OREANDA-NEWS. October 20, 2011. The Vatopedi monks, who are accompanying the relic, showed Vladimir Putin the reliquary containing the Belt of the Virgin Mary, while clerics of the St Petersburg Diocese held a service of thanksgiving.

Vladimir Yakunin, president of Russian Railways and head of the Foundation of St. Andrew the First-Called, presented Vladimir Putin with an icon painted by the monks of the Vatopedi Monastery on Mount Athos, Greece, on the occasion of the arrival of the Belt of the Virgin Mary to Russia.

This Christian relic has never been brought to Russia before.

Eastern Orthodox Christians believe that the belt has miraculous healing powers and the ability to cure women’s sterility.