Holy Equal-to-the-Apostles Princess Olga: who she patronizes and what they pray to her for

History of the icon

In order to trace the history of the icon of St. Olga, it should be said that Princess Olga became a Christian after baptism in Constantinople, during her visit to this city. At baptism, Olga was given the name Elena, which was subsequently not remembered and did not go down in history as the princess’s real name.

Holy Equal-to-the-Apostles Grand Duchess Olga

The “spiritual mother of Russia” was canonized in 1547, at the same time a decision was made to universally venerate her, and this period also served as the starting point for the beginning of the iconography of Saint Olga.

Important! In the history of Orthodox Christianity, only six women have been canonized as Equal-to-the-Apostles, among whom is the Holy Princess Olga.

This title was given to Olga because she dedicatedly advocated for the spread of Christianity in Rus', and at the same time, as a successful ruler, did not forget about state affairs. Thanks to Saint Olga, the western and southern borders of the country were established, trade relations with neighboring countries developed, but most importantly, this princess managed to put an end to the emerging internecine wars.

Where is the icon

The icon of St. Olga is one of the most common in Orthodoxy and is found in most churches in Russia. One of the icons of the Holy Princess Olga is located in the house church located in the Pilgrimage Center of Moscow, which is located in the Universitetskaya Hotel.

Attention! Another icon of Saint Olga can be venerated in one of the churches in St. Petersburg, located in Strelna. This temple is an architectural monument, built in one of the many most picturesque places in the city - on the shore of the Gulf of Finland in Mikhailovsky Park.

The meaning of the holy image

Princess Olga is one of the key figures in the spread of Christianity in Rus'. Its meaning is revealed through the iconographic image, where the princess is depicted holding a cross in one hand, which acts as a symbol of faith, and in the other - a temple, as an image of the spread of Orthodox Christianity in Russian lands.

The meaning of the icon “Saint Olga”

The significance of this image for the Orthodox world is difficult to overestimate. It is Saint Olga who owns the greatest miracle - the Baptism of All Rus'. Therefore, today many people bow in prayer to this saint.

Equal to the Apostles Olga is equal in importance to the apostles, since her role in the development of Christianity is very great, and only 6 women had the opportunity at one time to receive such a calling. At baptism, Saint Olga received the name Helena - the saint who found the Life-Giving Cross. Olga’s service to the Lord was just as significant, as it contributed to the spiritual development of an entire people.

During her lifetime, Saint Olga was distinguished by her decisive character and wisdom. She allowed herself tears only once when she saw the dead body of her husband Igor. After his death, she ruled Russia, and her leadership methods evoked only respect and praise. During her life, she was not able to completely establish Orthodoxy in the country, but she excellently raised her grandson Vladimir in the traditions of the faith. And he has already performed the Baptism of Rus' in memory of his grandmother.

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According to legend, when the relics of Princess Olga were removed, they were incorruptible. They were placed in a tomb so that the believers could see their miraculous radiance and could receive healing from various serious illnesses.

What does it help with?

According to tradition, according to which Saint Olga is endowed with special wisdom, a prayer addressed to her helps a person make a wise decision in any situation that arises. In addition, Saint Olga is asked in prayers for the well-being of Russia, its protection from dangers and to soften the hearts of enemies.

Turning to Saint Olga in prayer also helps in strengthening faith and resolving family conflicts.

Important! Among believers, stories of miraculous healing from mental illnesses through prayer in front of the icon of St. Olga are passed on from mouth to mouth. Speaking about how prayer to Saint Olga helps, we can say that you can turn to this saint with problems in any area of ​​life.


  • About the origin of Olga
  • arch. Leonidas, “Where did St. come from? Grand Duchess Olga of Russia? (“Russian Starina”, 1888, book 7)
  • I. I. Malyshevsky, “The origin of the Russian Grand Duchess Olga St.” (“Kyiv Starina”, 1889, 7 and 8 et seq.).
  • Lives of St. Olga:
    • prose (see “Readings in the historical community of Nestor let.,” II, and Macarius, “History of the Russian Church”),
    • in Chetya-Minea Macarius and in the Book of Degrees,
  • revised by Filaret, “Russian Saints,” under July 11.
  • What you need to know about the icon

    It is generally accepted that in a special way the Holy Princess Olga patronizes girls and women bearing this name. It is considered correct for girls named Olga to carry with them a small copy of the icon of St. Olga and a written prayer, which is better to learn by heart and read it in moments of special danger or grief.

