Mt. Athos, March 30, 2020
On March 19, the semi-autonomous monastic community of Mt. Athos announced that it would not be receiving any pilgrims until today, March 30. This measure has since been extended through April 11, in an effort to protect the Holy Mountain from the coronavirus and to help stop its spread.
However, at least one monk of the Holy Mountain has tested positive for the virus, reports the local newspaper Halkidikifocus.
The 55-year-old monk of Xenophontos Monastery, one of the 20 ruling monasteries on the Holy Mountain, is currently hospitalized in the AHEPA Hospital in Thessaloniki. He recently visited England with a delegation from the monastery, returning before the ban began.
After returning from England, the monk had contact with two other monks, who are now quarantined in the monastery.
Additionally, 50 pilgrims who were on the same boat as the infected monk on March 19 from Ouranoupolis to Daphne, the port on Mt. Athos, have been tracked down and quarantined, though none have as yet displayed any symptoms.