Corfu: Inside the church the procession of the Holy Shrine of Agios Spyridon

Taking all the security measures against the transmission of the coronavirus, the remembrance of the miracle of Agios Spyridon, for the rescue of Corfu by the Ottomans, on August 11, 1716, was celebrated again this year .

It is noteworthy that for the first time after about 300 years the procession of the sanctuary took place inside the church of Agios Spyridon, without the accompaniment of the local philharmonic, with dozens of believers inside and outside the church wearing masks and keeping appropriate distances. while the faithful had the opportunity to watch the Divine Liturgy online through the internet channel of the Holy Metropolis.

This year’s celebration in Corfu is different
Today was nothing like the former celebrations of Corfu for the great miracle of the Saint, where thousands of pilgrims came to the island to attend the majestic procession of the sanctuary. Spianada Square, where the inseparable once took place, as many believers found accommodation, using sleeping bags and even rags, to spend the night next to the Saint, was empty today. The philharmonic orchestras “silenced”, while the famous “barcaroles” of the island did not take place anywhere.

Saint Spyridon, the patron saint of Corfu
According to the ecclesiastical tradition, in 1716 Agios Spyridon saved the island from the Ottomans, when the Turks, although Corfu was under Venetian occupation, landed on the island and managed to capture first the fortresses of Mantouki and Garitsa and then Avrami and Sotiros. The fortress of Corfu, however, remained invincible, despite the fierce attacks of the Turks that lasted about a month, until August 8. The faithful made constant prayers and supplications, giving to St. Spyridon to intervene, saving their island. The Saint heard their prayers and on August 9, 1716, such a strong downpour broke out on the island that it destroyed the Ottoman fleet, while panic prevailed in the camp of the Turks, who, as they themselves testified, saw Saint Spyridon as a monk. ,

The catastrophic storm, in the middle of summer, and the fear of the monk who was chasing them, forced the Ottomans to flee in disorder. Their departure on August 11 was attributed to the miraculous operation of St. Spyridon. Corfu became the bastion of the whole of Europe, the defender Marshal Schulemburg was honored for life by the Venetian Senate, which by its resolution, on March 19, 1717 AD, established by law the annual litany of the sanctuary of St. Spyridon, that is, it takes place every year on the 11th of August .

From then until last year, the litany of the sanctuary of St. Spyridon in August was the largest of the four liturgies of the sanctuary on the island, as thousands of believers followed it, with Corfu celebrating the rescue with all its splendor
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