    Icon of Saint Princess Olga

    Every year on July 24, the Russian Orthodox Church celebrates the day of veneration of Equal-to-the-Apostles Princess Olga. On this day, in those churches where there is an icon of St. Olga, or in your cell church, you can pray before the face of the saint, revealing your sorrows to her, and there is no doubt that the saint will definitely help.

    For those who would like to bow before the face of Saint Olga, you should know that there is a list of the most famous churches where her icon is kept:

    • in the Sverdlovsk region, a parish in the village of Patrushi;
    • in the Kemerovo region, a parish in the village of Kalachevo;
    • in Moscow, the Church of St. Nicholas in Pyzhi and the Church of the Hieromartyr Nikita.

    Also in Moscow, in the Church of St. Nicholas, there is a piece of the holy relics of Princess Olga.

    Holy Equal-to-the-Apostles Princess Olga: who she patronizes and what they pray to her for

    And also some interesting facts from the life of the founder of Christianity and the first female ruler in Russian history

    Icon of the Holy Equal-to-the-Apostles Princess Olga. Photo inconexpo.ru

    July 24 (July 11 - old style) is the day of remembrance of the Holy Equal-to-the-Apostles Princess Olga, the first female ruler in Russian history, the founder of Christianity. The princess was canonized in 1547, and in Christian history only five women have received such an honor: Mary Magdalene , Queen Helen Equal to the Apostles , Martyr Apphia , First Martyr Thekla and Georgian Enlightener Nina .

    She was praised by the Russian sons as a pioneer, for even after death she prays to God for Russia,” notes the famous chronicler Nestor . And indeed, the memory of Princess Olga has survived centuries.

    Miracles of Saint Olga

    The incorrupt remains of the saint, which her grandson Prince Vladimir transferred to the Church of the Holy Mother of God in Kiev, were kept there for a long time. The relics rested in a stone coffin, and only those who sincerely prayed and truly believed in it “opened a window” through which they could see the body “glowing like the sun.” Whoever saw him was healed of all diseases.

    And today a huge number of believers come to churches to ask the icon of St. Olga for heavenly protection.

    It is interesting that in Tsarist Russia there was even a “St. Olga Insignia”, although it was awarded only once - in 1916. It was received by Vera Panaeva , whose three officer sons died in the First World War.

    Monument to Princess Olga in Kyiv. Photo liveihternet.ru

    Mysteries of the biography of Princess Olga

    Tradition called Olga Cunning, the church – Saint, and history – Wise,” writes Nikolai Karamzin . And he will be absolutely right, because the personality of Princess Olga is quite ambiguous and the surviving chronicle information about her raises many questions.

    For example, not a single chronicle gives the exact date of birth of the princess; the time when she married Prince Igor , gave birth to her son Svyatoslav , and when she was baptized is also in doubt. Only the date of her death is known for certain - July 11 (new style - July 24) 969, and how old she was at that time is also a mystery.

    But, perhaps, the chronicle legend about her revenge on the Drevlyans raises the most questions, so many argue whether, given this information, it is possible to call her a saint?

    Beautiful revenge or justified cruelty?

    According to the texts of the chronicles, after the Drevlyans killed her husband, Prince Igor, who went to them for another tribute, they, fearing revenge for the death of the Kyiv prince, sent matchmakers to his widow Olga, inviting her to become the wife of their ruler Mal.

    The first matchmakers arrived in the boat, under the pretext of showing them a great honor, the princess ordered the matchmakers to be carried directly into the boat into the courtyard of her mansion, lowered into a deep hole and buried alive.

    Olga's revenge on the Drevlyans. Photo rowalan-freezet.ru

    After which the princess informed the Drevlyans that she would agree to marry their ruler if they sent the most respected people of their land for her. And the Drevlyans sent their best ambassadors, whom Olga ordered to be locked in a hot bathhouse and burned.

    But the princess did not rest on this and, having asked permission from the Drevlyans to celebrate a funeral feast (funeral) at the site of her husband’s death, with a small detachment she came to the lands of the Drevlyans, gave them drink and ordered her warriors to chop them down on the spot.

