Saint Gerassimos was ordained a Monk at Mt Athos, went to Jerusalem for 12 years, spent some time in Crete and Zakynthos and in 1555 arrived on Kefalonia. He spent his first 5 years in a cave in Lassi. Saint Gerasimos' first Kefalonia hermitage is signposted from the main Lassi road and you will find a small church dedicated to the saint half way up the hill overlooking Lassi which incorporates the cave which has a natural hole offering daylight and a sea view!
Visiting times are from 07.00-13.00 and 15.00-21.00
In 1560 he moved to the Omala valley where he rebuilt the country chapel and founded a nunnery naming it 'New Jerusalem'. His favourite saying was 'Children be peaceful with yourselves and don't think high' Saint Gerasimos was known as a teacher, a healer and a water diviner. He was a man who sought peace by living in a cave and worked for his fellow man establishing many wells in the area of the Monastery. The islanders soon started to call their children Gerasimos (Makis for short) in honour of this lovely man and his remains are still cherished with pilgrims flocking from all over Greece to see them.
Today the Saint's relics are kept in a glass relic-case within a magnificent silver sarcophagus which is placed above the Saint's tomb. The small church of Saint Gerasimos has been built above the tomb and the cave where he lived. This hermitage can be reached by climbing down a 3 metre high ladder. The Saint planted some plane trees which are still preserved in the Monastery as well as the three large wells and 37 smaller ones he opened and the threshing fields that he worked to bring in funds for the Monastery. A new and very magnificent church of the Saint was completed in 1992 and is also within the Monastery grounds.
There are 5 feast days but the main ones are on 16th August and 20th October when the Saint's remains are brought out and carried in procession to the plane trees. Solemn vigil Holy Mass is performed in the Monastery from 03.00 to 07.00 a.m. You can visit the Monastery daily from 04.00 to 13.00 and from 17.00 to 21.00