It is one of the largest pilgrimages in Greece due to the miraculous Saint, whose holy relics attracts thousands pilgrims and visitors from around the world. The church was build in the single – nave basilica with strict and austere exterior decoration which contradicts with the interior hall. As entering the temple, an impressive Parian marble built on 1864 catches your attention. The famous Corfiot painter Spyros Prosalentis is the creator of temples’ icons. Also, the well -known local painter Panagiotis Doxaras, has painted in 1727 the famous “sky”- the roof of the temple- with the seventeen divided parts adorned with gold frames. Into the churches’ distinctive characteristics, the imposing red dome belfry is integrated. It is the highest bell tower in the Ionian Islands (visible from Corfus’ old town side to side) and is similar in design to its contemporary Greek Orthodox Church of San Giorgio dei Greci, located in Venice.
Aghios -Saint Spyridon was born in 270 A.D. in Askeia, a small village in Cyprus. He was a pious man and a shepherd and he became Bishop of Trimythous (Today Tremetousia, Cyprus). He was present in the First Ecumenical Council of Nicaea (325 A.D.) where, according to legend, he performed a miracle during his effort to convert a pagan philosopher into a Christian. He held a potsherd, when is said that it burst into a flame, water dripping down his hand. It is said that all that was left from the shard of pottery in his hand was dust. It is because of the specific account that St.Spyridon is regarded the patron saint of potters. The saint’s iconography is connected to this potsherd miracle.
Dated back to the history of Corfu, there are many connections with Saint Spyridon and the island. The plague salvation and the removal of the Turkish invasion with a catastrophic storm in 1716 are some of his miracles. Through the years he became their protector.
On December 12, where the memory of Saint Spyridon is celebrated, the locals honor their patron with a procession litany with the participation of their famous Philharmonic societies. He is also celebrated on Holy Saturday, on Palm Sunday, on August 11 (the salvation of Turkish) and on the first Sunday of November (plague rescue).