Icon of the Mother of God of Kasperov
Commemorated on April 5
(also commemorated on October 1, June 29, and Bright Wednesday)
Tradition says that this holy icon was brought to Cherson (in present-day Ukraine) from Transylvania by a Serb at the end of the sixteenth century. Passing down from parent and child, the icon came to the home of a certain Mrs. Kasperova of Cherson in 1809.
One night in February of 1840, she was praying, seeking consolation in her many sorrows. Looking at the icon of the Virgin, she noticed that the features of the icon, darkened by age, had suddenly become bright. Soon the icon was glorified by many miracles, and people regarded it as wonder-working.
During the Crimean War (1853-1856), the icon was carried in procession through the city of Odessa, which was besieged by enemy forces. On Great and Holy Friday, the city was spared. Since that time, an Akathist has been served before the icon in the Dormition Cathedral of Odessa every Friday.
The icon was written with oils on a canvas mounted on wood. The Mother of God holds Her Son on her left arm. The Holy Child is holding a scroll. St. John the Baptist is depicted on one border of the icon, and St. Tatiana on the other. These were probably the patron saints of the original owners of the icon.
The Kasperov Icon is also commemorated on October 1, June 29, and Bright Wednesday.
By permission of the Orthodox Church in America (www.oca.org)