ENGLISH MEDICAL TEXTS
ENGLISH GENERAL INTEREST TEXTS
Dr James Manos (MD)
2006



Photos of sister Patapia

Sister Patapia – nunnery of Saint Patapios, Loutraki (province of Corinthia), Greece

 

PREFACE


Saint Patapios Monastery is a nunnery with 40 nuns in Greece at the mountain Geraneia at height of 650 meters, near the health spa resort Loutraki (a city 1 hour from Athens, the capital). It is a lovely monastery with a fantastic view to the city and the sea. You will really join your time by visiting the monastery. Saint Patapios is responsible for many miracles in the past, but also at the present. One of his miracle has happened with me.

We all ask from God and the saints to give us health which is the most important thing in earth. All the people who believe in God ask Him to gives them health and happiness. But even in case of a sickness, god helps us tolerate and win the sickness or – if it is His will – to go to Heaven and meet him.

My own miracle, except of good health, is that Saint Patapios helped me with my lessons. I was very tired psychologically and I was about to quit my medical studies, however with the help of saint Patapios I passed 34 lessons in almost 1 year. I also passed in 11 months my 4 degree lessons one after the other. Before giving exams, I crossed my forehead with the olive oil of the Saint’s cave and ALSO I promised to try my best!

But it is not my personal miracle with Saint Patapios. In the past, and also in the present, thousands of people have described their own miracle.


The Saint helped and still helps many people with illnesses, family and personal problems, and so on. However, NONE was helped from the Saint if he didn’t believe. Actually it is the power of God who helped and helps all these people with the means of the specific Saint. Always God helps us if we truly believe in Him.


 

HOW TO VISIT SAINT PATAPIOS’ MOANSTERY

I suggest you to visit Loutraki, which is a nice city one hour from the capital of Greece, Athens. In Loutraki you will find many interesting places such as spa center. Loutraki is world famous for its healing mineral water and its spas. It is built at a fantastic coast and there you can find many shops, restaurants etc. Landing in Athens "airport Eleutherios Venizelos" you can visit Loutraki by buss from the bus station "KTEL Kifisos" (there is an immediate link from the airport by bus to the ‘KTEL’). You can also find outside the airport the suburb train (‘proastiakos’) and travel to Corinth and there from the train station you can take a taxi for Loutraki.

A more expensive solution is to take immediately from the airport a taxi for Loutraki.

If you visit Loutraki, I strongly suggest to visit the monastery Saint Patapios or in the local language "Agios Patapios". There you can go by taxi from Loutraki (just call the number 2744061000 and it will pick you up, even from the street!). Also in summer weekends there is a bus that goes to the monastery at about 7 a.m. (in the morning) and returns about at 9 – 10 a.m., so ask the bus station (KTEL) at Loutraki.

THE MONASTERY

When you reach the monastery your impression will be full of devoutness and serenity. The divinity of the place overflows your soul. You will go to the Saint’s cave and you will see the Saints relic, namely his body that is covered, but is untouched from the time and it’s not faded. You will feel an indescribable feeling of devoutness. In the cave there are drawn on the wall icons (including Saint Patapios and Saint Patience) from unknown artist, perhaps it the 15 century A.C.

If you wish, you may ask from the nun in the cave to give you a piece of cotton soaked with oil of the saint’s (from the hanging oil lamps in the cave) and also you may for a candle to light it outside the cave. Also beside the cave there is a spring with ‘Holy water from the Saint’ (many take and keep it in a small bottle).
Don’t forget to visit the church ‘Virgin Mary’, at the middle of the nunnery, beside the saints’ cave. On the centre of the temple there is an icon with the Saint that is celebrated the specific day (in the afternoon they place the Saint of the next day). On the right of the temple there is an icon with saint Patapios and at the wall there is the icon of Virgin Mary full of offerings. On the left wall there is an icon with Saint Patapios, Saint Hipomoni (Saint Patience) and Saint Nikon the new.
On the bottom of this icon there is the skull of "Saint Hipomoni" (Holy patience) who is the mother of Constantine Palaiologos, the last emperor of Constantinople (Istanbul) of the Byzantium. It is not a coincidence that Byzantium began (established) with Constantine and Helen (his mother) and finished (with the conquer of Constantinople from the Ottomans Turks) with Constantine and Helen who became

Saint with the name Saint Hipomoni (Saint Patience). By the way, Constantine (the Great) was emperor of Rome who believed in Christianity and God, won his enemies and established officially Christianity as a new religion. He also transferred the new capital from Rome to Constantinople (eastern Roman Empire).

Beside and inside the church of Virgin Mary on the left there is a separate church called ‘Agioi (saints) Anargoiroi’. When you leave the church of Virgin Mary, don´t forget to take some shots (photos) at the balcony with the fantastic view (the city and the sea). Also there is an exhibition with icons, books etc. The monastery has also inside the ‘impassable’ (where the nuns live in small cell - rooms) the church of the ‘Holy Triad’ (the Trinity). Also outside the nunnery there is a cemetery called ‘Saint Mary from Egypt’.

