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2014-12-11
Feast day of St. Andrew the Apostle in Athens

On the feast day of St. Andrew, representatives of the Foundation of St. Andrew the First-Called branch in Athens, together with the Vice President of the fund, Vladimir Mishchenko, and Vice-President of the Endowment Fund of St. Andrew for relations with philanthropists Ekatherina Gerus, took part in the solemn celebration of Apostle Andrew the First-Called, which was held in Patras. 
The ceremonies began on November 29 with an evening liturgy at the Cathedral of St. Andrew in Patras, which was attended by all the delegates. 
In the morning of November 30, a festive liturgy was held, headed by Metropolitan Chrysostomos of Patras. Then there was a religious procession surrounded by icons and the venerable head of St. Andrew the Apostle, which was attended by representatives of the Foundation of St. Andrew the First-Called, representatives of the local administration, the military, sailors and thousands of believers from different parts of Greece. 
 
St. Andrew is the patron saint of the city of Patras.
On the site of the present temple was once an old temple, built in the period 1836-1843, designed by Lisandros Kaftandzoglu. It was built on the very spot where Apostle Andrew was martyred. The new temple, which is now emblazoned in the center of Patras, was opened to the faithful in September 1974 by the Archbishop of Athens and All Greece, Seraphim. Th construction of the temple took about 20 years. The first architect was Anastasios Metaxas, and construction was completed by Georgios Nomikos. Today, the new church with 12 bell towers is topped by a gilded cross 5 m high. It is the largest cathedral in Greece and the second largest in the Balkans after the Cathedral of Saint Sava in Belgrade. The centerpiece of the temple is occupied by a throne, where a silver shrine of the venerable head of St. Andrew is situated, and the partially preserved cross of Andrew the Apostle, on which he was crucified. Next to the church is a holy source.

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