Reminder: Samuel hold no relation to Meshach Krikorian. They simply share the same last name.
Reverend Samuel Coffing Krikorian was born on July 31, 1893 to Coffing Krikorian and a local teacher at Aintab Seminary School (her name is unknown). He was delivered by Rebecca Krikorian, his aunt, who at the time worked as a midwife. Rebecca spoke a special blessing over his life knowing that one day Samuel would fill the shoes of his late grandfather’s, her father’s, ministry. Raised in Aintab, Samuel and his family witnessed the growing conflict against Christian Armenians. Rebecca prayed earnestly seeking to bring her nephew to America to be educated as a missionary and minister. In 1909, the second massacre broke out in Aintab. Shortly after, her prayers were answered, Samuel arrived to America on August 25, 1909 at the age of sixteen.
Residing in Warmingster, Buck County, Pennsylvania at the home of Dr. A. Oetinger. Samuel stayed at this home for two years.
Long before these young men came to America there was a burden on my heart far greater than that of securing money for their education. This burden was concerning the kind of school or college to which I should send them to be educated on their arrival in this country. I knew full well that most of the schools, colleges, and universities of the United States the true religion of Jesus Christ and the sound doctrine of the Bible were neither known nor taught…Consequently, together with some very godly friends of mine in Atlantic City, we made this matter a definite subject of our daily prayers for full seven months, after which in a miraculous way the Lord opened the way for these young men to come to America and enter into the Messiah Bible School and Missionary Training Home of the Brethren in Christ Church, at Grantham, Pa., on November 7, 1911.
Now, Samuel would arrive at Messiah on January 9, 1912. By this time, his Aunt Rebecca was travelling and speaking around the West Coast, settling in Pasadena, California. She desired to be reunited with her nephew and hoped he would continued his education at Pasadena University. He arrived on July 14, 1914.
Samuel found work in the city to fund his education. Despite learning English only a few years ago, he was among the first in his classes at Pasadena. He longed to complete his studies in three years in order to return home to minister to the Turks and the Armenians. Following the completion of his studies, Samuel joined the First Pentecostal Nazarene Church of Pasadena on December 2, 1917 . Through his ministry with the church, he felt called to minister in Jerusalem with his Aunt Rebecca. Ordained into the church, Samuel became the first missionary of the Church of the Nazarene to enter the nation of Palestine. His efforts are noted in Helen Temple’s Of Whom the World Was Not Worthy: The Story of Samuel Krikorian.
Samuel spent the remainder of his life in Los Angeles, California continuing to travel across the world. He died May 10, 1969.
The first international class of Messiah Bible School and Missionary Training Home continued the friendship and bond they made beyond their education. All four of these students travelled to California either enrolling at Pasadena University or Biola University. Three out of the four students were employed at Hotel Maryland in the mid to late 1910s. Hopefully, their lives and accomplishments will be honored and remembered.
Until the next post,