Neck Cross Akimov 101.060 «The Lord Almighty (Christ Pantocrator). The Mother of God Icon «Inexhaustible Chalice»
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"Next-to-the-skin cross with images of the Lord Almighty, and St. Moses the Black, and Martyr Boniface interceding with Him on the obverse; and the Mother of God Icon “Inexhaustible Chalice” on the reverse is specially intended for special relief and protection of those suffering of alcohol, drug, game-playing, or other addictions.
The Lord Almighty is the basic image of the cross. He, the master of human destinies, holds the Book of Life in His hands. According to Apostle John, woe betide those whose name is absent in it: God`s punishment will befall them. “Or don't you know, – Apostle Paul says, – that the unrighteous will not inherit the Kingdom of God? Don't be deceived. Neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor male prostitutes, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor slanderers, nor extortioners, will inherit the Kingdom of God” (1Cor. 6,10). It is beyond one's power to free oneself from a mesh of sin on one's own. One should set one's heart on that wish, and to invoke God's aid with humility. Holy God-pleasers are his protectors and advocates before the Lord. Moses the Black, the Priest-martyr and St. Boniface, the Martyr both achieved sanctity after being great sinners, therefore the Lord gave the a special grace of helping those who repented of their sins, and are ready to get rid of hard drinking and of whoredom and prodigality passions.
St. Moses the Black (the ""Ethiopian Hermit"") lived in 6th century. In his youth he was robbers’ leader, ransacked and killed people, addicted to drink and carnal funs. But one day the Lord by His saving grace showed him the whole profundity of his degradation. Moses repented and supplicated the monks of a hermitage cloister for work of penance. Reminiscences of the former vicious life racked his soul for many years, but Moses overworked his flesh with intensified fasting, feat incessant of prayer and hard work. Aged 75 he met his death at robbers’ hands, saying that he had or a long time waited for the Lord’s words coming true: “for all that take the sword shall perish with the sword” (Matt. 26, 52).
St. Boniface, the Martyr († 290) was a servant in the house of a rich Roman woman named Aglaide, being unlawfully with her and passing his time away in amusement and drinking. Both were Christians, both felt remorse but could not stop from committing their sins. Trying to get God’s aid in redemption Aglaide decided to take relics of a Christian martyr to her house. Boniface went to Tarsus where Christians underwent public trials on a mass scale at that time.
Shocked at the sight of dreadful torments, seeing the holy martyr faces enlightened by Actual Grace, Boniface rushed to them and began to supplicate for the honor of suffering together with them. Subjected to horrible torments he was decapitated by sword. Boniface fellow travelers bought his remains out and brought them to Aglaide. She built a church over the martyr grave, and retired to a nunnery.
On the cross reverse there is the famous miracle-working icon “Inexhaustible Chalice” (commemorated is on May 18). In 1787 in the Serpoukhov Vladychny (the Lord's) Monastery it appeared before a retired soldier, inveterate drunkard whose legs were paralyzed due to intemperance. In his dream the soldier saw the founder of the monastery, the Elder Barlaam who showed him where the icon should be found. The invalid literally crawled up to the monastery, and was healed completely. The day of St. Barlaam passing away, May 18, became the day of the miracle-working icon celebration.
In 1919 the monastery was closed, the icon “Inexhaustible Chalice” thus being lost. In 1993 it was duplicated in the Serpoukhov Vysotsky Monastery, and in 1995 the icon was recreated from an old photo in the restored Serpoukhov Vladychny (the Lord's) Convent.
The icon “Inexhaustible Chalice” keeps on wonder making. It is famous for speedy healing of those who suffer from alcoholism, drug and smoking addictions, as well as for solution housing problem. Wonders made by the image are recorded in the Monasteries. The Inexhaustible Chalice of heavenly help and mercy is accessible for all needy. “The Most Holy Mother of God, save us”, is written around the icon."
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