Mass Celebrated at Sourp Giragos Church in Diyarbakir

Hundreds attended a church service at the Sourp Giragos Church. (Photo by Gulisor Akkum, The Armenian Weekly)
Hundreds attended a church service at the Sourp Giragos Church. (Photo by Gulisor Akkum, The Armenian Weekly)

DIYARBAKIR, Turkey (A.W.)—Hundreds attended a church service held on Tues., Sept. 10, at the Sourp Giragos Armenian Church in Diyarbakir.

Two days earlier, on Sun., Sept. 8, a church service was held at the Sourp Khatch Church on Aghtamar Island in Van, during which five Armenians were baptized.

The head of the Sourp Giragos Church Foundation, Vartkes Ergun Ayık, told the Armenian Weekly that the two services were held two days apart to maximize attendance.

Acting Patriarch Aram Ateshyan conducted the church services, as Sourp Giragos does not yet have a priest.

“Unfortunately, there is no institution for training clergy in Turkey, which is why two years ago an Armenian from Adiyaman [in Turkey] was sent to study abroad. Upon the completion of his education, he will be assigned as permanent pastor at Sourp Giragos,” Ayık told the Weekly.

Mayor Osman Baydemir greets visitors at the church. (Photo by Gulisor Akkum, The Armenian Weekly)
Mayor Osman Baydemir greets visitors at the church. (Photo by Gulisor Akkum, The Armenian Weekly)

The church service was also attended by Mayors Osman Baydemir and Abdullah Demirbas, the heads of the Diyarbakir Metropolitan Municipality and the Sour Municipality, respectively.

“The Armenian people was burnt into ashes in 1915. Today, the Armenians are rising from the ashes in these lands,” Demirbas told the Weekly.

Sourp Giragos was restored and opened for worship in 2011 through the efforts of a handful of Armenian supporters and the Diyarbakir municipal authorities.

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Gulisor Akkum

Gulisor Akkum is a journalist based in Diyarbakir. She received her sociology degree in 2003 from Dicle University. She has written articles for the Armenian Weekly since 2009, and is the Weekly's correspondent in Diyarbakir since October 2012.

4 Comments

  1. Thank you Gulisor and the both municipality leaders. A big kudos goes also to Vartkes Ayik for all his efforts to keep this place and the museum alive.God bless you all!

  2. These Kurdish mayors Osman Baydemir and Abdullah Demirbash prove to be great assets for both Kurdish and Armenian peoples. May their example proliferate throughout Turkey and beyond.

  3. How can we contribute to the upkeep of this church and the heroic efforts of this community to make amends and build a different future?

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