The icon was originally found near Kursk several centuries ago. It belongs to the Russian church abroad, and its home is currently in the U.S.A.
Why? Who cares? some people asked me. What have I got to do with Russians making an incredible fuss over this antique, as it seems? You can see from the pictures here, a very few of the riveting images on the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia website, that thousands did go to extreme effort to honor it and be near it.
I wanted to write something very illuminating for those of you who might ask these questions. But in making the attempt, I realized how much a beginner and a child I am; I am still learning the answers to these questions myself. But I am learning by belonging and growing up here, in the Church, which is also there in Kursk. Those are my people.
I don’t stare at the faces and the churches because I am trying to figure out the answers, but out of love for my Church and Church family, and extreme thankfulness that I belong to Christ and His Church, where we are taught to love His mother. Not a theoretical church of individuals who argue theology, but a living and present people who are learning theology by worshiping together. A great force, the army of God’s love, the throng of needy souls who have found the Source of everything.
It’s good to be home.