THE PREACHING YEARS
Written by Gevork Nazaryan
Having reached adulthood Gregory married Mariam [Mary], the daughter of Davit, one the noblemen of Armenia Minor. Gregory and Mariam had two sons, the eldest being Vrt'anēs followed by Aristakes. Mariam with her youngest son Aristakēs retreated to a convent monastery. Vrt'anēs was placed under guardianship and upbringing of close friends of the family, by the directions of Gregory. In 287, Gregory departed from Cappadocia to Greater Armenia. St. Gregory on his way to the prominent capital of Greater Armenia, Vałaršapat preached Christianity and new converts began to join his camp. Christian communities existed in Armenia since the times of the apostles St. Thaddeus and St. Bartholomew.
KHOR VIRAP WHERE ST. GREGORY REMAINED IMPRISONED FOR 12 [OR 13] YEARS.
THE HOLY TWIN MOUNT ARARAT [SIS AND MASIS] IN THE BACKGROUND.
Upon his arrival in Vałaršapat, St. Gregory was promptly arrested upon the charges of treason and disrupting the social order of the Kingdom by the royal guards of Trdat III. Gregory was imprisoned in the dungeon of Khor Virap [literary, deep pit]. St. Gregory remained imprisoned for twelve long years in the darkness of Khor Virap.