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On Behalf of All

Miracles of the Mother of God. Syria

The Protection of the Mother of God. The Protection of the Mother of God.
When Christians are in need of quick and sure help, they have recourse to the Virgin Mary, Mother of God, who has saved people in Orthodox countries so many times that an entire history book could be compiled to describe them all. Many times the Theotokos has saved the Orthodox from attacks also by people from the Moslem East; not because she could ever be against anyone--for Moslems all also people created by God--but because Orthodox Christians have a special love for her, as for their own Mother, and she does not neglect her own.

In these terrible times, we must not forget to pray to the Theotokos with tears for the people of Syria, just as Orthodox Christians before us prayed in times of danger.

One example of this was celebrated last Sunday (September 1)--the Vladimir icon of the Mother of God, before whom medieval Russians prayed in the face of sure annihilation.

The Vladimir Icon of the Mother of God. The Vladimir Icon of the Mother of God.
In 1395, Tamerlane with his Tartar horde approached Moscow. The Grand Duke of Moscow, Vasiliy Dmitrievich, requested that the Vladimir icon be carried from the city of Vladimir to Moscow. As the icon was processed from Vladimir to Moscow, people stood on their knees, begging, “O Mother of God, save the Russian Land!” The city of Moscow waited solemnly for the Vladimir icon, and when it arrived, everyone came out to meet it, praying fervently for salvation.

During the very hour that the people were meeting the Vladimir icon, Tamerlane lay sleeping in his tent. He saw a vision of saintly hierarchs with golden staffs descending from a high mountain, and a radiant Lady in the air above them, surrounded by angels and dazzling rays of light. Tamerlane woke up in fear. His soothsayers warned him that the Woman whom he had seen in the vision was the Protectress of the Orthodox, the Mother of the Christian God, and that her power is invincible. Tamerlane was so shaken by the vision that he swiftly departed, swooping down upon the steppe-cities of the Golden Horde, who had caused the Russians no little trouble. Tamerlane crippled them, effectively curing Russia of their threat.

Later, in 1521, the khan of Kazan, Mehmad-Girey, advanced toward Moscow with Kazan and Nogay Tartars. Metropolitan Varlaam prayed with the people before the Vladimir Icon. Grand Duke Vasiliy Ivanovich barely managed to gather enough soldiers to meet the Tartars at the kingdom’s border, near the Oka River. He was slowly retreating to Moscow, trying hard to hold ranks.

On the night of the siege, a nun in a Moscow convent had a vision, which she related to the people, warning them that they must pray hard to the Mother of God to avert disaster. All the citizens of Moscow gathered in the church for a heartfelt prayer. The Tartars again saw a vision of “a huge regiment in shining armor,” and ran away from the walls of the city.

Other icons of the Mother of God that are celebrated in Russia are the Kazan icon, before which Russian forces prayed when they took Kazan from the Moslem Tatars; the Smolensk icon, which saved the western lands from an attack by the Poles, and the Albazin icon, which protected Russia’s eastern borders from the Chinese.

Russians also celebrate an event that occurred in Constantinople, when the Byzantine capital was saved from... the Russians!

In October, 910 Constantinople, was under siege by the pre-Christian, barbarian Russians. The situation was desperate. The citizens gathered in the Blachernae church and prayed to the Holy Mother of God. After the Virgin's robe, brought to Byzantine from Palestine, was cast into the sea, a storm rose up, driving the pagan ships away.

The Iveron Icon of the Mother of God. The Iveron Icon of the Mother of God.
Another miraculous icon in the Iveron Mother of God, also known as the Portaitissa, or “Gate-keeper”. This icon was preserved by a pious widow during the iconoclasm period, and made its way miraculously to a Georgian monastery on Mt. Athos. The monks placed it in the church, but it also miraculously replaced itself above the monastery gate. This happened again several times, until the Virgin appeared to the monk Gabriel in a dream, and said, “Announce to the brothers that from this day they should not carry me away. For what I desire is not to be protected by you; rather I will overshadow you, both in this life and in the age to come. As long as you see my icon in the monastery, the grace and mercy of my Son shall never be lacking!”

After a Greek uprising, when the Turks began to attack Mt. Athos, the Mother of God preserved her Holy Mountain. It has also become a tradition in monasteries all over the world to keep an icon of the Mother of God over the gates as protection.

