Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos

Ειδήσεις, Περιγραφές, Φωτογραφίες, Εμπειρίες προσκυνητών, Επισκέψεις, Βίοι Αγίων Γερόντων

Συντονιστές: Νίκος, Anastasios68, johnge

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Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos

Δημοσίευσηαπό ORTHODOXIA » Τρί Σεπ 11, 2012 4:58 pm

Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos (Virgin Mary)
11 Οκτωβρίου, 2010 — VatopaidiFriend

source: Ιερά Μεγίστη Μονή Βατοπαιδίου, «Θαύματα Αγίας Ζώνης», έκδοσις β΄επαυξημένη, Άγιον Όρος 2008
translated from Greek by: Olga Konnaris-Kokkinos, journalist

Εικόνα

Prologue

The works of God and His Saints, which cannot be rationally explained, are called miracles. God performs miracles ad infinitum. This is revealed by our Lord Jesus Christ who says: “My father is working until now” ( John 5, 17). By His uncreated energies, God provides, preserves and controls the whole universe, the whole creation. That is, God preserves the creation in the mint condition He had created it. He conserves and protects it by His divine consideration. Therefore, God’s uncreated energies are constantly and incessantly being revealed in the physical world and cause natural and physical results.Therefore, we are living a constant miracle. All of our abilities are being set in motion by God’s will. If God withdraws His energy from one of our abilities, we are going to lose it. Now I am able to see. I can see because God allows it. If God withdraws his energy I will become blind. read more…
According to the teachings of the Fathers of the Church there are no physical laws (by which nature is being governed) but only spiritual or uncreated laws. The creation remains in existance because it participates in the created, life-giving, provident energy of God. God, Who has created the World out of nothing, has not abandoned it, but governs it by His energies. Sometimes we are able to perceive certain stability in the way His uncreated energies are being expressed and revealed. This is how God wants to act. Man explores this stability, acknowledges it and calls it “natural laws” in his effort to make sense of the physical world. That’s why when people come to perceive the performance of miracles they explain it as God’s intervention in the operation of physical laws. However, the miracle is not the result of God’s intervention in the operation of physical laws, but it is a result of His uncreated Grace on His creation: “when you open your hand, they are filled with good things, when you hide your face, they are dismayed” ( Psalm 103, 28,29)Note 104, 28-29 in English).

Only God has the ability by His very nature to perform miracles. The Saints perform miracles because of the grace they have received from Him. The energy with which they perform the miracles is not their own, but God’s energy. Therefore, the Most Holy Mother of God, as the holiest of the holly, performs miracles more than anyone else, and not just that. All spiritual virtues are being transmitted through her both towards the angels and towards people. She comes second only after the Holy Trinity. After the honor to the Holy Trinity, honor is ascribed to the Most Holy Lady as “being higher than the Cherubim and consummately more glorified than Seraphim”. Since she is being granted the second place after the Trinity, she can attain whatever she wants. As the hymn to our Most Holy Lady, the Theotokarion, says: “you have the ability to achieve whatever you want”.

Our Most Holy Mother, besides her love and her goodness, has also an infinite capacity to assist us. Why? Saint Nikodeme Ayioritis, who is regarded as a loving friend (Θεοτοκόφιλος) of the Mother of God, explains the reason for this in his work “Eortodromio”.

The 9th Ode of the Pentecost Canon says: “Virgin Mother of God, you, who became pregnant without your virginity being corrupted and have lent your flesh to the Word God, the Creator of all”. Explaining this tropario, the Saint refers to that which the Mother of God has lent to her Son, which made Him forever indebted to Her.

“Notice that the hymn writer did not say that the Virgin ‘has given’ or ‘has provided’ or any other similar word, but that she ‘has lent’ her flesh to the Creator Word of the Father, to show that the Mother of God had made the Son of God indebted to her with her loan. Because He has borrowed from her- not an external monetary loan, or a loan of buildings, which may be returned but- an intrinsic part of her very existence; from her physical and most pure blood. Therefore, as a physical loan it is eternal. Thus the Son of God is now forever indebted to his Mother. What can we deduce from this? Since the Son of God is forever indebted to His Mother, foremost and necessarily He must glorify her with all divine glory and honor, which He has never bestowed on any other being. Secondly, He must accept her requests and supplications… Did you grasp, my dear friend, the Virgin’s glory? Did you grasp her splendor?”

In the present book we cite the miracles which the Most Holy Mother of God has performed by her Holy Belt, which is full of grace. All the miracles are being described by those who have been blessed by them, in letters they have sent to our Holy Monastery. These people do not bury the Grace, they confess about the benefaction. Some other people have testified verbally about the cures they have received, when we have transferred the Holy Belt to the various regions for people to worship, but did not put them in writing. A large number of the letters we possess bear the names, the addresses even the telephone numbers of the senders. When we possess such personal details, we pass them on. Out of the whole content of the letters we only publish the part which refers to the miracles.

The Holy Scriptures use a better term to describe the miracle: the term ‘sign’. The sign reveals, it points to someone. It reveals God. The miracle is good not because somebody is being cured, but simply because it reveals God to people. This is the most essential element. We usually pay attention to the first element, the cure, which is something less significant and we do not see the revelation of God’s glory, which is the most important part.

It is this personal experience of God’s presence in their lives, which the Christians, who have been granted the beneficial energies of the Most Holy Lady, are confessing. The most beneficial outcome of the miracle was the wonder of their return and their repentance, as well as God’s revelation. A number of the beneficiaries had either loose ties with the Church or none at all. After the benefaction, they have shed tears, realizing their mistake and their spiritual poverty. They now live in repentance and are struggling.

