Friday, March 25, 2016

The Church of Panagia of Finikia and Lord Byron

Near the site of Lord Byron’s house in Messolonghi and the Garden of the Heroes, which is a memorial garden commemorating the Philhellene Europeans who fought in the Greek War of Independence, is the island Chapel of Panagia of Finikia (Panagia of the Palms). Lord Byron especially loved this place and would often come here to rest and enjoy an evening equestrian excursion. The church was built in 1804.

Regarding Lord Byron's view of Greek Orthodoxy, as a Christian himself who read a chapter of Scripture daily, he respected the fact the Greeks were Christians, and did not want any Christian dominated by the Muslim Turks. Furthermore, he would argue against Christians from the West coming into Greece doing missionary work following their liberation, since his liberal opinion honored the free choice of people, and believed that the Greek priests should be given a chance to teach the people their inherited Faith.