The Bare Facts: Sex,Love & Relationships / Josh McDowell Seminar

It was a great opportunity for us, the teachers of the Nor Marash Armenian Evangelical Church's Sunday School, to participate in a seminar and be with JOSH MC DOWELL (a professional in sex education).

Dr. Dowell insisted on the importance of sex, love and relationship, considering the truth in the Bible, and the principles of medical science and culture. He says that as long as we have the internet, one culture exists, which is the internet-Facebook culture.
God has created sex, which is a beautiful thing. We must have complete knowledge of it and we must be able to wait for it in order to have a long, happy and healthy life.
He insisted that Sex education should be taught at home. Questions kids and teenagers ask have to be answered simply, honestly and truthfully. They should feel free and safe to ask their parents and not to be obliged to go to other sources for information like their peers or the Internet. He mentioned that nowadays teenagers are tempted to view with just 1 click at over 500 million pornography sites. So, WAKE UP parents, prepare your child to face it. All over the world, teenagers who are having sex freely are likely to get the HPV virus, which is incurable. Unfortunately people don't talk about it. This virus is 10 times faster than HIV virus. There are a hundred different strains of this HPV (Human Pupiloma Virus) virus. Be aware, having one act of sex you get 5 STD's diseases (Sexually Transmitted Diseases).
A sexually active woman can expect to have (80%) from this virus, and a sexually active man can expect to have (70%) from this virus.
Sometimes parents encourage their children to go ahead and have sex using a condom, they don't advise them to wait. Oh! Sorry, don't be deceived, be alert and help them understand that a condom is a zero; it doesn't protect them from the viruses.

For a girl, a loving close-relationship with her daddy is very essential and is better than peer pressure and the Internet. For a boy, both the mother and the father should teach that True Love waits. Sex that starts with your wife endures beautifully. We have memory hormones so don't do something now that will affect in your marriage badly. Your memory has an effect on your sex life in the future. Your sex-relationship experience sticks on your brain like a paper-clip. It remains with you throughout your life. And a sexually immoral person sins against his body.
Teenagers need to listen to their parents, because parents see things that teenagers don't see.
A high level of parent-family bond is powerful enough to avoid sexual involvement.
Forcing rules without a positive parent -teenager or child relationship leads to rebellion, which is not a desired outcome because it leads to other negative behaviors and outcome.
Children learn compassion, forgiveness and repentance from their parents. Parents should teach that sex does not just happen, you choose to have sex.
We should nourish and cherish our brains which are God-given to us.
Dr. Dowell defined love in 2 words which are to provide and to protect.
You love, the way you love yourself (2 Timothy 3). So, loving one's self is important for the future, pure love of your partner (Eph. 5.29).
To love oneself means to nourish and to cherish. To nourish you have to grow as Jesus grew and matured in 4 areas: (mentally, physically, spiritually and relationally). To cherish means to protect and to care for. You nourish first and then you cherish and protect yourself from books, drinks, TV programs, videos, and the Internet.
If you have any questions about this subject, please contact

1. Find a good friend with the same commitment about sex.
2. Write down your commitment to abstain from sex
3. Practice assertiveness.
4. make sure your friends know your values
5. Don't get involved with someone who doesn't share your values (1 Cor.15.33)
6. Plan your dates to avoid difficult situations.
7. Avoid alcohol and drugs (you will lose the ability to say no)
8. Introduce your date to your parents
9. Find a friend that will reinforce good decisions.

Bible verses:
Song of Solomon
Proverbs 2, 3, 8
1 John 2. 1
Hebrew 10. 10-14
Psalm 51: 1-4
Psalm 103.12
1 Thessalonians 4.1-3
Hebrew 13.4
Proverbs 5.18,19
Jeremiah 29.11
Romans 13.8
Deuteronomy 10
1 Corinthians 13

Anita Jamgotchian-Andonian

Photos by Nayiri Tersakian

In the photos, the Sunday School teachers of the Nor Marash Evangelical Church (Aline, Christine, Nayiri, Anita, Barouyr), also present are Badveli Datev Basmajian and Yeritsouhi Garine Cholakian.


Isn’t it wonderful to remember that we can always trust God? Financial needs, volunteer teachers, organization of trips… were full of concern. But trusting in the Lord made us enjoy and have a wonderful summer school full of God’s protection and blessings.

