Thousands of people lined up around the Cathedral of Christ the Savior in Moscow, where one of the most-revered Christian shrines, the Mother of God’s Belt, went on display on Saturday.
Russian Patriarch Kirill, who will celebrate his 65th birthday on Sunday, has led the service, celebrating the arrival of the miracle-working shrine which is believed to heal diseases and help women to conceive.
From the early morning thousands of worshippers from all over Russia and abroad are gathering near the Cathedral to pray before the Belt of the Mother of God that has been brought to Russia for the first time.
According to legend, the Mother of God wove the miraculous belt out of camel wool and wore it until the end of her Earthly days. At the time of her ascension, she passed the belt on to Thomas, the Apostle.
Currently, the relic belongs to the Vatopedi monastery on Mount Athos in Greece. The belt was brought to Russia on October 20 and has already been shown in St Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, Norilsk, Vladivostok, Ussuriysk, Krasnoyarsk, Tyumen, Nizhny Novgorod and Volgograd among others.
The relic will be on display in Moscow round the clock till November 27.