The Holy Translators (Tarkmançats) Feast, which is unique to the Armenian Church, was celebrated on Saturday, October 9th with the Holy Offering Rite (Surp Badarak) in Ortaköy Surp Asdvadzadzin Church.
High Priest Zakeos Ohanyan presided over the Holy Offering, which was presented by the hand of Senior Father Goryun Fenerciyan. Priest Haroutyun Damadian and senior readers of the church served the sacrament. Fathers sang the hymns accompanied by Rober Doğanay’s direction and organ.
Priests and fathers affiliated with the patriarchate also attended the ceremony, and the managers of Ortaköy Surp Asdvadzadzin Church Foundation, the director of the Tarkmançats School, the principal, teachers and students, as well as believers were present. Before the Lord’s prayer, High Priest Zakeos Ohanyan preached about Tarkmanchats Feast. After the sermon, the communion was distributed. At the end of the month, the Ayin-i Ruhani (Hokehankisd) prayers were read for all Saint Translators and all those who sleep in the Lord.
*REVIVAL OF A NATION
(What is Tarkmançats Feast?)
A hundred years later, a great danger awaited the Armenian nation, who converted to Christianity in 301.
There was the problem of dissolution and assimilation through religion among other Christian nations.
Because the rites were not performed in Armenian, but in languages such as Greek, Aramaic, Syriac, and Chaldean.
It was not possible to read the Bible in Armenian.
The only thing that was done in Armenian was the sermons. Especially in the west of the Euphrates, in Cappadocia and in Eastern Anatolia, the danger was even greater with the disappearance of the Armenian Kingdom.
Since the Church was the only institution that embraced all Armenians, it was up to them to solve this big problem.
The then Catholicos Sahag Bartev, the King of Eastern Armenia Vramshabuh and Mesrop Vartabed embarked on a groundbreaking work.
They started to work by agreeing on the creation of a new alphabet for Armenian, the translation of the Bible into Armenian in this way, and the performance of the rites in Armenian.
Mesrop Vartabet was one of the greatest religious scholars of the time. He was fluent in many foreign languages. He first tried to adapt other alphabets to Armenian, but could not find a suitable alphabet that would give all the sounds in Armenian, so he decided to invent it.
After much struggle, with God’s help, he found the alphabet (404-406) and translated the Bible into Armenian with his students.
This new writing began to be taught with great excitement and enthusiasm.
The new alphabet became the most important cultural element uniting the dispersed Armenians.
*(Excerpt from the article of Armenians of Turkey Patriarch Sahak II, dated 7 October 2016, Agos Newspaper)