Monastery of the Evangelistria

This picturesque monastery at Agiasmata, with its exceptional views of the Aegean, was founded in the early 20th century, with the first reference to its existence dating to 1938. Administratively, the church belongs to the parish of Egrigoros. The monastery was founded and headed by Makarios Spanos, who was born in the village of Egrigoros in 1883.
Displaying monastic leanings early in life, he was tonsured a monk by the Hegumen of the Monastery of Myrsinidiou – Vrontadou, father Christophoros Seremelis. In the following years he spent time on Mt Athos and at the Monasteries of Myrsinidiou and Kardamylon. Makarios was ordained a deacon in 1909, a priest in 1913 and archimandrite in 1916, while in 1937 he founded the Skete of the Evangelistria at Agiasmata. He was just as patriotic as he was pious: during the liberation of Chios from the Ottomans, he participated in the battle of the Aipos heights, bravely and valiantly participating as a volunteer in the Greek expeditionary force. In addition to his asceticism, he is also reported to have been well-versed in music, with an excellent singing voice.

The Skete was inaugurated by the Metropolitan of Chios, Ioakeim Stroumbis, on 8 July 1938. During the German Occupation, Makarios offered shelter to Officers of the Greek army and helped them evacuate to Asia Minor. He was commended and honoured by the Greek State, and especially by the Ministry of National Defence, for his fervent patriotism and contributions to the cause. Under his guidance, the modest monastery at Agiasmata developed into a cradle of spirituality, open and welcoming to all the faithful and those fleeing persecution. In fact, the Skete also became home for his sister Kalliniki Spanou, who was a nun there for forty-two years. Makarios passed away on 26 July 1966, having lived at the monastery for 28 years, while his sister Kalliniki passed away on 29 July 1980. His grave can be found in the monastery’s courtyard.
The Skete celebrates on the feast of the Annunciation of Mary, every 25 March. Even so, other prominent feasts celebrated at the monastery are those of the Life-giving Spring and of Bright or Easter Friday, five days after Easter Sunday.
Visitors to the monastery and its environs are sure to be enraptured by the sense of quiet reverence and solemnity, helped along by the unparalleled views of the endless Aegean blue. This modest monastery is most certainly worth the visit.

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