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Храм Серафима Саровского на Пангане
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The Cincture of the Theotokos in Thailand

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With the blessing of His Holiness KIRILL, Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia, from December 19, 2019 to January 19, 2020, a reliquary with a fragment of the Holy Cincture (belt) of the Theotokos will be visiting the Diocese of Thailand to mark the 20th anniversary of the Orthodox Church in Thailand.

The Cincture will remain for veneration in the churches of the diocese in accordance with the following schedule:

 

December 18-21, 2019​ – St. Nicholas Cathedral in Bangkok
December 21-25, 2019​ – All Saints church and Holy Veil church in Pattaya
December 26-27, 2019​ – Holy Royal Martyrs church in Hua Hin
December 27, 2019 – January 09, 2020​ – Holy Trinity church on Phuket Island
January 10-13, 2020​ – Holy Ascension church on Samui Island
January 14-16, 2020​ – St. Vladimir church in Chiang Mai
January 17-19, 2020​ – St. Nicholas Cathedral in Bangkok

The Belt of the Blessed Virgin Mary is a material testimony of Her life on Earth, it was woven by the Most Virgin of camel hair. As you know the Apostle Thomas did not participate in the burial of the Blessed Virgin Mary - at that time he preached in India and only on the third day was able to arrive in Jerusalem. There is a version that the Mother of God after her assumption appeared to the apostle and gave him her belt in order to console him. This version is imprinted on Orthodox icons: on Mount Athos there is a 6th century fresco depicting Thomas brings the belt to other apostles.

The belt was stored in Constantinople for a long time in a special golden ark. It was first opened at the end of the 9th century during the reign of Emperor Leo the Wise. This was done with the permission of the patriarch for the healing of the emperor’s wife Zoe overwhelmed by an unclean spirit. In gratitude to the Mother of God for healing Zoe embroidered the entire belt with a gold thread. In the 10th century the belt was divided into parts which eventually turned out to be in Bulgaria, Georgia and Cyprus.

In 1625, Tsar Mikhail Fyodorovich Romanov received as a gift from the Persian Shah Abbas I the greatest shrines exported by the Persians from Kakheti during the war of conquest: parts of the robe of the Lord, part of the belt of the Most Holy Theotokos, part of the cross and tomb of the Lord, as well as the relics of the holy saints. In 1626, in memory of the calling of Mikhail Fedorovich to the kingdom, the belt and other shrines were moved in the Ipatiev Monastery.

The materia is capable of theosis, it can contain divine energies. This idea has a basis in the Holy Scripture: “So that from his (Apostle Paul) body were brought unto the sick handkerchiefs or aprons, and the diseases departed from them, and the evil spirits went out of them” (Acts 19:12). The belt used by the Most Holy Theotokos herself has healing power and is confirmed by a great many miracles that occurred through the prayers of believers who reverently touched this great shrine.

2019  Храм Серафима Саровского на Пангане