Every year on May 17, the Georgian Orthodox Church celebrates Family Purity Day, traditionally with a large procession through the streets of Tbilisi.
However, this year, due to the coronavirus pandemic, the procession was held only by priests in a column of automobiles, without public participation, reports agenda.ge.
Holding icons and Georgian flags, the priests moved from the Sameba-Holy Trinity Cathedral into downtown Tbilisi after the Sunday Divine Liturgy where His Holiness Catholicos-Patriarch Ilia II called on all the faithful to pray for “the strength of their families.”
The priests blessed the streets and observing faithful with holy water as they went.
“The celebration [of the arrival of the Atskur Icon of the Mother of God to Tbilisi] lasted for a week. Georgia is the lot of the Theotokos, and for one week, we entreated the Mother of God to have mercy on Georgia. Today we celebrate Family Purity Day. We pray for our families to be strong, Christian, and faithful. Where faith is true, there is joy, there is love,” His Holiness said.
The Patriarch also spoke about one of the saints of the day, St. Monica, the mother of St. Augustine, who converted her husband and son to the true faith through her fervent prayers and her righteous example.