Mother of God, Kozelshchyna, Kobeliaky, Poltava, Ukraine
In the 1700s, an Italian lady in waiting to Empress Elizabeth brought this
Italian icon to Russia. After marrying a clerk of the Cossack army, the lady and
her icon moved to the Ukraine. The icon's feast on March 6 (February 21 in the
old calendar) commemorates the healing of Maria, daughter of Count Vladimir
Kapnist, who owned the icon in 1881. After cleaning its cover and praying
before the sacred image, Maria recovered from a mysterious crippling illness. As its fame grew and
miracles multiplied, the icon was moved to a chapel built for it on the estate
in Kozelschyna, later enlarged to a church and then a convent. The image is of
the Hodegetria type, the Virgin gesturing toward the Child in her left arm.
Here, though, she holds a delicate cross in her right hand, and in the lower
left, a table holds a cup and spoon -- possibly a reference to the Akathist Hymn
to the Mother of God:
Hail, bath — that washes clean the conscience.
Hail, bowl — in which the wine of joy is mixed.
Moved elsewhere for safekeeping during the Soviet era, the icon
returned to the newly restored Nativity of the Mother of God convent
church in Kozelschyna on February 23, 1993.
and other sources. Akathist translated by Archimandrite Ephrem,
web.ukonline.co.uk/ephrem/. Picture from "Козельщанская
Academy of Spiritual Development, www.madra.dp.ua/arctur/n12/p1.html.)