A BRIEF HISTORY OF SAINT PATAPIOS AND SAINT HIPOMONI (SAINT PATIENCE) & THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE NUNNERY

SAINT PATAPIOS

Saint Patapios lived in the 4th – 5th century A.C. He was born at Thebes of Egypt. His parents were wealthy, but good Christians and they raised their child Patapios with Christian principles and wisdom. Early, Saint Patapios departed to the desert for a lonely life at the wilderness, where uninstructed from means of livelihood he devoted totally to praying and curbing his physical needs and sensuality. He merged with God by his continuous prayer. He was living only for thanking God. His reputation brought near him many people who were seeking his wisdom and his advises and listened his preaching.

Saint Patapios left for Constantinople (Istanbul) to continue his virtuous life. There he met other 2 hermits (ascetics), Varas and Ravoulas who later also became saints. They stayed outside the wall of Constantinople and although they stayed in different places, they kept their brotherhood. Many people followed Saint Patapios who was hermit at the place ''Vlahernes'' at the ''Xero Oros'' (it is translated: dry mountain). Eventually Saint Patapios established the ‘monastery of Egyptians’ where he preached and guided the Christians. Saint Ravoulas was hermit at the gate of Romanos. Saint Varas established the monastery of Saint John (the Baptist) of Petras (stone).

At the Monastery of the Egyptians, Saint Patapios laid his soul to Jesus hands and died. His relic (body) was an inexhaustible spring of miracles for many people. It still is! The monastery of the Egyptians was destroyed on 536 A.C. Then Saint Patapios’ spiritual ‘brother’, Saint Varas, transferred Saint Patapios relic to his monastery of Saint John (the Baptist) of Petras (of Stone) which was under the protection of the royal family of Constantinople, Palaiologoi, and especially of Saint Hipomoni

(Saint Patience) who was the mother of the last emperor of Byzantium, Constantine Palaiologos.

After the conquer of Constantinople from the Ottomans in 1453, Aggelis Notaras, a relative of the emperor (nephew of Saint Hipomoni), in order to protect the relic (Holy body) of Saint Patapios from the Turks, transferred it at the mountain Geraneia in South Greece (near Athens, today capital) and he hid the relic in a cave, near the city ''Thermai'' (now called Loutraki). It has also to be mentioned that the cave in which the relic of Saint Patapios was transferred was a religious place inhabited by hermits since the 11 century A.C.

 

Sister Patapia at her small cell - room at Saint Patapios Monastery (2008)

 

 

Nun Patapia, Monastery of Saint Patapios (2010)

 

 

Sister Patapia at the nunnery of Saint Patapios (May 2011)

 

SAINT HIPOMONI (SAINT PATIENCE)

Saint Patience was the Queen of Byzantium Augusta Helen – Dragasis Palaiologos, daughter of the emperor of Slavic nation, Constantine Dragasis. She became empress of Byzantium as wife of Emmanuel B’ the Palaiologos and she was mother of the last emperor of Byzantium Costantine Palaiologos. The siege of Constantinople (Istanbul) happened at the time she and her husband were exiled (1390 – 1392).

She had 6 children and as an empress with her pious works she gave pleasant not only to God, but also to the people. She was well known for her wisdom and her justice. Her husband (formal emperor) became a monk with the name Mathieu and after his death she also became a nun at the monastery of ''Kira – Martha''. She helped to establish a nursing home (old people´s home) – with the name – The hope of the despaired – at the monastery Saint John (the Baptist) of Petras (Stone) where, as mentioned above, was kept the relic of Saint Patapios. She was a nun as all the others and, even she was a formal empress, she did all the works at the monastery, even in the kitchen! Two of her children became also monks.

She died at 13 March of 1450, 3 years before Constantinople, the capital of Byzantium, fell at the hands of the Turks Ottomans in 1453, after a long siege.

THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE NUNNERY

The cave with Saint Patapios’ relic was discovered accidentally in 1904 from citizens of the near town Loutraki. Some visitors of the cave took pieces of the Saint's relic as amulet. Then, a priest from Loutraki, father Konstantinos Sousanis, took the relic of Saint Patapios and kept it in his house (off course with the permission of the church) to keep it safe from the vandals.

Finally, in 1952 at the place of the cave where the saint was found was established a monastery from Father Nectarios (his real name was Kyriakos) Marmarinos who was priest at the church of Corinth (and his origin was from the island Aegina). Today, Father Nectarios is old, however he still guides the young Christians at the Sunday School and preaches (Christian lectures) at Soinikismos, a place in Corinth, near the hospital.

