Churches in Kokkari
Photo: Jan Backstrøm, Kokkari. & Torben Bolhøj.
Research: Jan Backstrøm.
A remarkable story !!
Kokkari is a little village with about 900 people.
There are 2 very nice churches within the citylimits.
The church of Panagia from 1819 is the smallest and oldest.
(more about this church will come later)
The Church of Saint Nikolaos -Agios Nikolaos.
The biggest church on Samos!
The Church of Saint Nikolaos is the 6'th biggest in Greece and the 3'rd biggest in the Aegean Sea. The church is on 650 sq.m. The total height is 44 m. (incl. the cross on top). Inside it has 36 m. free space under the dome. For the normal ceremonies it has room for 500 people.
The history about the church goes back to before 1902. At that time Samos was an autonomous state under the sultan in Konstantinobel.
Even if Samos was under Turkish control for a longer period, it allways has been Greek-ortodoks.
A local "Lotto-group" won a big sum of money (the lottery was organised from Konstantinobel). They decided to use the money to build a church. After some time they persuaded the monastery owning the area, to transfer a piece of land for the church, and the building began in 1902.
As the church is standing today, it was finished in 1962.
Most of the time during the long building-time, with many breaks due to financial difficulties, the church has been in use for the normal church ceremonies.
The buildingmaterial used for the church comes from Kokkari, from a little island close to Samos town and from Turkey.
All maintenance is done as voluntary work by the local people, and all expences is paid from locally collected funds.
The entrance to the church and the church's own flag with Saint Nikolaos.
PAPA GIORGIS (father Georgos) has been the priest in the church since 1985.
The church is directly under the bishop in Samos Town.
View from the balcony.
It is not the 'Stairway to Heaven' but only the stairs up to the roof area.
The ceiling and the dome inside.
Papa Giorgis is special proud of this icon. It was made in 1909
by a monk on Athos (the eastmost 'finger' on Halkidiki).
Papa Giorgis by a metalicon from 1846 of very high
sentimental value. The motive is Marias death.
Artemis Milonas who together with his mother runs the taverne 'THE BEER'
(just across the street) has been very helpful in the research-work. Here
he shows some of the many photos in the church's collection from the time
of construction (workingcrew) and from the big ceremonies in the church.
Thanks to Papa Giorgis and Artemis Milonas,
without their big support it was not possible for us to make this page!