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On September 22, a conference dedicated to the 1,000-th Anniversary Celebration of the Consecration of the Cathedral of Ani, opened in the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin. His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians, presided during the inaugural plenary session. The conference titled “The Glory of Ani” is organized under the auspices of His Holiness and the initiative of the “St. Mesrop Mashtots” Scientific and Cultural Center of Oshakan, in the Diocese of Aragatsotn.

His Eminence Archbishop Shahe Ajemian welcomed the participants of the conference in his opening address. His Eminence Archbishop Mesrop Ashjian, UNESCO’S Armenia representative Mr. Hambardzum Minasian, French-Armenian Claude-Armen Moutafian, and Architect Varazdat Haroutunian delivered lectures and reports dedicated to Ani and its architectural monuments.

In his remarks, His Holiness Karekin II accorded great importance to the jubilee ceremonies dedicated to the Cathedral’s consecration, noting: “It is necessary to stress our determination in focusing the attention of the international community on this magnificent architectural monument. She (the Cathedral) enriches the treasury of world culture, and our goal is complete reconstruction, preservation and bequeathing for the coming generations”.

The conference will last until September 24, with sessions taking place in Oshakan, and in the National Academy of Sciences of the Republic of Armenia, in Yerevan. More than thirty historical, architectural, scientific and cultural lectures and reports from Armenia and the Diaspora will be presented.

The main cathedral of the capital city of Ani was consecrated in the year 1,001 A.D., during the Pontificate of Catholicos of All Armenians Sargis I Sevantsi (Catholicos 992 – 1019), and the reign of King Gagik. The designer of the 16 columned, domed basilica was the Architect Trdat. The ruins of Ani are visible from the present-day Armenian border with Turkey.

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