Saint John the Forerunner


Saint John Kambitis Church
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Amid the fertile plain of Lassithi, among potato crops and the characteristic metal windmills of the plateau, we meet the temple of Saint John Kambitis (or Mesokapiditis) which means Saint John of the Plain. The temple is dedicated to St. John the Baptist and is the largest pilgrimage of the province of Lasithi. It celebrates on August 29 and on the previous day a big feast takes place. At the feast the inhabitants of all the villages of the plateau flock to their meeting poing for centuries.

The church belonged in the past to the monastery of Panagia Kroustalenia and today belongs to the Metropolis of Petra and Heronissos. Outside the church, a beautiful courtyard with many plants and trees has been formed, and the many centuries-old plane trees betray that the chapel has been there for several centuries (the first testimony of the temple dates back to 1761). The interior hosts an impressive wood-carved icon screen and there are many icons of Saint John.

According to the tradition, the temple was built in this place, where floods were very frequent and it was impossible to cultivate crops. After the temple was built, miraculously the water never surpassed the threshold of the temple, and the surrounding area became fertile.

Today, summer concerts are organized and there is a beautiful canteen to serve the farmers of the plateau.

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Additional Info

  • Location: Lassithi Prefecture
  • Type: Church
  • Accessibility: Paved road

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