Patriarch Torkom Manoogian, the Armenian Patriarch of Jerusalem, passed away on the morning of Oct. 12, according to the Armenian Patriarchate of Jerusalem and the St. James Brotherhood.
Patriarch Manoogian was born in 1919 in Barquba in the Mesopotamian desert to genocide survivors from Van. In 1931, he was enrolled in the Armenian Theological Seminary of Jerusalem and was ordained a celibate priest in 1939. He held many posts, including dean of the Armenian Theological Seminary, and was for many years the choir master of the St. James Cathedral and the parish priest in Haifa. In 1946 he left for New York for theological studies and founded the Armenian Society of Choirs.
The patriarch was an accomplished writer and musician, and had dozens of studies and publications. He was elected for several terms as primate of the Armenian Diocese in New York. In 1990, he was elected the Armenian Patriarch of Jerusalem and served in this capacity until his passing.
The Armenian Patriarchate’s jurisdiction extends over the Armenian communities in Israel, Palestine, and Jordan. It is one of the three custodians of the Holy Sites in the Holy Land.
On Oct. 15, Nagorno-Karabagh President Bako Sahakyan sent his condolences to the Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians, Karekin II. Patriarch Manoogian, wrote Sahakyan, contributed greatly “to fortifying the Armenian Apostolic Church, strengthening the Christian faith, as well as developing interchurch relations. He also had valuable input in preserving the Armenian national identity, maintaining the motherland-diaspora ties, promoting international recognition of the Armenian Genocide, and the fair representation of the Artsakh issue.”