D.V.B.School took place in Nor Marash Church from 4 July – 5 August, 2011 from Monday to Friday from 8.30 a.m. to 1.00 p.m.
12 volunteer teachers served God, by working in D.V.B.S. Most of them enjoyed their first experience, always having in mind ‘The Parable of the Tenants (Matthew 21)’, that God has trusted His work to us. So, we have to serve Him with all our hearts; doing our best.
We had 78 children whose ages varied between three and thirteen years old.

The five-week program was the following (except for the trip-days):
1. Physical Exercises
2. Worship (prayers, spiritual songs, Psalm 8, Bible stories)
3. Class Division for Bible Lessons & Crafts (according to age)
4. Recess (individual/group games & snacks)
5. Activity Time (hand-crafts, watching videos, & swimming-pool [with barbeque]).
6. Club Division (dance, sports & crafts)

Usually, the majority of the children were from non-Evangelical schools/ families. We are glad for this, because the D.V.B.S. aim was to offer them the chance to hear about Jesus, closer to their hearts.

During worship we emphasized the importance of prayer. We taught them that they should pray every day for themselves and for others. And it was lovely to see children who never prayed and who started trying to talk to Lord Jesus by praying few words.

Our goal was to lead the children to learn to be OBEDIENT, starting from their homes, to their parents and then being Obedient to God, by reading and keeping God’s word in their heart.
They studied 10 Bible lessons through the exciting Bible stories. All heroes were taken of Being obedient or disobedience.
The kids enjoyed the lessons because each had exciting workbooks for activities, which all were taken home at the end of DVBS.

The trip days were one of the most awaited days. Thank God, we were able to have a trip once a week. We went 2 times to “KCHAG”, the Christian Endeavour Resort Campus, where we worshiped God and had indoor and outdoor activities with lunch. Then we went to the “Luna Park”, ‘Splash Land” swimming pool, and “Jungle Land” playground. And also children were enjoying having swimming pools and BBQ lunch in our campus.
We had Birthday Party with “Parev Pokrigner” group. Their characters created great interest and happy atmosphere. They played drama having a moral lesson “ Being obedient” and played games with children. Children were served with juice, cakes, and popcorn. At the end of the party the children were distributed gifts (T-shirts, shorts and pants) donated from World Vision. Children were very happy with that.
The last day we had our wonderful farewell party, parents were invited to hear a lecture about ‘how to teach and behave with our children to make them learn obedience’ then children performed all the songs, verses, psalms, prayers, and the dance that they have learned through 5 weeks. At the end each child received his work in a decorated file, and CD of all their pictures as a memory.

We’ve never let any child deprived of DVBS’s joy, as a result of his financial situation.

We are thankful to all whose financial support was an encouragement for all of us. The World Vision, the Youth Endeavor (Korzatir) , and to our Church board.

We are so grateful to God for the year’s blessings of harmony, success, and safety. We thank God for all the volunteer supporters in different essential and unique ways. And to all our teachers:
Virjinia, Dzovig, Sonig, Mary, Narin, Anahid, Joseph, Apel, Araz, Hasmig and Patil,

Teaching children is hard work. It’s exhausting but most of all it is FUN, FUN, FUN! The most important job we’ve done. May God bless each child, the teachers who taught God’s wonderful Word to His precious children, those who prayed for us, and those who helped us financially and morally.


Anita Jamgotchian-Andonian

World Vision

Happy Birthday


Super Students

At Kchag

Chanitz Valentines Day in the Armenian Evangelical Church of Nor-Marash

After the great success of the Christmas event, the EC Production committee proposed to have a new event organized on Valentine’s occasion. Besides the light dinner - starters cold sandwiches, tuna/pasta salad, and soft drinks - the group has offered a bouquet of soft entertainment shows all themed up for St. Valentine’s day.

