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Nalbandian Armash

Armenian Primate of Damascus, Syria

Bishop Armash Nalbandian (baptismal name Hagop) was born on January 29, 1973 in Aleppo, Syria. He received his primary education in Aleppo.

In 1987 he entered the Gevorkian Theological Seminary at the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin. He was ordained to the diaconate in 1991, on the Feast of the Exhalation of the Holy Cross by His Eminence Archbishop Nerses Pozapalian.

He graduated from the seminary in 1993 after the successful defense of his thesis entitled "The Life and Works of Catholicos Gevork Surenyants V (1911-1930)"

Following his graduation, he left Armenia for the Armenian Diocese of Germany where he served as a spiritual pastor to the Armenian community. From 1995 to 2000, he studied New Testament Theology at the University of Erlangen-Nierenberg. He also studied ancient Greek and Latin strengthening his skills in the explanatory methods of the Holy Gospel.

He was ordained a celibate priest in Cologne Germany in November 1998, by His Eminence Archbishop Karekin Bekdjian, and given the priestly name of Armash. Following his ordination, he was assigned to serve as the spiritual pastor for the Armenian community of southern Germany.

Father Armash received the rank of Archimandrite (Vartabet) in December 2003, after he successfully presented and defended his doctoral thesis entitled "The Divine Liturgy of the Armenian Church from the 5th Century to Present".

In early 2004, Father Armash returned to Syria were he was assigned to serve as Vicar to the Diocese of Damascus. The Armenian community elected him to serve as the Primate in the fall of 2004.

On January 15, 2006 Father Armash was consecrated as a Bishop by the Catholicos of All Armenians, His Holiness Karekin II in the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin.

Bishop Armash serves today as the Primate of the Diocese of Damascus.

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