Armenia was the world’s first Christian nation and dates back to the time of Christ and before. Bartholomew, who was one of Jesus’ 12 disciples, went to Armenia after Christ’s Resurrection and founded the Armenian church there. Tradition also suggests that he was flayed alive in Armenia for his beliefs.
Armenia is buffered between the Byzantine/Turkish, Russian/USSR and Persian empires. Today it is largely Christian (94%), which is unusual for this part of the world, and we can definitely thank Bartholomew’s unrelenting faith for that. The Armenian Apostolic Church has long been a cultural refuge in times of persecution, but they are also deep in tradition which sometimes can get in the way of seeing the living Christ of today. Pray for this amazing church and country that they will continue the work of Jesus and His disciples and be a safe haven for all who seek the truth.