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Wednesday, 17 October 2012 18:51

Archbishop Aghan Baliozian OAM

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 aghan baliozian

 
1946 - 22 September 2012

 

 

His Eminence Archbishop Aghan Baliozian OAM, Primate of the Diocese of the Armenian Church of Australia and New Zealand died on Saturday 22 September 2012 in Sydney.

Archbishop Baliozian was held in high esteem both in Australia and around the world for his wisdom and commitment to Christian unity, interreligious dialogue and peace building.  He arrived in Australia in 1975 to serve as Vicar General of the diocese before being appointed as Primate of Australia and New Zealand in 1982.

As an active and passionate ecumenist he served as the first president of the National Council of Churches in Australia (NCCA) (1994-97) and later as president of the NSW Ecumenical Council (2005-07).  Archbishop Baliozian represented the Armenian Church within the World Council of Churches participating in the Assemblies of Canberra (1991), Harare (1998) and Porto Alegre (2006). He also participated in the Special Commission on Orthodox Participation after the Harare Assembly.

Archbishop Baliozian will be remembered for his outstanding commitment to ecumenism. His role in promoting Christian unity, the participation of the orthodox churches both in the NCCA and WCC, and the importance of interfaith dialogue is a continuing legacy for the churches. Alongside his work with the churches he worked with the wider community where he was held in high esteem by both local community and political leaders.

For his significant contribution and service to Australia and the Armenian community he was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia in 1995 and in 2001 the Centenary Medal.

The NCCA and the Australian Churches give thanks to God for his leadership and his tremendous contribution towards Christian Unity

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