September 6, 2023

The Cave of the Archangel Michael of Panormitis in Rhodes (History and Miraculous Testimonies)

By Lazos Mantikos,
Journalist for the Greek TV station Antenna

Surely everyone will have something to say about the Archangel Michael of Panormitis. The name has an ancient origin. Based on etymology, there are two versions: Because it is on a bay (ormos) or it is related to the deserted location of Apomero (ermo) located southwest of the beautiful island of Symi. It is one of the largest pilgrimage sites of the Dodecanese and has a pan-Hellenic pan-Orthodox reputation.

My Testimony
I will begin with my own story... When I brought my newborn daughter to Rhodes, my sister brought as a gift prayer ropes that had been blessed from the Sacred Monastery of the Commander Michael in Panormitis of Symi. One of them was to be put on her little leg. I didn't want the newborn baby to have anything on her. I said it in general, to make her feel comfortable. But I did not imagine that in my sleep I would see the Archangel Michael of Panormitis looking at me fiercely with his long gray hair and dressed in his silver armor. Terrified I woke up not knowing who it was, then I saw the icon they had left on my daughter's bed. He was exactly as I saw him in my dream.

The search for the icon of the Archangel Michael of Panormitis as I saw him in my dream led us to his "hidden hideout" in Rhodes. In the lower rocks of Rhodes, just below the captivating view of Monte Smith in the rocks you will find a natural cave. As you are on the road running from the town to the south of Rhodes on your right hand side you will see a marble inscription that says "Cave of the Commander Michael Panormitis".

Seeing the mesmerizing view where the sky joins the blue of the sea and in the middle the cave which is filled with icons and vow offerings of people coming to the spot, the picture is awe-inspiring. In fact, there is also a copy of the icon of the Commander Michael of Panormitis with his silver armor at this spot. Just as I saw him in my dream, we found him in his "hideout" in Rhodes!

The Story of the Cave of the Archangel Michael of Panormitis in Rhodes

A walk was the occasion to make this beautiful natural place a spot of religious worship. According to the testimony of a man on the day of the feast of the Commander, while he was walking he saw something floating in the sea. Inside a container was the icon of the Commander Michael of Panormitis with small oil bottles... He felt that this was not a random event and he had to do something. So he made a small rough shrine with an oil lamp on the main road, on the lower stones, and placed the icon in it.

According to the testimony of Mr. Stergos, when he went to light the lamp, he saw that the icon was missing. At that moment one of his belongings fell and it tumbled into the rocks. In his attempt to find it, he discovered it was inside the natural cave where he also found the identical icon of the Commander Michael of Panormitis. The cave was covered with vegetation and stones.

From this incident onwards, he took great care of the cave, placed icons and lamps inside, and the place acquired a religious peace. In fact, many people leave food at the site, while a woman also built the stairs, making the area more easily accessible. It should be noted that the place has not been recognized by the Church, but it is the result of a vow offering of a citizen who found the icon there and so other citizens left their own vow offerings for the miraculous Archangel Michael of Panormitis in Symi. It is said that this cave looks like the "refuge of the Archangel". The place is worth visiting and exploring. But the official place of the Archangel is Symi, where there is also the original miraculous icon of the Commander Michael of Panormitis.

Another Miraculous Testimony

A pilgrim of the Sacred Monastery in Symi in the area of Panormitis, a pilot by profession, recounted the following miracle:

"A few years ago, when I was new to the profession, I was operating an Athens to America flight. Over the Atlantic a mechanical failure occurred that I could not fix. Terrified, I asked the passengers to each pray to their beloved saint, because we were in great danger and there was no land nearby for a forced landing. After a while I see someone new repairing the damage with skill and quick movements. I looked closer and was amazed: the young man had wings! I thought he was my guardian angel. An inexplicable force held me and I did not pass out. After a while it disappeared and I found with unrecognizable joy that the plane had absolutely no problem!

I hurried and announced it to the passengers... Then a lady approached me and said modestly and in front of everyone:

'What you saw, my boy, was not your guardian angel but the Archangel Michael the Panormitis. I come from Symi and I entreated him.'

Now that i have arrived here and seeing the icon of the Archangel, all those dramatic moments flashed through my mind and I fainted from joy."

Source: Translated by John Sanidopoulos.

Become a Patreon or Paypal Supporter:

Recurring Gifts

Contact Form


Email *

Message *