Declaration of Independence doesn’t apply

It finally clicked in my head last night, why I’m on a different page when it comes to the Armenian Church. My son Christaphor was assigned to memorize a paragraph from the United States Declaration of Independence.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. (

That’s it. I hold this basic truth as SELF-EVIDENT. And so when such a holy government as that which runs the holy institution of the Church, becomes “destructive of these ends,” then it is in our RIGHT to abolish and to institute a new order.

All these years I’ve been considering the Church as a Sacred Institution that stood for the principles of life, liberty, truth, pursuit of happiness, that is, Unity with God. Isn’t that the prescription of self-determination written for each of us? Well, it turns out that this is my definition, flavored (though some may argue tainted) by the American dream.

Of course, this is why I can’t get along with the clergy who maintain the status quo. This is why I don’t accept the status quo. It is destructive. And the only cure is in an overhaul of the system. It’s long overdue.

The Declaration of Independence was the beginning of the United States. I pray that we can find the strength and courage to declare our independence from the tyranny that has taken over our church.

0 replies
  1. Linda Zadoian
    Linda Zadoian says:

    Setting the tone with this first blog of the year! You are not alone in this Fr. Vazken. The struggles of change can hurt sometimes but it is necessary to move forward, to heal and grow…and NO, we don't have to chew on glass 🙂 I'm always lifted and encouraged by your vision. Thank you for your dedication and courage to give us back the church.


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