YEREVAN. – Divine Liturgy with the participation of Pope Francis has started in the Armenian Apostolic Cathedral in Etchmiadzin.

Catholicos of All Armenians Karekin II is holding the ceremony in the open altar, and not in the cathedral as usual. 

Pope Francis is not the first pontiff to participate in a Divine Liturgy in Etchmiadzin. Fifteen years ago John Paul II participated in the liturgy during his visit dedicated to the 1700th anniversary of adoption of Christianity by Armenia. 

The pontiff has arrived on a three-day visit to Armenia. On Snday, the final day of his visit, Pope Francis will visit Khor Virap Monastery.