St. John Monastery

Monstiri Ai Yianni

St John

St. John Monastery

This is perhaps the most beautiful monastery on the island. It is surrounded by a pine forest, at the outskirts of Kalithies village and it celebrates its namesake saint on August 29, the day the Saint was decapitated. The day is considered a day of mourning and it is accompanied by strict fasting. The monastery is a magical scenery with stone tables and hosts many events and wedding celebrations. On the day of the Saint’s celebration a lot of people from the village camp on the site as it is said that in the morning, just as the sun dawns, the Saint makes an appearance. People wait all night to see this vision. St John was the last and greatest of the Old Testament Prophets, celebrated as a major religious figure. He is also called John the Forerunner because with his words and his work he announced Jesus’ coming and prepared the people for Jesus’ ministry. He was called Baptist because he baptized people in river Jordan and baptized Jesus himself. He lived an ascetic life in the desert and never hesitated to criticize the injustice and ethics of his era. This became the reason for his arrest and incarceration by King Herod who was illegally living with his brother’s wife, Herodiade. She convinced her daughter, Salome, to order John’s death and the King granted her wish by beheading the Baptist.
Wall Paintings in St John Monastery

A small but beautiful church

The Interior of St John Monastery

His name is one of the most common Greek names and surnames. A lot of churches and
chapels are devoted to him as well as hundreds of settlements and villages. His memory is
celebrated many times throughout the year.
January 7 th , St John the Baptist and Forerunner day
February 24 th , Finding of St John the Baptist and Forerunner holy head A’ and B’

May 25 th , Finding of St John the Baptist and Forerunner holy head C’
June 24 th Birth of Finding of St John the Baptist and Forerunner. On the day before people
burn fires and jumb over them for good luck.
August 29 th , St John the Baptist and Forerunner beheading. The day is day of mourning and
accompanied by strict fasting.
September 23 rd , St John the Baptist and Forerunner is conceived.

Photo Gallery of St John Monastery