A Hodegetria (“She who shows the Way”), or Virgin Hodegetria, is an iconographic picture of the Virgin Mary, or Theotokos as they title her in the Eastern Orthodox Church, who holds the Christ Child at her side, pointing at Him as the only source of salvation. In the Western Church this iconographic topic is widely known as “Our Lady of the Way”.
The icon represents a half-length portrait of Our Lady. The Infant sits on the left hand of the Mother. His legs are bent in the knees, and his right foot is under the left. In his left hand he holds a scroll, the right blesses.
The image of Our Lady on the Tikhvin icon is almost identical to the Smolensk icon of the Virgin. The main difference is in the inclination of the head.
In 1941, during World War II, the town of Tikhvin was occupied by German troops. Thee plundered the monastery and took the icon to Pskov. In 1944 the Germans transferred it to Riga. After all, for the sake of safety the icon was taken out of Russia by a Russian Orthodox bishop of Kolka parish, and later the Bishop of Riga – John (Garklavs) of Chicago.
The icon was stored in Chicago, USA since 1949 till 2004 when it was returned to Tikhvin by the bishop’s spiritual son – Fr. Sergei Garklavs of Chicago.
Nowadays the icon is kept at the Tikhvin Assumption Monastery, where it was kept prior to the Great October Socialist Revolution.
Her feast day is July 9.
Like the Church Icons plated with a gilded riza (a metal plating on an icon), the Icon of the Easter Egg is framed with a superimposed decorative pattern.
Each of the Eggs is unique because its components are hand-made and manually assembled. Thus there are no existing absolutely identical copies of any of the Easter Eggs offered to your attention.
According to the Russian Orthodox tradition, all of the products offered (icons, pectoral crosses, candles, church plate elements) are sanctified in the Temple by sprinkling with Holy water.