ATHENS – The Church of the Holy Apostles is a gorgeous piece of 11th century Byzantine architecture nestled among pine trees at the edge of the Athenian Agora, not far from the wonderful Stoa of Attalos.
The building is an archaeological site, but once a year, during the Feast of the Holy Apostles, the Church hosts services, vespers the night before and the Divine Liturgy the morning of the feast.
Regulations do not permit candle stands and congregants are encouraged to light candles at the lovely nearby Church of Aghia Marina, partly up the Hill of the Nymphs and just below the National Observatory of Athens with its delightful non-ecclesisastical dome.
Naturally, there were no microphones and speakers, so the guests reveled in the natural sounds of the voices of a fine choir of chanters reverberating amidst the dome and four apses – a Byzantine rarity – of the mostly whitewashed – also not common – Middle Byzantine monument.
The well-preserved Temple of Hephaestos is seen to the left of the 11th century Church of the Holy Apostles, a masterpiece of Byzantine architecture. (Photo by TNH staff)
The congregation that spilled out into the courtyard during vespers for the Feast of the Holy Apostles had fantastic views of the Athenian Agora. (Photo by TNH staff)