Saturday, June 8, 2013

Saintly Saturday: Icon of the Mother of God of White Lake

Today is the Feast of the Icon of the Mother of God of White Lake. This particular icon belonged to St. Cyril of White Lake, a hermit who began his monastic career at the Siminov Monastery in Moscow at the end of the 14th century. While doing an Akathist in his cell in front of the Icon he heard a voice: Go to White Lake, where I have prepared a place for you. He then received a vision of the place he was to go.

He left the monastery and went to White Lake, to the place he saw in his vision. There he set up a cross and dug a cell in the ground near Mount Myaura in the Vologda region of Russia.

This sounds like a great location-based encounter area:

Near White Lake (or another appropriate body of water) there is a large wooden cross. Next to it is a man-made cave. Inside are the remains of a long-dead man laying in front of an icon carved into the rock. When someone prays in front of the icon seeking the location of an object, person or place, the supplicant will receive a vision of the immediate area where that object, person or place can be found.

If the PCs show the proper respect to the body, the hermit saint that carved the icon and lived in the cave will grant them a boon (like re-roll one saving throw and take the better of the two rolls).

Alternatively, the hermit could still be alive and well. I would personally play him as a curmudgeonly fool-for-Christ, quite able to tell the PCs all kinds of interesting things if they are willing to get past the scathing criticism that flies from his mouth.


  1. I've populated a number of encounters in my campaign with various hermits on the basis of your posts. Please keep up the good work!