MARY, OUR MOTHER

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

The icon was carried across the battlefields




* July 28 – Icon of the Hodigitria, “she who leads the way” (Smolensk, Russia)   * The icon was carried across the battlefields  ----- A Moment with Mary --

Une Minute avec Marie
An initiative of the Association Mary of Nazareth 

July 28 – Icon of the Hodigitria, “she who leads the way” (Smolensk, Russia)  

The icon was carried across the battlefields 

The Smolensk icon is a Hodigitria Virgin "she who leads the way," the only way forward that is to Christ. The icon was painted by Saint Luke for the community of Antioch. It was subsequently venerated in Constantinople (today’s Istanbul, Turkey) in the church of Blachernae. It was probably brought to Russia in 1046, and placed in Smolensk’s Cathedral of the Assumption in 1101.

This Virgin is invoked to obtain guidance and assistance. In particular, she helped Vladimir Monomakh to pacify and unite Russia. She is credited with protecting the city against the invasion of the Tartars. In 1398, the icon was brought to Moscow and placed in the Cathedral of the Annunciation. Then it was returned to Smolensk, to the Church of the Assumption of the Novodevičij monastery (near Moscow).

In 1812 the icon was transported to the battlefields in the war against Napoleon. "In front and around the icon, behind and at all sides, soldiers would walk, run and fall prostrate to the ground, with their heads uncovered…countless soldiers." (Tolstoy, War and Peace).

On November 22, 1991, the icon publicly wept for a whole day in front of a large crowd of faithful onlookers. The bishop and patriarch acknowledged the authenticity of the occurrence.

The Mary of Nazareth Team

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