The murders of the Armenian people began on the 24th of April 1915. Most of Armenian intelligentsia were arrested and killed. The further step was deportation of Armenian Community from subsequent regions of Turkey to Mesopotamia and Syria.
It was connected with many weeks forced marches through wilderness and deserts. During these marches deportees were robbed ,tortured and murdered. In total over one million of Armenians were deprived of life. To this day, Turkey refuses to recognize these mass murders as genocide.
On 23rd of April in the Polish TV channel TVP Historia at 20.00 hrs was presented the film dedicated to the said topic. It is available online; ludobojstwo-ormian
Priest Professor Józef Naumowicz
Pastor of Armenian Catholics
gave us the following message;
On April 24, I urge you to celebrate in a special way the day of remembrance of the genocide of Armenians We cannot as every year gather at Khachkars in various centers in Poland (Kraków,Wroclaw, Gdansk, Warszawa, and others) in order to pray together, lay flowers, pay homage to the victims. We cannot walk through the streets of cities in memory marches with banners and Armenian flags in order to constantly remind everybody about this tragedy. However, we can cultivate this memory individually or in families. We can also pray for the victims of this slaughter, for peace and pray to the Armenian martyrs.
I wish to remind you that we have Holy Armenian martyrs.
- Armenian Catholic Archbishop of Mardin in Turkey Ignacy Maloyan was beatified in Vatican by the Pope John Paul II in 2001.He was killed of martyrs death. He was imprisoned and subjected to terrible torture. He refused to convert to Islam. He was sentenced to be shot. Before execution on 11th of June 1915 he rejected the offer to save his life for the price of renouncing his faith.’
- In August 2015 Flawian Michal Melki Syrian Catholic Bishop was beatified. He was murdered during the genocide of Armenians and Assyrians on 29th of August 1915 for refusing to convert to Islam. The solemn beatification took place in Lebanon. On behalf of the Pope Francis Cardinal Angelo Sodano was leading the Ceremony.
- On 23rd of April 2015 Armenian Apostolic Church canonized victims of the Genocide from the beginning of 20th Century recognizing them as martyrs. Taking into consideration the number of candidates for altars it was , as it seems to be, the biggest canonization in the history of Christianity ( 1,5 mln of martyrs ). This very canonization was carried out (then on the eve of the 100th anniversary of the tragic events – 24th of April 2015 ) by two Armenian Catholicoses Karekin II and Aram I. At the Ceremony were present representatives of other denominations and among them Roman Catholic and Armenian Catholic churches.
24th of April was designated as the day of holy martyrs in the Apostolic liturgy calendar. They suffered martyr’s death for their faith and homeland during the genocide of Armenians. It is therefore the new saints memorial day.
Let the symbolic forget-me-not flower purple and blue be a sign of the tragedy and at the same time sign of fortitude, glory and faith of Armenian martyrs of years 1915-17 who were killed for their homeland and Christian faith.
On 24.IV I will be praying individually by the Khachkar at Ormianski Skwer (Warszawa Sadyba) and by the Khachkar near the Temple of God’s Providence (Warszawa-Wilanow).
Priest Józef Naumowicz