Pope Decries Genocide of the Armenians

During his three-day visit to Armenia, Pope Francis decried the genocide of Armenians (1915 to 1923), calling it the first genocide of the 20th century. This is the pontiff's first visit to Armenia–the first country to adopt Christianity (301 CE) as state religion, a decade before Constantine the Great legalized Christianity in the Roman Empire.

The Pope held mass in several cities (Gyumri in the north, Holy Echmiadzin–the "Vatican" of the Armenian Church, and in Yerevan, Armenia's capital). While in Yerevan, the Pope visited the genocide memorial complex called Dzidzernagapert ("fortress of swallows").  At the massive complex, which is a repository of documents about the genocide, Pope Francis signed the guess book.

During his three-day visit to Armenia, Pope Francis decried the genocide of Armenians (1915 to 1923), calling it the first genocide of the 20th century. This is the pontiff's first visit to Armenia–the first country to adopt Christianity (301 CE) as state religion, a decade before Constantine the Great legalized Christianity in the Roman Empire.

The Pope held mass in several cities (Gyumri in the north, Holy Echmiadzin–the "Vatican" of the Armenian Church, and in Yerevan, Armenia's capital). While in Yerevan, the Pope visited the genocide memorial complex called Dzidzernagapert ("fortress of swallows").  At the massive complex, which is a repository of documents about the genocide, Pope Francis signed the guess book.

Everywhere he went the Pope was greeting by huge crowds and rousing welcome. Pope Francis is the second Pope to visit Armenia: in 2001 Pope John Paul II was the first Pope to visit the mountainous country in the Southern Caucasus.

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