ANTELIAS–ETCHMIADZIN–His Holiness Aram I–Catholicos of the Holy See of Cilicia will travel to Etchmiadzin Monday to take part in the funeral and burial of His Holiness Karekin I–Catholicos of All Armenia’s–announced the Cilicia Catholicosate announced Friday.
Aram I will lead a delegation comprised of members of the Catholicosate Central Executive Council–as well as prelates from various prelacies around the world.
Western Prelate His Grace Bishop Moushegh Mardirossian–and Western Primate Archbishop Vatche Hovsepian will also attend funeral services
The Catholicos’ Vicar General Archbishop Garegin Nersissian received a message from President Bill Clinton regarding the death of Catholicos of All Armenia’s Karekin I.
"I unexpectedly learned about the death of His Holiness Catholicos of All Armenia’s Karekin I. His Holiness was revered for his deep knowledge–sincere commitment to a broad interchurch dialogue and firm convictions," the message read.
"On behalf of the American people–I ask you to convey my condolences and sympathies to the Armenian people," the message added. "You and all members of the Armenian Apostolic Church are in our thought and prayers."
Similar messages were received from Pope John Paul II–French president Jaques Chirac–Lebanese president Gen. Emil Lahoud and Russian State Duma Chairman Gennady Seleznyev.
Condolence messages were also expressed by California Governor Gray Davis–Representative George Radanovich (R-Fresno) and LA County Board of Supervisors member Mike Antonovich.