The Monastery of Zoodochos Pigi in Andros is the most famous and largest monastery on the noble island. It is located between Gavrio, the main port of Andros, and Batsi, the picturesque fishing village. The exact date it was built is not known, although it is believed to be before 800 AD. The Monastery of Zoodochos Pigi in Andros is believed that it was a Byzantine school at first. However, in 842 AD it was established as a Christian monastery. An accuratly dated silver icon in the monastery attests that it was already operating as a Monastery in the 14th century AD. When the Franks abandoned the island, the Monastery of Zoodochos Pigi in Andros was destroyed.
In 1578 AD, however, it was rebuilt and renovated by monks. Then, it flourished again when it began welcoming new monks. Monk Ioannikos, a member of the friendly society, fortified the monastery during the years of the Greek Revolution, building new cells and doing various other works. Ioannikos spent all his money on these construction works, as well as the money of the monastery itself. As a result, while there were 100 monks at the end of the 17th century, the population of the monastery fell to half by 1836.
Monastery of Zoodochos Pigi in Andros – Miracles and history
The monastery of Zoodochos Pigi in Andros owes its construction, according to tradition, to a miracle. At a point further north from the site of Zoodochos Pigi, workers were building a monastery. Every night, when they stopped working, they mysteriously lost all their tools. Everyone thought someone was stealing their tools, but no matter how well hidden and safe they kept them, they couldn’t find them the next morning. One day, down the road, a thirsty, blind resident was looking for water.
On his way, he noticed a goat with its beard wet and realized there must be water nearby. Upon arrival, a woman suddenly appeared and the resident told her about his vision problem. She then advised him to wash his face and eyes with the water from the spring. Suddenly, miraculously, his blindness healed and then the woman revealed to him that she was the Virgin Mary. She asked him to hurry up and tell the workers to abandon the place where they were building the monastery and build it near the spring. As a result, the monastery was named Monastery of Zoodochos Pigi, after this miraculous spring.
In 1928 was converted into a nunnery, where it remains to this day.
Photo by: Nikolaos Tzatzanis