For many centuries, Syrian Christians have been graced with the Saidnaya icon Mother of God, kept in the monastery of the Nativity of the Mother of God in the village of Saidnaya. Countless miracles have been wrought through prayer before this icon, but we recount here one that happened as recently as the year 2004. It is a story that, if it had not been broadcast on the major TV channels in the Middle East, would certainly be hard to believe, even after reading about her intercessions throughout the Christian East. Here is an account of that miracle compiled by Archimandrite Nectarios (Serfes):

The Saidnaya icon of the Mother of God. According to tradition, this icon was painted by the Apostle Luke. The Saidnaya icon of the Mother of God. According to tradition, this icon was painted by the Apostle Luke.
In December 2004 a Saudi Arabian man, a Moslem, appeared before several news agencies to relate the following incredible event he experienced and which changed his life (this story appeared on TV, the Internet, radio, and was circulated in newspapers, magazines, and pamphlets throughout Saudi Arbia, Syria, Palestine, and evidently in all neighboring countries.

Some years ago, this man married a Moslem woman who was very rich, but sterile. As the years passed, and despite all their efforts and significant medical expenses with many doctors, they remained childless. The man's parents suggested to him that he marry a second woman, while upholding his initial marriage (as the local laws permits up to four concurrent marriages).

Being exhausted, worried, and downhearted, he did not accept his parents' advice but rather chose to vacation with his wife in Syria. There they hired a limousine with a driver who would serve as tour guide for all their site-seeing excursions throughout Syria. As the vacation progressed, the driver noticed that the Saudi Arabian couple was experiencing bitterness, pain, and grief. Having gained familiarity with the couple, the driver cautiously asked them whey they appeared to be so unhappy--was it perhaps because he was not conducting the tour to their satisfaction?

The couple confided to the driver that the source of their unhappiness was their inability to have children. The driver who was also a Moslem, then told them that in Syria the Christians, specifically the Orthodox Christians, have a monastery named Panagia Saidnaya (Arabic word meaning Our Lady) and that many people who can't have children take refuge in Her miracle-working icon. They go to the monastery, and there they are given to eat the wick form the lamp which burns before the miraculous icon. And then the "Mary" of the Christians grants them, according to their faith, what they wish.

Becoming excited, the Saudi Arabian and his wife asked the driver to take them to the "Saidnaya" monastery of "The Lady of the Christians" and said that if we have a child, then I will come back and I will give you 20,000 U.S. dollars, and I will give the monastery 80,000. So they went to the monastery and did as they were instructed. Later they returned to their homeland and after some time, his wife was found pregnant. In a few months she gave birth to a charming baby boy. It was truly a miracle of Our Lady Theotokos.

Now, as soon as his wife gave birth, the Saudi Arabian man wanted to return to Syria to uphold the promises he had made. Upon his return he called the same driver and asked to be picked up at the Damascus airport. But the driver was cunning and wicked and he persuaded two of his friends to go to the airport with him to pick up the rich Saudi Arabian man, to take his money and kill him. So they picked up the rich man at the airport and he, as they drove, without realizing that they had planned to kill him, told the friends of the driver that he would give them also 10,000 US dollars each.

These men, still not satisfied, deviated from the route to the monastery and went to a deserted place, proceeded to slay the Saudi Arabian man, and to cut off his head and other parts (hands and legs) of his body into pieces. Blinded by passion and overcome by the horrific act that they just committed, they put the man's remains in the trunk of the car rather than just leaving him there. After taking his money, watch, and all that he had, they proceeded to find another deserted place to discard the remains.

Then, on the National highway, their car broke down and stopped in the middle of that road. The three men got out to determine why the engine had stalled. Then a passerby stopped to help them but they, afraid that their terrible act would be discovered, pretended that they did not need any help. But as the passerby motorist was leaving, he noticed blood dripping from the rear of the vehicle and he called the police to investigate, because the scene and the three men looked suspicious. The police came and saw the blood under the car and on the pavement, so they ordered that the trunk be opened.

The Saidnaya Monastery, Syria. The Saidnaya Monastery, Syria.
Well, when they opened the trunk, lo and behold, the Saudi Arabian man lifted himself out, obviously and amazingly alive and in good health, saying to them "Just now this PANAGIA finished stitching my neck, right here (showing them the area of his Adam's Apple), after first stitching up the rest of my entire body". Seeing this, the three criminals immediately lost their minds, becoming as if mad. The police handcuffed them, and as they were being taken away to an asylum for the insane, the criminals started raving that it could not be possible that the Saudi Arabian man whom they killed, beheaded, and dissected could yet be alive.

The Saudi Arabian went to a medical facility to undergo examination by doctors and medical examiners who confirmed and attested that the stitching was done very recently, thereby validating the miraculous event. The stitches were, and still are, obvious. When the Saudi Arabian came out of the car's trunk, he had the appearance, literally, of just having been refabricated (put back together) to which he continuously confessed that the PANAGIA had rejoined his body and resurrected him with the help of her Son.

