Objects of the Order

Besides the general aims of a Benedictine community the special scope of the Mekhitarists is their dedication to the preservation of the cultural heritage of the Armenian nation. Of central importance – and that was always the main concern of Mekhitar – is the cherishing of the Armenian language. Because Armenians are scattered all over the world they are constantly confronted with the temptation to assimilate completely. To overcome this danger the Mekhitarists concentrate on educating the young people in the Christian spirit and in the Armenian tradition. Therefore they operate schools in Istanbul, Beirut, Aleppo, Los Angeles, Buenos Aires and Paris. In addition pastoral care is provided for the related local Armenian-Catholic communities.

Amongst the greatest merits of the order is their philological activity. It comprises all areas of Armenology: language, history, geography, archeology, church history, literary history, architecture, science and arts.

Especially with the magazine “Handes Amsorya” 1887 began an intensive philological activity in Vienna. It became the focus of Armenian Philology around which many Armenian as well as European Armenologists gathered together.