A Gift of Prayer

Saint Nicholas has long been turned to for assistance when faced with all manner of distress

Greek tamata—gift of gratitude to be left by an icon of St. Nicholas
St. Nicholas Center Collection

A Muslim woman in the Russian Republic of Bashkiria, who had been unsuccessfully treated for infertility for fourteen years, gave birth to a son after praying before the icon of St. Nicholas in an Orthodox church.

"I'm a Muslim, but for some reason I believed that it [the icon] would help me," the happy mother is quoted as saying by Ufa edition of the Komsomolskaya Pravda daily.

Her friends advised her to go to the church: her marriage had almost failed and the diagnosis sounded as a death verdict to family happiness—it is impossible to give birth with such disease.

It was the first time the woman came to the church, she was a little bit scared and did not know how to pray. Parishioners told her "sincerely, from the heart," ask St. Nicholas.

Then she invented a simple prayer: "Nicholas the Wonderworker, help me, give us a son, please . . ." Finally, the woman took off her favorite golden chain and left it near the icon—there is a belief that such gifts make a prayer more effective.

A month later she learned she was pregnant. Her son Tamerlan makes his parents happy: he is so cheerful and clever.

From Interfax, January 21, 2011.

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