marian feasts     october

October 23

Virgin of Akathistos, Zografou Monastery, Mt. Athos, Macedonia, Greece

Hail, the Undaunted Might of Martyrs! Hail, O Steadfast Foundation of Faith!

The Akathistos is a long sequence of praises to the Mother of God, each beginning with Χαιρε (Hail, Rejoice), which originated in Constantinople in the 500s and is said while standing (a-kathistos = not seated). In 1276, near the Bulgarian monastery of  Zografou on holy Mt. Athos, lived a hermit who spent his days repeating the Akathistos before an icon of the Virgin and child. One day, she answered his salutation: "Hail to you too. Don't be afraid, but go quickly to tell the abbot and monks that the enemy is near. The faint-hearted should escape, but those who wish a martyr's crown should stay." When the hermit arrived at the monastery, he found the icon waiting at the gate. Taking it with him, he delivered the Virgin's warning to the abbot. Soon, Catalan crusaders arrived. After an unsuccessful attempt to get the monks to accept Papal authority, the crusaders set fire to the tower, making Orthodox martyrs of the 26 people inside: abbot, monks, hermit, and four lay employees, on October 10 (October 23 in the modern calendar). Only the icon survived, unhurt in the ashes. The Bulgarians call it Cherovo, Hail; the Greeks, Προαναγγελλόμενη (Proangelomeni), Warning. (Information from www.mountathos.gr. Picture from "Ιερές Εικόνες Παναγίας Αγίου Όρους (Images of the Virgin in Holy Mount Athos)," Aνδρωνιάνοι  Eυβοίας, katsosk.googlepages.com.

Also commemorated this date:

Navštívení Panny Marie, Frýdek, Silesia, Czech Republic (Visitation of the Virgin Mary). Church proclaimed a Basilica Minor, 1999.
Notre Dame des Otages, Paris, France (Our Lady of the Hostages). Church inaugurated, 1938.
Goa Maria Air Sanih, Buleleng, Bali, Indonesia. Grotto blessed, 2005.
Maria Santissima della Fontana, Torremaggiore, Foggia, Apulia, Italy. Statue crowned, 1983. Festa Tues. & Wed. after Easter.
Onze Lieve Vrouw ter Linde, Uden, Noord-Brabant, Netherlands. Liturgical feast, mass and procession.
Purísima Votada, Bureta, Zaragoza, Aragon, Spain (Immaculata of the Vow). Votive procession dates from 1834 cholera epidemic; city leaders carry the Virgin's statue to every house in town.
Maria-Hilf, Gubel, Zug, Switzerland (Mary Help). Apparition, 1531.
Santa Maria della Misericordia, Ascona, Ticino, Switzerland (St. Mary of Mercy). Church consecrated, 1442.
 

Where We Walked ~~~ Mary Ann Daly