Tuesday, July 26, 2016

The Holy Spring of Saint Paraskevi Outside Thessaloniki


A few kilometers outside of Thessaloniki, shortly before arriving at the Monastery of Saint John the Theologian in Souroti, is the village of Agia Paraskevi. It is a beautiful village built on a hill, with a fertile stretched out plain.

A true blessing of the village, besides the grave of Saint Paisios the Athonite, is the miraculous holy spring of Saint Paraskevi.

According to a tradition which should be respected, this was the location where a local Christian girl was killed by her Muslim father. Her father was the bey of the village, named Hasan, and his daughter was a Christian that was baptized in the Church of Saint Paraskevi, and she took the name Paraskevi. When her father learned this, he became a enraged and tried by every means possible to get her to deny Christ. But her faith was so strong, that it was impossible to change her mind. Hunted by her father, she ran away and hid. When he caught up to her, he killed her. From that time, at the spot of her martyrdom, a spring gushed forth and the rocks took on a red color.

They say that the white shawl she was wearing became caught on an oak tree. And although a hundred years have passed, young people still come here and place a white ribbon.

It is also said that the father repented after he killed his daughter. He built a new church in honor of Saint Paraskevi in the village and left, unable to withstand the loss of his daughter.

According to the priest of the village and many of the faithful, many miracles take place here through the prayers of the Saint, especially healings having to do with the eyes, since she is the patron of eye problems. Crowds of people flock there daily, with even groups coming for a pilgrimage.

The church celebrates on July 26th, the feast of Saint Paraskevi, and on Bright Friday, when the Life-Giving Spring is celebrated.













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