Recently, I think on the Orthodoxchristianity.net forums, Fr Peter Farrington alluded to a story about a king Abgar and how Christ delivered to him an imprint of His face which planted the seed of the 'Icon' tradition in the church. It apparently also motivated St Luke to write the first icon of Christ's face. King Abgar lived around the same time as our Lord..He was very ill and had heard of our Lord doing miracles in another land and sent for him, but Christ apparently sent him a hand written letter stating that he could not make the trip, instead sending him the aforementioned.
What, if any, truth does this story hold. Has it passed into christian folklore as mere myth or is there solid historical truth to it. It seemed to me a beautiful story, worthy of greater attention