The great work of digitalization and through that the rescue of a great historical archive of manuscripts, microfilms and miniatures in slides was concluded with an agreement between the Patriarchal Institute of Patristic Studies (PIPM), the Greek Ministry of Culture and the Prefecture of Central Macedonia.
The PIPM was founded 42 years ago by the Ecumenical Patriarch Athenagoras in order to rescue precious manuscripts and miniatures of the libraries of the Mount Athos Monasteries and promote their study and research. This arduous and lengthy rescue project has led to the creation of 15,000 copies from Mount Athos, 3,500 manuscripts from the monastery of St. Catherine of Sinai and many others from the National Library of Paris and 3 thousand items of material stored at the Vatican. The PIPM archive is in danger due to time but also the storage conditions of the microfilms: increased humidity in the storage areas or damage of the infrastructure of the building where the archive is kept. This is why it is now considered essential to transfer – transcribe them to modern digital media.
Digitalization will lead to the rescue of the contents of 98 microfilms from the Vlatadon monastery which include Greek and Ottoman documents of the 18th century, patriarchal sigils (official imperial documents of the Byzantine Empire related to administrative matters and foreign policy issues) and incunabula (printed documents from 1500 A.D. onwards) of the monastery, but also of 21 handwritten codes and 2 thousand incunabula belonging to the PIPM collection.