Archbishop Krikorian Dies


VIENNA — Archbishop Mesrob Krikorian, a leader of the Church of Armenia, a scholar of Armenology, and a pioneer representing the Church of Armenia in interdenominational relations, died on January 14 in Vienna, Austria. He was 84.

Krikorian was born on October 25,1932 in Aleppo, Syria. He graduated the seminary in Antilias in 1947, and in 1953 was ordained as a celibate priest. From 1956 to 1957, as a clergyman faithful to his oath, together with 10 other members of his brotherhood, he took sides in favor of the Catholicate of All Armenians, and became the director of the Seminary of the Independent Brotherhood. He was expelled from the monastery during this period together with his students.

He taught for a period in the Armenian General Benevolent Union Hovagimian-Manoogian Secondary School in Beirut and then went to Durham University in Great Britain to continue his higher education. He is the author of ten books on Armenian theology, manuscripts and history.

In 1959 he moved to Vienna, where he remained till his death. He founded St. Hripsime Armenian Apostolic Church there. From 1964 to 1974 he represented the Mother See in the World Council of Churches. In 1980 he was appointed the Pontifical Legate to Central Europe and Sweden. In 1986 he was ordained a bishop at the hand of Catholicos of All Armenians Vasken I.

A more detailed biography will be forthcoming.