Agia Theodora of Vasta

The Church of Saint Theodra can be found outside the village of Vasta near Megalopoli. It was built between the 10th and 12th centuries. According to tradition the construction of the church is linked with the martyrdom of Theodora who was an 11th century Byzantine citizen born in the area of Ancient Melpiea.

When the area was raided by bandits, Theodora was determined to help defend her village, but as a woman she could not do so.  Theodora then disguised herself as a male soldier in order to fight, however, she did not survive and as she lay dying she spoke the following words:  “Let my body become a church, my hair a forest of trees and my blood a spring to water them.”

This small church supports 17 large trees that grow from the roof and walls.  There is no evidence of tree roots inside the church.  A spring underneath the church waters the trees.


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