A Brief History of
The Holy Trinity Armenian Apostolic Church of Toronto
As early as 1928, a handful of Armenians held a few yearly Divine Liturgies at the St. Stephan’s Anglican Church. During the years extending between 1930 and 1953, Divine Liturgies were offered at Holy Trinity Anglican Church. Then, with the efforts of the 200 or so Armenians in Toronto, a new church was erected on Woodlawn Avenue at Yonge Street. The church was named Holy Trinity Armenian Church, in honour of Anglican Church parish that hosted the Armenians for so many years. It was consecrated on December 6, 1953, by the Primate of the Eastern Diocese of America, His Eminence Archbishop Tiran Nersoyan.
Holy Trinity parish was blessed by the inaugural visit of His Holiness, Vasken I, Catholicos of All Armenians, of Blessed Memory, in 1960. Shortly after, the parish joyfully received its first permanent pastor, Very Rev. Fr. Jirayr Tashjian in 1961.
In 1963, with the addition of a parish hall in the lower level, the Armenians in Toronto had a spiritual and cultural centre complete with Ladies’ Auxiliary, youth organizations, and Saturday and Sunday schools.
By the late 1970s, as the number of Armenians in Toronto increased significantly, it was deemed appropriate and necessary to build a new church, carrying the same name, in Scarborough, to satisfy the spiritual and national needs of the growing community.
Ground was broken on August 28, 1986 by His Eminence Shnork Kaloustian, Patriarch of Constantinople and His Eminence Arch. Bishop Vazken Keshishian for the new Holy Trinity site in Scarborough 1986, and the structure was completed by November 1987, thanks to the efforts of the then-Pastor, now-Primate of the Western Diocese of the Armenian Church of America, His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, and the participation of the Armenian community of Toronto. The consecration of the new church took place on November 15, 1987, by His Holiness Vazken I, Catholicos of All Armenians.
The architectural theme of Holy Trinity Armenian Church symbolizes unity, while the style itself is a merging of the old and the new. The architect, Mr. Takvor Hopyan, created a unique structure influenced by the style of St. Hripsime cathedral in Etchmiadzin. As mementos of the old building of Holy Trinity on Woodlawn, the altar and stained-glass windows of the old church gracefully reside in the new church.
This parish has never been without a priest, but since 1996, the parish has been blessed to have as their spiritual leader, the vital and caring pastor, Rev. Archpriest Fr. Zareh Zargarian.
The church was honoured to have the visits of His Holiness Karekin I, Catholicos of All Armenians of Blessed Memory, in 1996, and His Holiness Karekin II, Catholicos of All Armenians in 2001.
There have been many milestones for the church in the past few years. The biggest project was the four level Babayan elevator was successfully completed in 2006.
The parish has grown in the last 88 years. Today, along with a beautiful building and facility, under the leadership of Rev. Archpriest Zareh Zargarian, the pastor of Holy Trinity Armenian Church and the Parish Council, is a very busy and vibrant parish. The church is home to auxiliary bodies and committees listed below:
St. Sahag and St. Mesrob Armenian Saturday School
Saturday School Graduates’ Mission to Armenia
Holy Trinity Armenian Sunday School
Armenian Church Youth Organization of Canada – Seniors
Armenian Church Youth Organization of Canada – Juniors
“Sassoon” Dance Ensemble – Seniors & Juniors
Bible Study – English
Altar Boys’ and Deacons’ Training
“Mario Gumushdjian” Christian Library
“Ararat” Summer Youth Camp
Canadian Youth Mission to Armenia
Children’s Fund For Armenia
Liturgical Services and Sacraments
Deacons & Sub-Deacons
Bible Study – Armenian
Altar and Sanctuary
Humanitarian, Social & Cultural:
Armenian Family Support Services
“Mass” Baking Committee
“Seda Pederian” Bookstore
“Lousapen” Theatre Group
The Canadian Armenian Association for the Performing Arts (CAAPA)
Annual Golf Tournament Committee
Annual Picnic Committee
Publications & Communications:
“Nor Serount” Newsletter in Western Armenian & English
“Hayreniq” Newsletter in Eastern Armenian & Russian
Armenian Resource Directory
Graphic Design, Website & IT
Church Office Personnel & Volunteers
Cemetery, Funeral Arrangements & Memorial Monuments