Icon “The Protection of the Holy Mother of God”. Wood, oil. XIX century

Many icons are associated with the image of the Mother of God. Among them is the icon “Protection of the Holy Mother of God”. According to legend, on October 14, an army of Agarians besieged the city of Constantinople, trying to capture it. The inhabitants of the capital of Byzantium turned to the Mother of God in fervent prayer for salvation. According to stories, the Mother of God appeared before people and covered them with her veil. After that, the enemies retreated, and the city was saved. The Christian holiday “Protection of the Blessed Virgin Mary” is celebrated by Eastern Rite churches on October 14. Since 1999, the holiday of the Intercession in Ukraine has been celebrated as the Day of Ukrainian Cossacks, because this icon protected Ukrainian Cossacks during military campaigns. It is traditionally believed that on Pokrov, in 1942, the Ukrainian Insurgent Army was formed in Ukraine. Therefore, October 14 is celebrated as the day of creation of the UPA. In 2014, the Decree of the President of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko, approved the celebration of the Defender of Ukraine Day on October 14, on the day of the Protection.