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October 22, 2022

The Healing of a Hernia by Saint Artemios

By Demetrios Panagopoulos, Preacher 
(1916 - 1982)

For 25 years I suffered from a hernia. This year I couldn't take the pain anymore and had to go for surgery.

One day after one of my talks, I spoke to a monk and said to him:

"Next Thursday I will not be here to speak. I will go to operate and I will ask Father Marino to come in my place."

"I will tell you something," the monk told me. "I also had a hernia. I was suffering and had to go to surgery. But I was ashamed as a monk to go and operate. I then went and begged Saint Artemios to make me well. And he made me well! And now I'm without a bandage, without anything and I'm going around with the sack in my hand, I'm "plowing through" Attica and I'm fine. Glory to His name! Why don't you go there too?"

The next day in the morning I got up and went to Saint Artemios in Gouva.*

I had been speaking there for six years at Saint Artemios, and now I said to him:

"As you know, Father Elias told me this and that, that you have made him well. I know from your life, that they put a stone on you, on your stomach and your organs came out. And when they lifted that stone, one ton in weight, that they had on you, your genital organs were out and you were walking! And you have – so I have read in your life – grace in this matter. If you want, close the aperture, so that I don't have to operate. I will take some oil from your lamp and anoint myself and you can do as you wish."

This was the conversation I had with the Saint. I did my prostrations, lit the candle, asked the sexton for oil and went home. I smeared it on the hernia area.

I was to have surgery the next day. In the afternoon, however, my wife broke her leg at the ankle, as a result of which I postponed the operation, but at the same time I found that Saint Artemios had healed me after 25 years!

Source: Translated by John Sanidopoulos.

* In Athens there is a Church of Saint Artemios, in the district of Gouva (behind and east of the First Cemetery). In 1923, a small wooden church of Saint Artemios was built, in a distinguished part of the area, one of its heights. Five years later, in 1928, the new church was founded by the Archbishop of Athens Chrysostomos Papadopoulos. The name of a good Christian, Michael Bilalakis, was inextricably linked with the building of the church. He was the man who donated land for its construction.

In particular, he offered a plot of land, which was raffled and forty thousand drachmae were collected, an amount that was used for the foundation of the temple. The continuation of its masonry began in 1947 and ended in 1950, while the iconography of the church was done by Demetrios Kentakas (1906-2005). The lintel is the creation of Photios Kontoglou. Over the years, the temple became not only the religious but also the social and cultural center of the neighborhood, which has become known as Agios Artemios.