DID YOU KNOW that there is a peninsula located in Northern Greece solely dedicated to the Virgin Mary, to prayer and to contemplation on God? Mount Athos or the ‘Holy Mountain’ consists of over 20 monasteries and other monastic communities. We as young Orthodox Christians can learn a lot from their way of life: their harmonious relationship with creation, their faithfulness to God – with 10 centuries of preserving Orthodox tradition and orthopraxy. Many of the monasteries are like small villages, with each monk having his own responsibilities, be it in the gardens cultivating their fresh produce, or in the refectory preparing the healthy Athonite cuisine.
The “Castles of Orthodoxy”
Mount Athos is known for its Byzantine architecture, its awe-inspiring structures and overall views. Take a look at Simonopetra Monastery, established in the 13th century: an architectural wonder!
The ‘Ecumenicity’ of the faith (the fact that Orthodox Christianity is the faith for all peoples) is reflected in the diversity of ethnicities and of pilgrims.
Let us practically implement the simplicity of life, the harmony that is cultivated with nature and the environment, the dedication to God and to prayer in our own settings and context.
Photos from Mount Athos used by the kind permission of photographer Mihalis Konstantinidis.