JERUSALEM — On Thursday, January 24, the members of the St. James Brotherhood elected Archbishop Nourhan Manougian as the new Patriarch of Jerusalem after a two-day conclave.
Out of 33 members of the Brotherhood, Manougian was elected with 17 votes. Archbishop Aris Shirvanian, who has been serving as locum tenens, received 15 votes, with one blank vote cast.
Now, Manougian’s election must be approved by the governments of Israel and Jordan.
Manougian was born in Aleppo, Syria, and in 1948, graduated from the local Haigazian School. He studied at the seminary of the Catholicosate of Cilicia in Antelias, Lebanon. In 1966, he was accepted to the theological seminary of the Armenian Patriarchate of Jerusalem. His days as a student at the Patriarchate culminated in his ordination to the priesthood and his membership in the St. James Brotherhood in 1971.
A year later, he was appointed the pastor of the Armenians of Switzerland. Subsequently, he returned to the Middle East and served as the pastor to the Armenian communities of Jaffa and Haifa. In 1980, he was assigned the position of pastor of the Armenian community of Holland.
Manougian visited the US and pursued his graduate studies at New York’s General Theological Seminary. He subsequently served the Eastern Diocese as the pastor of St. Mark Church of Springfield, Mass., and then St. Kevork Church of Houston, Texas.
Upon returning to Jerusalem, Manougian was elected Grand Sacristan of the Holy See in 1998. A year later, Catholicos of All Armenians Karekin II elevated him to the rank of bishop.
(Editor’s note: We congratulate Archbishop Manougian on being elected the 97th Patriarch of the Holy See of Jerusalem and wish him every success in his challenging mission.)