Site of Sts. Sahag & Mesrob Armenian Apostolic Church 1925-1950

On July 22, 1925, the West Philadelphia Armenian Church community purchased a large house at 6006 Walnut Street and an adjacent lot. Economic difficulties during the depression made it challenging to pay the mortgage and taxes, but Messrs. Aram Jerrehian and Haig Pakradouni jointly guaranteed the mortgage. Instead of converting the house into a church, they turned the second floor into a chapel accommodating 175 people, consecrated in 1932 by the Rt. Rev. Bishop Tirayr Hovhanessiants, with Mesrrs. Garabed Jerrehian and Dickran Ispecherian as Godfathers. The church's membership reached 200, and the first Armenian Sunday School in America was established by Mrs. Azniv Nedurian. The Men's Brotherhood of the Armenian Church and the Daughters of the Armenian Church were formed to attract younger members and organized a Sunday evening lecture series with guest speakers. Alongside the Ladies Aid Society, these groups raised funds and furnished the church. After World War II, prosperity led the community to seek a new location. In a Parish Assembly on November 11, 1945, a new Building Committee was elected, with Aram Jerrehian as Chairman initially, later succeeded by Mr. Dickran Vishabazoun. They purchased land at 63rd and Locust Streets for a new church. Architectural plans were donated by Mr. Harry Kuljian of the Kuljian Corporation and approved by the membership. Mr. Avedis Boornazian later became the Chairman of the Building Committee. On September 15, 1950, the Walnut Street Church was sold.

Photographer & Historian


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