On August 12, 2018 in the only Armenian-inhabited Damala village of Javakheti’s Aspindza region series of events aimed at the improvement and strengthening of Armenian-Georgian friendship took place giving importance to the millennial path the two nations had passed together.
The mayor of Aspindza region Rostom Magrakvelidze, the representatives of the local authorities, the delegation of Support to Javakheti Foundation led by the chairman of the Board of Trustees Sos Sahakyan, the deputy of Aspindza regional assembly Emin Baloyan, Armenian and Georgian spiritual representatives and numerous guests from other regions of Georgia, Armenia and Russia were present at the event.
Series of events began with the liturgy at 11:00 at Surb Khach church of Damala, after which the blessing of the grapes ritual took place and the bunch of blessed grapes were given to the attendees.
After the liturgy, the attendees left for Koghtaberd. The spiritual representative of Georgian Orthodox church performed the ritual, which was accompanied by the candle lighting and the performance of folk and spiritual songs
According to the villagers, Koghtaberd castle dates back to the 13th century and the church in the neighborhood of the castle was considered a pilgrimage place for Damala villagers.
After the ritual ceremony, within the frames of Armenian-Georgian friendship day the participants were presented concert performances.
In Koghtaberd duduk was performed by duduk player, musician Vache Gabrielyan and as a sign of respect for the Armenian-Georgian friendship the children of Damala village recited poems.
The event was followed by the reconstructed 19th-century spring-monument’s solemn opening ceremony with the blessing of the village’s spiritual shepherd. SOS Sahakyan, the chairman of the Board of Trustees of Support to Javakheti Foundation, welcomed the attendees noting that these series of events unite the people and strengthen the Armenian-Georgian friendship.
The spring-monument was reconstructed by means of benefactor, businessman Mkhitar Barseghyan.
At the end of the opening ceremony, Karin Folk Dance Ensemble of Damala village brought together the attendees under Armenian dances, summing up the day with cultural spirit.