Kefalonia, August 7, 2017
The snakes of the Panagia, as the Theotokos is also lovingly referred to by Greeks, made their annual appearance on the great feast of the Transfiguration this year on the Greek island of Kefalonia, reports Romfea.
Two snakes appeared Saturday afternoon in the Dormition Church in the island village of Markopoulo, built on the ruins of a monastery. The village bells immediately began to ring out joyfully. Last year only one snake appeared at first in Markopoulo, and one in the village of Arginia, according to Mystagogy.
The snakes appear every year on the new calendar feast of the Transfiguration on August 6 and begin crawling everywhere throughout the church, and particularly around the icon of the Panagia. They remain until the feast of the Dormition on August 15, immediately disappearing back into the wilderness after the Divine Liturgy. As in years past, it is expected that more snakes will appear in this time.
The local faithful also testify that the snakes are warm-blooded, which is unknown anywhere else or any other time in the world.
In the early 18th century, the nuns of the former convent were attacked by pirates. After praying to the Theotokos for protection, the nuns were transformed into snakes. When the pirates entered the convent they were terrified by the sight and fled.
The snakes have appeared every year since then, except for two years: 1940, the year Greece was brought into the Second World War, and 1953, the year of a devastating earthquake on Kefalonia. Thus, it is believed to be ominous if the snakes do not appear.
Watch below a video from 2015 with the snakes: