• LCO_2010_2_WEB
  • Tatev

  • church edifice
  • shepard

Historical Finds and New Friends

on .

Archaeologist Arman Holding Sword


Volunteers are continuing working on the church. They are clearing the surrounding area outside the walls, lifting stones and debris. The church interior is still delicate work. The roof tiles, which are being removed by local workers, hold historical finds of earlier crosses carved on stone. Also, a sword from the David Beg era was found. Weapons were often hidden in various parts of churches during our tumultuous history. Needless to say, the volunteers were thrilled with this find, as well as our archeologist.

 

Back on the home front, Garine and Narine are two village women who are doing great job preparing traditional regional cooking for the group. Volunteers take turns, two at a time, staying at the home doing various chores. Nayiri and Alison cleared the outdoor shower area and put up the clothesline. The next day, Arman and Arsham collected large stones and made a fire pit on a nearby field. The group enjoyed evening fireside chats and playing cards. Vladimir wants to start teaching English to the local children, who are intrigued by our volunteers mingling with them. The local youth challenged our group to a friendly soccer match that ended in a tie.

So our volunteers are making themselves felt in the village and their new home, making friends with locals, bonding with each other, preparing a 17th century church for restoration, and having an experience and adventure of a lifetime.

  • "There are experiences you shape and then there are experiences that shape you. The LCO Campaign of 2007 in the village of Azat offered me invaluable perceptions into the realities of my fellow Armenian brothers and sisters in a way only a true immersion program can. I urge everyone and anyone who might feel an inkling of belonging to this fascinating country, people, and history to sign up with the campaign immediately. I smile just thinking about what you have yet to experience."
    Noushig K, Azat 2007, CA, USA

  • "Coming back from a 4-day trip to Kharabagh really felt like coming back home, with our family waiting to greet us outside our house. That's when I realised just how attached we'd grown to the place, to our family, to the other volunteers"
    Anoosh Gasparian, Azat 2009, London UK

  • "I went to this trip with no expectations, and came back with a great appreciation for our country.  Life in the village is surreal, the food is beyond delicious and the people are incredibly nice. It was a once in a lifetime experience I will never forget!"  Sam Tahmasian, 2009, CA, USA
  • "LCO is an amazing concept. It introduced the deprived Diasporan to their land and their people. It is a wonderful introduction to Armenia and something every young man or woman should experience."
    Madlene Minassian Ispirian, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, Yerevan, Armenia

  • "My most memprable experience was being so warmly taken care by an old village couple, receiving gifts from them, giving them gifts and establishing bonds."
    Naira Der-Kiureghian, Ayroum 2003, CA, USA

  • "...I know that when I reflect back on this experience I will feel ecstatic about the work we accomplished, the things we saw, and the bonds we forged."
    Hovig Saghdejian, Ayroum 2003, California, USA

  • "Dolma is made with mum's careful instructions, grandmothers eyes found on the faces of children, songs of Ararat are as familiar as the Khachkars dotting the landscape. If it smells like home, looks like home then it must be home."
    Datevig Simonian, Shadvan 2004, California, USA

  • "LCO experience was a revelation for me. It gave me the opportunity to expand my horizons both personally and professionally. One of the most important experiences of my life and an important factor in determining my future goals."
    Lara Aharonian, August 1999, August 2001, Montreal, Canada.

  • "I formed strong bonds with my volunteers, and the difference in backgrounds was refreshing. It was interesting to hear the points of view of different Armenians from other areas of the Diaspora."
    Aramazt Kalaydjian, Shoushi 2003, NY, USA

  • "I loved the simplicity of life in the village, the fresh homemade food is wonderful; that people are the friendliest and most hospitable... the children have the most beautiful faces..."
    Sophia Balakian, Shadvan 2004, New York, USA