Father Nectarios, the founder of the monastery, has established other monasteries such as the male monastery ‘The 3 Hierarchs’ (near the village Perachora) and a summer camp for children (‘Bethlehem’) and has also created a female nursing home in Loutraki (in which nuns from the monastery help the elderly women). Today father Nectarios has been retired. Father Nectarios has received many awards from the Church of Corinth in which was chief officer. Today he still does Sunday (Christian) school at Corinth, at the district Synoikismos, near the church of Virgin Mary.

The first nuns in 1952, when the monastery was established by father Nectarios, were 3 – 4 nuns. The first mother superior (abbess) was nun Siglitiki. One of the first nuns, nun Patapia helped at the building of the monastery and remained Mother Superior of the monastery from 1963 until 1970 when she resigned because of health problems.

In the beginning in the nunnery there were only a few small rooms - cells in which the nuns lived. In the early years it was difficult for the nuns to carry building materials to build the nunnery, as there was no passable road, but a path, so the nuns used a donkey to carry things such as supplies, construction materials food (from Loutraki) and water (from a source some miles away). The nuns some often carried building materials or other stuff (such as jugs with water) on their back!

With the help of God and great efforts the construction of the monastery was completed and today there is access to it with an asphalt road (it was constructed by the army) and it has independent water and power supply.

Today Mother Superior is nun Isidora.

Saint Patapios’ memory is celebrated on 8 December. Saint Patapios’ memory is celebrated on 8 December (main celebration) and also at the Tuesday 2 days after the Sunday of Easter (in memory of the day that his relic was discovered).

 

REFERENCE

1. "Agiologio of Orthodoxy," [Christos Tsolakidis, Athens, 2001 edition]

2. «O Megas Synaxaristis of the Orthodox Church" Saint Patapios, p. (254) - (261) [m Victoras Mattheos, 3rd edition, Metamorfosi Sotiros Monastery, Athens, 1968]

3. "Saint Patapios" [Stylianos Papadopoulos, professor of the University of Athens, Holy Monastery of Saint Patapios, Loutraki, Greece, edition 2006).

4. "St. Patapios and his miracles," [Dr. Charalambos Busias, edition of Holy Monastery of Saint Patapios Loutraki 2004]

5. "Life, akolouthia, paraklitikos kanonas and egomia of the holy mother ‘’Saint Hypomone" [Dr. Charalambos Busias, edition of Holy Monastery of Saint Patapios, Loutraki 1999]

6. "Deltos of Miracles of our miraculous father St. Patapios" [Dr. Charalambos Busias, edition of Holy Monastery of Saint Patapios 4th Edition, Loutraki 2011]

7. «The Holy Monastery of Saint Patapios in Loutraki» [edition of the Metropolis of Corinth, Sikyon, Zemenou, Tarsus and Polyfengous, 2012].

8. «The Greek Monasteries» [Ev. Lekkou, Ihnilatis, Athens, 1995].

PHOTOS OF SISTER PATAPIA

 

Nun Patapia, Monastery of Saint Patapios, 2010
 
Nun Patapia, Monastery of Saint Patapios, 2010

 

 

Nun Patapia, Monastery of Saint Patapios, 2010
 
Nun Patapia, Monastery of Saint Patapios, 2010
 

 

 

Nun Patapia at her cell – room at the monastery of Saint Patapios at Loutraki, Greece, 8 December 1998
 
Nun Patapia at her room at the home of Saint Patapios in Athens, Greece, 18 November 1998
 

 

 

Nun Patapia, Monastery of Saint Patapios
 

Sister Patapia has just returned from making sugared buns that the nuns made in honor of Elder Nektarios, the founder of the monastery (October 2011).

patapia  

 

 

 

Nun Patapia, Monastery of Saint Patapios (2010)
 

 

 

Sister Patapia, nunnery of Saint Patapios, Loutraki, Greece, 19 January 2013

Sister Patapia, nunnery of Saint Patapios, Greece, October 2012

 

Sister Patapia, Loutraki, Greece, 20 March 2012

Sister Patapia, nunnery of Saint Patapios, Greece, October 2012

 

Sister Patapia at the annual celebration of Saint Patapios monastery (8 December 2012)

 

 

Sister Patapia, 1 September 2013, Greece, nunnery of Saint Patapios

 

 

Sister Patapia, 5 May 2013, Greece, nunnery of Saint Patapios

 

 

Sister Patapia at Saint Patapios nunnery, Easter, 20 April, 2014

 

 

Sister Patapia at Saint Patapios nunnery, Easter, 20 April, 2014

 

 

Sister Patapia at Saint Patapios nunnery, Easter, 20 April, 2014

 

 

Sister Patapia at Saint Patapios nunnery, Easter, 20 April, 2014

 

 

Sister Patapia at Saint Patapios nunnery, Easter, 20 April, 2014

 

 

Sister Patapia at Saint Patapios nunnery, Easter, 20 April, 2014

 

 

Sister Patapia at Saint Patapios nunnery, Easter, 20 April, 2014