The Commemoration of the Heroes
The Armenian Church marks the holiday of St. Vardanants on Thursday preceding Fat Tuesday (Bun Barekendan) which is celebrated on the eve of the Great Lent. The Holy Vardanants festival is celebrated in memory of Armenian Commander Vardan Mamikonyan and his comrades-in-arms who martyred in the Battle of Avarayr against the Persian state in 451. This holiday is also considered to be the christening day anniversary for all people bearing the names of Vardan Mamikonyan and 7 other warriors and soldiers
who fought heroically and died for the sake of their faith and country. This year the Armenian Apostolic Church celebrates the holiday of St. Vardanants on February 16. On the Commemoration Day of victims a divine liturgy is served in all churches of all dioceses which is followed by religious procession with cross and banners. The participants of the procession illustrate the war scenes and imitate the warriors and soldiers who put their lives into risk for the sake of Armenia and our faith against the Persians. Among the participants there is a rider on the white horse who embodies Armenian Military Commander Vardan
Mamikonyan. This Divine Liturgy is a tradition marking the eve of the great battle against Persia, when Armenian clergy blessed and baptized their troops.
This holiday is one of our national favorite festive days as it symbolizes the insuperable and imperishable power of our faith. And now we celebrate the Commemoration Day of Victims of the Great Battle in memory of those brave soldiers who spared no efforts to save the unity of our country. The martyrdom of St. Vardanants warriors is the victory against collapse.