Immediately after this, the Saudi Arabian called his relatives to come to Syria. They all went together to the monastery of Panagia Saidnaya and offered up prayers, praises, and glorification, and instead of the initially promised gift of $80,000 he gave $800,000 to the Theotokos.

Today, as this man relates the details of that overwhelming miracle, he starts his narration with, "When I was a Moslem this happened to me", thus indicating he is no longer a Moslem, nor is his family.

This miracle stunned with awesome surprise the entire Arabic/Moslem nation and all of the Middle East.

Let us Orthodox Christians never neglect to pray to the Mother of God for protection against all evil. And let us witness to those Christians who are not Orthodox, who do not revere and pray to God’s most holy and ever pure Mother, that she is indeed our Protectress in times of need.

13 / 09 / 2013

    2014-12-16
    05:17
    HELEN:
    OH HOLY MOTHER OF OUR LORD AND SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST
    PLEAD BEFORE HIM FOR OUR SALVATION FOR WE ARE ALL SINNERS.
    HELP US TO FIND THE ROAD TO HIS FOOTSTEPS AND WORSHIP HIM
    WITH PURE LOVE. GIVE US THE STRENGH TO WORSHIP NO OTHER.
    AS THE THIEF CRUCIFIED WITH HIM BELIEVED HE WAS TRULY THE SON OF GOD AND SAID.
    JESUS REMEMBER ME WHEN YOU COME INTO YOUR KINGDOM.
    WE ASK FOR MERCY FOR FOR OUR SINS.
    IN JESUS NAME,
    AMEN.

    2014-09-20
    11:53
    biniam michael:
    thanks God for you give us mother as our mother
    2013-11-18
    18:08
    Sol:
    A question on the Saidnaya icon you posted in this article:

    Is this really the icon found at Saidnaya? I thought this was an icon from the holy land. The Saidnaya icon has emperor Justinian and the queen on both sides of Our Lady.
    2013-10-29
    21:58
    beya mulugeta:
    she is always miracle to me.let GOD show the true road of Christianity to all of our brother and sister they are not ortodox
    2013-10-15
    06:04
    Cheryl:
    Mary Refuge of Holy Love, Protectress of the Faith, and Defender of All Virtue, come to our aid!

    www.holylove.org
    2013-10-14
    21:51
    Leia Tatiana Thomas:
    Incredible!
    2013-10-08
    16:21
    Yordanos:
    glory to God and his holly mother. they are visiting us always with their blessings despite our (human beast) arrogance and lack of faith.

    Thank God for revealing the miracle in this age where we have traveled so much away from you.

    God, the shepherd, will never leave his herd alone.
    2013-10-06
    14:17
    mulu:
    she cannot help to any one rather she need help form GOD or JESUS but Jesus says come to me matew 11:28 this is what the obstacle of gospel jesus is the only savior johon 14:6
    2013-09-28
    11:53
    Yared:
    Oh Glory to God and our beloved Vergin Merry the mother of our savior. In Orthodox church such miracels are common but it must amaze other churches and must be make them revise their religion. In Orthodox Christian churches in Ethiopia one can see many miracels daily. It is a place where the Satan suffer under a dust of our shoes, and a place where every problem get solved- just have a great fath on Jesus & his beloved mother.
    2013-09-17
    09:57
    Engineer Mahfouz el Ashkar:
    If we are truly an orthodox Christians,we should not be surprised about this miracle.

    Our Theotokos ,Mother of God,our mother,with the help of her son,our God,Jesus Christ,son of God ,can do every thing.

    She was and still Indeed our protectress since 2000 years from this world,especially from the Jewish and Muslims extremists, who want to cancel our presence from the east.

    My brothers don't be afraid ,we should pray to the Mother of God,and we receive quickly her help according to our faith.



    From Lebanon.
    2013-09-15
    19:17
    Christopher Chrysostom Gunaseelan Jesudason:
    The story points to true theology, which is goodwill and demonstrated love; not so much of Church theology and mudslinging that we observe, all in the name of Orthodoxy. Therefore I think that prayer to the MOTHER OF GOD will preserve non-malevolent theology, faith, our own lives and provide for the possibility of relations with all men of goodwill.
    2013-09-14
    17:12
    Michael:
    Devout invocation of the Theotokos will unfailingly lead us to her Son. The importance of her intercesion in the Lord's economy of salvation can never be over-stated.. I ask all readers to pray to the Mother of God for my mother, Eloise, who is 88 and in Alzheimer's-related dementia; and for me as well. God reward your generosity!
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