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October 20, 2021

The Church of Saint Matrona in Lythri of Asia Minor

The village of Lythri in Asia Minor is located where the ancient Greek city of Erythrai or Eritrea once existed, and today is known as Ildır. It is directly across from Chios, and there a Church to Saint Matrona of Chios existed. It which was built as a three-aisled basilica, probably in the 18th century, and was rebuilt in 1881-1883 after an earthquake, with material from the ancient theater of Erythrai but also from the surrounding Byzantine ruins.

In this church was an icon of the patron saint of Lythri, Saint Matrona. This historic church is now in ruins, destroyed after the Asia Minor catastrophe.

The refugees from Lythri settled in the area of New Eritrea of Attica, where they transferred to their new homeland the veneration of Saint Matrona. Thus they transported as a valuable object together with their few possessions the old miraculous icon of the Saint, and they gave her name to a road adjacent to the Church of Evangelistria in New Eritrea. In 1991 a church dedicated to Saint Matrona was built.