Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Worshiping in Rumney, New Hampshire

Summers during the 1940's, members of the United Armenian Brethren Church of Watertown, Massachusetts, would often head up to Rumney, New Hampshire, to gather with folks from area evangelical churches for a week in the country around a lake (similar to the camp meetings in Oak Bluffs on Martha's Vineyard), a week of attending religious services every morning, every afternoon, and every evening.

One evening, while the Rumney, N.H., evangelist was preaching on Satan, sitting in the congregation was Rev. Vartan Bilezikian, well known pastor of the United Armenian Brethren Church of Watertown, Massachusetts,  reverently listening to the sermon.  8 year old cousin David, Rev. Vartan's great nephew, was also in attendance. 

As David tells it, one afternoon during a particularly energetic church service, the folks in the congregation were distracted from what the (very forceful) evangelist was preaching; rather, they started turning their backs on the preacher, looking around and staring at the antics of a black cat that had walked into the house of worship and was strutting down the center aisle . . . right towards Uncle Vartan.  The preacher started railing:  "The devil has sent that black cat to distract you, my congregation of believers, to prevent you from hearing the Word of God."  The little black cat, lonely for Uncle Vartan's attention, sidled up to him and started rubbing against Uncle Vartan's ankles; the very same Uncle Vartan, owner of the cat,  tried to shoo it away without other folks in the congregation noticing. . . as the evangelist continued on the new topic of the day:  The devil has sent that black cat to prevent you from hearing the Word of God!  Get thee behind us, Satan! the evangelist preached quoting Jesus, as Uncle Vartan vainly attempted, with as much subtlety as he could muster, to shoo his cat away. 


  1. However unintended, stories like this, given the ignorance of the reader of this blog to uncle vartan's remarkable walk with the lord in the spirit of christ evangelizing in turkish villages only a few years following the first genocide (@500,000 murdered) serves no purpose except to tarnish and ridicule the life of this great man of God, and even more so the mighty power of the Holy Spirit to bring about the preaching of peace from those whose families had just been murdered, not by government decree, but by the sound of the local imam's trumpet for neighbor to pull out neighbor from their households and beat them to death with clubs, or throw them live into huge ovens, as my great grandmother was murdered. the reader of this blog most likely is not acquainted with the power of forgiveness and the might of the lord of peace and love and grace. it is too bad that the recollections of this great man are at the expense of somebody whose life, especially in those days following the year of blood and terror, should be sullied in an attempt to gain a laugh whose power is rooted in the weakness and imperfection of man, rather than the greatness of a God who can bring peace where there is no peace. The reader is recommended to avail themselves of the opportunity to know who Vartan really was by reading his short description of the days he and a small group walked from village to village preaching love and forgiveness to those who just a few years before were filled with a bloodlust whose symphony was the soft sound of Turks clubbing their Armenian neighbors to death. In the soul of Vartan and his few friends of like mind and soul, was the hallelujah chorus of heaven which drowned out the satyr’s symphony ringing in the ears of the survivors. Google: ‘Abraham Hoja of Aintab’, for the very short account written by Vartan of those days of the sword of truth (the good news of forgiveness and redemption, the word of God) was wielded in the face of the sword of Islam.

    1. see it that way? i do not think it is a matter of 'seeing it that way'. i stated brute facts. the premise of the syllogism is irrefutable, and thus the conclusion is, as well.

    2. "She's right, he's right, and they're right too!"

    3. ah...so the rules of logic no longer apply, and truth does not exist? and you wonder why our world is about to end?

    4. See http://marashgirl.blogspot.com/2013/09/youre-right-too-favorite-nasreddin.html