On August 4, President of the Republic of Abkhazia Raul Khadzhimba participated in the opening of a charity marathon to raise funds for the construction of a church of the Holy Great Martyr Eustathius Apsilsky (Marshan) in Tkuarchal.
Head of the Administration of the Tkuarchal District Aida Chachkhalia delivered a welcoming speech.
“This event taking place today in the hero-city of Tkuarchal is truly historic. It unites history and modernity. This church will help to strengthen the ideas of kindness, mutual respect and reconciliation in our society. The building of a church is not someone’s whim. It responds to the real needs of the residents of our city. The idea to build a church belongs to the residents of Tkuarchal. This project was supported by the founder of the Cultural and charitable foundation “Ashana” Beslan Shakaya. After receiving a blessing of the Abkhazian Orthodox Church, before the 20th anniversary of Victory, the first stone was laid. Today, thanks to the efforts of the Cultural and charitable foundation “Ashana” and the Foundation of the Holy Apostle Simon the Zealot and the Holy Great Martyr Eustathius Apsilsky in Tkuarchal, a charity marathon will take place. Thanks to everyone who responded to this good initiative. The construction of a church will revive the city, and pilgrims will be coming here. The construction itself will create new jobs. I believe that the spiritual and economic revival of the city is not far away”, - said Aida Chachkhalia.
The President addressed the guests and participants of the event with a greeting.
“Dear participants and guests of the marathon, all those participating in it and making the first steps to build the church! It is important for our spiritual foundations to develop. In their unity, our people have proved that they are capable of living and building the Abkhazian state. Where there is a church, there is purity. May God grant us purity, unity and strength so that we could continue the task of our ancestors, our fathers and brothers”, - said the President.
Founder of the Cultural and charitable foundation “Ashana” Beslan Shakaya expressed gratitude to everyone participating in the marathon.
“First of all, I would like to thank everyone for coming here today to the charity marathon in support of the construction of a church. It will be built in honour of 246 soldiers who defended the besieged Tkuarchal and gave their lives. Of them, 136 were born in Tkuarchal. I am certain that the best form of gratitude to all those who died for our freedom is the building of a church in their memory in a place where there was never a church. There is a symbolic meaning to the fact that the future church will bear the name of a warrior and martyr Eustathius Apsilsky from the Marshan family, who is recognised by the Eastern Orthodox Church”, - said Beslan Shakaya.
Head of the Abkhazian Orthodox Church, priest Vissarion (Apliaa) blessed the organisers and participants of the charity marathon.