The Village Of Kalavryta

 

Heading out from camp, we first stop at Mega Spilaion or the “Monastery of the Great Cave.” This Monastery was founded because of the discovery of the miraculous Icon of the Theotokos that was written by Saint Luke the Evangelist. Made mostly of beeswax, it is recorded to be one of the oldest known icons in the world. After that, we head to Agia Lavra Monastery, which is known as the birthplace of the Greek Revolution. The Monastery of Agia Lavra and Mega Spilaion both hold important spiritual and cultural importance today, because during the Turkish occupation they helped preserve the national identity for the local people during that troubling time. It was inside the old church in 1821 that Archbishop Germanos of Patras held a secret assembly where he declared the Greek Independence, and the famous call “Eleftheria I Thanatos” (Freedom or Death) was heard. The region of Kalavryta once led the resistance against the German and Italian invaders. The village itself is especially known for the cruel actions of the German soldiers in WWll. After a lunch in downtown Kalavryta, we visit the church of Kimisis tis Theotokou, where Fr. George regales us with the courageous story of the Greek people and the true miracles that occurred in the church. Following our visit at the church, we make one last stop at the memorial sight before heading back to camp.