Our ancestors in the Carpathian region were poor, but they possessed a great
spiritual treasure in their great devotion to the Most Holy Mother of God, whom
they sincerely loved and venerated as the Mother of the Ruthenian land ( Mati
ruskoho kraju ). And the Most Holy Theotokos showed her motherly concern for
our poor people by her miraculous icons, the most famous of which is the Weeping
Icon of Mariapovch ( in Hungarian: Maria-Pocs).
In the middle of the XVII century many Ruthenian families, looking for better
conditions of livelihood, moved from their Carpathian land to the north-eastern
plains of Hungary, which was then devastated and abandoned by the Turks. Thus
the Ruthenians settled down and established several villages in the so-called
Szabolcs county. Professing the Greek-Catholic faith, they immediately organized
their own parishes, which until 1912 belonged to Mukachevo eparchy.
One of those villages was - Povch, where about 160 Ruthenian families
settled down and built for themselves a typical wooden church in 1676. Their
pastor was Father Daniel Pap who, as the registers show, came down with his
people and served them with love and dedication. When the church was ready
he invited his younger brother, Stephen, who was a popular painter of icons,
to paint the iconostasis for the new church. The Icon of the Most Holy Mother
of God was commissioned by the head of the village, a certain Basil Chyhrij.
Since Chyhrij refused to pay the six florins for the icon, it was bought by
another parishioner L. Hurta, who then donated the Icon to the church "for
the remission of his sins"
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