Intercession of the Theotokos

The Intercession of the Theotokos, or the Protection of Our Most Holy Lady Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary, is a feast of the Mother of God celebrated in the Eastern Orthodox and Byzantine Catholic Churches. The feast celebrates the protection afforded the faithful through the intercessions of the Theotokos (lit. Mother of God, the Eastern title of the Virgin Mary). In the Slavic Orthodox Churches it is celebrated as the most important solemnity besides the Twelve Great Feasts and Pascha. The feast is commemorated in Eastern Orthodoxy as a whole, but by no means as fervently as it is in Russia, Belarus and Ukraine. It is not a part of the ritual traditions of, and therefore is not celebrated by, the Oriental Orthodox Churches or some jurisdictions that allow Western Rite Orthodoxy. Yet the feast is perfectly consistent with the theology of these sister churches. It is celebrated on October 14 (OS October 1).[1] The Western Rite Communities of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia (ROCOR) do celebrate this feast on their calendar (www.rocor-wr.org).

Icon of the Protection, 19th century, Russia