This is a very expressive modern icon of the Birth-Giver of God, or Theotokos, who in her tender embrace with her Divine Child cheek to cheek, shows us their unity of mind and profound love for one another. This deep, personal, and loving relationship is often seen in icons of the Sweet Kissing style, which in Greek are called Glykophilousa. Often the Virgin’s eyes are looking both inwardly to her interior state, and then also outwardly in love and concern to her Son, as seen here.
The Divine Infant holds a prophet’s scroll in one of His hands to remind us that He is the fulfillment of the prophet’s words. With His other hand, He blesses His mother with His Holy Name, His fingers are forming the letters “IC XC,” the abbreviation for Jesus Christ in Greek. The stars on the Virgin Mary’s veil and shoulder represent her virginity before, during, and after childbearing, for she was ever-pure. Not by just chance of God’s choice was the Virgin so extraordinary, but by the strength of her will to be obedient to an impossible choice: virginity and motherhood. May we learn also to always choose God’s sweet Will in all things!