Our first icon of 2016 can be found in the Dochiariou Monastery on the holy Mount Athos, whose tradition holds that the icon was painted in the 10th century.
In the year 1664, the cook Nilus walked to the monastery kitchen at night, while carrying a burning torch. The icon of the Theotokos hung over the door of the kitchen, and all of the sudden–he heard a voice, telling him that in the future, he should not walk by with a torch, so as it avoid covering the Holy Icon in soot.
Believing this voice to be a prank from one of his brother monks, Nilus ignored the warning and continued to walk through the kitchen with the torch—that is, until he was struck blind. With desperate and fervent prayers, Nilus called upon before the icon of the Mother of God.
When Nilus’ brother monks heard of the occurrence, they began to hold a watch, placing a lamp in front of the icon and censing it constantly. Eventually, Nilus heard the voice tell him that all had been forgiven, and that his sight would be restored.
The Theotokos then asked Nilus to tell his brethren that she was the protector of the monastery. “Let them and all Orthodox Christians come to Me in their necessities, and I shall not forsake them. All their petitions will be granted by My Son, because of My intercession with Him. My icon shall be called “She who is Quick to Hear, for I shall speedily fulfill the petitions of those who hasten to it.”
Copies of this icon have brought forth many miracles, especially in Russia, where it is venerated greatly.