Thomas Cosmades






In the space of three years there was not one city where Armenians lived throughout the length and breadth of Argentina that Vahram had not visited.  And it was not just a matter of being involved with a few churches in each place.  There were open-air meetings, visits to prisons, homes for the aged and hospitals, and ministry in any other place where opportunity presented itself.  He always carried his violin with him.  He formed a youth ensemble, comprised of three violins, two accordions and two wind instruments, which he directed himself.  The music would always be heralded by a cry of 'Hallelujah!'  He took the ensemble with him on home visits to bring joy to sick, elderly or disabled people.  He wrote that the musical group made a valuable contribution wherever they went.

All this time he could never forget his beloved Istanbul.  In a letter from Cordoba dated the first of August 1958, he encouraged the believers back home: "There is a revival in Cordoba, Hallelujah!  Do not forget to visit the hospitals.  Stay faithful to the meetings.  Keep your prayer meetings going even if there are only a few of you in attendance.  News of spiritual progress in Istanbul pleases me so much that I would have not been so happy if the whole of South America were given to me!  All will soon be past; only service done for Christ will last.  In Cordoba a series of outdoor meetings continued for eight days.  Many listened from the open windows of their homes.  The church in this place has not witnessed such a revival for years.  People follow the messages with deep satisfaction and are blessed.  Hallelujah!"  Interest in God's work was kindled everywhere he went.

Calls for him to visit various towns were increasing.  It was impossible to accept them all!  A great number of people wanted him to come to their homes for a meal.  There was no way he could accept all their invitations. As the Lord said, "I have food to eat of which you do not know" (John 4:32).  Again he wrote to Istanbul, "If you could only see what is happening here!  It's like being in paradise.  Hallelujah!"

Whenever he went to a home to eat, the meal table turned into a spiritual feast.  Each time he was able to draw the company from the physical to the spiritual food.  He would transfer them to the banquet table of Christ, which is promised to believers for all eternity.  To share in a meal with Vahram and other Christians was to become part of a joyous fellowship in a happy atmosphere.  It can honestly be said that no one ever saw him in a sour mood.  His joy was the joy of the Lord.

If Vahram detected a person who was uneasy or nervous in a meeting, he would say something to put him at ease.  He sensed when someone was looking for an opportunity to slip out, and he would seek ways to make that person enjoy the meeting.  A lady would always make a quick exit the moment the benediction was pronounced.  One day he went after her and said, "Why are you running away from the Lord?"  The woman started to cry.  He was able to lead her to Christ that same evening.  Vahram was a workman who understood the need of every person.

On one occasion, he happened to be standing at a busy thoroughfare in Rio de Janeiro distributing tracts in Portuguese.  A man and his son were passing by when the son reached out to take one.  Suddenly his eyes brightened.  "Oh father," he exclaimed, "This man is Vahram Tatikian!"  The father could not contain himself.  He ran up to Vahram and threw his arms around him.  Taken by surprise, Vahram said, "Forgive me; I don't think I recognise you."  "I'm a spiritual child of yours from Istanbul," the man replied. The two men embraced each other on that crowded street, shedding tears of joy and praising the Lord.  The words of Psalm 126, verses 5 and 6, were again recalled.

A celebrated evangelist was going to speak in a large church in a Brazilian city.  A lot of people wanted to attend in order to hear that famous preacher.  At the last minute it was announced that he could not come, but had sent someone else in his place.  Everybody was disappointed.  When they saw a stranger standing at the pulpit, and with an interpreter, they wondered who could have been chosen to take the place of the well-known evangelist.  They gave little thought to the presence of the Holy Spirit who anoints both well-known and unknown speakers and who alone can bring fruit in God's work.  Vahram's message, "The Love Which Springs from God," struck fear into their hearts and was authenticated by results they could never forget.


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