GLENDALE—Ahead of a community celebration of the 95th anniversary of Armenian Independence on Saturday, 24 new members joined the ranks of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation.
Ahead of the oath ceremony, Harut Megrdichian of the ARF Western US Central Committee’s Education Committee welcomed the soon to be new members and reported that 38 individuals applied to join the ranks of the party, of whom 26 successfully completed the four-month intensive novice educational program. On Saturday, 24 took their oath, while another two members were unable to take part in the ceremony because they were out of country.
Veteran ARF member Khatoun Pakradouni was invited to administer the oath, following which she presented her brief yet moving remarks to the new members of the 123-year-old party.
She recalled her own swearing in ceremony in 1952 as a young student in Beirut and revealed that legendary ARF leader General Dro was on hand to administer her oath to membership in the ranks.
Pakrdouni then told the new members that to serve the mission of the ARF is to serve the entire Armenian nation, adding that along the way there will be challenges to overcome, but in the end the sacred mission to advance the Armenian Cause was the ultimate goal.
She also announced that this crop of new members will be called the “Simon Zavarian Generation,” named after the ARF founder, who was known as being the conscience of the party. This year marks the 100th anniversary of Zavarian’s death.
Pakradouni concluded her remarks by quoting Zavarian who said, “without real work, words are meaningless.”
In his remarks, ARF Western US Central Committee chairman Dr. Viken Hovsepian told the new members that although they had completed the educational program, the true education in the party began when they took the ARF membership oath, stressing that each day, as an ARF member, is an education.
The more than 200 fellow ARF members who had gathered to witness the solemn ceremony, one-by-one congratulated the new members and welcomed them to the ranks.