The Wonderworking Icon of the Mother of God of Chirsk-Pskov

Commemorated on July 16/29

Troparion, Tone 4: O Most Holy Theotokos, / we thy servants, having thee as an Indestructible wall / and a fountain of miracles, the power of our enemies is overthrown. / Therefore, we entreat thee: / “Give peace to thy city and great mercy to our souls.”

Kontakion, Tone 4: As a sign from thy holy Icon, / thou didst grant a marvellous victory over the enemies of thy city; / therefore, we cry out to thee: “Rejoice, O Virgin, the boast of Christians.”

In the XV century, in the territory of the Pskov principality, there was a certain village called Chirsk, or Chersk, where, in the church of the Nativity of Christ, there was a Hodēgḗtria Icon of the Mother of God. In 1420, during the reign of Tsar Basil I of Moscow, and when Archbishop Simeon occupied the See of Novgorod and Pskov, a great disaster broke out over the Pskov region – the plague. People were despondent and sought solace and comfort by praying to God and the Queen of Heaven for help.

On July 16, 1420, as a consolation for the faithful and the encouragement of the faint-hearted, a great Sign took place in the church of the Nativity of Christ at Chirsk: tears flowed from the eyes of the Mother of God on the Icon. News of the miracle spread quickly among the inhabitants of that region, and they began to flock in large numbers to venerate the newly glorified Icon.

Soon Prince Theodore of Pskov was informed of this, so he sent priests to Chirsk, along with many noble and devout persons, with orders to take this Icon and bring it to Pskov. With reverence and solemnity, they obeyed the command of their Prince. At Pskov, when it was learned that the holy Icon was nearing the city, Prince Theodore went out to meet it, with all the clergy and people.

This moment of the meeting was marked by an amazing new miracle: tears began to flow again from the eyes of the Mother of God, even more copiously than before, which was witnessed by all those who were present. The people, trembling at the sight, fell to the ground with tears, crying out: “Lord, have mercy! O Most Holy Sovereign Lady Theotokos, do not forsake us, but help us, your sinful and unworthy servants, and save us!”

The Cross Procession came to a halt, and the priests who carried the Icon served a Moleben of thanksgiving. This wonderworking Icon was brought into the city of Pskov and was placed in the cathedral church of the Life-Giving Trinity, where it remains to this day. Every year, on the Feast of Mid-Pentecost, the Icon is taken from Holy Trinity Cathedral and carried around the city.

The Holy Apostle and Evangelist Luke and Saint Theodosios of the Kiev Caves are depicted on the reverse of the Icon.


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