Saturday, February 22, 2014

Parish Trip to Litohoro

On January 30, we took a parish pilgrimage north, to the Holy Monastery of St. Dionysius of Mt. Olympus, in the village of Litohoro. We left Portaria at 1:30 in the afternoon, stopping on the way at the Holy Shrine of St. Paraskevi in Tempe.

Here we are crossing the bridge over the river to get to the shrine of St. Paraskevi.

Below you can see the small church. The main north-south railroad track actually used to run on top of this church. In the old days, I've heard, the train would stop so that people could light candles there. They even had a hole in which they could drop their coins down into the church's main collection box.

There's a cave, with a very small entrance, to the ancient spring of holy water. It was just the right size for the kids.

Here's our friend Despina trying to go down. She gave up before she got to the end.

Here are the kids running back across the bridge.

And here's Benny driving the bus with Fr. Stavros. Our next stop was the Monastery of St. Dionysius. Our purpose there was not only to venerate the monastery and its saint, but also to pick up a reliquary that was being loaned to us for a few days. I had gotten a blessing from the bishop and the monastery to borrow an old reliquary containing the relics of St. Tryphon, St. Paraskevi, St. Haralambos, and our parish's own St. Cosmas the Holy Unmercenary, in order to celebrate the feast day of St. Tryphon on Feb. 1 in our newly restored side chapel to the saint. More on that in the next post.

Because I was preoccupied with getting the relics, I didn't manage to take any photos at the monastery. Next time!

For the return trip, a faithful parishioner had brought his own car, and we rode back together with the relics in silence.

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