During the month of May 2017, an extraordinary event took place in the life of Orthodoxy in Great Britian. The wonder-working, myrrh-streaming icon of the Theotokos, normally resident in our parish in Hawaii (and thus commonly known as the ‘Hawaiian icon’), was brought to the Diocese by His Grace Bishop Irenei and the icon’s keeper, Subdeacon Nectariy Yangson.
The holy icon, which is a copy of the ‘Montreal icon’ of the Theotokos (itself a copy of the ‘Iveron icon’ found on Mt Athos) which was lost upon the martyric death of its keeper, Brother Jose Munoz, began to stream holy myrrh in 2007 — the very year of the signing of the Act of Canonical Communion that restored full brotherly unity within the Russian Orthodox Church. It has been continually streaming myrrh, often in copious amounts, ever since; and the holy icon has been moved from the small private chapel where it was originally located to the parish church in Hawaii (after extended examination by the Holy Synod of Bishops), while work is apace to construct a new temple in Hawaii as a fitting, permanent dwelling place for the miracle-working icon.
The icon has travelled all over the world, with hundreds of thousand coming to venerate it. This was its first trip to the United Kingdom, and the icon was brought to nearly every parish in our Diocese, as well as being taken to parishes of the other Orthodox jurisdictions throughout England and Wales, to ensure that as many people as possible were able to venerate it and be blessed with the myrrh that flows from it.