Holy Monastery of Vidiani – Visit lasithi

Holy Monastery of Vidiani

The Holy Monastery of Vidiani has been built on the site of the old glebe of Vidos family (1583) which was inhabited by the members of this old family that had come from Chandakas as land tenants. The surname Vidos, in the form of Vidakis, still exists in Lasithi. The Holy Monastery of Vidiani was founded after 1856 by the hieromonk Methodios Perakis and was set on fire in 1867 by the Turks during the Battle of Lasithi. It was renovated and reopened in 1874. During its short life it experienced periods of prosperity and decline.

In 1959, the year of the death of the last monk, the Monastery was abandoned to the ravages of time. In 1981, the Association of Lasithi in Heraklion undertook its development and submitted a proposal suggesting various activities, the most important of which was the creation of a Museum of Natural History which would exhibit specimens of fauna and flora as well as various rocks from Lasithi Plateau. The proposal was accepted and included in the Leader program. In the meantime, it was decided to revive the Μonastery and the first abbot to be appointed was Archimandrite Damianos Beleris. After his transfer to the Holy Monastery of Kroustallenia, a new abbot was appointed, Dorotheos Kaftakis, who showed great zeal and performed a very important work.

In addition to the evocative and peaceful environment that visitors will enjoy, they can visit the Museum of Natural History, while inside the Monastery they will have the opportunity to admire the famous icon of Panagia Vidiani (mid-Byzantine period) and the altarpiece icons made at the School of Fine Arts of Athens around 1880.

It should be noted that the last abbot of the Monastery, Dorotheos Tsagarakis, who organized significant resistance actions during the occupation, was arrested by the Germans, was severely tortured and finally executed in Agia of Chania at the end of October 1943.