May 17, 2020

Saint Barbara and the Miraculous Deliverance from a Smallpox Epidemic on the Island of Lefkada in 1922

Every year on the Third Sunday of May in the parish of Panagia of the Stranger (Παναγίας των Ξένων) and specifically in the Chapel of Saint Paraskevi, commemoration is made of the miraculous deliverance of the residents of the island of Lefkada from an epidemic of smallpox in 1922, through the intervention of the Holy and Glorious Great Martyr Barbara, which was established by a royal decree on July 8, 1940. It was during this epidemic that the Monastery of Saint George in Marantochori was turned into a place of quarantine for the sick. In fact, this resulted in the destruction of the precious frescoes of the temple, as they were whitewashed in an attempt to disinfect them. A procession takes place in honor of Saint Barbara on this day throughout the streets of Lefkada beginning from the Chapel of Saint Paraskevi.

Apolytikion in Plagal of the Fourth Tone
Let us honor Saint Barbara, for she crushed the snares of the enemy, and as a sparrow she delivers from illness, the all-majestic one having the Cross as a help and weapon.

Come O residents of Lefkada, let us celebrate with hymns, the wondrous Barbara, our protectress, who grants healings, to those who with longing hasten to her temple.