Black Church Tabriz - Ghara Kelisa
An Armenian Church, known also by the name of St. Tadi, Qara kilisa that has been built on top of a hill in the hamelt (black church) near Chalderan in the township of Maku in the province of West Azerbaijan. The dome of the church resembles a pyramid with 12 buttresses and the eastern exterior has been decorated with black stone and that is one reason why the church is called Ghara Kelisa, meaning black church.
In the eastern and ancient side of the church that belongs to the 10th century, there is a courtyard and preaching hall on the entrance of which an inscription in Armenian presents some details about the main building and gives an account of the construction of the old and original building.
Other inscriptions indicate that the building of the church was repaired in 1814 AD on the order of crown prince Abbas Mirza Qajar.
In various interiors and exteriors of the church there are relief exhibits which demonstrate religious meetings, the picture of the saints and the scenes of the historical tales of the holy book along with numerous decorative and ornamental designs, all with great worth and value from the artistic and archaeological point of view.
The martydom anniversary of Saint Thaddaeus is a day when special rituals are performed in the church and this place is one of the most important places of worship for the Iranian Armenians.