A Wonderful Month for Prayer and Practice

As we end the month of July, we’d like to share a few photos from our gatherings.

Holy Cross Orthodox Church offered the viewing and anointings with myrrh of the Miraculous Myrrh Streaming Iveron Icon.  Craig and Rebecca, parishioners of Holy Cross, let us know about this blessed event in their church.  All present were in tears of joy mixed with sadness as we experienced this Miracle of Holy Tears.  As each person moved forward to venerate Holy Theotokos and Infant, we then moved to the side where the priests anointed our foreheads and hands with myrrh saturated cotton that is collected in a small channel underneath the icon.  The children then placed the cotton balls into little bags with a card of the image of the Iveron icon inside for each to take home.  This took place on July 17 and when we met for our guild meeting, all were still catching small pockets of the scent of myrrh throughout our homes.  Mine is placed before the the Blessed Mother and Infant Child in my home altar and I can smell the myrrh all the way upstairs and this picture is in a sealed bag!  The viewing of this beautiful icon brought about deep emotional responses as we do not ever wish for Our Mother to cry, even beautifully scented tears of myrrh … Prayers for All!

Iveron Icon1

Holy Cross Orthodox Church Linthicum, MD

Iveron Icon!1

Myrrh Streaming Iveron Icon







Franciscan Sister applies bole

Our Franciscan friends each put the brush to the icon of Archangel Michael we are creating for Brother Gerry–over 40 people offered their prayers for Brother Gerry as they took turns placing bole around the frame (sorry we couldn’t post everyone’s photo here).  Eventually this icon will be finished and delivered to him in New York for his Christmas gift.

We miss his mischievous smile and his sweet admonitions “Are you all still up? I’m going to bed–blow out the candles so you don’t burn down my home!”  and “I checked on you all two hours ago, that’s all you’ve accomplished??”  He is a very joyful being!

Brother Gerry was in the Shrine for 15 years so everyone knew him very well; the absence of his physical presence is felt by all but he will soon have a little memento that we love him and think of him every day, knowing his spirit is very much with us in prayer!



Franciscan Sister brushing bole onto Archangel Michael


Franciscan Formation Team Member, Ed


Franciscan Minister Bob


Our field trip with Debra Korluka to Hillwood Mansion!  This is where I first encountered Iconographer, Debra Korluka through the purchase of her book in the gift shop of Hillwood Mansion.  My husband Tom and I had visited Hillwood awhile back and after touring the beautiful mansion, the treasures within and the bountiful gardens–we popped into the gift shop.  Several large sections of books about Russia and icons caught my eye and I added Deb’s book to my collection.  Fast forward to the Icon Conference in Massachusetts in 2015 where Tatiana and I met Debra in person.  As she was talking about her work, it was then it dawned on me that I had a signed copy of her book.

Many conversations, emails and text messages back and forth, our friendship grew and I invited this warm and vibrant woman to come to speak to our guild.  Though Debra is scheduled for surgery (August 1) she just had to come and visit with us before being in recovery for 8 weeks, mentioning this visit is better than any pain medication!  The timing was perfect as her visit coincided with our field trip to Hillwood–it’s kind of a “full circle” friendship!

Deb Korluka

Vibrant Deb Korluka


We gathered at our home and piled into our van.  Along for the ride — Dr. Nina, myself and Deb, with Monica meeting us there –My Tom Sweetheart, always loving to hang with the “fun icon ladies” drove us into DC to a quiet section where this lovely mansion is situated close to Rock Creek Park.

We enjoyed a beautiful day looking at the wonderful collection of icons Ms. Post had collected, enjoyed a leisurely and delicious lunch, strolled the exquisite gardens and then of course, hit the gift shop for Russian goodies and chocolates!  Sadly, none of the icons shown here had any information about them.  Perhaps after our October 17–22 workshop with Vladislav and Dmitri, we can coerce them to come on another field trip and they can identify them for us?! (www.archangelmichaeliconguild.com /workshops and events for workshop registration forms)




Beautiful workmanship


Carved icon


Icon in Hillwood Museum










Heading home with a side trip for coffee (white chocolate mochas please! Thank you Dr. Nina for buying the caffeinated treats !!)  we arrived safe and sound to sit down and experience the delicious meal that Tom Sweetheart prepared for us.

Saturday brought our icon guild meeting and we had much to share about our fabulous field trip and then settled in to listen to Deb’s presentation about her life as an artist, tour guide to Russia and the Ukraine and her life’s passion–icons!  A versatile and eloquent woman, we are happy she came to visit with us.  Several members bought her book and she signed them, then at the end of the day … donated 10 books to our guild (a value of $580.00) to sell and put the money into our general fund!!  Such a gracious and very generous woman!  Thank you Debra!

We ended this wonderful day with a delightful meal at our designated hot spot–Great Sage.  Toward the end of dinner, everyone in the restaurant received the alarm on their cell phones about flood warnings.  Frightening but funny as everyone pulled out their phones to see what they already knew and all collectively laughed!  We drove home at 20 miles an hour in blinding rain, praying for safety all the while.

Please keep Deb in your prayers as her date with the surgeon is tomorrow, August 1.  We still can’t believe she came out from Minnesota to visit for the weekend and go in for surgery on Monday.  This demonstrates her passion for icons, those who dedicate themselves to writing them and the many prayers that continue to go to God’s ears with each stroke of the brush!  God bless all!


Tubular orchid at Hillwood


One of a hundred orchids at Hillwood


Saturday, AUGUST 27, 2016

Icon Guild Meeting at the Shrine of St. Anthony (Conference Room)

10am til 6pm

Geologist, Wayne Homens returns with Part 2 of his discussions and demonstrations about rocks, minerals and gems.  Beginning PROMPTLY at 10am, we have much ground to cover, please make every effort to arrive at 10:00am.  Dr. Nina will provide the masks as we plan to crush various specimens for use as pigments.  WE ENCOURAGE YOU TO BRING SPECIMENS but we’ll have some for general use.

After our rock crushings and clean-up, we have some very important bit of news to share, discuss and vote on.   You’ll just have to be there to find out what this news is!  See you next month!

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