November 5, 2013

An Iveron Icon of the Theotokos Washes Ashore On Its Feast in Sochi

The faithful in Sochi at the Church of Saint Nina, the Enlightener of Georgia, are talking about a miraculous appearance of a copy of the icon of the Mother of God of the Iberians (Iveron).

The holy icon was painted in the 19th century and found ashore on 25 October 2013 at a beach the day before the Iveron icon celebrates its feast according to the ecclesiastical calendar, which is October 26th (New Calendar).

For the church in this small village of the Golovinky district the discovery of this icon is a great event. According to a statement of the priest of this church, the icon was brought to the church by a woman who was staying in a settlement nearby and brought it to the nearest church for the priest to decide what to do with it. It appears to have been in the water for a long time. The woman who discovered the icon has wished to remain anonymous.

On the icon there are traces of gilding and an inscription. The name of either its owner or its painter, Archpriest Alexander Smirnov, is indicated. It appears the icon was painted in Moscow in 1896. Now the icon is on display for veneration and artisans are sought for its restoration. Despite the numerous questions surrounding this icon and its discovery, believers are calling it a miracle.

It should be noted that the original icon of the Iveron Mother of God washed ashore on Mount Athos during the time of Iconoclasm and is kept in the Georgian Iveron Monastery. It is more popularly known as Panagia Portaitissa.