The Baptistery of Saint Lydia
The Baptistery of Saint Lydia was erected in honour of the first Christian in Europe on the shores of Zygaktis river, to the west of the ancient Philippi.
Lydia, a Judish merchant of purple textiles from the city of Thyatira at Lydia, Asia Minor, was baptised Christian and thus became the first person convert to the new religion in Europe. The Orthodox Church honours her as a Saint and as an equal-to-the-apostles, or Isapostolos. A church–baptistery, similar to those surviving in the Early Christian basilicas at Philippi, was raised in her honour at the site where her baptism took place.
The church–baptistery of Saint Lydia of Philippi stands as a modern Christian monument with several Early Christian features. It consists of a courtyard and an interior space. According to tradition, the initiate ceremonies of the Baptism like the catechesis and the confession of the faith were held at the court outside the church, while the mystery of the Baptism was celebrated in the marble, cross-shaped baptismal font that was accessed by staircases and lied in the interior of the church, called the photisterion.
The church–baptistery of Saint Lydia resembles the Basilica of the Museum of Philippi, as they share common decorative features like the stained-glass windows.