BETHLEHEM, Saturday, January 18, 2020 (WAFA) – Archbishop Nourhan Manougian, the Armenian Patriarch of Jerusalem, arrived at Bethlehem’s Manger Square this morning ahead of the Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Epiphany celebrations.
Manougian headed the annual procession from Jerusalem’s Jaffa Gate, where the Armenian Patriarchate is located, to Bethlehem, stopping on the way at Mar Elias Monastery before continuing into the wall-locked biblical city of Bethlehem where he was received by Palestinian officials before continuing to the Church of Nativity, where Christ was born, at Manger Square. He will lead the midnight mass tonight at the Nativity Church.
Armenians are the last of the Christians in Palestine who celebrate Christmas in the Holy Land. While followers of the Catholic faith celebrate Christmas on December 24 and 25, and the Orthodox churches on January 6 and 7, the Armenians mark it on January 18 and 19.
The Armenians, and the other Orthodox churches, will also celebrate tomorrow Epiphany, or the baptismal of Jesus Christ, at a site on the River Jordan in the occupied West Bank.