9. The deadly plague is stopped
22 August 1827. Father Savvas writes: “At Enos, the deadly plague has stopped on the 15th of June with the grace of the Holy Belt”. From Enos, the Holy Belt was transported to Didimotichon. In another letter, dated 12th September, the same priest writes: “Here, the deadly plague has stopped as it did at Enos, with the grace of the Holy Belt”.
10. We have been freed from the onslaught of lucusts. read more…
Father Kosmas Chrysoulas in a letter to the monastery writes: “In 1915, , we have invited the Holy Belt from the Vatopedi monastery to our village, Neochori, Kallipoleos, because we have had an onslaught of locusts. When the Holy Belt arrived and the service of the Holy Water had finished, flocs of black birds appeared in the sky and devoured the locusts. We have been, thus, freed from this calamity”.
11. The Holy Belt in Ithaki
Mrs Eythymia Sofianou, of Vathy in Ithaki, had kept for safekeeping the “holy belt” at her home. It had been given to her maternal grandmother, Maria Molfesi-Sofianou by Saint Joachim. This holy relic was a belt, of light brown and was embroidered with a golden thread. It was being kept at the Iconostasi and was given to virgins, who would tie it around their heads or their bellies during the marriage service as a so called “proof of virginity”. This was regarded as a great blessing. Afterwards, the holy belt was being returned to the Sofianos family. The last time was being given to a refugee family in 1935.
The family used to cross children with the belt when they were sick. Unfortunately this holy belt was lost during the destructive earthquake in 1953.
12. Thasos is being saved from drought
In 1957, some residents from Thasos arrived at the monastery. They were pleading to have the Holy Belt transferred to the island since it hadn’t rained for years and the drought was threatening to depopulate it.The fathers agreed and decided to leave for Thasos a few days later.
According to the monastery’s tradition, when the Holy Belt leaves the monastery, a Paraklisis service is being held. The fathers accompany the Holy Belt in a glorious procession to the small port, the arsanas, holding pennons and incense, while the bells of the church are ringing. On the way to the sea, the Paraklitikos Canon is being sung.
The same thing happened that day and the fathers boarded the small boat for Thasos which is 2-3 hours away. The weather was fine and there were no signs that any rain was imminent. By the time they had reached the port of Thasos, torrential rain had already been falling on the island. Such was the flooding that they could not leave the boat. They immediately returned to the monastery, instead, offering praise to the Most Holy Mother of God, who had intervened and saved the devout people of the island, seeing their good intentions and adhering to their appeal.
source: Ιερά Μεγίστη Μονή Βατοπαιδίου, «Θαύματα Αγίας Ζώνης», έκδοσις β΄επαυξημένη, Άγιον Όρος 2008
translated from Greek by: Olga Konnaris-Kokkinos, journalist