June 2, 2011 - 18:39 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - Today, Armenian Apostolic Church is celebrating the Ascension Day to be marked 50 days after the Holy Easter. For the first time in 200 years, the Holy Lance that pierced Jesus’ side as he hung on the cross was transferred from Holy Echmiadzin’s treasury to Geghard Monastery.
Upon completion of liturgy at Geghard, the lance was set in the church, with a free entrance to all faithful allowed. After the evening liturgy the Lance was returned to Echmiadzin. Further, a sacrificial offering was held in Geghard Monastery.
The Holy Lance (also known as the Spear of Destiny, Holy Spear, Lance of Longinus, Spear of Longinus or Spear of Christ) is the name given to the lance that pierced Jesus's side as he hung on the cross in John's account of the Crucifixion.
Geghard, Armenian for a Holy Lance is now conserved in Echmiadzin, the religious capital of Armenia. The first source that mentions it is a text Holy Relics of Our Lord Jesus Christ, in a thirteenth century Armenian manuscript. According to this text, the spear which pierced Jesus was to have been brought to Armenia by the apostle Thaddeus. The manuscript does not specify precisely where it is kept, but the Holy Lance gives a description that exactly matches the lance, the monastery gate, since the thirteenth century precisely, the name of Geghardavank (Monastery of the Holy Lance).