Thursday, September 26, 2013

Feast of the Nativity of the Theotokos

Mr. Husband and I went to the Feast of
the Nativity of the Mother of God this past Saturday.
It is like an early Christmas,
for we would not have Christmas if the Mother of God
had not been born;
it is, truly, the beginning of our salvation!

"The present feastday is for us the beginning of feastdays. Serving as a boundary limit to the law and to foretypes, it at the same time serves as a doorway to grace and truth." ~ St. Andrew of Crete
(h/t Mystagogy)


"On the eve of the feast, Vespers is served and contains three Old Testament readings that have New Testament meaning. In Genesis 28:10-17, Jacob's Ladder which unites heaven and earth points to the union of God with men which is realized most fully and perfectly in Mary the bearer of God. "How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven!" In Ezekiel 43:27-44:4, the vision of the temple with the door to the East perpetually closed and filled with the glory of the Lord, symbolizes Mary. And in Proverbs 9:1-11, Mary is also identified with the "house" which the Divine Wisdom has built for herself."
~See here for more.

"This is the day of the Lord; wherefore, rejoice ye nations; for behold the chamber of Light, the scroll of the Word of life hath come forth from the womb; the gate facing the east hath been born. Wherefore, she awaiteth the entrance of the High Priest. And she alone admitted Christ into the universe for salvation of our souls.

+ Doxastikon of the Feast, Tone 6


Your birth, O Theotokos, brought joy to the whole world, for from you dawned the sun of righteousness, Christ our God. Freeing us from the curse, He gave us His blessings. Abolishing death, He granted us eternal life.


In your holy birth, Immaculate One, Joachim and Anna were rid of the shame of childlessness; Adam and Eve of the corruption of death. And so your people, free of the guilt of their sins, celebrate crying: "The barren one gives birth to the Theotokos, who nourishes our life."

Fr. Thomas Hopko speaks on this feast here.
Simple ways to celebrate the feast:

Say the short prayers
(the troparion and kontakion,
as listed above)
at home.
One suggestion I have heard for this is to have
the first prayer (the troparion) said before one eats a meal
and the second (the kontakion) said after the meal.
Another is to pray them in your morning and evening prayers.
Go to vespers or vigil the day before the feast.
Go to the festal liturgy on the feast.
Pray some of the prayers at home
if it is not possible to go to church.
Place an icon of this feast in your icon corner.
Tell the story of the feast,
of Sts. Joachim and Anna,
to your children if you are blessed with them.
Be thankful to God for such a beautiful beginning of our

1 comment:

Mimi said...

I had the blessing of attending this feast on both calendars this year, this past week in Seattle and getting to visit a dear friend.