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The Assumption of the Virgin Mary

Each year the island of Tinos welcomes thousands of pilgrims from across Greece and other Orthodox countries for the feast of the Virgin Mary on 15 August. For the Orthodox Church this day is ‘Virgin Mary Assumption Day’ where the Virgin is believed to have ascended to heaven. This is the most revered religious holiday in the Orthodox calendar after Easter. The annual celebration is a crowded affair, with a navy band and honor guard leading a procession carrying the icon down the hill from the church to the port and through the streets of Tinos. Thousands of people who have flocked to the Aegean Island for this day, kneel and wait for the icon to pass over them.  So, if you find yourself in Tinos that day, you will witness and perhaps participate, in one of the most significant rituals in Greece.