Amphilochios (Makris) of Patmos

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Elder Amphilochios of Patmos (Makris) was a priestmonk who lived on Patmos.


  • 1889 Dec 13: Athanasios Makris was born to Emmanuel and Irene Makris. Large family of simple country folk. As an infant, he would miraculously observe fasting rules without even knowing them, refusing mother's milk on Wednesdays and Fridays.
  • ~1894: At 5, Athanasios convinced his newly-engaged godmother to spend the rest of her days in virginity.
  • 1906: Having preserved himself from worldly temptations, Athanasios decided to enter a monastery. He received his parents' blessing, which they were happy to give.
  • 1906 Mar: Athanasios became a novice at the Monastery of St. John the Theologian, Patmos.
  • 1906 Aug: Br Athanasios became beloved of the aging brotherhood, and they made him a rassophore, giving him the name Amphilochios.
His asceticism, to fight the passions and temptations, included eating ten mouthfuls of food at each meal - on fast days, seven or eight olives.
  • 1911: The abbot of the monastery sent the future elder to Mt Athos to learn wood-carving.
  • 1913 Mar: Tonsured to the Great Schema by Elder Antoniadis.
  • 1913 May: The abbot had the agreement of the brethren to ordain Fr Amphilochios to the diaconate. Due to his self-perception of inadequacy, he directed his travelling companion (also to be ordained) to continue, while he went to Egypt and the Holy Lands. He asked the Patriarch of Jerusalem to receive him as one of the caretakers of the Holy Sepulchre. The Patriarch was willing, but the Monastery on Patmos insisted that he return. On his return, he was "punished" by being sent to the hermitage of Apollo, aside Elder Makarios. He was very happy there, being able to pray.
  • 1919: Fr Amphilochios was ordained to the diaconate then, soon after, to the priesthood. He was then sent to serve at the monastery's dependency on the island of Kos. He also served as confessor throughout the Dodecanese.
  • 1926: Fr Amphilochios was sent to the cave of the Apocalypse, Patmos. He spent much time with students of the Ecclesiastical Academy, bearing numerous elders and abbots.
  • 1935: The Italians, occupying the Dodecanese, influenced the Church by forcing a system of governence that made it easy to manipulate the Church. However, the Patriarch of Constantinople demanded that this situation be rectified for the new abbot of the monastery. The brotherhood elected Elder Amphilochios as abbot.
Soon after his election, the seeds of the future female Monastery of the Annunciation began to be planted. The first building was to house a training workshop for knitting and weaving, with the hidden agenda of teaching children Greek.
  • 1937: The Italians exiled Elder Amphilochios to mainland Greece. He was given hospitality by the Zoe brotherhood in Athens, and travelled throughout Greece, then going to Crete, where he became spiritual father of the island.
  • 1939: Exile ended. Elder Amphilochios was received with great joy on Patmos, but did not assume the abbacy, but focused on dependencies and the female Monastery of the Annunciation.
  • 1942: Patmos now occupied by Germans.
  • 1947: Elder Amphilochios organised a small group of nuns to assist the orphans of Rhodes, who were extremely poor, by establishing an orphanage, and also a unit for pregnant women.
  • 1968 Easter: Elder Amphilochios received a forewarning of his coming repose, given two years to prepare himself and his children for his repose.
Anxious for his spiritual children, with tears he asked God for more time to develop his children. The Mother of God and St John the Theologian appeared to him and informed him that his request was denied. Soon after, he received a bout of flu.
  • 1970 Apr 16: Having made his final preparations, Elder Amphilochios reposed.


"Do not be afraid because of your Orthodoxy; do not be afraid because, as an Orthodox in the West, you will be often isolated and always in a small minority. Do not make compromises but do not attack other Christians; do not be either defensive or aggressive; simply be yourself." -- Bishop Kallistos (Ware), 2000, "The Spiritual Guide in Orthodox Christianity", in The Inner Kingdom: Volume One of the Collected Works, St. Vladimir's Press, Crestwood, New York.


  • Middleton, Herman A., 2004,"Elder Amphilochios of Patmos: Life", in Precious Vessels of the Holy Spirit: The Lives & Counsels of Contemporary Elders of Greece, 2nd edn., Protecting Veil Press, Thessalonica, Greece.