Tomorrow will be the last Sunday in December and in the calendar year of 2014. It is the celebrated afterfeast of the Nativity of Christ. Tonight's Great Service of Vespers, through Germanus, tells us about the present mystery, of which we greatly rejoice and sing. Who is this infant, Jesus? What effect does His birth have on all for all time?
"Come, let us greatly rejoice in the Lord,
as we sing of this present mystery;
the wall which divided God from man has been destroyed;
the flaming sword withdraws from Eden's gate;
the Cherubim withdraw from the Tree of Life;
and I, who had been cast out through my disobedience,
now feast on the delights of Paradise;
for today the Father's perfect Image,
marked with stamp of His eternity,
has taken the form of a servant.
Without undergoing change He is born from an unwedded mother;
but through His love for mankind,
He has become what He never was: true man.
Come, O faithful, let us cry to Him:
"O God, born of the Virgin, have mercy on us,!"
Anatolius, writing for the Feast says: "The Wise Men worshipped, and the Angels sang.
But Herod was troubled, for God had appeared in the flesh.
He is the Savior of our souls."
O Pre-eternal God, have mercy on us!
"Let us glorify Christ, Who shone forth from the Virgin and took on flesh in order to save our souls!"
We are gravitating toward the coming year in which the troubled Herod's of the world still slaughter innocents, unable to understand the Divine Plan. The Son of God, Jesus, shone forth from His Virgin mother Mary, taking on our flesh in order to save our souls by His death on the cross and His glorious Resurrection.
Glory to God, for He has granted Peace to the world, compassion and great mercy!
"What shall we offer You, O Christ,
Who for our sakes have appeared on earth as a man?"
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