Monday, August 15, 2016

The Feast of the Assumption 2016

When thou departed to Him Who was born of thee ineffably, o Virgin Mother of God, there were present James, the brother of God and first hierarch, and Peter, the honored head and leader of theologians, and all the divine choir of the Apostles, and with words that reveal the things of God, they praised in song the amazing divine mystery of the dispensation of Christ God. They rejoiced as they prepared thy body, which was the origin of life, and received God, that art praised with every hymn. And the all-holy and venerable angelic powers, looking down upon this wonder from above with astonishment, said to one another:“Lift up your gates and receive Her that bore the Maker of heaven and earth. Let us exalt with songs of praise the august and holy body which contained the Lord, invisible to us.” Wherefore we also, celebrating thy memory, cry out to thee, o all-praised one: Exalt the state of Christians and save our souls. (The doxastikon of Vespers of the Dormition of the Mother of God in the Byzantine Rite.)

Russian icon of the Dormition of the Virgin Mary, late 16th or early 17th century.
Ὅτε ἐξεδήμησας, Θεοτόκε Παρθένε, πρὸς τὸν ἐκ σοῦ τεχθέντα ἀφράστως, παρῆν Ἰάκωβος ὁ Ἀδελφόθεος, καὶ πρῶτος Ἱεράρχης, Πέτρος τε ἡ τιμιωτάτη κορυφαία τῶν θεολόγων ἀκρότης, καὶ σύμπας ὁ θεῖος τῶν Ἀποστόλων χορός, ἐκφαντορικαῖς θεολογίαις ὑμνολογοῦντες τὸ θεῖον καὶ ἐξαίσιον τῆς Χριστοῦ τοῦ Θεοῦ οἰκονομίας μυστήριον· καὶ τὸ ζωαρχικόν καὶ θεοδόχον σου σῶμα κηδεύσαντες, ἔχαιρον πανύμνητε. Ὕπερθεν δὲ αἱ πανάγιαι καὶ πρεσβύταται τῶν Ἀγγέλων Δυνάμεις, τὸ θαῦμα ἐκπληττόμεναι, κεκυφυῖαι ἀλλήλαις ἔλεγον· Ἄρατε ὑμῶν τὰς πύλας, καὶ ὑποδέξασθε τὴν τεκοῦσαν τὸν οὐρανοῦ καὶ γῆς Ποιητήν, δοξολογίαις τε ἀνυμνήσωμεν, τὸ σεπτὸν καὶ ἅγιον σῶμα, τὸ χωρῆσαν τὸν ἡμῖν ἀθεώρητον καὶ Κύριον. Διόπερ καὶ ἡμεῖς τὴν μνήμην σου ἑορτάζοντες, ἐκβοῶμέν σοι· Πανύμνητε, Χριστιανῶν τὸ κέρας ὕψωσον, καὶ σῶσον τὰς ψυχὰς ἡμῶν.

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