KAZAKHSTAN: September 24, 2011
Kazakhstan bids farewell to the image of the Queen of Heaven
The visit of the Kursk-Root Icon of the Mother of God “of the Sign” to the Republic of Kazakhstan came to a close on September 23, 2011, with a 5 pm moleben in Vvedensky Cathedral performed by the archpastors who participated in the visit along with clergymen of the churches of Almaty.
The Cathedral could not accommodate all those who wished to bid farewell to the miracle-working icon, so hundreds of pilgrims held candles outside the temple. After the moleben, His Eminence Metropolitan Alexander of Astana and Kazakhstan blessed the worshipers with the great holy icon, first inside the cathedral, then outside. Accompanied by the singing of the troparion and magnification, the icon was brought out of the church by clergymen of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia. An automobile then bore the miraculous healing icon away as the worshipers sang “Most-Holy Mother of God, save us!”
The icon will then fly via Moscow to the city of Kursk.
With the blessing of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia, the main holy icon of the Russian diaspora visited Kazakhstan from September 19-23. Tens of thousands of worshipers venerated the holy icon in Astanai, Karaganda and Almaty, as well as believers from the other cities and towns of the Republic of Kazakhstan, from southern Siberia and Kyrghizia.
Those who wished to pray before the Kursk-Root Icon were given the opportunity to do so 24 hours a day, and molebens and akathists were constantly being performed before it.
The icon's visit helped to bolster and console the Orthodox Christians of the region.