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The short film introduces the octogenarian caretaker of an 11th century church in southern Greece, who true to her vow for half a century, lit a candle daily.

© 2018 Katerina Zacharia, Athenoe productions

The copyright of the depicted antiquities belongs to the Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sports

© 2018 Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sports N. 3028/2002



An octogenarian villager, Mrs. Metaxia Anaplioti, kept her vow for 49 years, lighting a candle daily at the 11th century Byzantine church of Hagioi Theodoroi in Vamvaka, Mani, in Southern Greece. This act of piety contributes to her personal sense of identity as much as to the collective identity of the village by asserting the connection to the particular place, keeping alive customs of the village’s forebearers. This continuity of customs must be protected much like the territory the church was originally built to protect, recycling building stones from earlier periods repurposed for the new construction. The pastiche of various historical periods in the building of the church, and the diachronic preservation of the church across ten centuries sustains collective identity claims for the villagers. A sense of historical continuity is sustained by memory, belief, imagination and narrative.


  1. Best Documentary, Grecanica International Film Festival, Calabria, Italy

  2. The Georgio Voyatsis Special Jury Award for Symi International Film Festival, Greece

  3. Best Documentary for December 2018, Festigious Los Angeles Monthly Film Competition

  4. Best Documentary (under 40 min) for December 2018, Eurasia International Monthly Film Festival, Moscow

  5. Finalist for Best Short Documentary for December 2018, The Monthly Film Festival, Glasgow, UK

  6. Finalist for Best Short Documentary for February 2019, CFIFF (Changing Face International Film Festival), Sydney, Australia

  7. Finalist, Oniros Film Awards (100 best reviewed festivals 2018)

  8. Semi-finalist, JellyFEST, biannual North Hollywood Film Festival, Aug. 2019

  9. Semi-finalist for Best Short Documentary (March 2019), Utah Film Festival and Awards.

  10. Pre-selected for the 42nd International Short Film Festival in Drama; available for private screenings on the Market–Videolibrary of the Festival (Sept. 15-21, 2019) for representatives of foreign festivals, film critics, journalists.

  11. Official Selection, The Lift Off Sessions, UK

  12. Official Selection, Dumbo Film Festival, Brooklyn, New York

  13. Official Selection, South Eastern European Film Festival, Los Angeles

  14. Official Selection, London Greek Film Festival, UK

  15. Official Selection, Moscow Shorts ISFF Awards

  16. Official Selection, International Documentary Festival of Ierapetra, Crete

  17. Official Selection, NYC Greek Film Festival

  18. Official Selection, West Side Mountains Doc Fest, Epirus, Greece

  19. Official Selection, Chania Film Festival, Crete, Greece

  20. Official Selection, Buenos Aires Film Festival, Argentina

  21. Official Selection, Under the Stars International Film Festival, Bari, Italy

  22. Official Selection, 10th Bridges International Film Festival, Corinth, Greece

  23. Official Selection, Nafplio International Film Festival - Bridges, Greece

  24. Official Selection, Bucharest ShortCut CineFest, Romania

  25. Official Selection, Long Story Shorts, International Film Fest, Bucharest


 Dedicated to the memory of Metaxia Anaplioti (1939-2018)


Director, Producer, Writer: Katerina Zacharia

Executive Producer: Sharon E. J. Gerstel

Assitant Director, Cinematographer, Editor: Claire M. Andreae

Music Composer: Mladen Milicevic

Color Correction: Huan Manton 

Sound-Mixing: Brandon Cudequest 

Post-Production Assistant: Kelly Sarri

Duration: 14:54 mins



© 2018 by Katerina Zacharia.

Site and Media manager: Kelly Sarri.

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