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The monastery of St. George Apanosifis

The Monastery of St. George Apanosifis or Epanosifis is located 31km south of Heraklion city, near the village Metaxochori.
It is situated at an altitude of 480m and is the largest male monastery in Crete.
It is also one of the oldest and richest in the island.
The monastery was probably built around 1590-1600, at the end of the Venetian Era.

According to a written testimony, it was founded by monk Paisios of the Apezana monastery.
Due to disputes with other monks there, he departed for the monastery Agarathou and, on the way, spent the night in the small church of St. George, property of a feudal lord named Lagouvardos.
In his sleep he saw the vision of Saint George saying that he wanted him to stay and expand the church.
In the end, Paisios did finish the building of the monastery.

During the early Turkish occupation, it was a spiritual centre where clerics were educated and served the preservation of the Greek speech, according to manuscripts of the bibliographic laboratory of that period.

Precious heirlooms, gospels, crosses carved with representations, a silver chalice of 1842, sacredotal vestments and relics of 21 saints are kept in the monastery.
It also houses a Higher Ecclesiastical School in a building that was formerly an orphanage.
The church of St George is celebrated on April 23 and November 3.

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