Beloved people in Armenia, Artsakh and the Diaspora,
This year marks the thirtieth anniversary of the re-establishment of our independent statehood.
Three decades ago, our people, with a united will, chose the path of rebuilding its independence, to fulfill their centuries-old desire and dream with enthusiasm and inspiration.
Our people have traversed a difficult path of state-building, facing many challenges and making great sacrifices.
With glorious victories, successes and achievements, we also had omissions, wrong processes, both in the homeland and in the international arena.
Last year our nation went through a new trial. Azerbaijan again unleashed a war against the Republic of Artsakh.
The worst consequences of the catastrophic war, the wounds that bleed every day, have created a completely new situation in the life of our people.
In our hearts is the deep pain of our losses, our fallen martyrs, captives and the missing, the anxiety of the uncertainty towards the future, but also the determination to stand up again, to shake off the disasters and troubles that have befallen us, to ensure conditions for our people to live safely and prosperously in Artsakh and Armenia.
The independence of the native country is the greatest value.
Over the centuries, the Armenian Church has always kept the idea of independence awake in the souls of our children, blessed the struggles for our freedom, put everything possible in the establishment and progress of our modern independent homeland, and will continue its activity in this sacred mission.
The main meaning of the 30th anniversary of independence is to rebuild a progressive, prosperous country in love and unity.
Today, unfortunately, we often see intolerance instead of solidarity and dialogue.
The problems facing our country and people demand unity, joint efforts and implementation of like-minded goals.
We must defend and preserve the independence, which was acquired at a high price, with national unity, overcoming internal and external challenges along the way of this sacred mission, because our independent state is the strongest anchor and guarantee of our existence and being.
On the occasion of the Independence Day, we extend our pontifical blessings to all our people, urging them to stand firm in the faith, to walk in God’s commandments, united around the homeland, to fulfil our vivid national desires with patriotic and fraternal love.
It is our pontifical prayer that Almighty God keep our Homeland and the world at peace, as well as grant creative and safe life for the children of my nation, today and always. Amen.