EASTER CELEBRATION in PATMOS Featured

EASTER IN PATMOS: Easter is the island's most important period. The main celebrations are operated in Hora (Town), by the historic Monastery of Saint John (separate listing), and are known all over the world. The "Great Week"  is celebrated in Patmos according to Byzantine tradition and pilgrims travel there from all over the world. Several services take place througout the Great Week. The most important are:

On Good Thursday, a represantation of the Jesus (by the Bishop) washing the feet of his twelve disciples (twelve monqs), takes place in Hora's square. This action took place before Jesus was crucified, during the Last Supper. Good Friday is a day of mourning. The church bells ring sparingly and national flags are at half-mast. Christ's Entombment representation takes place in St John's Monastery (14:00 - 16:00), with Jesus is taken off the cross, wrapped in a white cloth and laid on the altar. From 20:00- 23:00 hrs, the "Epitafios" procession takes place. A bier covered with flowers with the representation of the Christ's lying body is carried throughout the Town (Chora). The believers follow the bier with brown candles lit. The bier is taken back to the church, followed by the people, and is placed in the inner chamber for fourty days. Easter Saturday: Churches are decorated joyfully. The early resurrection service takes place (9.00-11.30). The priest turns away the devil who tries to prevent the Resurrection. The bells ring furiously and guns fire. After 9 o' clock in the evening, the main Resurrection Service begins and lasts until 2 o'clock in the morning. Everybody has a white candle. Children have colourfully decorated candles (godparents' present). Before midnight all lights turn off and only the "holy light" remains. The priest, comes out of the sanctuary, holding a white candle lit from the "holy light" and says to the faithfull “Christos Anesti” (Christ has Risen) and "Defte Lavete Fos" (Come to Take the Light). Then the light spreads, bells ring, fireworks explode and everyone kiss each other wishing "Christos Anesti" to get the answer "Alithos Anesti" (Trully he has Risen). At the end families go home (with their candles lit) to eat magiritsa soup, meat and knock the red-died eggs. In Easter Sunday everyone roast a lamp and celebrate. The Love Ceremony takes place in the church.