Mary Health of the Roman People c.445 A.D.

This icon is attributed to having been painted by Saint Luke and resides in the Basilica of St. Mary Major in Rome.  It came from Jerusalem to Constantinople and is the oldest icon of Our Lady and Christ Child.

And behold an angel of the Lord stood before her saying:

“Fear not Mary, for you have found grace before the Lord of all things, and you shall conceive of his word.”  And she, when she heard it, questioned in herself, saying:

“Shall I verily conceive of the living God, and bring forth after the manner of all women?”

And the angel of the Lord said:

“Not so, Mary, for a power of the Lord shall overshadow you:  wherefore also that holy thing which shall be born of you shall be called the Son of the Highest.  And you shall call his name Jesus:  for he shall save his people from their sins.”

And Mary said:

“Behold the handmaid of the Lord is before him:  be it unto me according to your word.”