Religious Monuments of Crete


Church of Jesus Christ our Savior at Kato Mera (Ierapetra)
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The double aisled temple of Jesus Christ our Savior (Afendis Christos) and Saint Charalambos is located in the district of Kato Mera, near the port of Ierapetra and very close to the fortress of Kales. It is the oldest temple in the city, which has taken its present form as a result of successive interventions in the single-nave arched-roofed temple of the Venetian Era, to which the south aisle of Agios Charalambos was added in the 17th century. Later a double-domed narthex was added to the west, which was later expanded to meet the increasing worship needs.

Interesting from the temple is the iconostasis (templon) with icons attributed to the iconographer Georgios Kastrofylakas, dating back to the early 18th century. Today the interior walls have been painted with modern frescoes. Opposite the temple there is a clock tower.

Historical documents refer to the conflict between the Orthodox and the Catholic residents of the city, since the temple was used by both doctrines. The dispute arose when the Franciscan monk Paul Mudarro decided to take possession of the temple for the sake of the Franciscan order, destroying the orthodox iconostasis and constructing a chapel (today's southern aisle). Eventually the conflict ended with the intervention of Francisco Morosini; it was proposed that the new aisle would be used only by the Catholics and the old by both doctrines.

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Additional Info

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

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