Ilias Miniatis has said something very touching regarding the protection offered by the Mother of God to the faithful, especially to those suffering and being afflicted.

“You, the orphans, who have been deprived of your parents; parents who have been deprived of your children; spouses who have lost your partners; foreigners who have lost your country; afflicted, who are in pain; you, who are sad, enslaved and sinners, be sad no more. You have a mother; the Mother of God: A Mother, who guides you in your loss; who consoles you in your sorrow; who cures your passions; who forgives your sins. Do not despair. You have a Mother, the Mother of pain; the Mother of God. You, Christians, young or old, priests and laymen, the elderly, men, women and the ailing, all of you, who worship her Crucified Son, you must lodge your appeal to her. So that she will soften your pain and you will be able to carry your cross, your pain and your sorrow”.

We pray that the publication of the present book by our Holy Monastery will strengthen those who are shaky in their faith and bring joy to the faithful, increasing their love towards the most celebrated Mother of God.

The Abbot of the Great Holy Monastery of Vatopedi,
Archimandrite Efrem.



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Re: Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos

Δημοσίευσηαπό ORTHODOXIA » Τρί Σεπ 11, 2012 4:59 pm

Introduction

Our Church honors the holy and sacred relics, whether they are derived from the bodies of Saints, or are items belonging to them. One such relic, the only one which has been found to this day and belongs to the Most Holy Mother of God, is her Holy Belt. It constitutes a precious treasure and the most sacred relic which the Great, Holy Monastery of Vatopedi possesses. The Grace of the Holy Spirit continues to act through the holy relics. As Saint Chrysostomos says: “Jesus Christ, honoring the struggles, the blood they have shed and the martyrdom of the saints, has safeguarded their souls in heaven. But He left on earth their body and their holy relics to assist in our salvation”. read more…
The Grace of the Holy Spirit performs the miracles through the holy relics. There are numerous examples both in the Old and the New Testament. Moses, the prophet, performs great and astonishing wonders with his stick (traversing through the Red Sea, water gashing from the rock, after he touched it with the stick etc). Prophet Elijah, just before he ascended with his body to heaven at the end of his life on earth, which itself constituted an incredible miracle, he performed his last miracle. He struck his sheepskin cloak on the waters of the Jordan River, opened the way and traversed on the opposite river bank with his disciple, Elisha. “Then Elijah took his cloak and rolled it up and struck the water, and the water was parted to the one side and to the other, till the two of them could go over on dry ground” ( 2 Kings, 2,8 ) Prophet Elisha inherites the cloak together with his teacher’s spirit and repeats the same miracle on the Jordan river by appealing to God. The book of the Old Testament says that as soon as the other prophets saw the miracles of the division of the waters said: “The spirit of Elijah rests on Elisha” (2 Kings, 2, 15). The cloak, the garment covering the sacred body of Prophet Elijah, itself became sanctified. It was covering up the body of the prophet and was overflowing with the miracle performing Grace. The cloak received honor from the prophet’s honor, blessing from his blessing, holiness from his sanctity, Grace from his Grace, despite being worn out and humble. Even “the Jordan river respected it” because “in the lifeless garment” the “prophet was present in his absence”.
We see the same phenomenon continuing in the New Testament. We have the case of the woman who had been suffering from hemorrhage for 12 years (Mark 5, 25-34). She did all that was humanly possible, spent all her money on doctors and various cures without any improvement. On the contrary, she became worse. When she had heard about Jesus, she came among the crowd and touched His garment from the back. She thought: “Even if I touch his garments, I will be cured”. She realized she had been cured immediately. The force which was derived from Jesus, in his garments, performed the cure. That’s why He had asked: “Who touched my garments?” The sanctified garments transfer the force which exists in our Mighty Lord.
In the Acts, it is said that even the Saint Peter’s “shadow” performed miracles. “So that they even carried out the sick into the streets and laid them on cots and mats, so that, as Peter came by, at least his shadow might fall on some of them. The people also gathered from the towns around Jerusalem bringing the sick and those afflicted with unclean spirits and they were all healed” (.Acts, 5, 15-16).
The same thing happens with Saint Paul. God was performing unusual miracles with the hands of Paul. People were picking up even his head scarves or the aprons he had used and were placing them on the sick. The sick would then be cured and the unclean spirits would be departing from them. “And God was doing extraordinary miracles by the hands of Paul, so that even handkerchiefs or aprons that had touched his skin were carried away to the sick, and their diseases left them and the evil spirits came out of them” ( Acts 19, 11-12).



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Re: Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos

