Like the well-known Russian icon, Our Lady of Vladimir, this image of the Mother of Tenderness. depicts the mother of God nestled cheek-to-cheek with her infant son.
How to Pray with Icons
Praying with icons is an ancient practice that involves using natural and supernatural eyes, seeing what the image communicates in both mind and soul.
- Be unassuming: Approach an icon with reverence. Simply seek to observe and understand the scene and setting. Icons represent a heavenly presence and as you pray interact with that presence.
- Enter the Scene: Become aware of the truths the icon opens to the mortal mind. Meditate: Where is your eye drawn? Consider how this component touches your life. Spend time allowing your heart to interact with the icon subject.
- Listen: Remain quiet in prayer, disposed to following prompts on your mind or heart. Don’t strive to lead prayer.
- Be grateful: Offer your needs and aspirations, trusting that they are received and understood. Spend time in the presence of God giving thanks for the experience.
Prayer to the Mother of Tenderness
Dear Mary, mother of God and our mother, your gentle embrace of your Son, Jesus, shows your great affection toward him and all of us, your children. Instill in our hearts the same love and tenderness you have for Jesus. Intercede for us with him in all our needs and teach us compassion toward the needs of all we meet. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
– Sister Carol Datz, SSND