May 23rd: Our Lady of the Protection (5)
On the Feast of the Protection of the Most Holy Theotokos the faithful implore the protection and the assistance of the Queen of Heaven. "Remember us in your prayers, O Lady Virgin Mother of God, that we may not perish under the weight of our sins. Protect us from every evil and from grievous woes, because we hope in you and in venerating the Feast of your Protection, we magnify you.”
As with most icons of Mary, many miracles are attributed to the icon of the Protection of the Theotokos. One of the most moving ones was in favor of the Greek army: the soldiers were fighting under severe adverse conditions, and were losing hope. The Virgin Mary appeared to them and covered them with her mantle, not only in protection but also in leading them towards their enemy, ready to fight along side the soldiers. Needless to say, with such support, the Greek army won the battle. Thus, Mary was named the protector and leader of those who fight for their country under difficult circumstances.
“Today the Virgin stands in the midst of the Church, and with choirs of Saints she invisibly prays to God for us. Angels and Bishops venerate Her, Apostles and prophets rejoice together, since for our sake she prays to the Eternal God!”
Let us not hesitate to ask Mary for her protection...
Rejoice, you who breaks the webs of the Athenians.
Rejoice, you who fills the nets of the Fishermen.
Rejoice, who draws us from the depths of ignorance.
Rejoice, you who enlightens many with knowledge.
Rejoice, Raft for those who desire to be saved.
Rejoice, Haven for those who fare on the sea of life.