Paths of Orthodoxy
In this blessed place the religiosity of the people is from the early Christianity. Churches which were built on ruins of ancient temples. Today about 60 churches that embrace the island and along with the monasteries and churches help boost religiosity visitors and residents.
The Nunnery of the Archangel Michael is the biggest and most famous monastery of Thassos and is an important pilgrimage. You can easily visit it as it is located in the southeast on the road of the island between Astris and Alyki village and is 33 km from the port. It is built on the edge of a cliff near the Theologos village with the view of the Aegean is giving the visitor the feeling that hovers over the sea.
In this position the ascetic Luke, obeying the command of the Archangel Michael, built in 1110 AD a small chapel in which flowed holy water. According to tradition, infidel Turks try to dirt the well, the well dried out and miraculously flowed in a cave near the sea until today. The sacrilegious Turks diet. Years later, miraculously, came to the small chapel the Holy nail (the nail that went into the right hand of the Crucified Christ) who had dedicated the emperor Nikiforos Votaniates Philotheou to the Monastery of Philotheou in Mount Athos. After years in the position of the small chapel was founded the monastery of Archangel Michael, as an extension of the monastery Philotheou.
We do not know when but an official document of 1287 refers to it. In 1835 repairs were made, as evidenced by the inscription on the western entrance of the church. In 1974 the nuns came from Pelion, which worked hard and transformed the monastery. Important is the spiritual link with the elder Ephraim Philotheou of Arizona USA. For Thassos and especially for the residents of Theologos, Archangel Michael is the patron saint. The Grace of Archangel and uniqueness and the blessing of the Holy Nail is a cause of high turnout of pilgrims. Celebrated on November 8th, the feast of the Archangel and on a Tuesday after Easter.
The Monastery Assumption of the Virgin known as Panagouda locally and beyond. To be able to visit you should head off the road that starts from Skala Maries to the mountain village Maries. A visit to the monastery to see the miraculous icon of Virgin Mary and learn the history that accompanies and closely connected with the construction of the monastery at that location.
The Monastery of Saint Panteleimon is characterized by his difficult access as it is located on the slopes of the so-called the fish cliffs at an altitude of about 730 meters. Now there is easy access from Prinos by road that enables each pilgrim to visit safely.
At the village Panagia you will find the church of Panagia. Considered by many the most imposing church of Thassos and of particular interest to the pilgrim, the church is dedicated to the Assumption of the Virgin inside the church you will see an image of the Virgin of Pantovlepousas.
Worth noting is the construction of the church build with marble from Thassos and marble from the ruins of ancient temples. The icons dating from the 14th century. until the 17th century. With high historical and religious value. Every year on the day of the Virgin Mary, the church celebrates with procession of the icon and celebration of the faithful.
Theologos village worth visiting the church of Agia Paasikivi and admire the icon of the Virgin Mary in speculated that is a work of St. Luke, a creation of wax and mastic. Also, in the same village is worth visiting the church of Agios Dimitrios, the patron saint of the village, see the wonderful handmade wooden reredos. This carved iconostasis is made by monk Ignatius.
The settlement at Limenaria Castle is famous for its church of St. Athanasius is also the patron saint of the village. On the day of the celebration of the saint, many people flock to church, while giving life to this old settlement. Materials used in the construction of the church, dating from the early 19th century, are the ruins of an old castle.
One of the oldest churches of the island that stands in the center of the Port and is dedicated to the patron saint of sailors, St. Nicholas. The St. Nicholas Church was built, certainly not by chance, by the sea.
But special mention should be made to the Saints on the island:
Saint John Neomartyras the Thasian
This heroic child, born in the Village of Maries Thassos Island.
At age 14 he came to Constantinople and learned the art of tailoring in Galata. He once went to a Jewish merchant store to buy threads and quarreled with him.
The Jew took the opportunity while Hotza was on the minaret, accused John swears the faith and pilgrimage of the Turks. When the child was brought before the vizier and pressed to deny Christ, bravely replied:“I will never deny my sweet Jesus Christ, even if you make me suffering or give me all kingdom.”
Seeing the vizier irremovable views of the child, he ordered his beheading.
The memory of Saint John the child of Thasos, celebrated on December 20. The Church of St. John of Thassos is located in Maries Thassos.
Saint Daniel the Thasian
Pious from his childhood, right from his youth was eager preacher of the Gospel, advocate and champion of Orthodoxy.
Saint Daniel a god bearer lived in the 9th AD. In the time of emperor Leo the Armenian, the iconoclast. When he became man, Daniel founded a monastery on the islet Kravousa, next to the island of Thassos. The reputation of the great virtues of the founder brought there many monks from Thassos and elsewhere.
St. Daniel loved the spiritual life and was so humble that when the Great Ioannikios came to Thassos Daniel left his abbatial position and ran to take lessons for a thoughtful and virtuous live .
Ioannikios tried to prevent him, telling him, he could be alone and perfects himself by prayer, study and grace of the Holy Spirit. Daniel insisted and Ioannikios fell.
After time Ioannikios, ordered Daniel to return to his monastery. Because the monks asked him insistently, they could not find a worthy replacement. So Daniel returned to the monastery.
In old age emigrated to the Lord and was buried on the islet, according to his wishes near the waves where he prayed .
The memory of Saint Daniel celebrated on September 12.