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Sunday, 13 April 2014

The Revd John Barker ordained priest to serve Anglicans in Armenia

On Sunday 30 March, in the presence of brothers and sisters from the Diocese in Europe and the Old Catholic Diocese of Austria, I presided at the ordination to the priesthood of the Revd John Barker.

The service was in Christ Church Vienna, where Fr John is technically an assistant curate serving under the supervision of Archdeacon Patrick Curran. But his real ministry is in Armenia where he lives and where he has a particular responsibility to develop the Anglican congregation in the capital city, Yerevan. The preacher for the service was the Diocesan Director of Ordinands, the Revd Canon William Gulliford.

Fr John is a pioneer in ministerial terms. Several years ago, as a Reader, he worked to establish a congregation in Skopje in the FYR of Macedonia. Now in Yerevan under Fr John's leadership, Anglican life is beginning to flower again, after a hiatus of more than 10 years.

Fr John with his wife Ella and daughter Laura

The Catholicos of All Armenians, His Holiness Karekin II, has graciously given us the use of the beautiful Church of St Zoravor in central Yerevan. We give thanks for the warm relations we enjoy with the Armenian Apostolic Church.

We pray for John's pioneering work in Armenia, for the strengthening of Anglican ministry there and for the congregation as it celebrates its first Holy Week and Easter with its new priest.

St Zoravor's Church, Yerevan

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