The Metropolitan Cathedral of the Great Holy Virgin (Megali Panagia) in Rethymnon is dedicated to the Presentation of the Virgin Mary (feast 21st November) and is called great to distinguish it from Little Virgin Mary (Mikri Panagia). The original building was a three-aisled basilica with the middle aisle dedicated to the Presentation of the Virgin Mary and the other two to the Three Hierarchs and the Holy Apostles. This church was founded in 1844 and was completed in 1856, under the guidance of the bishop Kallinikos Nikoletakis.
The church was bombed during the Second World War, so the demolition of the temple was necessary. On the same site the new temple we see today was built, following the plans of Panagia at Tinos, preserving the same internal form with the iconostasis of 1852 carved by Dimitrios Ragouzis.
The church also houses important icons, most notably the Virgin of the Passion (15th century), as well as other sacred vessels. The bell tower with the clock of 1899 rises, while the first bell is kept at the adjacent Rethymnon Church Museum.