Icon of the Virgin of Mercy (Kikkskaya, Kikkotissa)

Icon of the Virgin of Mercy (Kikkskaya, Kikkotissa)

Days of celebration: January 8, November 25
The icon of the Mother of God, known as the “Merciful” or “Kykkos”, according to legend, was painted by the Holy Apostle and Evangelist Luke. Another name “Kikkiotis” she got from the name of Mount Kykkos on the island of Cyprus, where her abode, known as the Kykkos monastery, is located. Initially, the icon of the Most Holy Theotokos was located in one of the first Christian communities in Egypt. In 980, she was transferred to Constantinople, where she remained until the reign of Emperor Alexius Komnenos. The icon eventually returned to Cyprus thanks to the efforts of the hermit elder Isaiah. Legend has it that the local ruler Manuel Vutomit, who committed a cruel act, was punished with a serious illness. It was revealed to Isaiah that the miraculous icon should remain on the island of Cyprus, and he sent Manuel to Constantinople to get the icon. After praying in front of the icon, Manuel’s daughter, who was suffering from an illness, felt better. The icon was brought to the island of Cyprus and placed in a specially built temple, around which a monastery later arose. Miracles associated with the icon” Merciful ” strengthen the faith of many parishioners, including not only Christians, but also non-Believers. The image of the Mother of God on the icon represents the “Eleusa” type. The face of the Blessed Virgin is tilted to the left, and the Infant supports the edge of her maforia, holding a Greek scroll in his joined hands. For a long time, the “Merciful” icon was covered up to half with a veil, hiding the face of the Mother of God and the Divine Baby. Lists of the miraculous image appeared in Russia in the XVII century. One of the most famous was located in the Moscow Zachatievsky convent and was its main shrine. In subsequent years, the icon was moved to the temple of the Prophet Elijah in Obydensky Lane. In 1999, she returned to her former monastery after a revival of monastic life. Prayer before the icon “Merciful” brings spiritual consolation to all who turn to the Most Holy Theotokos with faith and hope.

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