Δημοσίευσηαπό ORTHODOXIA » Τρί Σεπ 11, 2012 4:59 pm

[Volume 3] - 13 Οκτωβρίου, 2010 — VatopaidiFriend

The Holy Apostles became the vessels of the Grace of the Holy Spirit. Miracles are events beyond nature, which use and are being energized by material things (handkerchiefs and aprons), which are full of Grace. Our Orthodox Church celebrates the worship of the “chains” of Saint Peter in January. When he had been imprisoned by Herod in Jerusalem, his hands were chained. An angel sent by the Lord, freed him. The Christians have preserved the chains and they have been honoring and worshiping them for the benefit of their souls. The chains have received “eternal grace” and became “the cure of ailments, the consolation of those afflicted, the harbor for those distressed”. In a troparion of the Canon of the feast it is written: “Peter, drive away demonic disturbances, pacify the tempest of sin and eradicate all sicknesses, dangers and afflictions as well as the assaults by barbarians from all those who revere your chains”. read more…
In his account to the story of the three youths rescued from the furnace, Ippolitos (235 A.D) notes: “The fire immediately burnt the straps with which the King had tied them, but did not touch their garments, so that this would also demonstrate the Lord’s Might. It is because the garments had been touching their bodies that they had become sanctified and did not burn in the fire”. The fire respected the garments of the youngsters because they had been sanctified since they had been touching their bodies.
Athanasius the Great says that when Saint Antony the Great would enter Alexandria, Christians and idolaters “would try if possible to touch the Elder, believing that they would derive some benefit”. Similarly, Saint John Chrysostomos refers to the way people expressed their reverence at seeing the Bishop of Antioch, Meletios, returning from exile. When he reached the town, “some of them would approach him and touch his feet and kiss his hands and listen to his voice”. Those who could not approach him, thought it was enough “just to see him in order to be blessed”.
Deacon Pontios, who wrote the biography of the martyr, Bishop Kyprianos, refers to the fact that a Christian soldier who was present at the time of the martyrdom, offered him new garments to wear, since he wished to take away the martyr’s clothes which had been drenched in the sweat of his agony.
All material things which are somehow connected with “spirit bearing” saints are being sanctified. Subsequently, they sanctify those who come into contact with them. These are not just preserved as simple memorabilia, but as “holy” relics, worthy of worship and veneration. As Saint Gregory of Nyssa says “those, who even touched the chest where the body of the martyr Theodore was placed, were receiving blessing and consecration. Since, it is not just the body which possesses supernatural qualities but also the chest walls which surround it, even ‘the dust’ gathering on them”. The power of the saint, according to Saint Chrysostomos, passes from “the soul to the body, from the body to the garments, from the garments to the shoes and from the shoes to the shadows”.
We must stress here that according to our ecclesiastical tradition, holy relics emit a fragrance, a particular pleasant scent, because of the presence of divine Grace. The Holy Belt was tied around the belly of the Mother of God, while Christ as an embryo resided in it, and received the grace of healing. Those who venerate it, receive ample Grace and consolation. All those who are in the deep end of the vastness of sickness, let them resort to the vastness of mercy granted by our Most Immaculate Lady. The prophetic book ‘Song of Songs’ of the Old Testament writes about our Lady’s garments: “the fragrance of your garments is like the fragrance of Lebanon”( Song of Songs 4, 10-11. )
In our Holy monastery we keep the tradition to hand out to the devout, when they ask, pieces of ribbon which have been blessed by the Holy Belt of the Most Holy Mother of God. With the blessing of the Holy Belt innumerable miracles are being performed. The Holy Belt mostly helps couples who wish to have children and heals cancers and other incurable diseases.
However, if a miracle is to take place there are some basic preconditions. One is the virtuous life of the person to whom the miracle is being performed. The divine Grace is not being revealed neither does it reside in a soul which is full of passions and evil. Only a person who has a clean heart may become the vessel of Grace. It must be cleansed from “all defilement of flesh and spirit” according to Paul the Apostle (2 Corinthians 7, 1). As it has been shown from the countless miracles which have taken place, it is not just the person who asks for it or has been granted the favor who must be free from words, thoughts and deeds which are contrary to God’s will, but also his close family. However, if he is being weighed down by something, he must first be cleansed by the mystery of repentance and honest confession. It is only then that he can appeal to divine Grace.
A second precondition for any miracle to take place is faith. This is what Saint John the Syrian (?) of Damascus writes: “A ‘Christian’ means faith. Whoever comes forth in faith will gain a lot. On the contrary, whoever has doubts resembles the waves of the sea which are moved by the wind here and there, and he will not receive anything”. He means the kind of faith which is manifested by his whole life and which God likes- not faith shown only in words. If in our everyday lives we cannot prove that we love God, then we resemble the people at the times of our Lord, whom He had described as ‘hypocrites’ and for whom He had said: “These people honor me with their lips, but their heart is far from me” ( Matthew 15, 8 )
Therefore, what is needed is the kind of faith which is absolute, unreserved, unshakable, total and steady. Whoever possesses such faith depends entirely on God. He places his trust on His Might and His Grace. Faith either exists or it doesn’t. If we are talking about the kind of faith which is full of questions, hesitation, ambivalence, preconditions and ups and downs, then this faith is nonexistent. Such, so called, ‘faith’ cannot attract divine Grace and Might and it cannot render possible “what is impossible to humans”. The stronger man’s faith gets, the more able is divine Grace to descend and approach him. When faith wavers, Grace withdraws. When man’s faith reaches the strongest possible grade so that it becomes total and unreserved, divine Grace comes to greet him and at the meeting point the spark of the miracle ignites. Then the devout receives immediately whatever he has asked for.
Thus the patient, if he cleanses his life, so that he proves his total faith, he is being granted the miracle and he is instantly and totally healed once and for all.
This was the healing method also used by our Lord. He first cleansed the soul and the life of the patient by forgiving him his sins. Then to those who were asking for His Grace, He would ask such questions as to help them realize that they possess faith inside them and confess that they indeed believe in Him. The third stage after the absolution of sins and the confession of faith was their complete cure. He would complete the full circle of His healing method with the admonition: “See, you are well! Sin no more, that nothing worse may happen to you” (John 5, 14).
From what we have said so far it is construed that the Lord’s Grace is always the primary cause for every miracle. However, if a miracle is to take place, the power of a lively faith is necessary. With this kind of faith, the faithful safeguard the acceptance of divine Grace. In any case, one cannot stipulate a certain prescription with which a miracle is performed even with the presence of the most fervent faith. Christ’s apostles, despite their faith, could not heal the epileptic youngster (Matthew 17, 15-21). The Lord’s reply to their question of why they couldn’t heal the young man shows that a warmer personal communion and accord must exist between those who are asking for a miracle and the Most Holy Will of the only True God.



