January 4, 2020

The Church of the Holy Unmercenaries in Aigaleo and its Association with St. Nikephoros the Leper

Saint Nikephoros the Leper lived the last years of his life and died at the Western Attica General Hospital Agia Barbara in Aigaleo west of Athens, which had a leprosy center. He was blind and nearly paralyzed at the time. There he had his monastic cell, attended services and chanted at the Church of the Holy Unmercenaries, and there he was buried in the cemetery set aside for lepers. At that time Elder Eumenios Saridakis, who had been a patient at the hospital after coming down with leprosy but was eventually healed there and decided to stay and serve the lepers, also had a cell next to that of Saint Nikephoros, and he was the celebrant priest at the Church of the Holy Unmercenaries. Today the Church of the Holy Unmercenaries has icons of Saint Nikephoros, a portion of his relics, his monastic cassock, and his monastic schema.