The Diocesan Academy of Theological and Historical Studies of the Holy Meteora was officially inaugurated on 24 November 2019 in a special event held at the Hotel Divani in Kalambaka and graced by the presence of all the metropolitan bishops of Thessaly and the Metropolitan of Messenia, as a representative of the Archdiocese.
The event began with hymns sung by the choir of the Holy Metropolis of Stagoi and Meteora, the ‘Meteoritiko Psaltiri’, directed by Mr. Spyridon Spyrou.
This was followed by an address by Mr. Kostas Skrekas, Deputy Minister of Rural Development, who declared that the Holy Meteora must be protected against all its recent critics.
In a brief address, the Regional Governor of Thessaly, Mr. Agorastos, stated that the inauguration of the Academy was an important development in the history of the local area and that all should endeavour to preserve and protect the Holy Meteora ‘like the apple of their eye’.
A brief address was also given by the Head of the Archaeological Service of Trikala, Ms. Manzana.
This was followed by an address by the Protosynkellos and abbot of the Holy Royal Monastery of the Holy and Great Meteoron, Archimandrite Nephon Kapsalis.
Next, a ten-minute video about the Holy Meteora was screened, which included an address by Elder Symeon Dionysiatis, the Protoepistates of Mount Athos.
There followed a presentation by Mr. Theodoros Giagkos, Dean of the Theological School of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, of the recent research studies by Mr. Konstantinos Vapheiades, professor at the Higher Ecclesiastical Academy of Athens, entitled ‘The Typikon of the Holy Monastery of the Great Meteoron’ and ‘The Hierodiakonikon of the Holy Monastery of the Great Meteoron’.
Then Mr. Phokion Kotzageorgis, Assistant Professor of Modern and Contemporary History, Folklore and Social Anthropology at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, presented the concise work by Mr. Konstantinos Vapheiades entitled ‘The Monastery of the Holy and Great Meteoron: History – Prosopography – Spiritual Life’.
Finally, His Eminence the Metropolitan of Stagoi and Meteora, Theokletos, gave a presentation entitled ‘The Diocesan Academy of Theological and Historical Studies of the Holy Meteora’.
The event was coordinated by Mr. Charalambos Stergioulis, Doctor of Byzantine Literature at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki..
At the same venue there will be a display of manuscripts, documents and treasures from the Treasury of the Monastery of the Holy and Great Meteoron.
The event was attended by the Mayor of Meteora Mr. Alekos, the Deputy Regional Governor Mr. Michalakis, the MP Mrs. Papakosta, representatives of the local government authorities, as well as many monks and members of the general public.
The first, celebratory issue of Analecta Stagorum et Meteororum aspires to inaugurate new directions in the study of the heritage of the monastic community of Meteora, primarily through interdisciplinary studies on new and lesser-known stubjects.