Orthodox icon | The Miracle Workers of Belozersk | 24762.
The Miracle Workers of Belozersk, or the White Lake, refers to a group of prominent and revered Orthodox Christian saints that played a significant role in the spiritual development of the area. Situated in Russia, Belozersk, translated as “White Lake,” is a region known for its sanctity and religious significance. Two of these Miracle Workers, Saint Venerable Cyril and Saint Venerable Therapont, are amongst others on the icon:
- Saint Venerable Cyril of Belozersk (June 9): Saint Cyril, born as Cosmas, was an influential figure in 14th-century Russian monasticism. After visiting the monasteries of the Russian North and being ordained as a monk, he decided to lead a hermit’s life at the shore of the White Lake (Beloe Ozero). Cyril was renowned for his austere life, miracles, and his role in establishing a community of monks, which later transformed into the Kirillo-Belozersky Monastery, the largest monastery in Northern Russia.
- Saint Venerable Therapont of Belozersk/White Lake (May 27): Saint Therapont was a contemporary of Cyril and also significantly contributed to the monastic life in Belozersk. After being a monk in Moscow, he moved to the north and founded the Luzhetsky Monastery on the Mogocha River. Later, by the invitation of a local prince, he founded the Ferapontov Monastery near the Kirillo-Belozersky Monastery. The Ferapontov Monastery is famous for the frescoes of Dionisius, one of Russia’s greatest icon painters.
These miracle workers are revered for their sanctity, their devotion to the monastic life, and the miracles attributed to them. The monasteries they established became centers of Christian pilgrimage, education, and art. Today, both Kirillo-Belozersky and Ferapontov Monasteries are considered gems of Russian cultural heritage and are included in the UNESCO World Heritage List.
All the saints on the icon:
On the left:
- Saint Venerable Justina – A lesser-known saint whose history remains obscure.
- Saint Venerable Daniel of Pereyaslavi – Celebrated on April 7, he was a Russian medieval monk and the founder of Pereyaslavl-Zalessky.
- Saint Venerable Philip of Yankov – Commemorated on August 17, he was a renowned Bulgarian monk and theologian.
- Saint Venerable Cyril of Belozersk – His memory is observed on June 9. He was a 14th-century Russian monk, who established several monasteries in the Russian North.
- Saint Venerable Therapont of Belozersk/White Lake – Honored on May 27, he was a monk and the founder of Ferapontov Monastery in Russia.
On the right:
- Saint Venerable Nil Sorsky – His feast day is on May 7. He was a significant figure of the 15th century Russian Orthodox Church, advocating for monastic reform.
- Saint Venerable Alexander of Svir – Remembered on August 30, he was a hermit and wonderworker, known for his deep humility and austere life.
- Saint Venerable Zosimas of Vorbosomsk – His day of celebration is April 4. He was a monk of the Solovetsky Monastery, known for his spiritual insight and miracles.
- Saint Venerable Cyril of Novoezersk – Celebrated on February 4, he was an ardent ascetic and the founder of the Novoezersk Monastery in Novgorod.
- Saint Venerable Martinian of Belozersk/White Lake – His feast day is on January 12. He was a spiritual leader, known for his fervent prayer and ascetic life.
At the top of the icon, Christ Pantocrator is depicted, blessing the congregation. This refers to a particular depiction of Christ, symbolic of his role as the all-powerful sustainer of the universe.
The icon includes a Metalloklad, or a metallic cover, typically made of silver or gold, which is crafted with attached halos and gemstones to enhance the sanctity and richness of the icon. Icon painted through.