Patriarch Ilia of Georgia adds another 708 Godchildren in 52nd mass Baptism

His Holiness Catholicos-Patriarch Ilia II of Georgia celebrated his 52nd mass Baptism yesterday in Holy Trinity Cathedral in the capital city of Tbilisi, adding another 708 Godchildren, reports Georgia Online.

The celebration began in the second half of the day, after the morning Liturgy. His Holiness arrived to the cathedral around 8:00 PM to bless his new Godchildren, who all received official certificates and Baptismal crosses.

His Holiness now has 33,934 Godchildren.

The previous such Baptism was celebrated on November 23, in which over 600 children were baptized.

With the first mass Baptism on January 19, 2008, Patriarch Ilia commenced his initiative to help improve the dire demographic situation in Georgia caused by post-Soviet abortion rates. Such mass celebrations are held four times a year in which the primate personally baptizes and becomes the godfather for the third and later children of married Orthodox couples.