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Re: Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos

Δημοσίευσηαπό ORTHODOXIA » Τρί Σεπ 11, 2012 5:00 pm

[Volume 4] - 14 Οκτωβρίου, 2010 — VatopaidiFriend

The history of the Holy Belt chapter

Εικόνα

The Holy Belt of the Mother of God, divided these days in three parts, is the only relic or remains, which endures from her life on earth and is being safeguarded at the Holy and Great Monastery of Vatopedi. According to the tradition, the belt was woven from camel hair from the Mother of God herself, and after her Repose, while she was ascending to heaven, she handed it over to Thomas the Apostle. The apolytikio of the feast for the deposition of the Holy Belt of the Mother of God says: “While you were ascending to the forthcoming glory, you have given your most venerable belt to Thomas the Apostle”. read more…
In Jerusalem, two poor but devout women assumed the responsibility to keep the Holy Belt safe. The Most Holy Lady had asked John the Apostle to also share among these women her two dresses. One devout virgin belonging to this family assumed the same responsibility from generation to generation.
During the reign of Emperor Arcadius, son of Theodosios the Great, the Holy Belt was transferred to the glorious capital of the Byzantine Empire, Konstantinoupole. He placed it in a precious reliquary, which he named “Holy casket”. The deposition took place on the 31st of August. The holy relic would, from then on, protect the capital of the empire and its citizens from enemy attacks, calamities and demonic assaults.
A few years later, Arcadius’ daughter, empress Poulheria, erected the dazzling church of Halkoprateion and deposited the Holy Belt inside. The empress herself embroidered it with golden threat and it is found in this condition today at the Holy and Great Monastery of Vatopedi.
The following century, we do not know precisely when or how, the Holy Belt was taken to Zela of Kappadokia, south of Amassia. It was returned to Konstantinoupolis again during the reign of Emperor Justinian the A (527-565), the owner of Ayia Sofia. His successor Justinian the B with his wife Sofia, have renovated the Church of Halkoprateion and built the chapel named after the Holy Casket. The Holy Belt was then placed on the Altar.
The Holy Belt performed innumerable miracles in Konstantinoupolis. It healed the empress Zoe Zaoutsi, wife of Leon the Wise (886-912), who had been possessed by a demonic spirit. As soon as the Patriarch placed the Holy Belt on her, she was instantly released.
The Patriarch of Konstantinoupolis, Germanos the A (715-730) offers the beautiful observation that the Holy Belt preserves the divine fragrance of its healings to all eternity, bestowing joy to all those who approach it in faith and devoutness. Joseph the hymn-writer (apprx. 816-866) wrote hymns for the holy relic, since by the Grace of the Most Holy Lady it bestows blessings on the faithful who approach to offer veneration, raises them beyond corruption and frees them from illnesses and afflictions.
Around the year 1150, the Holy Belt was found in the Great Palace of Konstantinoupolis in the church of Michael the Archangel. It must have most probably been cut into pieces which have been housed in various churches.
During the 12 Century, when Emmanuel the A Komninos was emperor, (1143-1180), a feast for the veneration of the Holy Belt was established on the 31st of August, while before it was being celebrated together with the feast for the Garments of the Mother of God on the 2nd of July.
After the capture of Konstantinoupolis by the crusaders during the 4rth Crusade in 1204, some pieces have been plundered by the barbarian hords and were transferred to the west. Fortunately not all of the pieces were lost. It is certain that a single piece remained in Konstantinoupolis even after its recapture by the emperor Michael the H, the Palaiologian, in 1261 and was being kept in the church of Vlahernas. An anonymous Russian pilgirm gave the last available testimony as to the presence of the Holy Belt in the Byzantine capital. It is not known what has happened to the Belt after the capture of Konstantinoupolis by the Turks in 1453. The biggest piece is being safeguarded today at our monastery. However, it arrived here in an adventurous way.

Constantine the Great had constructed a cross, which he was carrying with him during all his battle campaigns for his own and his army’s protection. In the middle of the cross a piece of the Holy Cross was placed. There were also some spaces where remainders from the most known martyrs and a piece of the holy belt were being placed. All the emperors were carrying this cross in their campaigns. During a campaign against the Bulgarians, the emperor Isaakios B, the Angel( 1185-1195), was defeated by their ruler, Assan. A priest had thrown the cross in the river to protect it from being consecrated by the enemy. However, the boulgarians found it and handed it over to their ruler Assan.
The boulgarians did not have good relations with the Serbs and these had been constantly worsening. Around 1330, the Bulgarian army was defeated in a battle by the Serb ruler, the great martyr Laxarus (+1389). The King’s cross passed on to the hands of the Serbs. Forty years later, Lazarus gave the cross of Constantine the Great to the Vatopedi monastery as a gift, together with the piece of the Holy Cross, the piece of the Holy Belt and other holy remains. At the back of the Cross the following is written in the Serbian: “I, Lazarus, Knezis of Serbia and King of Greece in Christ, grant this mighty weapon with the immaculate Belt of my Most Pure Lady, to the monastery of my kingdom, Vatopedi”. Since then, it is being kept in the altar of Katholikon, which is the main church of the monastery.
Let us also refer to another tradition which is being preserved at our monastery. According to this, the Holy Belt was gifted to Vatopedi by the emperor John Z Kantakouzinos, (1341-1353), after he had stepped down from the thrown and became a monk, named Iosaphat, at our monastery.
During the years of the Turkish occupation of Greece, monks from the monastery would perform holy litanies with the Belt in places like Crete, Macedonia, Thrace, Konstantinoupolis and Asia Minor so that the enslaved Greeks would receive its blessing and be freed from epidemics.



