JERUSALEM, Israel (ArmRadio)—An Armenian official delegation headed by Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian attended the reopening of Jesus’ tomb in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem’s Old City on March 22.
Attending the event were Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, high-ranking officials from other countries, Christian church leaders, thousands of pious people.
Earlier in the day, Nalbandian visited the Armenian Patriarchate of Jerusalem to meet with Patriarch, Archbishop Nurhan Manougian.
Archbishop Manougian delivered a speech at the reopening ceremony along with Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew of the Greek Orthodox Church, Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem, Theophilos II. A message from His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians, was read out.
The tomb where Jesus is believed to have been buried was unveiled today following nine months of restoration.
Three main Christian denominations–Catholic, Greek Orthodox and Armenian Churches–guarded separate sections of the church, and put aside their longstanding religious rivalries to give their blessing for the restoration. Armenian architects were involved in reconstruction works.
The Armenian, Roman, and Greek Orthodox churches share custody of the church, but disputes between the denominations have led to decades of delayed renovations.