Sunday, 12 February 2012

New Icon of St Nicholas, Father of Beit Jala

This icon of St Nicholas was a gift to the parish, commemorating the loving care of the Saint over 1,700 yrs. Unusually it narrates not just the events of St Nicholas' life and stay in the Holy Land, but also some of the miracles attributed to him up to the present day. The central panel at the bottom show the apparition of St Nicholas over the church in 1967, during the war between Israel and Jordan. According to many testimonies, including clergy of both the Orthodox and Latin churches, St Nicholas appeared during the bombardment of the town by Israeli soldiers, catching the shells being fired at the town and deflecting them into the fields. Miraculously not one person was killed, and the only injury was a stone which flew up and caught a person's ankle.

The saint is dressed as an Orthodox bishop, and holding the church in his left hand while blessing with his right. The inscription, in Arabic, says 'St Nicholas, Father of Beit Jala'. 

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