Feast of the Assumption of the Holy Mother of God is celebrated at the Armenian Diocese in Georgia
On August 14, 2022, the Armenian Apostolic Holy Church celebrated the Feast of the Assumption of the Holy Mother of God. It is the fourth of the five major feasts of the Armenian Church and the most ancient feast dedicated to the Holy Mother of God. The Feast of the Assumption of the Holy Mother of God was celebrated with Divine Liturgies and Blessing of Grapes Services offered in all churches of the Armenian Diocese in Georgia.
Festive Divine Liturgies in the Cathedral of Saint George in Tbilisi, Saint Etchmiadzin church in Avlabari, Armenian churches in Akhalkalaki, Ninotsminda, and Akhaltsikhe, and nearby villages began on Saturday. Spiritual servants offered divine service in communities. From early morning, they were celebrating liturgies and offering the traditional Blessing of Grapes Service blessing grapes and all the harvest of the year.
On Assumption Day Armenian faithful from Tbilisi expressed their love and respect for Holy Virgin Mary by attending churches and taking part in festive Divine Liturgies.
Churches of the Armenian Diocese in Georgia were crowded from early morning. The altars of the Diocesan churches were decorated with different types of day symbol - grapes, and other fruits. The flow of the faithful to the church did not stop: people were coming with beautifully decorated trays and baskets of grapes and other fruits hoping to receive blessings for the harvest of the year and asking for the intercession of the Almighty God.
After the Morning Service, the Service of Blessing the Four Corners of the World (Andastan) was offered in the churches. The four corners of the world and all peoples were blessed. Afterwards, Divine Liturgy was celebrated everywhere.
Divine Liturgy was celebrated at the Cathedral of Saint George and Saint Etchmiadzin church in Tbilisi. The Primate of the Armenian Diocese in Georgia Rev. Father Archimandrite Kirakos Davtyan celebrated Divine Liturgy at the Cathedral of Saint George.
The festive Divine Liturgy was attended by Armenian community representatives, intellectuals, heads of organizations, numerous faithful and tourists from both the Republic of Armenia and other countries.
At the conclusion of the Divine Liturgy, at the church altar, the Service of Blessing of Grapes was offered under the presidency of the Diocesan Primate, a passage from Gospel summarizing the mystery of the day, and ''Blessing of Grapes'' Prayer of Nerses the Gracious were read.
The celebrant properly preached about the mystery of the day – the big mission of the Holy Virgin Mary, the falling asleep of the Holy Mother of God, Her Resurrection, and Assumption; highlighted the love and deep respect of the Armenian Church for the Holy Virgin Mary; encouraged the faithful to continue to live with the light of the Assumption and the Faith of Resurrection. Celebrant Rev. Father Archimandrite Kirakos Davtyan congratulated the attendees, especially mothers and those women whose names are Mary; touched upon the mystery of the Blessing of Grapes Service, interpreted the grape as a description of a person, and compared the connection of the grape with its roots to the soil with the connection of the faithful to the faith and Church.
Divine Liturgies were celebrated and Blessing of Grapes Service was offered also in Saint Gregory the Illuminator (Grigor Lusavorich) church in Akhaltsikhe; Holy Cross (Surb Khach) church in Akhalkalaki; Saint Sarkis church in Ninotsminda; Saint Karapet church in Gandza; Saint Savior (Surb Prkich) church in Batumi; Saint Mother of God (Surb Astvatsatsin) church in Shahumyan, Kvemo Kartli region; Saint Gregory of Narek Spiritual Center in Rustavi city and other churches and chapels of Armenian populated regions.
Afterwards, hospitality with grapes and Matagh (Thanksgiving Animal Sacrifice) took place organized by Armenian benefactors and godfathers of the church.
Monday, August 15, is the day of commemoration of the deceased. Divine Liturgy will be offered in the churches of the Armenian Diocese in Georgia in memory of the deceased. At the conclusion of the Divine Liturgy, a Requiem Service will be offered for the peace of the souls of the deceased.