July 8 was the last day of the gathering “Towards Homeland, Towards Holy Etchmiadzin”. It coincided with the Feast of Transfiguration. The festive Liturgy was offered in Yerevan St. Gregory the Illuminator Church by His Holiness Hovnan. The Liturgy was attended by the Supreme Patriarch along with the priests of the Mother See. He sprinkled rose-water on the believers and blessed them. On the last day of the gathering the young people visited Tsitsernakaberd to commemorate the victims of Genocide.
On July 7, ACYO continued its gathering in Tsakhkadzor. 400 members of the gathering reached to Kecharis Monastic Complex singing with the clergy. They had a meeting with the President of Armenia Armen Sargsyan in the evening. The Director of ACYO Headquarters Gevorg Mkrtchyan informed his friends that by the presidency of Karekin II Catholicos of All Armenians the Catholicosate Residence adjacent to St. Anna Church was allocated to ACYO.
Five years ago, a joyful tradition of celebrating the eve of Vardavar was established in Ararat Patriarchal Diocese. The members of Ararat Patriarchal Diocese Youth Union organize a march with the support of Yerevan City Hall to the Children’s Park with songs and dances. The celebration was joined by pedestrians, tourists, people resting in the Children’s Park.
Today is celebrated third major feast of the five feasts of the Armenian Apostolic Church - the Feast of Transfiguration or Vardavar. Our Church celebrates it 98 days following the Feast of Holy Resurrection, between the period of June 28 to August 1. The festive liturgy was offered by Rev. Father Minas Hakhverdyan of the Mother See.
The pilgrimage day of Hovhanavank is also celebrated on the Feast of Transfiguration. The tradition was commenced by Karekin II. It is celebrated since 2013, when the silver reliquary containing the relics of St. John the Baptist was for the first time taken out of the Mother See and taken to Hovhanavank. As per the tradition, the Patriarch Grigor Lusavorich established the Monastery on the relics of John the Baptist. Many believers came to participate in the festive liturgy and receive the blessing of the relic of John the Baptist.