Metropolitan Church of Agios Minas (St. Menas)
The big church of St. Menas, to the northeast of the small one, was built between 1862–1895 by a practical architect from Epirus, Athanasios Mousis, with frequent contributions of the monasteries and donations from hundreds of Christians, as can be noted from the church’s manuscript books of donations. It is an eclectic monument whose architectural plan combines the features of a cross-in square, domed church and those of a three-aisled basilica with galleries and two corner belfries, each measuring 32.70 metres in height. Various styles can be discerned in its individual architectural and decorative elements. In the first half of the 20th century, the architect A. Orlandos designed, and F. Skaris created, the altar screen and the bishop’s throne from white and green marble of Tenos. The icon painting of the church, during a period of new breath according to the exemplars of Byzantine icon painting, was done by the iconographer S. Kartakis, a pupil of Fotis Kontoglou, in the year 1960. The church is a place of reference for all the religious and national celebrations of the city of Heraklion, especially November 11, where a hierarchical Divine Liturgy and great festival take place on the feast day of the Holy Great Martyr Menas.