Firefighters battling a blaze at a church in Serbia were stunned to discover that three religious icons had shockingly survived the inferno. According to Serbian media reports, paintings of Jesus Christ, John the Baptist, and the Apostle Peter were found with their faces largely intact in the attic of a dormitory at St. Elijah monastery in the town of Kakapun. The building, a relatively recent addition to the 13th century religious site, was destroyed by the fire, spawning something of a debate among residents as to why the icons were spared.
One individual mused that the survival of the paintings, which are traditionally blessed by members of the clergy, was a proverbial sign from above. "Glory to God and his worshippers," the awestruck local declared. However, not everyone was convinced that the incident was miraculous. A more skeptical member of the community noted claimed that the icons were painted on gold and, therefore, were able to endure the extreme temperatures that occurred during the fire.
While that may be the case, it's uncertain at this time whether or not the works were actually painted on gold or if they were made on wood. Based on the charred sides of the icons, it would seem to indicate that the latter medium was used. Regardless, there should be little doubt that the pieces, once collecting dust in the attic of the building, will be afforded a more prominent spot at the site after the dormitory is reconstructed.
The rather odd incident hearkens back to a similar series of cases that took place in Tennessee when wildfires ravaged a significant part of the state in December of 2016. In that instance, a charred statue of Jesus was the only thing left standing at a residence completely destroyed by fire and two other homes had religious sculptures which survived while everything around them had been reduced to rubble. And, eerily, a single, charred page from the Bible was discovered sitting on a park bench bearing a passage from the Book of Joel asking for God's help in the face of a massive inferno.