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ORTHODOXIA
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Εγγραφή: Παρ Ιούλ 27, 2012 3:09 pm
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Re: Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos

Δημοσίευσηαπό ORTHODOXIA » Τρί Σεπ 11, 2012 5:00 pm

[Volume 5] - 15 Οκτωβρίου, 2010 — VatopaidiFriend

The Holy Belt has performed innumerable miracles over the years. We will only refer to some of them, here.

1. The ship stays montionless

Once, the inhabitants of Ainos invited the Holy Belt. The monks who were accompanying it were being offered hospitality at the house of a priest, whose wife secretly cut off a small piece. When the monks boarded the vessel, the ship stayed motionless, even though the sea was calm. When the woman saw this extraordinary event she realized her mistake and handed back the missing piece. The ship sailed off only after the piece was handed over. Since then a second casket was crafted to accommodate this piece to this day. read more…

2. The adventures of the Holy Belt

During the uprising in 1821, at the request of the people of Crete which were afflicted by the plague, the Holy Belt was transported to the island. When the monks prepared to leave, the Turks arrested them and led them to be hanged. The Holy Belt was then bought by the English consul Dominique Santantonio, who took it with him to his new home Santorini. The news spread fast to the whole island and the Bishop informed the monastery’s brotherhood, who sent Abbot Dionysios to Santorini in 1831. The consul demanded 15.000 grosia for the Holy Belt and the people very touchingly managed to assemble this amount. That’s how the Holy Belt was bought back and returned to the Vatopedi monastery.
However, the wife of the consul did exactly the same thing that the wife of the priest had done. She also secretly cut off a piece, before handing the Belt over to Abbot Dionysios. However soon, her husband suddenly died and her mother and sister became seriously ill. In a letter to the monastery in 1839, she asked them to send representatives to collect the piece.
Every year since then, on the 10th of October the monastery celebrates the second home coming of the Holy Belt to our Holy monastery.

3. The disappearance of a pandemic/ the rising of a dead man.

In 1864, the Holy Belt was carried over to Konstantinoupolis because of a cholera outbreak. As soon as the ship reached the port, the cholera stopped and none of the sick died. This strange event surprised the Sultan, who had asked the monks to fetch the Holy Belt to him so that he could offer his respects.
While the Holy Belt was in Konstantinoupolis, a Greek resident of Galatas region, had requested for it to be brought to his home since his son was very ill. By the time the Holy Belt reached his house, his son had already died. The monks, however, did not despair. On the contrary they asked to see the body. As soon as they had placed the Holy Belt on him, he rose again.

4. The onslaught of locusts

In 1894, the Holy Belt was invited to Madyto of Asia Minor, because swarms of locusts have been ravishing the trees and the land. As soon as the ship reached the port, the sky was filled with locusts which were falling into the sea in such great numbers that they made it difficult for the sailors to moor the ship. When the residents of Madytos saw this miracle, they started endlessly chanting “Kyrie Eleison”( “Lord have Mercy”) from were they had been standing at the docks.



Άβαταρ μέλους
ORTHODOXIA
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Εγγραφή: Παρ Ιούλ 27, 2012 3:09 pm
Τοποθεσία: Ομάδα Διαχείρισης

Re: Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos

Δημοσίευσηαπό ORTHODOXIA » Τρί Σεπ 11, 2012 5:01 pm

[Volume 6] - 16 Οκτωβρίου, 2010 — VatopaidiFriend

5. Fr Daniel Katounakiotis is cured of an inflammation of the kidneys.

Εικόνα

In his book, “Contemporary Figures of the Holy Mountain”, Vol. 4, the late Archimandrite Cherubim describes how Father Daniel Katounakiotis had been miraculously cured of an acute inflammation of the kidneys. We quote the account: “No sooner did he reach Vatopedi than he suffered an acute inflammation of the kidneys. This “thorn in the flesh” afflicted him very seriously this time and he had to stay in bed for weeks.
The fathers at the monastery have been nursing him with a lot of affection. But even more affection was shown by the great Doctor of the Mountain, the Mother of God. read more…
Father Daniel was especially fond of our Lady, the Mother of God; he was showing the same reverence and trust and honor to her like all the saints. He had pleaded with her with fervor and tears and he was certain of the outcome. He knew about her promises. Was it at all possible that she wouldn’t keep them? Indeed. The day of the feast of the Holy Belt (31st August), the patient was suddenly healed and his cure was permanent! He was never again bothered by this terrible illness which had been pestering him for ten, whole years”.

6. The cure of Fr. Filotheos Zervakos.

Εικόνα

The blessed Elder, Filotheos Zervakos, describes how dreadful his constant migraine was. Here is his account of the miracle. “We have arrived at the Vatopedi monastery on the 31st of July. I was offered hospitality at the Archontariki, but I could not take the horrible pain I was in. After a short while, I was in such a pain that I was holding my head and was running here and there. I pleaded with the head of Archontariki for some help and he went to the doctor, who gave me some painkillers. On my way from the pharmacy I passed by the church, which happened to be open. When I entered, I saw that the Holy relics were on desplay in the Holy Sanctuary and a deacon from Ikonion was venerating them. I entered and started kissing with reverence the Cross first and then the Icon of the Lady Vematarissa. Then, I kissed the piece of the Holy Cross. I also kissed the Holy Belt, feeling at the same time that the wretched me was kissing the Holy Belt with which the Most Holy Mother of God was strapping herself. While I was kissing it with veneration and tears, I felt- Oh the miracle!- that my illness had gone and I was completely cured! Oh how great and wonderful are your wonders, most revered Lady! Let your name be most glorified and blessed, because you do not stop healing our bodies and souls… I came out of the Holy Sanctuary and was standing in the middle of the church speechless and was marveling at how I was feeling before I entered and how suddenly I was completely cured”!

