The church has always dominated the Armenian Jerusalem landscape. Throughout its troubled history, it has always been the priestly brotherhood that has provided the Armenians with the impetus and inspiration to forge ahead.
The Sts. Tarkmanchats Armenian (Holy Translators') School in Jerusalem was built on the heights of Mount Zion in the year 1929 in the days of His Beatitude, the late Patriarch Yeghishe Tourian, homage to his memory and to all those who had the vision of creating this school.
The Calouste Gulbenkian Library of the Armenian Patriarchate of Jerusalem strives to collect, preserve, and make rapidly and easily accessible a vast array of ideas and information for the education, enrichment, and empowerment of its religious and lay community, as well as for the enlightenment of scholars and researchers.
The Edward and Helen Mardigian Museum of Armenian Art and Culture is located inside the Armenian Convent walls in the Old City of Jerusalem. The Museum offers a comprehensive overview of 3,000 years of Armenian art, culture and history. The building is actually situated in the former “Chamtagh” which once served as the Patriarchate’s Theological Seminary (1843).
The Jinishian foundation has set up a medical centre within the Convent of St James, providing free medical care and subsidized medication for all Armenians. The centre is staffed by a doctor and a nurse, and has been instrumental in helping the community combat common illnesses.
Just across the entrance, on the other side of the road, sprawls the L-shaped structure that houses the Theological Seminary. This is undoubtedly the raison d'etre of the Armenian Patriarchate of Jerusalem - had it not been for this institution, the Armenian church would have been in crisis and the Armenian presence in the Holy Land a mirage.
The Armenians of Jerusalem enjoy the distinction of having established the city's first printing press. Copy was set by hand, a cumbersome and time-consuming task, which remained a practice until quite recently when hot metal (Linotype) was introduced.