Volume III - Church History

Tenth Century

Liturgical Development


The feast of the Protection of the Theotokos (October 1) comes from the 10th century. Saint Andrew the Fool for Christ (d. 956) saw a vision of the Theotokos interceding before God and protecting the praying people of Constantinople with her veil (omophorion) during the time of an attack on the city by the pagan Slavs. Ironically, this feast, which has been detached from its historical roots and is now celebrated primarily as the feast of the presence of Mary in the midst of the Church, is kept as a popular celebration almost solely by the churches of Slavic tradition.