Church of Agios Kyprianos
Located in the centre of the old housing of Menoiko is the church dedicated to Agios Kyprianos and Agia Ioustini. According to Karouzis, this church constitutes one of the few Orthodox churches dedicated to Agios Kyprianos and Agia Ioustini.
The church of Agios Kyprianos and Agia Ioustini is the pride of the community. It's a basilica with ogive arches and staurolites and a particularly impressive bell tower. Through the centuries, several reconstruction works have taken place at the church of Agios Kyprianos and Agia Ioustini, something which has altered its original form. Even today, the church is still being renovated as part of the renovation works which began in 2008. Additionally, new hagiographies are being created by Russian hagiographers.
According to the records of the Holy Bishopric of Morfou on Agios Kyprianos, the northern transept of the church was built in the 14th century, as this is after all proven by the remains of the hagiographies. Also salvaged are some architectural spoils of the medieval church, among them being column capitals with plant decorations, as well as elements from an earlier byzantine church such as a semi-circular synthronon bearing features of byzantine art. Later on, in the middle of the 19th century and more specifically in 1946, the southern transept of the church was built so that the church would be expanded.
What is more, also salvaged is the holy water well which is found on the northern transept of the church and which is nowadays channelled to the forecourt of the church. Also noteworthy is that Machairas also praises the holy water.
At this point it is important to mention that according to the Community Council, the church was built in the 16th century by the Franks, possibly linking the construction of the church with a tradition which mentions that a sick King of the Franks, who was suffering from fevers, was cured after having worshipped the Holy Heads and drunk holy water when the Franks came to Cyprus in the end of the 12th century. The interior of the church is adorned by a wooden iconostasis dated back to 1818, which, as it is described in the aforementioned records of the Holy Bishopric of Morfou, “includes birds, animals, plants with a particular emphasis to pergolas and grapes, as well as a liturgical fan on the priedieu of Agios Kyprianos”(p.51). Next to the iconostasis, on the southern wall of the church, there is an exquisite hagiography of Agios Kyprianos and Agia Ioustini.
Apart from the wooden iconostasis of the church and the aforementioned hagiography, the icons of the church which cover a period from the 16th century until the beginning of the 20th century are also of huge historical and religious value. One of the most important icons of the church is that of Agios Kyprianos, which was painted by an important artist named David and which is dated back to the year 1613. Also salvaged at the church of Agios Kyprianos and Agia Ioustini are siginificant holy heirlooms, including a wooden pyx dated back to 1873, a drawn leaflet of 1856, as well as some silver-made ecclesiastical objects such as the silver-gold coated cover of the church of Agios Kyprianos. Additionally, manuscripts and incunabulum including publications of the Greek printing agencies of Venice, as well as four handwritten mid-byzantine saint ceremonies are kept at the church.
On October 2nd, the name-day of Agios Kyprianos and Agia Ioustini, crowds of worshipers from all over Cyprus come to Menoiko. On that day a big fair, which is actually one of the biggest in Cyprus, is organised at the community. Over the past few years, the church of Agios Kyprianos and Ioustini attracts worshipers from abroad as well, especially from various European countries and mainly Russia and other former Soviet Union countries. According to the Community Council, this has been achieved after efforts were made by the Holy Bishopric of Morfou and more specifically the Bishop of Morfou Neophytos, who promoted the miraculous properties of the Saints.
Telephone: 22822435 (In case you find the Church closed)
Giorgos Karouzis, StrollingAroundCyprus, Nicosia, City and District, Nicosia 2001 Community Council Agios Kyprianos in Menoiko, Holy Bishopric of Morfou, “Theomorfou Publications”