The “Agios Georgios” Church (Central)

Acheleia: A small village with few inhabitants –around a hundred –that you come across while on the main road from Pafos to Limassol. When visiting the community, on Acheleia’s main street and more specifically at the center of the village, we have the opportunity of admiring the village’s church, which is dedicated to Saint George, from up close. According to the inscription found at the church’s west entrance, it is a very old church -built in 1724. It is made in the Byzantine style.

The external wall is made with local stone and it is 4 feet wide. The dome also seems to be entirely made of stone. The church’s courtyard is comfortable and paved with flagstones.

The chancel of the church of Agios Georgios

The icon of Agios Georgios

Inside the church seems to maintain icons of significant value. These icons complete the church’s icon screen and –according to tradition –they seem to be of the 17th century, still extant until today. The icon screen appears to have two gates. The Central, “Beautiful” Gate and the North Gate. The church, although big enough to accommodate around 200 faithful, is flat and has no women’s loft.

Saint George’s day is celebrated on the 23rd of April, a great festival taking place as well as having Saint George’s holy icon carried about in procession. Furthermore, the removal of Saint George’s relics is celebrated on the 3rd of November, a large crowd of believers also gathering to honor the grace of their Saint.

The Country Church of “Agios Theodosios”

South of the village, about 200 – 300 meters outside the community, stands the small church of Saint Theodosios. It is a simple country church of the Byzantine style that has no steeple and is shaped like an equal-armed cross with a dome in the middle.

An icon-stand in the yard of the chapel of
Agios Theodosios

Externally it is made of stone, the external wall being up to a meter thick. It is built at a level lower than that of the earth (one meter) and it is enclosed by a low, stone-made wall that is two feet tall. Although the building was constructed many years ago, around the end of the 12th and the beginning of the 13th century, it does present some interest regarding its interior. The small church appears to be decorated with frescoes. The hagiographies are characterized by their schematization and by being monochrome. The frescoes are of the 13th century and -naturally –through the years some of them are worn out. Its icon screen is woodcut and it is completed by the holy icons. It can accommodate fifty to a hundred faithful. A liturgy takes place in the small church 3 – 4 times a year.

Chapel of Agios Theodosios
An icon-stand in the yard of the chapel
of Agios Theodosios

The community of Acheleia celebrates the memory of Saint Theodosios on the 11th of January with his Holy Icon being carried about in procession.

The Country Church of: Agios Leontios”

The country church of Saint Leontios was constructed in the 13th century. It is a simple church of Byzantine style that is made of stone externally. It was demolished during the 1990’s. It was restored once again during the same decade with the use of exactly the same stones but not in the same venue. The old one was located south of the village. The new one was constructed in the venue called “anatoliko tou Agiou Neofytou”, located north of the village and at the top of a small hill.

The interior of the church of Agios Leontios

Externally it is made of stone. Inside a simple, woodcut icon screen, a Bishopric throne, a pulpit, and a kneeling desk, all of them of a recent making, decorate the church. A liturgy takes place in the country church twice a year. On the 18th of February, the day of Saint Leontios, several believers gather and his Holy Icon is carried about in procession.

Icon of Agios Leontios

Church Tower between
the chapels of Agios Leontios
and Agios Charalambos.
Chapel of Agios Leontios

Chapel of Agios Charalambos

Chapel of Agios Charalambos
The interior of the chapel of Agios Charalambos
The icon of Agios Charalambos

The relics of the chapel of Agia Maria

The relics of the chapel of Agia Maria

Chancel Table – relic of the chapel of Agia Mavri