Panayia Diakinousa Church
Few Words About the Church
The ancient church of Panagia Diakinoussa, located in a valley southwest of Prastio Avdimou, is among the old churches of Cyprus and, in particular, of the ecclesiastical district of Paphos. The temple’s history dates back to the early years of Christianity. According to tradition, the church of Panagia is associated with the departure of Christians from large urban centres as a result of persecution at the hands of Jews and, later, pagans. According to local legend, during the difficult times of the Middle Ages in Cyprus, numerous incurable diseases arose and caused widespread death. During this time, the terrible epidemic, also known as the “Black Death”, reached the borders of Prastio Avdimou. Literally every day, the pandemic wiped out entire cities, villages, and settlements.
All of the village’s inhabitants, who were threatened with extinction, were overcome with panic and dread.
They turned to Panagia, whose temple was located in the village, because they had no other place to turn for hope and assistance. In response to the pleadings of the elderly and the cries of the young, the Virgin Mary, according to legend, pursued the “Black Death” and, after locating it in an area of the village known as “Pathkia of Panagia,” he killed it, thus liberating the people from the incurable disease. Tradition has it that for many more years, many villagers continued to see the Panagia leaving her temple and walking through the village’s alleys. Due to this, as well as the aforementioned miraculous, Panagia was dubbed “Panagia the Moving” or she who moves through the village and guards it.
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