Friday, August 14, 2015

Feast of Soonoyo (End of 15 day Fast)

Feast of Soonoyo (Transfer or Dormition of St. Mary)

An excerpt from the homily of John of Damascus during the feast of Soonoyo and Bible Readings

"Theofanus uspenie" by Theophanes the Greek - Own work (scan). Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons -
Icon of the Dormition by Theophan the Greek, 1392. The Theotokos is depicted lying on a bier, surrounded by the Twelve Apostles. At center, Jesus Christ is shown in a mandorla, swadling the soul of the Virgin Mary (a red seraph is shown above his head). To either side of him are depicted the Hieromartyrs Dionysius the Areopagite and Ignatius the God-Bearer who, according to tradition, are responsible for transmitting the account of the dormition.

10. Oh, see how the source of life is carried over into life, through the midst of death! See how the one  who overcame the defining limits of nature in her childbearing now gives way to those same limits, and submits her unsullied body to death!...Se how the maker of all things receives into his own hands her holy soul, now separated from that tabernacle that received God. He rightly honors her who was by nature his handmaid, but whom by his saving plan he made to be his mother, in the unfathomable ocean of his love for humanity. For he truly became flesh, and did not feign incarnation.

The Apostles saw, we are told, the ranks of angels waiting your departure from this world of human life. O lovely emigration, which was for you a migration to God!....

11. The angels and archangels carried you there. The unclean spirits of mid-air trembled at your departure. The air was blessed by your passing through it, the aether of the upper regions was sanctified. Heaven received your soul with joy!....

12. And so your holy, spotless body is committed to a reverent burial as angels go before you and stand around you and follow after, doing all the things by which it is fitting to serve the mother of their Lord. The Apostles, too, are there, and all the full membership of the Church, crying out divine hymns to the music of the harp of the spirit and singing... The company of the Apostles lift you up n their shoulders, the true ark of the Lord God, as once the priests lifted up the typological ark that pointed the way to you; placing you in the tomb, they carry you, as through another Jordan, into the true land of promise - to the Jerusalem which is above, the mother of all the faithful whose builder and craftsman is God. For your "soul did not go down into the underworld, nor did your flesh see corruption. Your immaculate, completely spotless body was not left on the earth, but you have been transported to the royal dwelling-place of heaven as queen, as lady, as mistress, as Mother of God, as the one who truly gave God birth...
Source: On the Dormition of Mary - Early Patristic Homilies by SVS Press

Bible Readings on the Feast of Soonoyo:

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