Church of the Holy Virgin

Church of the Holy Virgin was built in Samarkand in 1903 due to donations of Armenian population. In the 15the century, Amir Temur returned from military campaign to Armenia with Armenian people (artisans).

The number of Armenian people started to grow after unification of Turkmenistan and Russia in the 19th century. In 1898, they were allowed to open praying house. Initially, Armenian people rented special premises. Later, they constructed their own building. Ruben Bekgulyants, who contributed to construction of the Church, led it.

Afterwards, the Soviet government banned the activities of the spiritual institution, the purpose of the building was changed several times. But local Armenians continued to dream about construction of their own Church.

In summer 1991, two monks arrived in Samarkand. Rituals of baptism and wedding, as well as funerals are carried out here again. Armenian people of Samarkand also started to celebrate religious holidays and learn the Christian canons.


On request of Armenian community, the authorities of Samarkand returned the building. Afterwards, the works started. All community was engaged in the restoration. Everybody helped with what they had - money, construction materials and transport. Some people were involved in construction, some decorated the church. Others made reports on reconstruction in mass media.

It took two years to restoration of the church. Local painters decorated the internal part of the church. The 100-kg cross, cast from bronze at the Samarkand plant, was installed at the belfry. Crystal chandeliers from Yerevan are installed on the ceiling.

The opening and consecration of Surb Astvatsatsin (Holy Virgin) was held on 20 August 1995 and became long-awaited celebration for all Armenians in Samarkand.

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