December 10, 2010

The Monastery of Saint Nicholas in Ano Vatheia

Amarynthos is a small sea-side city, part of the municipality in Euboea (Evia), Greece. In Amarynthos (Ano Vatheia) is the female monastery of Saint Nicholas with wallpaintings from the 15th century. It was founded in 1455, and the Katholikon which is dedicated to Saint Nicholas was built from 1460 to 1463. Soon after iconography decorated the church.

The history of the monastery only goes to about the 18th century when life at the monastery seems to have died down during the Turkish occupation. The new history of the monastery begins again in 1963 when it was re-established as a female monastery with five nuns lead by Abbess Mitsopoulou (+1988). The monastery slowly was restored and expanded, and the Cemetery of the Metropolis of Chalkidos is outside the monastery where the nuns are buried. In the late 1930's Elder Porphyrios lived her for three years.

The Katholikon today has many holy relics: Sts. Nicholas, John Chrysostom, Haralambos, Xenophontos, Paraskevi, Righteous David, Arsenios the Cappadocian and Panteleimon.