For the past 7 years since 2010, Armenian Prelacy of Canada’s Armenian Religious Education Council organizes a weekend seminar with clergyman, organizing committee members and Youth and Young Adults. It has been very successful every year.
On June 9th-11th, 2017, at Camp Iawah north of Kingston, Ontario, Canada in Godfrey, over 100 people attended the seminar coming from Montreal, Toronto, Cambridge, California, New York, even all the way from the Bahamas. We enjoyed home cooked meals, also a barbecue by the shores of Wolfe Lake, overlooking the beautiful moon which made its presence after our barbecue, then we danced around the bon fire with Armenian music, made s’mores.
During our free time we had activities such as canoeing, basketball, soccer, enjoying the lake, and some of us during that time enjoyed a good conversation, connecting with others and we became a family. Then we all wished it was a longer gathering.
The purpose of this Armenian North American retreat is to strengthen our spiritual selves, to meet and make friends with other Armenians, to make a spiritual bond with God, and to enjoy a weekend of fellowship.
Clergyman conducted discussions both about religion and other topics. Srpazan/ArchBishop Papken Tcharian, Hayr Keghart Kosbakian, Hayr Vartan Tashjian, Father Paul Guirgis, Dr. George Laylekian. Also Semaline Joukakelian who were also one of the presenters of a discussion.
Thank you to Zaven Joukakelian, Anie Aboyan, Sossie Aboyan, Nora Zobian, Maria Tchamitchian, Sarkis Kidanian, Arameh Ebrahamian, Taline Krikorian, Mariam Arakelian, Dania Ohanian, and others who organized this beautiful weekend which we will never forget.
During the course of the weekend, people heard the Phrase “Church Camp, Church Camp, Yeah, Yeah!”, That was said by Taleen Haneshian and Nazeeg Haneshian with crediting them, and later we all learned it on Friday night when everyone arrived. It was a fun saying which then it was said throughout the weekend many times. It was so incredible.
Many people hardly slept all weekend as we all wanted to spend as much time with each other as possible as we all know, weekends go very fast. Time is precious and we all wanted to be part of every single aspect of the weekend. I know we all if not most of us recovered when we got to our homes.
We look forward to future gatherings together to reunite with friends, to make new friends and most importantly get together with hearing Gods words, learning, and creating a strong bond with God, and to take what we learn to include it in our lives. God bless everyone and hope to see you at our next Armenian North American retreat/seminar.