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Small Russian Icon - The Guardian Angel and St. Eudocia of Heliopolis

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Small Russian Icon - The Guardian Angel and St. Eudocia of Heliopolis

In Orthodoxy, a Guardian Angel is a type of angel that is assigned at birth to protect and guide a particular person. Each human has a guardian angel who stands before the face of the Lord. This guardian angel is not only a friend and a protector, who preserves from evil and who sends good thought; the image of God is reflected in the creature—angels and men—in such a way that angels are celestial prototypes of men. Guardian angels are especially our spiritual kin. Scripture testified that the guardianship and direction of the elements, of places, of peoples, of societies, are confined to the guardian angels of the cosmos, whose very substance adds something of harmony to the elements they watch over.

Saint Eudocia (Eudokia) was a Samarian woman who lived in Heliopolis of Phoenicia (present-day Baalbek, Lebanon). She was a very beautiful pagan and garnered her wealth by attracting wealthy lovers. Eudokia learned about Christianity from a monk by the name of Germanos and asked him if she, too, could be saved from Judgment. Germanos instructed her to remain alone in her chamber for one week, fasting and praying. Eudokia followed his instructions, and at the end of the week, she had a vision about the Archangel Michael that assured her of Christ's love for all people. At age 30, Eudokia commissioned the building of a monastery near Heliopolis and dispensed much of her wealth in various charitable projects. She rejected all of her suitors, and when one persistent suitor named Philostratus was struck down because of his persistence, Eudokia prayed for him until he recovered and then converted to Christianity. Eudokia persuaded many pagans to convert to Christianity and, by her actions, angered Roman officials who had her beheaded in 107 AD.

Additional Info

  • ID#: 54-1009-095-069-SP1
  • Size: 3 1/4 x 2 3/4 inches (8 x 7 cm)
  • Age: ca. 1850's
  • Origin: Icon painting village of Palekh
  • Materials: Egg tempera and gilding on gessoed wood
  • Price: $575
  • Orthodox Cross
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