7. The locusts were dropping in the sea

In the Book: “Talks by Elder Paisios Ayioritis”, Volume 1, titled “With pain and love for today’s man”, there is a miracle performed by the Holy Belt on p.113.
- “Did you throw the medication against maggotts?
- I did, geronta.
- There are so many of you, nuns and you cannot exterminate a single maggott! During the German occupation of Greece, swarms of locusts have appeared in Halkidiki and they brought the Holy Belt from Vatopedi. The locusts, like clouds, had then been falling into the sea”.

8. The pandemic is stopped.

In September 1818, the fathers of Vatopedi carried the Holy Belt to Galatsi in Romania, together with a piece of the Holy Cross and the head of Saint Gregory the Theologian. In a letter, the Metropolitan of Moldavia, Benjamin, says among other things: “As soon as each one of us consumed the holy water, the most painful plague has stopped”.



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Re: Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos

Δημοσίευσηαπό ORTHODOXIA » Τρί Σεπ 11, 2012 5:01 pm

[Volume 7] - 18 Οκτωβρίου, 2010 — VatopaidiFriend

9. The deadly plague is stopped

22 August 1827. Father Savvas writes: “At Enos, the deadly plague has stopped on the 15th of June with the grace of the Holy Belt”. From Enos, the Holy Belt was transported to Didimotichon. In another letter, dated 12th September, the same priest writes: “Here, the deadly plague has stopped as it did at Enos, with the grace of the Holy Belt”.
10. We have been freed from the onslaught of lucusts. read more…
Father Kosmas Chrysoulas in a letter to the monastery writes: “In 1915, , we have invited the Holy Belt from the Vatopedi monastery to our village, Neochori, Kallipoleos, because we have had an onslaught of locusts. When the Holy Belt arrived and the service of the Holy Water had finished, flocs of black birds appeared in the sky and devoured the locusts. We have been, thus, freed from this calamity”.

11. The Holy Belt in Ithaki

Mrs Eythymia Sofianou, of Vathy in Ithaki, had kept for safekeeping the “holy belt” at her home. It had been given to her maternal grandmother, Maria Molfesi-Sofianou by Saint Joachim. This holy relic was a belt, of light brown and was embroidered with a golden thread. It was being kept at the Iconostasi and was given to virgins, who would tie it around their heads or their bellies during the marriage service as a so called “proof of virginity”. This was regarded as a great blessing. Afterwards, the holy belt was being returned to the Sofianos family. The last time was being given to a refugee family in 1935.
The family used to cross children with the belt when they were sick. Unfortunately this holy belt was lost during the destructive earthquake in 1953.

12. Thasos is being saved from drought

In 1957, some residents from Thasos arrived at the monastery. They were pleading to have the Holy Belt transferred to the island since it hadn’t rained for years and the drought was threatening to depopulate it.The fathers agreed and decided to leave for Thasos a few days later.
According to the monastery’s tradition, when the Holy Belt leaves the monastery, a Paraklisis service is being held. The fathers accompany the Holy Belt in a glorious procession to the small port, the arsanas, holding pennons and incense, while the bells of the church are ringing. On the way to the sea, the Paraklitikos Canon is being sung.
The same thing happened that day and the fathers boarded the small boat for Thasos which is 2-3 hours away. The weather was fine and there were no signs that any rain was imminent. By the time they had reached the port of Thasos, torrential rain had already been falling on the island. Such was the flooding that they could not leave the boat. They immediately returned to the monastery, instead, offering praise to the Most Holy Mother of God, who had intervened and saved the devout people of the island, seeing their good intentions and adhering to their appeal.



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Re: Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos

Δημοσίευσηαπό ORTHODOXIA » Τρί Σεπ 11, 2012 5:02 pm

[Volume 8] - 20 Οκτωβρίου, 2010 — VatopaidiFriend

Εικόνα

Contemporary miracles


The miracles referred to in this chapter took place from May 1992 to July 2007 and have been selected from the monastery’s archives.

1. It’s difficult to have kids
Fr Theotimos comes from Congo. He studied theology in Greece. He wished to have kids so much but had a problem. He asked for the ribbon blessed on the Holy Belt. He describes the result.

3.12.1995 - Methonis 23, Athens
“The name of God-Man Christ must always be glorified and the name of the Most Holy Lady, the Mother of God must be honored. read more…
We received the Holy Belt on March 1992. In May 1992, my wife became pregnant and we had a baby son weighing 2.900gr. He was born with a caesarian section and we baptized him, Marios, to honor the name of the Most Holy Lady. The doctors had previously verified that it would have been difficult for us to have children.
In April 1993, my wife was eight months pregnant and had a problem. She had to have another cesarean before the end of the gestation period. My wife wore the Holy Belt on her for two days before the operation. The baby, a girl, who was weighing only 1400 gr., was born having doubled her weight”.
Fr. Theotimos and Evangelia Tsala.

