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The Armenian Orthodox Church
The Armenian Orthodox Church, Baghdad is one of the top rated attractions of the city. Baghdad is one of the top rated tourist destinations of the country. Travelers from all parts of the world come to see the varied places of attraction. Of these The Armenian Orthodox Church, Baghdad is one of the most favored sites that deserves a special mention.
The Armenian Orthodox Church, Baghdad is popularly known as the Meskenta Church. It is one of the old churches of the capital city. The Armenian Orthodox Church is also common among the locals as the Church of the Virgin Mary. The church is located in Midan Square off Al-Rashid Street. It is well connected and easily accessible from all parts of the city.
The Armenian Orthodox Church in Baghdad was first built in 1640 AD. Originally it was built by the Armenians. It was constructed on a piece of land that was granted to them by the Ottoman Sultan Murad IV. Later the Nestorian Christians played a significant role in building the church. Finally it again went into the hands of the Orthodox Armenians. It is a great piece of architecture that attracts worldwide tourists. This church was reconstructed later in 1967.
There are special rituals held every year on 15th August. The rituals and the ceremonies are held to celebrate the "Assumption of Virgin Mary to heaven". Natives of Baghdad as well as people from other parts of Iraq come here round the year to offer gifts to the church. Religious people also gather in large number to offer their prayers.
The Armenian Orthodox Church Baghdad is also called the Church of Meskenta. It is named after a woman who sacrificed her life in 5th century. To offer tribute to this lady certain traditions are practiced in the church. All these traditions and customs are related to local folklore. One of the common practices is the one related to iron chain. People usually put iron chain round their neck. It is believed that if the chain tied round the neck unlocks automatically then all the wishes of the persons would be accepted.
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