As war rages, some Ukrainians look to Mary for protection—continuing a long Christian tradition

Wind in the chimes

Ukrainian Marian Collection, The Marian Library, University of Dayton CC BY-ND

Ukrainian clergy demonstrating against the war in their country have appeared in media coverage carefully holding an image of the Virgin Mary, her outstretched hands lifting up the edges of a cloak. 

I am an archivist for the Marian Library at the University of Dayton, which includes a collection of Ukrainian artwork about Mary. For Ukrainian Christians, both Orthodox and Catholic, the “Pokrova” image held by protesters represents a long history of seeking Mary’s protection during difficult times.

These pictures depict a particular religious icon known as the “Pokrova” in which Mary’s veil – a “pokrova,” or “cover,” in Ukrainian – is a sign of protection.

Kayla Harris from her essay on The Conversation, March 9, 2022

I encourage you to read more about the “Queen of Ukraine” in Harris’ article. As she notes, “It is quite common for Christians, and even people of other faiths, to ask Mary to intercede on their behalf during hardship.” Let us pray.

About Wind in the Chimes

Look again


How would you picture Mary?

The Blessed Virgin Mary was thoroughly Jewish. Different cultures and ethnicities have often portrayed her, Jesus, and others from the Bible as being from their group.

Since Christianity for many centuries was based largely in Europe, these important characters of salvation history have often been depicted as white Europeans. Which is fine! But other cultures have also depicted them according to their own appearances.

Take a look at how others have pictured Mary: 13 Beautiful Non-White Depictions of the Blessed Virgin Mary a post on ChurchPop by the Editor

Image: via ChurchPop

Wind Chimes: 25 Jan 2013 — Day 8

A Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

Readings for Day Eight — Walking in celebration

Habakkuk 3:17-19 | Celebrating in a time of hardship
Psalm 100 | The worship of God through all the earth
Philippians 4:4-9 | Rejoice in the Lord always
Luke 1:46-55 | The Song of Mary

Quote . . .To walk humbly with God means to walk in celebration. The visitor to India is struck by the hardships and struggles endured by Dalits, but at the same time by their sense of hope and celebration. 2013-WPCU-Readings-and-Prayers

Prayer on Day Eight

2013 Week of Prayer (Cover)Gracious God, may your Holy Spirit fill our communities with joy and celebration, so that we can cherish the unity we already share, and zealously continue in the search for visible unity. We rejoice in the faith and hope of peoples who refuse to allow their dignity to be diminished, seeing in them your wonderful grace and your promise of freedom. Teach us to share in their joy and learn from their faithful endurance. Rekindle our hope and sustain our resolve, that in Christ‘s name we may walk together in love, raising a united voice of praise, and singing together one prayer of adoration. God of life, lead us to justice and peace. Amen.

divider lineImage: School of Theology & Ministry, Seattle University

Feast of the Visitation (May 31)

Take a moment, now that you have found this, to consider the visit of Mary to Elizabeth. May 31st is the Feast of the Visitation in the Episcopal Liturgical Calendar.

In those days Mary set out and went with haste to a Judean town in the hill country, where she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the child leaped in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit and exclaimed with a loud cry, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb. And why has this happened to me, that the mother of my Lord comes to me? For as soon as I heard the sound of your greeting, the child in my womb leaped for joy. And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her by the Lord.” Luke 1:39-45

Take my life, and let it be consecrated, Lord, to Thee

We have titled Mary’s response to Elizabeth, “the Magnificat” Luke 1:4-55.

Earlier today Sojourners posted this in its “Verse and Voice” blog: “Take my life, and let it be consecrated, Lord, to Thee. Take my moments and my days; let them flow in ceaseless praise. Take my hands, and let them move at the impulse of Thy love. Take my feet, and let them be swift and beautiful for Thee. Amen.”
From the first verse of the hymn, “Take My Life and Let It Be” Post: Prayer of the Day: Take My Life and Let It Be

Finally, if you like to listen to different voices speaking on women in the Bible, and Mary on the Feast of the Visitation try this podcast: Lifting up the lowly offered by America: the national Catholic weekly

In what ways do these women model for you what it means to listen to the Spirit, to hear the Spirit, and to act on what you hear the Spirit saying to you? Leave a comment.

B Nativity, Art for Readings for December 25, 2011

A Guide to Byzantine Icons
Many thanks to Fr. Rondeau for this link.
Click to open this extensive site and explore icons.

The Nativity
Russian Icon
School of Novgorod
XVth century

Click to open an interactive illustration of this icon’s symbolism.

B Advent 4, Art for Readings for December 18, 2011

(b. ca. 1384, Siena, d. ca. 1455, Siena)
Click to open Web Gallery of Art Artist Biography and to explore other works by this artist.

Madonna of the Magnificat
Polychrome wood, height 133 cm
Sant’Agostino, Siena

Click to open Web Gallery of Art display page. Click on their image to enlarge/fit page etc. Use maximum magnification (200%) to see “The Magnificat” carved in Mary’s mantle hem.

Proper 17A: Art for Track 1 Readings

A different presentation of Moses and the Burning Bush. Original post updated 8/28/20

Moses and the Burning Bush, Nicolas Froment (1476)

The Burning Bush
Wood, 410 x 305 cm
Cathedrale Saint Sauveur, Aix-en-Provence
FROMENT, Nicolas
(b. ca. 1435, Uzes, d. ca. 1486, Avignon)Barcelona)
Click to open Web Gallery of Art display page.

Exodus 3:1-15 is one of the readings appointed for Proper 17A (Continuous Narrative). Here is an interesting depiction of that moment.

What is going on here? Mary standing in for God? Well not exactly—the infant Jesus represents God in the burning bush. Why Mary?

Welcome to typological and allegorical interpretation where Mary represents many ideas and connections. Notice the little mirror held by Jesus. Perhaps Mary, sometimes known as “the reflection of the Church” or “the reflection of faith,” brings our witness to this foundational story of God acting for justice and order in our lives.

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