2. The time we have longed for, arrived

Athens
“I would like to mention a miracle which took place to my wife, when she was wearing the Holy Belt of the Most Holy Mother of God, which a priest from your monastery has given us in August 1992, when I had visited the Holy Mountain.
But before I go into this, I would like to refer to another miracle which happened to both of us and made us completely change the way we live. Our life was definitely secular. We were knee deep into the sludge of lies and sin which our society provides in abundance. We had been walking a path which was supposedly leading us to happiness and joy but basically it was causing tabefaction and finally eternal spiritual death.
The All Merciful God showed mercy on us. He gave us a present which we thought at first that it was unbearable. My wife had been diagnosed with compulsive neurosis. She was prescribed twelve pills a day to deal with depression, sadness and suicidal tendencies. She was having attacks and was crying all day. We visited many doctors, until we have found our spiritual father; Fr E. Everything has changed since then. We turned towards the right path.
Even though my wife’s problem did not completely disappear, the psychiatrist, Fr S, in cooperation with our spiritual father, advised us to have a child. However, because of my wife’s problem, it was difficult for her to become pregnant. We had been expecting help from above.
And now I am going to refer to the second miracle.
During our worship of holy relics, the priest talked about the miracles that our Most Holy Lady performs on childless women with the blessed ribbons. All those who wore them and lived with repentance, become pregnant. Then I was fighting the thought to get one for us, but I was embarrassed. I was ready to leave, but something pushed me and I got one.
My wife had been wearing it all the time. We were praying and waiting. In November the same year, the time which we have yearned for has arrived. Now that I am writing this, we have a daughter who is 9.5 months old and is called Erini.
With respect,
Vasilis and Panayiota Aslanides.

3. The doctors had disappointed both of them

20.11.94 - Livadia Larnaca, Cyprus
In 1993, I celebrated the Annunciation of the Mother of God at the Holy Mountain. Besides my personal need for prayer, I asked the fathers to pray for two spiritual sisters who had not had the joy of becoming mothers. The doctors had disappointed both of them.
At the end of the Paraklisis made for B. and G, I took the ribbons, after they were being blessed by the Holy Belt. When I returned to Cyprus, I had invited both of them to receive the blessings, which I had brought for them. B, came, kissed the icons at the iconostasi, but did not take the ribbon that day, she took it later on. In the meantime, she became pregnant.
It took G more time to receive the blessing because she was staying far away. She had adopted a child. When we met, she took the ribbon and a few days later the doctor confirmed that she was pregnant.
Both of them visited me to announce their good news. All together we gave glory to the Most Holy Lady, Mother of God.
Lenos Skitinis



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Re: Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos

Δημοσίευσηαπό ORTHODOXIA » Τρί Σεπ 11, 2012 5:02 pm

[Volume 9] - 21 Οκτωβρίου, 2010 — VatopaidiFriend

4. I was married for seven years and didn’t have a child

M.Bogdou 18, Xanthi - 2.6.1995
“I had been married for seven years and didn’t have a child. My husband and I had tried many times to have a child and had visited various doctors in Athens and Thessaloniki. Finally at the end of our tether, you sent me a ribbon blessed by the Holy Belt of the Mother of God. I got pregnant and gave birth to a healthy baby boy on the 31st August 1993, on the feast-day of the Holy Belt.

I certainly cannot express my gratitude enough and my adoration and awe for our Creator, who does great and wonderful things and continues to bless his worthless servant. I am pregnant again and the doctor told me that they are twins. Please write my son’s name, among the list of the miracles of our Most Holy Lady…”

With a lot of respect and affection,

God’s servants,

Demitrios and Maria

5. Three healings

Thessaloniki - 6-5-1995
We feel the need to express our gratitude for the great honor you have shown in bringing the Holy Belt to our home. It would be a great omission not to refer to the miracles we have seen being performed. We refer to some of them, fully realizing the magnitude of what we are about to write.

A military judge, who had a serious back problem and was walking bend, became well as soon as he left our home.

A fifteen year old child, who could never stand on his feet because of a congenital problem, began to walk as soon as he entered the house. It is important to say that his parents kissed the Holy Belt when you had already entered the car and were getting ready to leave. They told us about the miracle a few days later, because they had been afraid!

My husband’s colleague as soon as he put on some Holy Water on a funny spot which was suddenly growing and making him anxious, it disappeared immediately! This person did not come to our home to worship the Holy Belt and the miracle had been performed just by the Holy Water”.

May we have your blessing!

Paul and Fotini Papoulidou

6. We have been given two healthy boys

Arch. Chrysostomos 1, Pafos, Cyprus - 6.7.95
“I am writing this letter as an indication of our gratitude to our Most Holy Mother of God and Ever-Virgin Maria, who has shown her magnanimity towards the sinful and humble servants of our Lord, once more.

She has performed a miracle on us, by giving us two healthy boys, after seven years of marriage. When I have visited your monastery in 1993, I prayed in front of her miracle- performing icon and took the ribbon from her blessed Holy Belt. A year later the miracle happened. My wife became pregnant with twins.

I also extend my thanks to you because you have helped me find the true path of God which leads to eternal life. Please pray to our Lady that she grants health to the children, which she has given us so miraculously”.

With the love of Christ,

Stelios and Eleni Kalli

7. Back pain stopped

Themistokleous 31, Athens - 20.9.1995
“During my visit to the Great and Holy Monastery of Vatopedi on the 25.8.95, after the Vespers the priest brought out the body remains of saints and the Holy Belt of the Most Holy Mother of God for the visitors to worship. When this has finished, I asked the priest to read some prayers for me at the presence of the Holy Belt. He placed his petrachili and the Belt of the Most Holy Lady and started saying a prayer. While he was reading, I started feeling that I had been holding a great and very heavy load on my back, which was receding as the reading was progressing. When the prayer ended, I felt that the weight had disappeared. From that moment my back pain, which has given me so much trouble for so long, had disappeared.

I would like to express my infinite gratitude to our Most Holy Lady for the miracle she performed on me, by completely curing my back pain.

