Tag Archives: Annunciation

Orthodox Church quotes about the Annunciation

St. John of Kronstadt: Sermon on the Nativity of Jesus Christ (Part 1)

Nativity of Jesus 5“The Word became flesh; that is, the Son of God, co-eternal with God the Father and with the Holy Spirit, became human – having become incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary. O, wondrous, awesome and salvific mystery! The One Who had no beginning took on a beginning according to humanity; the One without flesh assumed flesh. God became man – without ceasing to be God. The Unapproachable One became approachable to all, in the aspect of an humble servant.”

+ St. John of Kronstadt, Sermon on the Nativity of Jesus Christ

Read Full Sermon at Pravoslavie

From the Russian text appearing in Chapter 2 of “Solntse Pravdy: O Zhizni i Uchenii Gospoda Nashego, Iisusa Khrista” [“The Sun of Righteousness: On the Life and Teaching of Our Lord, Jesus Christ”], by Protopriest [Saint] Ioann [John] (Sergiev) of Kronstadt, pp. 4-6. Translated into English by G. Spruksts.

St. John of Damascus: After the normal nine-month gestation period, Christ was born . . .

Annunciation“After the normal nine-month gestational period, Christ was born at the beginning of the tenth, in accordance with the law of gestation. It was the birth that surpassed the established order of birthgiving, as it was without pain; for, where pleasure had not preceded, pain did not follow. And just as at His conception He had kept her who conceived Him virgin, so also at His birth did He maintain her virginity intact, because He alone passed through her and kept her shut [Ezekiel 44:1-3].

While the conception was by ‘hearing’, the birth was by the usual orifice through which children are born, even though there are some who concoct an idle tale of His being born from the side of the Mother of God. For it was not impossible for Him to pass through the gate without breaking its seals. Hence, the Ever-Virgin remained virgin even after giving birth and never had converse with a husband as long as she lived.”

+ St. John of Damascus, An Exact Exposition of the Orthodox Faith

Sticheria 6 on “Lord I Call,” Vespers of the Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple

Icon of the Entrance of the Theotokos into the TempleAnna the all-praised cried out rejoicing: “Receive O Zachariah, her whom God’s Prophets proclaimed in the Spirit, and bring her into the holy Temple, there to be brought up in reverence, that she may become the divine throne of the Master of all, His palace and resting place and dwelling filled with light!”

— Sticheria 6 on “Lord I Call,” Vespers of the Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple

St. Germanus: Today she who will receive the Holy of Holies . . .

Icon of the Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple“Today she who will receive the Holy of Holies, that is the Christ, through the sanctification of the Holy Spirit is, through an even greater sanctification, placed in the Holy of Holies with holiness and majesty.”

— St. Germanus of Constantinople, First Homily on the Presentation

St. Andrew of Crete: Thus the immaculate fruition issuing forth from the womb occurred from an infertile mother . . .

Icon of St. Andrew of Crete“Thus the immaculate fruition issuing forth from the womb occurred from an infertile mother, and then the parents, in the first blossoming of her growth brought her to the temple and dedicated her to God. The priest, then making the order of services, beheld the face of the girl and of those in front of and behind, and he became gladdened and joyful, seeing as it were the actual fulfillment of the Divine promise. He consecrated her to God, as a reverential gift and propitious sacrifice and, as a great treasury unto salvation, he led her within the very innermost parts of the temple. Here the Maiden walked in the upright ways of the Lord, as in bridal chambers, partaking of heavenly food until the time of betrothal, which was preordained before all the ages by Him Who, by His inscrutable mercy, was born from her, and by Him Who before all creation and time and expanse Divinely begat Him, …”

— St. Andrew of Crete, Homily on the Nativity of the Theotokos

St. Germanus . . . it is there in this holy sanctuary of grace that Mary is offered to stay there indefinitely.

Entrance of the Theotokos 2“There where only the High Priest may enter, and then rarely: only once a year, it is there in this holy sanctuary of grace that Mary is offered to stay there indefinitely. Who has ever heard anything similar? Who has ever seen or heard, now or formerly, that a woman was introduced into the intimacy of the Holy of Holies, and that it was in this place, almost inaccessible even to men, that she lived and ate. Is this not a striking demonstration of the strange magnificence of which her womb would be the object? Is it not a manifest sign, a irrefutable proof?”

— St. Germanus of Constantinople, Second Homily on the Presentation

St. Irenaeus: The Theotokos and Eve

Icon of St. Irenaeus of LyonIn accordance with this design, Mary the Virgin is found obedient, saying, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to your word. Luke 1:38 But Eve was disobedient; for she did not obey when as yet she was a virgin. And even as she, having indeed a husband, Adam, but being nevertheless as yet a virgin (for in Paradise they were both naked, and were not ashamed, Genesis 2:25 inasmuch as they, having been created a short time previously, had no understanding of the procreation of children: for it was necessary that they should first come to adult age, and then multiply from that time onward), having become disobedient, was made the cause of death, both to herself and to the entire human race; so also did Mary, having a man betrothed [to her], and being nevertheless a virgin, by yielding obedience, become the cause of salvation, both to herself and the whole human race.

And on this account does the law term a woman betrothed to a man, the wife of him who had betrothed her, although she was as yet a virgin; thus indicating the back-reference from Mary to Eve, because what is joined together could not otherwise be put asunder than by inversion of the process by which these bonds of union had arisen; so that the former ties be cancelled by the latter, that the latter may set the former again at liberty. And it has, in fact, happened that the first compact looses from the second tie, but that the second tie takes the position of the first which has been cancelled. For this reason did the Lord declare that the first should in truth be last, and the last first. Matthew 19:30, Matthew 20:16 And the prophet, too, indicates the same, saying, instead of fathers, children have been born unto you. For the Lord, having been born the First-begotten of the dead,Revelation 1:5 and receiving into His bosom the ancient fathers, has regenerated them into the life of God, He having been made Himself the beginning of those that live, as Adam became the beginning of those who die. 1 Corinthians 15:20-22 Wherefore also Luke, commencing the genealogy with the Lord, carried it back to Adam, indicating that it was He who regenerated them into the Gospel of life, and not they Him. And thus also it was that the knot of Eve’s disobedience was loosed by the obedience of Mary. For what the virgin Eve had bound fast through unbelief, this did the virgin Mary set free through faith.

— St. Irenaeus, Against Heresies, Book 3 Chapter 22