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(By Western Diocese of The Armenian Church)

Published – 21 September 2018


Under the auspices of His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate, the Western Diocese of the Armenian Church of North America and the Stewardship Committee honored Dr. Vahram and Mrs. Polina Biricik, Leading Stewards of Faith and Benevolence, on Sunday, September 16, 2018.
With over 250 guests in attendance, the Appreciation Benefit Luncheon was held at The Nazareth and Sima Kalaydjian Hall following the celebration of the Divine Liturgy. The well-deserved tribute was in recognition of their dedication and transformative influences in fulfilling the objectives of clergy preparation at the Western Diocese.
Welcoming remarks were delivered by Mrs. Aida Askejian, member of the Stewardship Committee of the Western Diocese. Following the Invocation, the granddaughter of Dr. and Mrs. Biricik delighted the guests with her wonderful vocal performance.
Mr. Derik Ghookasian, Chairman of the Organizing Committee stated that Dr. Vahram Biricik has been an invaluable asset to the Stewardship Program since 2003 when it was revitalized for maximum efficiency.
In his remarks, Joseph Kanimian, Esq., Chairman of the Diocesan Council reflected on Dr. Vahram Biricik’s staunch belief in the mission of priesthood as a divine calling to shepherd the flock of Christ and lead them on the path to righteousness.
Diocesan grand benefactor and former Chairman of the Diocesan Council Mr. Antranik Zorayan reflected on the humble personality as well as tireless work ethic of his friend and honoree in the overall advancement and success of the Stewardship Program. Mr. Zorayan congratulated and conveyed his genuine wishes to Dr. and Mrs. Biricik.
The Khachadourian Choir under the conductorship of Dn. Stepan Gozumian delivered rousing choral performances, enthralling the guests.

His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian stated that the mission of the Stewardship Program is to educate and train young clergy candidates who will, in time, become spiritual leaders of our communities and minister to the next generation of Armenians – our children and grandchildren.  “We give thanks to God for gracing Dr. and Mrs. Vahram and Polina Biricik in our Diocesan life with their Christian love, wisdom and dedication, for they have truly been a source of admiration for us all with their unconditional sacrifice for the Church, for their perseverance in the success of the stewardship mission and their love for Christ’s flock.
Referencing to the couple’s Christian character, His Eminence stated “We all have known the Biriciks through their dedication to living the Gospel of Christ, our Lord, their dedication to the Armenian Church and have undoubtedly learned much from their exemplary Christian way of life. For close to five decades, they have worked hard for the Western Diocese and have contributed to its expansion in many ways. The stewardship mission has been the closed to their hearts and words cannot possibly express the extend of our gratitude to them.”
In recognition of Dr. and Mrs. Biricik’s steadfastness and loyalty to the Armenian Apostolic Church, the Diocesan Primate presented couple the first-ever Srbots Ghevontiants Khach-medals (Sts. Gheovntiants Cross Medal), an honor bestowed upon individual or individuals who display outstanding Christian character and live a true Christian lifestyle.
In his heartfelt remarks, Dr. Biricik expressed his wholehearted gratitude to the Diocesan Primate for the prestigious honor as well as his fellow Stewardship Committee members for the kindness, love and support they have demonstrated throughout the years. He vowed to continue his service to the Armenian Apostolic Church with renewed zeal and commitment.
Dr. and Mrs. Vahram and Polina Biricik
Leading Stewards of Faith and Benevolence
Dr. Biricik’s concern about the future of the Armenian Church and the salvation of our people in Christ resuscitated and redefined the Stewardship mission, and clergy preparation became a top priority.  Dr. Biricik and his wife Polina, spared no detail in their commitment to lay the groundwork for success in clergy education and preparation as qualified spiritual leaders.
Dr. Biricik truly epitomizes his Armenian heritage and culture, with his faith and a background steeped in the love of his church.  He was a founding Parish Council member and later Parish Council Chairman of St. Mary Armenian Church in Orange County.  He has  devoted increasing amounts of time to the Western Diocese, serving four terms on the Diocesan Council; organizing pontifical Divine Liturgy celebrations of the Catholicoi; and serving  as interim Parish Council Chairman of St. John Garabed Church in San Diego.
Dr. Biricik has also had a distinguished career in the aerospace industry following his graduation from Lehigh University in Pennsylvania with a Ph.D. in Applied Mechanics and Mechanical Engineering.  In 1971  he accepted a position as a member of the Senior Technical Staff at Northrop Corporation.  While he was at Northrop he worked on sensitive and innovative military applications, such as High Energy Lasers and the B2 Stealth Bomber.  At the same time he received his MBA in Product Development from the University of Southern California.  His hard work at Northrop was rewarded by a series of promotions, culminating with his appointment in the early ‘90s as Director of Technology for the Electronics and Systems Integrated Division, a division with over two billion in sales and responsible for the development of a number of military applications, including the development of the E2-C Hawkeye aircraft for the Navy and Joint Stars aircraft for the U.S. Air Force.
At the same time, Dr. Biricik’s wife Polina, received her nursing degree and began working in the neonatal unit of Torrance Memorial Hospital.
The Appreciation Benefit Luncheon offered both the Armenian and American community the opportunity to express their love and appreciation for Dr. Vahram Biricik and his wife Polina, for their unwavering and exemplary dedication to fulfill the stewardship promise of unselfishly giving their time, talents and treasures for the growth, progress and development of the Armenian Apostolic Holy Church.
Donations made on this occasion, as well as the net proceeds, went towards fulfilling the objectives and mission of the Stewardship Program of the Western Diocese.


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