With infinite thanks,

V. Papachristopoulos

8. The Holy Belt has miraculously given me 12 children

Patra - 18.10.1995,
“I have a 14-member family: myself, Fr Nicholaos, my wife Anthi and twelve children. A crucial and great miracle of the Holy Belt is our having twelve kids.

When my wife was pregnant with our first child she had serious health problems. She was nearing her term but had no labor pains. The doctors had said that the baby was dead and that she had to abort it otherwise her life was in danger. However, she had placed her faith in God, was reciting parakliseis and praying with the prayer rope. Our child in the end was born alive and healthy under the following miraculous circumstances.

A devout woman, when she heard about our problem, gave me a ribbon of the Holy Belt. She told me to tell my wife to wear it and everything would be all right. My wife did as she was told and after a while she gave birth to a graceful and blessed little girl.

My wife’s other pregnancies were also problematic, but with the grace of the Holy Belt, we have managed to have twelve kids, six boys and six girls.

And here is something else, which is also important. My wife had varicose veins on her legs and the doctors had advised her not to have another child since she was going to endanger her child’s life as well as her own during birth. Because she had placed her trust in the Mother of all people, was never put in any danger”.

With respect and love in Christ

Father Nicholaos, Theologian and Teacher



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Re: Miracles by the Holy Belt of Most Holy Theotokos

Δημοσίευσηαπό ORTHODOXIA » Τρί Σεπ 11, 2012 5:03 pm

[Volume 10] - 22 Οκτωβρίου, 2010 — VatopaidiFriend

9. She had a natural birth

Demitri Tirimou 3, Larnaca. Cyprus - 1/11/1995
“My wife’s sister had some problems with her pregnancy and the doctor had advised her to stay at the clinic and give birth by a cesarean. She was 8,5 months pregnant. After some tests, the doctor diagnosed that the baby would have some problems with its heart and she had to be induced. As soon as they told me, without a second thought I gave her the ribbon of the Holy Belt. She had already fasted in order to take the Holy Communion and she went to the clinic in this spiritual state of mind. They put her on the drip to start labor and after one to two and a half hours she gave birth naturally to a healthy baby boy.

With infinite thanks,

Andreas Ioannou

10. I have the Holy Belt in my hands for the last 42 years



In the province. - 9.11.1995
“I am paralyzed since 1926.The Holy Belt is in my hands for the last 42 years. The miracles that have been performed are numerous. I have not kept, however, the names of those healed, and because I am now old I cannot remember them all. The miracles were performed to women who could not give birth easily and were risking death. They would place the Holy Belt on their chests. The Grace of the Lady, Mother of God, would change the difficult labor into an easy one and thus, both mother and child would be saved! I am writing down the names of the persons whom I still remember”. ( A list of 12 names is given)

I kiss your right hand,

Georgia Karamouzi

11. For the entire night I would find no rest.

Laskou 26, Paleo Psychiko, Athens - 11.12.1995
The Grace which springs from the miraculous Belt of the Mother of God has freed me from a great turmoil.

After an operation in the intestines which I had done years ago, I was left with an occasional pain in the abdomen which was giving me a lot of trouble. After some medical attention the pain was a little alleviated.

During this summer, for three consecutive months, the pains were a daily occurance. No medicine could help me. For night after night I would find no rest. Even the days were full of pain and torment.

By God’s providence I was in Thessaloniki when the full of graces Belt of our Most Holy Lady was taken out of the Holy Mountain. Full of hope I ran to worship it. I took the blessed ribbon and put it on me. I fervently prayed to our Most Holy Lady to help me. I was certain absolutely sure, that I would be cured.

Oh the miraculous wonders of the Great Lady! Great is her Grace for her troubled children. The pains immediately stopped. I was completely cured. I do not feel even the slightest pain.

I had no way to thank her. I could only cry and whisper: “My Lady, I thank you…”. Naturally I am not willing to take the ribbon off me, not even for a minute. I feel such trust, which is not compared to even the best etnerologist sitting next to me. How can I not feel this, since they pains never appeared again?

With great respect..

Beatrice Kalaitzi

12. Completely impossible, since it was a congenital defect.

Nicosia

I was married in 1981 and four years later I realized that it was difficult for my wife to conceive. After the relevant tests, I was told that it was completely impossible to get my wife pregnant since my problem was a congenital one. Everything happened in 1985.

In 1995, I visited the Vatopedi monastery to celebrate the Holy Week. There, I heard about the Holy Belt of the Mother of God. After I kissed it, the priest placed it on me and read a prayer. Then, he gave me a ribbon blessed by the Holy Belt to tie it around my waist, since it was me who had the problem.

In March 1996, ten months later, my wife visited the doctor for something else and he told her that she was two months pregnant. We showed him all the tests which were saying that it was medically impossible for this to happen. After seeing them, the doctor only said: “I cannot say anything. This is a miracle”.

I give glory to the Most Holy Lady and her Holy Belt for the divine gift she has given me.

Konstatinos and Eleni Faratzi

13. Take the Holy Belt with you to protect you

Halkokondyli 32, Peristeri, Athens - 30. 7. 1996
Last year, I visited your monastery and took two ribbons of the Holy Belt. I gave the one to my best man who could not have children and tied the other around my waist for protection. When I visited A, my spiritual sister, I felt that I had to give my ribbon to her husband, K. He was giving her trouble daily with his drinking problem, his unwillingness to work and for her life in Christ. They were two people following completely different paths.

-K, I told him, take the Holy Belt of the Most Holy Lady to protect you and everything will sort itself out slowly.

A month later, K stopped drinking, found a job and with the help of our Lady he began praying and going to confession.

May you all be blessed

Christos Apostolakis




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