Senators Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Diane Feinstein (D-CA) made statemen’s on the floor of the US Senate this week–welcoming His Holiness Aram I–Catholicos of the Great House Of Cilicia–to California for his upcoming October visit.
Senator Boxer stressed that the Catholicos’s spiritual–cultural and educational influence extends beyond the Armenian people. "His Holiness Aram I? has worked to strengthen interfaith relations between Christian and Muslim communities. In 1974–the Catholicos was one of the founding members of the Middle East Council of Churches."
In her speech–Senator Feinstein stressed that his Holiness is not only the spiritual leader for hundreds of thousands of Armenia’s around the world–but is also of the most prominent Christian leaders in the Middle East. "The Pontiff presently serves as the Moderator for the World Council of Churches which is comprised of more than 340 churches from different cultures and countries around the world representing over 400 million Christians. Currently serving his second term–His Holiness is the first Orthodox and the youngest person to be elevated to Moderator," she said.
Pointing to the theme of the Pontiff’s visit,"Towards the Light of Knowledge," she said it reflects the Pontiff’s faith that "only with greater education and dialogue can the world’s conflicts be addressed properly."