The monastery of Panagia Myrtidiotissa - Kythira

panagia-01Panagia Myrtidiotissa is the protector of Kytherians all around world. The monastery is located in the southwestern part of the island.
There lies the miraculous icon of Panagia,
perhaps the most precious relic of the Christian faithof Kytherians.

It is built on natural rocky opening surrounded by many myrtles, pines and almonds. Going down the road leading to the monastery you will notice in the sea two large islets. The legend says they were pirates who were going to loot the monastery, but Panagia turned them into deserted islands.

The first chapel, named as the Old Catholic, was built by a shepherd after he found the icon of Panagia among the myrtles. Thus was given to the church the name Myrtidiotissa. Up to this day the chapel houses the wax offerings of the faithful.

Over the old chapel in 1857, was built the new grand temple. On the Sunday of Orthodoxy and after the Divine Liturgy, the believers accompany the icon all the way until the Cathedral church of Estavromenos in Chora. The icon remains there until Easter Monday. Then starts the icon’s procession (litany) passing through most of the island’s villages before it returns back in Myrtidia. The monastery celebrates on the 24th of September.

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