Grigor Lusavorich

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Location: Yerevan
Established: 2001

Gregory the Enlightener was the first catholicos of all Armenians. According to Agathangelo, during times when Christianity was rejected in Armenian, king Trdat the Third throws Gregory the Enlightener into the pit of royal prison, where he spends 13 year. A widow fed him, every day secretly throwing a loaf of bread into the pit (Khor Virap). After st.Gregory saved the kind from an incurable disease, Trdat he third let him free. As soon as st. Gregory got freedom, with the king’s support, in 301 he declared Christianity as official religion in Armenia. So, Armenia became the first country to adopt Christianity as state religion. Armenian Church is also called Gregorian in honor of Gregory the Enlightener.

To the 1700th anniversary of adoption of Christianity in Armenia, the leader of Ararat Patriarchal Diocese Garegin archbishop Nersisyan met with catholicos of all Armenians Vazgen A with an offer to build a new church. Very soon, by the order of catholicos of all Armenians, the preparing works started. Architect Marutyan offered to build a church with the same model as Zvartnots temple, though it was declined, because a number of representatives of intelligentsia and political leaders were convinced that the 20th century church should correspond with the requirements of modern architecture. As a result of the competition Stepan Kyurkchyan’s plan was affirmed. 

The consecration of the foundation of the church was accomplished by the former catholicos of all Armenians Garegin A in 1997, during the celebration of St. Mary's Annunciation. This church complex consists of St. Mother of God, St. Trdat, St. Ashkhen queen chapels. The belfry built of 30 arches and the parish are located in front of the church entrance. Gregory the Enlightener's relics are kept in the parish; they were brought here by Garegin the Second in 2000 from the same name church of Nepal. 

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