With longing we kiss the image of Christ

Today is the Sunday of the Fathers of the Seventh Ecumenical Council, at Nicaea in 787.

THE assembly of the Fathers excellently laid it down, for those who honour God, that the holy image of Christ should be set up in its place once more, and given a veneration that is relative [i.e. to the person it depicts]; for our part, as obedient children, we lovers of true religion celebrate their yearly memory, and with longing we kiss the image of Christ.


An icon of Christ in Hagia Sophia, Constantinople

An icon of Christ in Hagia Sophia, Constantinople



MORE than blessed art thou, Virgin Theotokos; for through him that came of thee, Hades was taken captive, and Adam was recalled, the curse was withered in death, and Eve was set at liberty, death died utterly, and we were made alive. Therefore, singing praises we cry: Blessed art thou, Christ our God, who wast well-pleased so to do: glory be to thee.



Alleluia. Praise ye the Lord.


2 thoughts on “With longing we kiss the image of Christ

  1. This reminds me– when I went to the orthodox service for the first time, I was directed to kiss some of the icons. I was a bit uncomfortable to be honest, but I often think about that humble act of adoration.

  2. You can feel a bit self-conscious at first, I know, but in time the icons become very precious. They become the presence of friends. There are so, so many healing miracles associated with icons, too. But I think the most touching thing I have read, is what Elder Joseph the Hesychast said:

    “Embrace in your arms the icon of the Panagia as if she were alive, as you embraced your dear mother when you were little. Tell her all your pain, wet her icon with your pure tears, and you will derive constant consolation. She will intercede with her Son, Who is so good, Who loves the good, has mercy on the bad, and forgives repenting sinners. He will open the noetic eyes of your soul and fill your heart with love and divine eros. And then your eyes will become two fountains of tears. I pray that you will attain this.”

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