Tag Archives: Georgian Orthodoxy

The Georgian Protests: Dramatic Days, an Unexpected Outcome

by Tamara Grdzelidze | ελληνικά | Русский

Early on March 9th, the Georgian population learned that the Georgian Dream party announced the withdrawal of the draft on transparency of foreign influence. It was on March 7th that Parliament of Georgia, with a majority from the Georgian Dream party, passed the first reading of the controversial law on “foreign agents” (any organization receiving funding from abroad!). The law would limit freedom of the press and of non-governmental organizations, destabilize civil society by limiting contacts with the Western partners, and block potential for the country’s Euro-Atlantic expansion, and most importantly, safeguard the ruling party’s chance of winning elections in 2024.

Two days of protests followed, with thousands of people gathering in front of the Parliament, where police and special forces were mobilized against the demonstrators. First-day clashes ended with some people being injured and many detained; most of the protesters suffered from tear gas or the strong stream of a water cannon. Despite that, the next day more people went out, people of all ages, but the young dominated the scene. Thousands of angry citizens protested against the potential change to Euro-Atlantic choice of the nation.

Today, among those who are in opposition to the Georgian Dream, there is disagreement on the question, “How did we get here?”  

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Understanding True Citizenship: Lessons from a Georgian Saint

by Fr. Irakli Jinjolava  |  српски

Hieromartyr Archimandrite Grigol Peradze (killed 1942 in Auschwitz) was an eminent Georgian Churchman, theologian, and historian and one of the figureheads of the ecumenical movement in the 1920s.* In the journal “Jvari Vazisa” (“Grapevine Cross”), he published a homily series on the Lord’s Prayer (შინაარსი ჭეშმარიტ მოქალაქეობის [“The importance of the true citizenship”], Paris 1933). Grigol’s interpretation of the Lord’s Prayer offers a lesson on the nature of “true citizenship.” According to Grigol, true citizenship is not only earthly citizenship, which exists in relation to the state, but above all, it is heavenly citizenship, which in turn has an impact on the earthly. Grigol argues that the Lord’s Prayer presents Jesus’ teaching for his disciples on how to attain this true citizenship.

The concept of “true citizenship” is a common thread that runs through the eleven sermons in the series. How can the Georgian emigrants in exile be “true citizens” of Georgia, and what is the role of the church and of one’s relationship with God? Continue reading