It is for a reason that the venerable father's cell icon became known as "Tenderness" in a context of feeling humble, contrite, and genuinely compassionate. It is the condition the Holy Virgin expressed by saying: "Behold the maidservant of the Lord! be it unto me according to your word." (Luke 1:38). It is not ruled out that there is the connection of the name "Tenderness" and one of her Latin names such as Madonna, or "dell'Umiltà," meaning "humble, meek, obedient young maiden, the handmaiden of the Lord".
In Catholic art, the image of the Mother of God in prayer, with Her hands crossing her chest, has primarily been recognized as an independent iconographic style. Due to its versatile display of attention in prayer, it was used in a range of various paintings, such as "Annunciation," "Crowning of Mary," "Immaculous Conception" (less frequently, in "Nativity," "Descent of the Holy Spirit," or "Last Judgment"), as well as "Crucifixion." Therefore, icons depicting Virgin Mary with her hands crisscrossing her chest represent a fragmented version of that style.
A quote from the ancient Akathist to the Most Holy Theotokos "Rejoice, the Bride Unwedded" is located on the icon of the Mother of God "Tenderness." It is a poetical interpretation of the Evangelic greeting of the Archangel Gabriel to the Virgin "Rejoice, the Blessed One" (Luke 1:28). In his book "The Pillar and Ground of the Truth" Father Pavel Florensky wrote: "The Tenderness icon is remarkable since Theotokos is depicted on it without a child or even before His conception – at the moment of the "Archangel's Greeting," when She is the Ever-Pure Vessel of the Holy Spirit. St. Seraphim had seven candleholders burning before the icon and they took up most of his cell's space. Again, it manifests the Holy Spirit in His seven gifts, seven highest spiritual gifts. The venerable father commanded us to call this icon Tenderness, the Joy of all Joys."