    However, this revenge was not the last: Princess Olga with her army approached the Drevlyan capital and said that she forgives them, and she would not even take a large tribute, she only asked to give only three doves and three sparrows from each courtyard. And when the Drevlyans, surprised by the stupidity of the princess, brought her birds, she ordered to tie tow with sulfur to each of them, set it on fire and release the birds into the wild. The birds returned to their native nests - and the city burned to the ground.

    Could Olga have acted differently at that time? Photo syl.ru

    How can Olga’s cruelty be justified? Firstly, the time in which she lived, and secondly, the fact that the Drevlyans and her husband acted completely ignoble - they tore him into pieces, tying him to the tables of two trees.

    And Christian believers also remind us that at that time Princess Olga was not yet baptized. The sacrament of baptism was later, according to chronicle legends, performed by the Patriarch of Constantinople Theophylact himself, and at baptism she received the name Helen.

    The first ruler of Rus' to be baptized

    The Orthodox Church glorifies the saint as equal to the apostles - for preaching the Christian faith. Princess Olga built churches, converted people to Orthodoxy, and although Russia was baptized only by her grandson Prince Vladimir in 988, it was Olga who became the first ruler of Kievan Rus to be baptized.

    On July 24, remembering the holy Equal-to-the-Apostles Princess Olga, the priests say that she was and is an example of service to God and people, a symbol of wisdom, patience, inner purity and faith in God.

    Saints Olga and Vladimir. Photo liveinternet.ru

    Who does the saint patronize?

    It is believed that Saint Olga protects the entire Russian people, but most often people ask her for protection:

    1. Mothers of sons, especially those who are in military service, pray to the saint to protect them from harm.

    2. Newly converted Christians or those who doubted the faith, asking to be strengthened in faith and help to live honestly and justly.

    3. Widows and girls who have lost a loved one turn to the saint asking for strength to survive the loss and find the meaning of life again.

    In addition, an icon of Saint Olga in the house will help protect yourself from intruders, offenders and envious people.

    Perhaps today in many churches you can find an icon of St. Olga. For example, in Moscow, the throne icon and a particle of the saint’s relics are kept in the Church of St. Nicholas in Pyzhi.

    But the Divine Liturgy in memory of Equal-to-the-Apostles Grand Duchess Olga by His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia today in the capital’s Church of the Icon of the Mother of God “Joy of All Who Sorrow” (Transfiguration of the Lord) on Bolshaya Ordynka.

    Contents of the icon

    The veneration of Princess Olga as a Saint began only during the reign of Prince Vladimir, her grandson. There is even an icon showing Olga and Vladimir side by side. On the icon they are represented standing opposite each other, in one hand of Prince Vladimir there is a cross, in the other there is a scroll on which is written a prayer for the blessing of the people. Princess Olga, as in other icons, holds the church in her hands.

    Interesting! During her lifetime, Saint Olga herself composed prayers, which are recommended to be read before her icon in our time.

    Martyr Olga (Evdokimova), memorial date: February 8, February 10

    She was born in 1896 in the Moscow province. After graduating from a rural school, she married the peasant Pyotr Evdokimov. He went through the war of 1905, then began working in a factory. In 1921, Pyotr Matveevich died, and his wife Olga was left alone with two children. All this time she visited the Church of John the Baptist, in 1932 it was closed, and five years later Olga Vasilievna was arrested along with the priests of the temple. After interrogation and trial, she was sentenced to 10 years in a labor camp. A year later she died and was buried in an unknown grave.

    Icon of the martyr Olga Evdokimova

    Prayers to the saints

    Memory: July 11/24

    Princess Olga, in her baptism Elena is called “the head of the faith” and “the root of Orthodoxy” in the Russian land. Patroness of the sovereign's people. They pray to her for children, for raising them in faith and piety, for admonishing non-believing children and relatives, or those who have fallen into sects.

    Troparion to Equal-to-the-Apostles Grand Duchess Olga of Russia, tone 1

    Having fixed your mind with the wings of God's understanding, you flew above visible creatures, seeking God and the Creator of all things, and, having found Him, you again received birth through Baptism, enjoying the tree of the animal, remaining incorruptible forever, Olgo, ever-glorious.

    Kontakion to Equal-to-the-Apostles Grand Duchess Olga of Russia, tone 4

    Let us sing today to God, the Benefactor of all, who glorified the God-wise Olga in Russia, and through her prayers he will grant remission of sins to our souls.

