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When Armenian film and television director-producer Sarky Mouradian passed away earlier this year, he left a legacy of film, music and entertainment that will garnish Armenian culture for years to come. His influence was felt in Armenian communities throughout the world, but it was a very special cannister of film that his son, George Mouradian, found that is of historic significance, primarily for the Los Angeles Armenian Community.
“We found two-canisters labeled, ‘1957 Consecration of the St. James Armenian Church’ while going through his archives,” said George Mouradian in a call to the Western Diocese. The films were turned over to His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, to find a permanent home among the diocesan archives and library.
The film, which has now been digitized, documents the consecration of the St. James Armenian Church on Adams Blvd., an ornate church constructed in traditional Armenian architecture. The church still stands as a monument to the faith of the Los Angeles Armenian community.
According to Fr. Vazken Movsesian of the Western Diocese, “This film has not been viewed in over six decades. The images of the clergy, congregants, and the church structure itself have special historic significance, particularly as it reflects the struggle of the post-Genocide generation in their quest to define Armenian identity in Southern California.”
The film was meticulously digitized, with attention to detail, at the direction of George and Tristan Mouradian. A few years ago, Tristan Mouradian, established “Armenian Classic TV” and coordinated the conversion of thousands of hours of film and TV footage produced by his late grandfather. Armenian Classic TV is a repository of Armenian culture and history, with hundreds of hours of Sarky Mouradian’s interviews and insights.
The digital conversion of the newly-found film, “1957 Consecration of St. James” was underwritten by the St. James Memorial Fund. This being the 95th Anniversary of the Western Diocese, Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, expressed his delight that another piece of the beautiful tapestry of faith has been found, recovered and weaved into the story of our Church.
The video will be released shortly by the Western Diocese Media Department.