[From Wikipedia] “Orthodox Christianity was the state religion throughout most of Georgian history until 1921, when it was conquered by the Russian Red Army during the Russian Civil War and became part of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (U.S.S.R.). The current Constitution of Georgia recognizes the special role of the Georgian Orthodox Church in the country’s history, but also stipulates the independence of the church from the state. Government relations are further defined and regulated by the Concordat of 2002.
The church is the most trusted institution in Georgia. According to a 2013 survey 95% respondents had a favorable opinion of its work. It is highly influential in the public sphere and is considered Georgia’s most influential institution.”
Candles lit by pilgrims burn at an altar inside Jvari Monastery.
Jvari Monasteri overlooks Mtskheta, one of Georgia’s oldest cities a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
A Georgian Orthodox woman says a prayer to the Virgin Mary at Svetitskhoveli Cathedral in Mtskheta.
Sitting at the confluence of the Aragvi and Mtkvari rivers, Mtskheta is home to several of Georgia’s most important religious monuments.
The Holy Trinity Cathedral of Tbilisi commonly known as Sameba is the main cathedral of the Georgian Orthodox Church located in Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia.
A Georgian Orthodox woman lights a candle in Jvaris Mama, a 16th century church built atop the 5th century foundations of the original church in Old Tbilisi.
The snow-capped Caucasus Mountains rise up behind a monastery near Kvesheti.
A nun peers from a doorway at Bodbe Monastery near the hillside village of Sighnaghi in eastern Georgia’s Kazbegi municipality.
Check out all the high-resolution shots from my trip to Georgia in my Flickr album.