Georgian Orthodox Church
Upon donation and assistance by Georgians living in the United States there is hired a premise for Holy Queen Tamar’s Church in Washington. The first Divine Liturgy was held on 8-9 of January. Upon blessing by His Holiness and Beatitude Catholicos Patriarch of All Georgia Ilia II and Holy Synod Decision there were opened several parish communities throughout the United States last year. Holy Synod appointed Metropolitan Dimitri of Batumi and Lazeti Diocese to rule the parish communities in North America and Canada. Upon blessing by His Holiness two Georgian priests Father Peter and Father John began their activity in Philadelphia and Los-Angeles and San-Francisco respectively.
Father Alexander has been conducted liturgy at St. Nino’s Church in New York for a long time. Father Nicolas is sent to Atlanta, Georgia. And, Father Matthew is about to leave for Chicago in a week to serve at Holy King Vakhtang Gorgasali’s Church there.
Archpriest Peter Kruashvili, “This is the third Georgian church in the United States where we can serve Divine Liturgy at any time. Upon God’s blessing each priest tries to open new Georgian churches and gather Georgian parish to prepare get back to our motherland.”
Archpriest Peter Kruashvili met with Georgian parish in Washington, Maryland, and Virginia just last year. He says the parish was ready to meet the priest, “The situation in Washington was much better than in other states as Archpriest Michael Popkhadze was there. In fact, he created a spiritual temple in their hearts. I’ve just continued his deeds. People have lived Christian lifestyle here and it was easy to open a church due to their contribution and donation here.”
Georgian Church opening ceremony was attended by Georgian emigrants from other states all over the USA. Mr. Koba Bukvaidze is among them. He graduated from Tbilisi Theologian Seminary and wished to continue his activity in that way, “This is truly great day for Georgians here. Thanks God, thanks Father Peter for all his efforts and hard work to gather Georgians. Let’s hope to see new nuns at Holy King David the Builder Church-Monastery by 27th of January on St. Nino’s Day. The Monastery was purchased by local Georgians here. And, Divine Liturgy is being conducted on every Sunday there.”
Sophia Tavartkiladze has lived with her family in Washington for 10 years. She used to attend Russian and Georgian liturgies at American orthodox church, “We had a priest and sheltered in Russian church for 10 years. That was the place to form the basis for our Georgian church here. After father Peter’s arrival we began to seek our own premise. We collected donations and managed to open Georgian church. It will certainly turn into educational place, where Georgian language, our spiritual and cultural values will flourish.”
As Father Peter says, “Georgians were spiritually ready here. Father Michael has nurtured them according to orthodox canons. They attended services at different churches because of having no Georgian church here. We have opened Georgian church here. And, our next step forward is to build truly Georgian church according to Georgian architecture for Georgian parish living in Washington, Virginia, Maryland, Baltimore and other states.”
Reported by “Voice of America”