The most humble Handmaiden of the Lord, the Virgin Mary, is shown the greatest honor in this icon by placing her on a throne with her Son and God. The Orthodox Church honors her by crying out in her church service, “Thou art a gold-entwined tower, and twelve-wall encircled city, a throne besprinkled with sunbeams, a royal chair of the King. O, unexplained wonder! That thou dost feed the Master with thy milk.” Those of the household of God repeat what she said to the great Archangel Gabriel at the Annunciation, “behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed.” (Luke 1:48)
In this 17th century Greek icon, known to work miracles and to cure those with cancer, the Divine Child sits in glory on her All-Pure lap and blesses us. He was aware of His Divine Nature and Rulership at every moment of His Life, as is seen in His icons which show the intelligent and aware face of an adult even when He was a child. In the halo around Christ’s head is a cross with the Greek letters for “I AM” as the infant silently proclaims himself to be the King of Glory and ground of Existence Itself.