Georgian Patriarch marks 41st anniversary of consecration

Georgian Patriarch, who is the most trusted figure in Georgia based on public polls, marked the 41st anniversary of consecration in the town of Mtskheta, the old capital of Georgia. Photo: 1TV., 25 Dec 2018 - 14:50, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgian Patriarch Ilia II, who will turn 86 in January, has marked the 41st anniversary of his appointment to the position.

Georgian Prime Minister Mamuka Bakhtadze and other top officials came to the town of Mtskheta today to congratulate the patriarch and Ilia II delivered a holiday service in the Svetitskhoveli Cathedral.

Bakhtadze stated that Ilia II’s time in the role is distinguished by “unprecedented building” in the history of the Georgian church.

Hundreds of churches have been built and restored under Ilia II. The Patriarch’s appeals for love of the motherland, tolerance, education and work are those much needed for the state development,” Bakhtadze said.

Ilia II became the patriarch when he was 44 years old.

In 1988 there were only 180 priests, 40 monks,15 nuns, 200 churches, one seminary, three convents, and four monasteries in Georgia.

Currently there are about 2,000 acting churches and monasteries in Georgia and up to 3,000 monks and nuns.