    First prayer to Equal-to-the-Apostles Grand Duchess Olga of Russia

    O holy Equal-to-the-Apostles Princess Olgo, accept praise from us, unworthy servants of God ( names

    ), before your honest icon of those praying and humbly asking: protect us with your prayers and intercession from misfortunes and troubles, and sorrows, and fierce sins; We will also be delivered from future torments by honestly creating your holy memory and glorifying God, who is glorified in the Holy Trinity, the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, now and ever and unto the ages of ages.

    Second prayer to Equal-to-the-Apostles Grand Duchess Olga of Russia

    O great saint of God, God-chosen and God-glorified, equal to the apostles Grand Duchess Olgo! You rejected pagan evil and wickedness, you believed in the One True Trinitarian God and you accepted holy baptism and laid the foundation for the enlightenment of the Russian land with the light of faith and piety. You are our spiritual ancestor, you, according to Christ our Savior, are the first culprit of the enlightenment and salvation of our race. You are a warm prayer book and intercessor for the kingdom of all Russia, for its kings, rulers, the army and for all people. For this reason, we humbly pray to you: look at our weaknesses and beg the most merciful King of Heaven, so that He will not be angry with us, as through our weaknesses we sin all day long, and may He not destroy us with our iniquities, but may He have mercy and save us in His mercy, may He implant His saving fear in our hearts, may He enlighten our minds with His grace, so that we understand the ways of the Lord, leave the paths of wickedness and error, and strive in the paths of salvation and truth, the unwavering fulfillment of the commandments of God and the statutes of the Holy Church. Pray, blessed Olgo, to God, the Lover of Mankind, to add His great mercy to us: may he deliver us from the invasion of foreigners, from internal disorder, rebellion and strife, from famine, deadly diseases and from all evil; may he give us the goodness of the air and the fruitfulness of the earth, may he give the shepherds zeal for the salvation of their flock, may all people hasten to diligently correct their services, may they have love among themselves and like-mindedness, may they strive faithfully for the good of the Fatherland and the Holy Church, may the light of saving faith in Our Fatherland, in all its ends; may unbelievers turn to faith, may all heresies and schisms be abolished; Yes, having lived in peace on earth, we will be worthy of eternal bliss in heaven, praising and exalting God forever and ever. Amen.

    Third prayer to Equal-to-the-Apostles Grand Duchess Olga of Russia

    O holy Equal-to-the-Apostles Grand Duchess Olgo, first saint of Russia, warm intercessor and prayer book for us before God. We resort to you with faith and pray with love: be your helper and accomplice in everything for our good, and just as in temporary life you tried to enlighten our forefathers with the light of the holy faith and instruct me to do the will of the Lord, so even now, in the heavenly lordship, favorable With your prayers to God, help us in enlightening our minds and hearts with the light of the Gospel of Christ, so that we may advance in faith, piety and love of Christ. In poverty and sorrow, give comfort to the needy, give a helping hand to the needy, stand up for those who are offended and shepherded, those who have gone astray from the right faith and are blinded by heresies, and ask us from the All-Bountiful God for all that is good and useful in temporal and eternal life, so that having lived here well, we will be worthy of an inheritance eternal blessings in the endless Kingdom of Christ our God, to Him, together with the Father and the Holy Spirit, belongs all glory, honor and worship, always, now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

    We magnify you, holy Equal-to-the-Apostles Princess Olgo, as the morning dawn has risen in our land and foreshadowed the light of the Orthodox faith to its people.

    Read other prayers in the “Orthodox Prayer Book” section

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    The princess's spiritual sadness

    However, the hour has not yet struck for Rus' to emerge from the darkness of paganism and be illuminated by the light of the Orthodox faith. The chronicler reports that there were quite a few boyars and warriors in Kyiv who hated the Wisdom of God, and among them was Prince Svyatoslav, Olga’s son, who had matured and become stronger by that time.

    No matter how much his mother instructed him in the true faith, no matter how much she persuaded him to accept baptism, he invariably continued to persist. However, those close to him who turned to Christ did not interfere with this and did not allow others to mock them. Over time, all power passed to the son, and his pious mother devoted herself entirely to serving God and doing charity. She was engaged in state affairs only on those days when Svyatoslav was on campaigns with his squad.

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