THE ANNUNCIATION of the THEOTOKOS
On the twenty-fifth day of this month we celebrate the Annunciation of our Most Holy Lady Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary.
The Angel announced to the Virgin the
Great Son of the Father’s great Counsel.
The Angel said, "Rejoice", to Mary on the twenty-fifth.
God, Who is merciful and loves mankind, is ever solicitous about the race of men. When, as a loving Father, He saw the work of His hands enslaved to the Devil and under his tyranny, subject to the passions and to idolatry, He resolved to send His Only-Begotten Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, to deliver mankind from the clutches of the Devil. Since He wanted to escape the notice not only of Satan, but also of the Heavenly Powers themselves, He entrusted the Mystery to one of the Archangels, the glorious Gabriel, and in His OEconomy He brought it about that the Holy Virgin was purified by the Holy Spirit, for she was worthy of such a favor. When the Angel came to the city of Nazareth, he said to her: “Rejoice, O Full of Grace, the Lord is with thee.” She asked: “How shall this be?” He replied: “The Holy Spirit shall come upon thee, and the power of the Most High shall overshadow thee.” And she said: “Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word.” At the same time as she and the Archangel spoke, she conceived preternaturally in her immaculate womb the Son and Word of God, His enhypostatic Wisdom and Power, by the overshadowing of God and the coming of the Holy Spirit. Thereafter, the Mysteries of God the Word were accomplished by His OEconomy, for our salvation and redemption.
By her holy intercessions, O God, have mercy on us and save us, for Thou art good and lovest mankind. Amen.
Apolytikion in the Fourth Tone
Today is the crowning of our salvation and the manifestation of the Mystery which is from eternity; the Son of God becometh the Son of the Virgin, and Gabriel announceth the glad tidings of grace: wherefore let us cry out with him to the Mother of God; Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with thee!
Kontakion in Plagal of the Fourth Tone
To thee, the Champion Leader, do I offer thanks of victory, O Theotokos, thou who hast delivered me from terror; but as thou that hast that power invincible, O Theotokos, thou alone can set me free: from all forms of danger free me and deliver me, that I may cry unto thee: “Hail, O Bride without Bridegroom.”
Megalynarion in the Fourth Tone
The Theotokos, being the living tabernacle of God, shall never be touched by an unclean hand. But the lips of believers shall sing unto her ceaselessly with the voice of angels, crying joyfully, Rejoice, O full of grace. The Lord is with thee.
Koinonikon in Plagal of the Fourth Tone
The Lord hath chosen Zion; He hath chosen it for His dwelling. Alleluia.