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March 11, 2011

The First Salutations To The Theotokos

An Angel of supreme rank was sent down from heaven to say to the Theotokos, Rejoice. (Thrice) And perceiving You take bodily form at the sound of his bodiless voice, O Lord, he was astounded and he stood shouting to her such salutations:

Rejoice, through whom is the joy to shine forth.
Rejoice, through whom is the curse to vanish.

Rejoice, restoration of Adam the fallen one.
Rejoice, liberation of Eve from tears.

Rejoice, height to which the thoughts of men are hardly able to ascend.
Rejoice, depth which for the Angels’ eyes is very hard to apprehend.

Rejoice, for you are a throne for the King.
Rejoice, for you hold the One who holds everything.

Rejoice, the star causing the Sun’s manifestation.
Rejoice, the womb of the divine incarnation.

Rejoice, through whom is creation re-created.
Rejoice, by whom is the Creator procreated.

Rejoice, O unwedded Bride.

Beholding herself wholly kept in chastity, boldly says to Gabriel she who is holy: The exceptional tidings of your voice seem difficult for my soul to accept. For what do you mean, pregnancy by unseeded conception, crying, Alleluia.

Curious to know knowledge that is knowable to no one, the Virgin cried to the serving Angel: How is it possible for a son to be born of inviolate loins? Tell me please. And he with fear replied to her, albeit shouting thusly:

Rejoice, initiate of secret counsel.
Rejoice, assurance of what calls for silence.

Rejoice, introduction to the miracles of Christ.
Rejoice, consummation of His articles of faith.

Rejoice, heavenly ladder by which did God himself descend.
Rejoice, bridge that conveys unto heaven earthborn men.

Rejoice, the wonder most renowned among Angels.
Rejoice, the wound greatly bemourned by the demons.

Rejoice, who bear the Light inexplicably.
Rejoice, who declare the manner to nobody.

Rejoice, transcending the knowledge of scholars.
Rejoice, illumining minds of believers.

Rejoice, O unwedded Bride.

Divine power of the Most High, to effect her conception, overshadowed the unwedded Damsel; and it made her luxuriant womb to appear as a luscious field for everyone who desires to reap salvation while chanting, Alleluia.

Eagerly did the Virgin, hosting God in her body, then hasten to visit Elizabeth, whose own infant recognized the voice of her greeting at once and rejoiced in the womb; and with leaps and bounds for songful sounds, he shouted to the Theotokos:

Rejoice, the branch with its shoot unwithered.
Rejoice, the ranch with its fruit unblemished.

Rejoice, for the man-loving Husbandman you cultivate.
Rejoice, for the Gardener of our life you germinate.

Rejoice, arable land yielding tender mercies hundredfold.
Rejoice, banquet table whereupon has forgiveness overflowed.

Rejoice, for the meadow of delight you make flourish.
Rejoice, for a haven of our souls do you furnish.

Rejoice, accepted incense of intercession.
Rejoice, the universe’s expiation.

Rejoice, the good pleasure of God unto mortals.
Rejoice, the confidence of mortals before God.

Rejoice, O unwedded Bride.

Fraught within with confusion brought about by doubtful thoughts, the temperate Joseph was troubled as he looked upon you the unwed and suspected adultery, O blameless one. But when he learned that your concep­tion was by the Holy Spirit, he uttered, Alleluia.