Protection Most Holy Mother of God

Protection (Patronage) of the Most Holy Mother of God

An apparition of the Mother of God in the tenth century at Constantinople commemorates the Feast of the Protection of the Mother of God on October 1.

In 911, AD, Constantinople, the capital of the Byzantine Empire, was under military threat and the people were praying for God's help in the Blachernae Church in the suburb of the city.

According to tradition, the Holy Virgin appeared, accompanied by St. John the Forerunner, St. John the Evangelist and several saints.  She approached the center of the church, knelt down and prayed for a long time.  Her face was covered in tears.

Afterwards, she arose, took her veil off and spread it over the people as a sign of protection.

From this veil, which in Slavonic is called "pokrov", the feast got its name: "Pokrov  Presvyatoyi Bohorodytsi"  (The veil (or Protection) of the Most Holy Mother of God).  The veil became a symbol of protection and intercession of the Blessed Virgin.  After the appearance of the Mother of God, the danger of barbarian invasion was averted and the city was spared from bloodshed and suffering.