“Hasten to hear our prayer, O Virgin, for You are quick to hear”

The Kutuzovsky skete of the Seraphim-Diveyevo monastery solemnly glorified the Most Holy Mother of God on the day of the celebration of Her “Quick to Hear” icon. It celebrates the patronal feast today. The house church at the skete was dedicated to the “Quick to Hear” Icon of the Mother of God.

The All-Night Vigil on the eve of the feast, followed by the Divine Liturgy, the water blessing prayer service and paraklesis were celebrated this morning by Archpriest Alexander Naumov, the clergyman of Seraphim-Diveyevo monastery.

At the conclusion of the liturgy, the clergy, sisters and parishioners walked in a festive procession around the church.

The “Quick to Hear” Icon of the Mother of God as She named it Herself, is a testament to Her quick response about all our life’s needs, illnesses and sorrows.

The first miracle, revealed through this icon, occurred in the 17th century in the Docheiariou monastery on Athos.

Acting foolishly and in heartfelt indifference, the monk Neilos on obedience at the monastery refectory insulted the greatness of the Mother of God. According to tradition, he frequently walked near the fresco depicting the Mother of God and thus had it covered with soot from the burning candle. The Queen of Heaven pointed to him that he should stop this: “Monk, as unworthy of this name as you are! How long will you continue to blacken My image so carelessly and shamelessly?” Once Neilos lost his sight, he fell down on his knees before the icon and prayed to the Most Holy Mother of God all night long, and before other brethren arrived, asking forgiveness. When other monks learned of the miracle, they fearfully drew near the miraculous icon, lit an inextinguishing oil lamp before it and commanded a new monk assigned to work at the refectory to burn incense and cense the area before the icon every evening.

Neilos, in hopes of great loving-kindness of the Mother of God, resolved to remain near the icon until he gains forgiveness and healing. And so, his fervent prayer was heard soon. Kneeling before the icon, he again heard the familiar voice: ” Neilos! You are forgiven, you are to regain eyesight. As you receive this mercy from Me, announce to the rest of the brethren that I am their intercessor, the providence and protection of their monastery dedicated to the Archangels. May they, along with all Orthodox Christians, come to Me in their needs, and I will leave no request unheard; I will intercede on behalf of all who reverently appeal before Me, and their prayers will be answered by My Son and My God, for the sake of My intercession before Him. From this time forth, this icon of Mine shall be called as “The Quick to Hear”: I will be show mercy to everyone who resort to Her help.”

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