Athens

Athens is famous for it’s pagan philosophers, pagan literature, and pagan temples but it’s also the capitol of one of the first countries that the apostles preached in, and they won many converts here.  Some of the relics in this city are easy to find, and some have proven quite difficult, requiring the help of a pious Athenian and a smartphone map in order to be found.  All the relics mentioned I learned about from Mother Nectaria McLees’ book

Evlogeite: A Pilgrim’s Guide to Greece, however her directions leave something to be desired if one is traveling without a guide and doesn’t speak Greek.

Relics in Athens

ST. PHILOTHEI OF ATHENS, ST. GREGORY V, PATRIARCH OF CONSTANTINOPLE, ST. NICHOLAS PLANAS, ST. GREGORY OF NYSSA, ST. THEODORE OF TYRO, ST. THEORDORE STRATELATES, ST. GEORGE OF NEOPOLIS, ST. STEPHEN THE PROTOMARTYR, ST. APOSTOLOS, ST. MAKARIOS, ST. THEODORE, ST. CHARALAMBOS, ST. JOHN, ST. PAOASKEVES, ST. LAURENCE, ST. MEOKOULOU, ST BASIL, ST. JOHN

St. Philothei of Athens and St. Gregory V, Patriarch of Constantinople

The Metropolitan Cathedral

The Metropolitan Cathedral was built on the site of the monastery of St. Andrew founded by St. Philothei.  The Metropolitan cathedral appears to be open during normal daylight/business hours.  In the three times I have visited Athens I have never found it closed.  The cathedral contains the relics of both St. Philothei of Athens and St. Gregory V, Patriarch of Constantinople. 

St. Philothei’s life may be found here:

https://hellenicnews.com/saint-philothea-of-athens-an-athenian-patron-saint/

The life & death of St. Gregory V, Patriarch of Constantinople may be found here:

https://orthodoxhistory.org/2010/03/25/the-death-of-patriarch-gregory-v-of-constantinople-1821/

When you walk into the cathedral St. Philothei’s reliquary is to the right side, against a column underneath the lectern, and St. Gregory’s reliquary is to the left side, against the opposite column.

St. Nicholas Planas

The Church of St. John the Baptist “the Hunter”

The original church of St. John the Baptist “the Hunter” has been reduced to an open-air altar area, however the large new church which stands in it’s place does contain the relics of St. “Papa Nicholas Planas.

 

From station Σύνταγμα (Syntagma) take a train heading towards Ελληνικό (Elliniko).  Get off at the station Άγιος Ιωάννης (Aghios Ioannis).  There is only one exit from the station.  The church will be visible as you ascend the stairs/escalator.  Walk past the church to find all that remains of church where Papa Nicholas served – the still-standing altar area.  Retrace your steps and go back into the church where St. Nicholas’ relics are kept; they are in the right as you enter the church.

 

St. Gregory of Nyssa, St. Theodore of Tyro, St. Theodore Stratilates, New Martyr George of Neapolis

The Church of St. Efstathios

When the ‘exchange of populations’ occurred between Turkey and Greece in 1923, one million Orthodox Christians fled the lands that had just been declared part of Turkey taking with them their most important possessions, including relics of saints from their churches as they set up new homes in Greece.  The head of St. Gregory of Nyssa is one such relic that came to Greece.

To get to the church by bus: Go to the Theater Rex (Θέατρο Rex).  In front of it is a bus stop. Get on Bus No. 054.  It will be a long ride.  Get off at stop 8h Perrisou (8ώ Περισσός). The church of St. Efstathios is right behind you.

The directions to come by metro will be

St. Stephen the Protomartyr

By bus: Go to the Theater Rex (Θέατρο Rex).  In front of it is a bus stop. Get on Bus No. 054.  It will be a long ride.  Get off at stop 8h Perrisou (8ώ Περισσός). The church of St. Efstathios is right behind you.

To get to the church of St. Stephen the Protomartyr – Agios Stefanos (Άγιος Στεφανος), turn right after you leave the church of St. Efstathios. Cross the street. Walk down Sikelianou Angelou (Σικελιανού Ανγελού) until it turns into Palaiologon (), turn right on Galinou (), left onto Palaiologon again, and then continue right on Palaiologon as it merges with Sinopis. The church is on the right.

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