cologne

YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)–Catholicos of All Armenia’s–Karekin I–ended his visit to Egypt Monday and left for his first official visit to the Armenian community of Germany.

At the airport of Frankfurt–His Holiness was met by Head of the German Diocese of the Armenian Apostolic Church–Bishop Garegin Petchian–locum tenens of the pastor envoy–Bishop Norvan Zakarian–spiritual pastor of the Central Europe–Senior Priest Hakob Hekchian–Armenia’s Ambassador to Germany Ashot Voskanian and members of the church council.

The same day–Karekin I left for Cologne and personally sanctified the chief eparchy church after St. Sahak and St. Mesrop.

Tuesday–first liturgy was served in the church by Karekin I. The sermon was attended by representatives of sister-churches–diplomats and political figures.

After the liturgy was over His Holiness met with representatives of Greek–Egyptian–Assyrian and Russian Orthodox church–as well as Catholic–Evangelistic and other sister-churches.

The Catholicos is scheduled to meet German Chancellor Helmut Kohl and other high-level German officials–where he will discuss issues of interest to Armenia’s.

He arrived in Germany from a week-long visit to communities in Egypt.

During his visit there–he met with Egyptian presiden Hosni Mubarak and the head of Coptic chuch Patiarch Shnuda III.

The Catholicos is expected to return to Etchmiadzin following his trip to Germany.

This is the first pontifical visit to Germany for Karekin I.

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