20 Jul, 2018

ATP Pays Tribute to the Inspirational Life and Grassroots Work of Fr. Dajad Davidian

Photo by Winslow Martin

The Armenian world lost one of its pillars with the passing of Rev. Fr. Dajad Davidian on July 14, 2018. Fr. Dajad served as Pastor of St. James Armenian Church in Watertown from 1969 to 1999, and was known for his faith, eloquence, sense of humor, and down to earth style that endeared him to many.

"Fr. Dajad had an ability to connect with faithful of all ages with his charismatic personality, warm smile, and love for others. He touched the lives of countless parishioners, always proclaiming, without reservation, the importance of God and the Armenian Church in our lives," read a statement from St. James Church.

Fr. Dajad, whose baptismal name was Arthur, was the husband of the late Yeretzgin Rosemarie (Abrahamian) Davidian, father of Ari Davidian, Susan and her husband Joseph Ferro III, and Raymond A. Davidian and his wife Seta. He was the brother of Raymond Davidian and Albert Davidian and his wife Patty.

Fr. Dajad was born in Worcester and attended the Theological Seminary of the Armenian Catholicosate in Cilicia. He was ordained a priest in 1960. After his formal retirement in 1999, Fr. Dajad only started a new chapter in his ministry, noted St. James Church. He spent most of his time in Armenia where he was actively engaged in preaching, teaching, and organizing new parishes. He organized youth groups in Armenia and performed much-needed pastoral ministry with the poor, handicapped, and elderly.

"Fr. Dajad leaves us all with the eternal inspiration for growth. We are grateful that he has designated Armenia Tree Project as a place that we can now invite people to remember--and also participate--in the thrust of his life’s work," stated ATP founder Carolyn Mugar.

The Davidian Family has requested that in lieu of flower memorial donations be made to St. James Church or to Armenia Tree Project. ATP is exploring various project sites in Armenia that would best reflect Fr. Dajad's interest in supporting Armenia’s youth and the most disadvantaged populations in rural areas.
"We know there are countless youth he engaged by listening and sharing," added Carolyn Mugar. "We will identify a program that best exemplifies his unique qualities and deeds. We are grieving the loss of such a great friend and committed activist who worked on the ground, with the people."

Fr. Dajad was present at most of ATP's events in Armenia, offering a prayer even bringing volunteers along to plant trees. These grassroots actions were an expression of renewal and a belief in the future health and well-being of Armenia. "We consider this offering from Fr. Dajad as a sacred trust to carry out his work of inspiring people to become engaged citizens," concluded Carolyn Mugar.