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Catholic Dictionary




One of Russia's most famous wonder-working icons of the Blessed Virgin. Housed in a small chapel at the gate of the Red Square in Moscow was the image of the thoughtful uncrowned Blessed Virgin and her Infant Child, resting on her left arm. No czar ever thought of leaving the city without a visit to ask Mary's guidance and protection. The original of this famous painting is in the Greek monastery at Mount Athos. When Czar Alexis was seriously ill, he asked that the "Virgin of the Gate," as the Mount Athos icon was called, be brought to him. A special copy was made then and sent to him. He was cured instantly. This icon was then placed in a chapel in front of the Kremlin, the same little church that served the people as a place of refuge during the Bolshevik Revolution. During the revolution this church was destroyed, but the icon was saved and for a time received honor at the Donskoi monastery. Since the Communist take-over its present location is uncertain.