Archangel Michael


According to the Orthodox faith, Archangel Michael is the leader of an army of angels and a heavenly patron of the warriors and ruling princes of Russia. Icons of Archangel Michael are prevalent in Russian churches and are often found decorating the side doors of the iconostasis. The icon depicts Archangel Michael as a servant rather than a military commander.  His richly decorated robes, studded with jewels, are made of elaborately embroidered fabrics that resemble the formal dress of Byzantine courtiers.  He is shown wearing a belt, or loros, similar to those worn by Orthodox deacons during church services. Instead of his usual lance, the Archangel holds a staff and a round mirror. The mirror is a means of communication with Christ, the commander-in-chief of the heavenly armies, whose image we see in the mirror.