The opening of the night was a light worship lead by Christine-Ann Keshian, who also informed the rest about St. Valentine’s and its significance. The worship was followed by a Walts dance performed by 3 out of the 9 couples we have in our group - Vartan/Lucy - Shahe/Rita - and Joseph/Houry. The dance was choreographed by Shahe Demirjian. After the Waltz Christine-Ann and Raffi Akbasharian performed an Armenian duet called "Im Sere Kez" accompanied by Joseph kfoury on the piano. The production has prepared videos, which were screened in the evening; for a couple of advertisements which were recreated by the team to have them matching the event and making them funnier. The remakes were Nescafe and Tortilla chips ads. There were also 2 games in the program, one was called "Heik mn ghanni" lead by Sako Magarian and Houry Demirjian, with the help of Joseph Kfoury. The game was consisted of singing competitions of 2 levels - first they were supposed to guess the song when a small part was played, the other level was to sing a song with the word that appears on the screen. The other game was targeted to the singles, which was coached by Christine-Ann Keshian and Vartan Akbasharian. They were supposed to answer the questions they pick all related to being singles! The final part was a remake of The Talk of The Town where 6 people were invited to the stage to be interviewed along with the videos prepared previously that consisted of interviewed couples from inside and outside the Marash Youth group. The interviews were done by Christine Ann and Naryie Tertsagian. The Show was hosted by Shahe Demirjian.
The whole night was hosted by Sako Magarian and Houry Demirjian.
Last but not least, there were gift vouchers that were offered to the group 3 invitations from Roadster and Deek Duke. The winners were selected by a random picking up of the names.

I would like to thank all the EC-Production members, for their time, effort and worthy ideas that were put to reality. In addition to the members of the committee, I would also like to thank the members who came and took part in the event without them, everything was going to be useless. Topping all these, my gratitude goes to God who gave us the strength and love to serve wholeheartedly.

* EC - Event Committee.

Shahe Demirjian


*Photos courtesy of Aline and Lucy

Vartanantz Day was different this year in the Armenian Evangelical Marash Church

Thursday, Feb. 22, it was Vartanantz. This year it was different, the pews of the Armenian Evangelical Marash Church were full and people were standing at the door. It wasn't an ordinary Vartanatz Day, during which the same speech would be recited with the hope that a courageous "Vartan" would come forth and lead the Armenians. This year it was different, because this time a courageous "Vartan", Hrant Dink, was remembered. This year it was different, because the speaker was the living martyr, Mrs. Rakel Dink. It was different, because you could feel the anguish, the pain, the emotional turmoil in her speech. No, it wasn't a distant Vartanantz Day, it was Rakel Dink, the wife of the late Hrant Dink, who was martyred in front of his office.
It was different, because Rakel Dink lived her Christian faith boldly, and she shared with us how she went through the temptation and how she kept her faith in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Raffi Chilingirian

Testimony: Youth Participation in a Theological Seminary

It was a great experience participating in the Theological study, organized by the Fellowship of the Evangelical churches in the Near East.

The director of these studies is the Egyptian Pastor, Rev. Ounsi Anis. His vision and passion is to equip church leaders with sound theological and practical studies in order to have ready and prepared leadership in the church and in ministry.

The participants came from different evangelical churches, from Lebanon, Jordan, Syria, and Egypt. The common motivation and purpose of each individual was to acquire sound information in order to pass the good news to the new generation in a decent way!
(In front): Silva Chilingirian (from Marash Church) at the left, Gassia Kelougian (from Ashrafieh Church) the 3rd from the left, and Rev. Ounsi Anis at the right.

All the participants had fully committed themselves to come together for three consecutive years to take the 12 courses and at the end, after hard work, receive their diplomas granted by the Fellowship of the Evangelical churches…

It was both hard and fun. For two weeks, not only the participants were obliged to sit on their desks and listen to the lectures and take notes, but also to do the home-works and study for the exams!

The fun part was the different lahjes (accents) that each participant used. We almost became a big family, around 24 participants!

I'd like to thank the fellowship, which had the vision in bringing together youth from different countries, nationalities and different backgrounds in order to train them and prepare them to become leaders, to serve for the growth of the church and its ministry!

I'd like to specially thank our good shepherd and father, Rev. Ounsi, who with his big smile, loving and caring heart and encouraging words and sometimes with his special remarks supported, directed and guided us through the end of our journey. Indirectly he left a special mark into the heart of every student.

The courses which we took were just a taste for those who had a desire and interest in Theology and Christian education. Some of the participants, in the end, even changed their major to continue their studies at a deeper level, becoming students at NEST or other Theological Seminaries in their country, in order to become full-time ministers or servants such as Pastors or Christian Educators.

This was a special opportunity for me. I noticed a huge change in my character. Not only I gained confidence but also my character was built up! I can evaluate myself and say that God molded me and changed me from a fragile person into a strong, courageous, Godly woman!

I want to encourage you to participate in such conferences for the sake of your spiritual growth and the growth of the Evangelical Churches and hence our community!

Sincerely yours,
Silva Chilingirian

Armenian Evangelical Nor Marash Church
Bourj Hammoud, Lebanon