/ / Church Of Saint Lazarus

Church Of Saint Lazarus

Photos and description

One of the few remaining in Cyprus to the present day churches of the Byzantine era Church of Saint Lazarus is located in the heart of Larnaca. The temple was erected in the IX century during the reign of Emperor Leo VI in honor of the righteous Lazarus, whom the Bible says Jesus brought back to life. After his resurrection he became one of the most zealous preachers of Christianity. After a few dozen years the Saint died and was buried in Cyprus. It is on the site of his grave was built a Church, but his relics the ruler decided to move the capital of the Empire - Constantinople.

The new Church was a large building with an apse and three domes and a tall bell tower. But almost every time when power on the island has changed, the temple was rebuilt. The first time it happened in the XIII century, when Cyprus was ruled by a series of Lusignan, the second - in the time of the Venetians. Then the Church was moved to the Catholic Church. Later invaded the island, the Ottomans turned it into a mosque, destroying the dome and the bell tower. Soon, however, the Turks decided to sell the building, and it was changed again to the Christians. Some time there, was both Orthodox and Catholic services. In the XVIII century the Church has a unique gold-plated iconostasis in the Baroque style, carved from wood. It is decorated with a large number of icons are made with special care. But the bell tower was restored only in the XIX century, before the bells just were fastened to a wooden post.

When after gaining of the independence of Cyprus, in the temple performed the repair under the altar was found a marble sarcophagus. Studies have shown that the remains that were in it, belong to St. Lazarus. Apparently, they were removed to Constantinople only partially.