An advertisement for icons that has been published in both our editions, Greek and English, has aroused a lot of interest in our community – and beyond. For this reason, I found it useful to make an explanatory reference on the topic in this forum.
Many of our readers and others living in this vast country find it difficult to obtain from Greece certain items and products that interest them. To serve them, as for example in the case of books, we created the National Herald Bookstore years ago where people from anywhere in the U.S. or Canada can order books from. If we do not already have an item in our bookstore, we order it through our office in the center of Athens and they send it to us directly. This is a useful service we offer to our readers which has become more and more popular.
On the basis of this reasoning, as well as our experience, we know that there are various other items (such as icons that are authentic and of good quality), which our readers want but which are difficult to obtain and, which up to now, we could not help them with.
Thus, during a recent visit to Mount Athos and the Holy and Venerable Great Monastery of Vatopaidi, I discussed the possibility of exporting their icons to our Greek community, knowing that this monastery – one of the most important on Mount Athos – is one of the best in terms of iconography. The icons are painted by the monks of the monastery.
The few icons that they paint are found in the Katholikon, the central church of the monastery, and are among the miraculous icons that are housed in this amazing place dating back many centuries.
The officials of the Monastery with whom I discussed this issue immediately showed great interest and agreed to give the opportunity to our pious Greek community to bless their homes with the presence of these images.
We have therefore created a separate section in the newspaper called Gifts from the National Herald, through which the icons are available. In the near future we hope to have other gifts, mainly religious, but also various other specialized and always carefully selected items.
Our goal, of course, is not to become general importers of Greek products, but to import a few select items which are difficult to obtain by the community, and which cover its intellectual and other needs.
This is a new feature the newspaper presents to our readers. It is an idea that we had long thought about, and now it is time to realize it, having found the most suitable source and the most appropriate people to work with: the monks of the Holy and Venerable Great Monastery of Vatopaidi. That is why we express our heartfelt thanks to the respected Abbot of the Monastery, Elder Ephraim.