|PRAYER AT DZIDZERNAGAPERT MEMORIAL|
|Pope John Paul II
WE ARE APPALLED BY THE TERRIBLE VIOLENCE DONE TO THE ARMENIAN PEOPLE
On Wednesday, 26 September, the Holy Father visited the Dzidzernagapert memorial in Yerevan and paid a moving tribute to the 1.5 million Armenians who were killed in the early 20th century. The Armenian Monument, Dzidzernagapert, was constructed in 1965 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Armenian massacre. The monument is a towering grantie needle flanked by an eternal flame. Twelve imposing pylons, representing the twelve provinces where the Armenians were massacred, surround the memorial flame inside the fortress. The flame burns to represent the Armenian spirit, which can never be extinguished. The monument which means "Citadel of Swallows" is named for a bird that always returns to its nest, even if its home has been destroyed. The needle-shaped shaft beside it represents the rebirth of the Armenian people. The Holy Father left a red rose at the eternal flame. As many as 1.5 million Armenians died in the persecutions that lasted from 1915 to 1923. In his prayer, the Holy Father begged the Lord to listen "to the lament that rises from this place, to the call of the dead from the depths of the 'metz yeghérn'". The Holy Father used the term "Metz Yeghérn" which is usually translated as the great evil or the great crime. In his prayer he deplored the violence that continues in our world. "We are appalled by the terrible violence done to the Armenian people, and dismayed that the world still knows such inhumanity".
Weekly Edition in English
3 October 2001, page 6
L'Osservatore Romano is the newspaper of the Holy See.
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