On September 21 the Church celebrates feast of the Nativity of the Most Holy Mother of God. On that day we had a festal service at St. George Church. Our Rector, Archpriest Igor Tarasov celebrated the Divine Liturgy. Following the reading from the Gospel Fr. Igor preached a homily.
The Rector expressed his regret that not too many parishioners came today to honor the Blessed Mother on the occasion of Her Birthday. We usually remember the birthdays of our loved ones and friends, we try to greet them and attend their birthday parties. However, sometimes we forget about our Blessed Mother’s day of birth.
Further Fr. Igor in his sermon shared the following thoughts: “Today the Church describes this feast by such a beautiful expression, “The barrenness of our nature has been loosed”. It says so because the whole human nature was spiritually barren, not able to give any good fruits. After the sin of Adam and Eve all men were deprived of spiritual fruitfulness. Only our Lord Jesus Christ could loose that barrenness and lift up the curse. In Christ our nature became fruitful again. But Jesus Christ had to be born of the Blessed Mother. Her Birth we celebrate today. This is why we sing these beautiful words about Her Nativity.”
“Now, in Christ all of us have to be spiritually fruitful, to bear a fruit of spiritual life. There is no requirement for all of us to be married and have children. But in any moment of our lives we have to be spiritually sane and active and bear spiritual fruit. We have to listen to the voice of Christ and follow Him. If we do so, then the fruits of our behavior, of our lifestyle will be appropriate.”
“Honoring the Most Holy Mother of God we should also honor Her holy parents, Joachim and Anna. They are examples to all parents, teaching us how to bring up children in piety. St. Joachim and Anna worked together with the Holy Spirit, with spiritual truth. This was the beginning of their joy. If we can do the same, it will be the beginning of our joy too. We too can free ourselves of the barrenness of our nature, if we stop thinking about our material well-being and start thinking about our spiritual well-being. Then we too will give birth to spiritual fruit like holy grandparents of God Joachim and Anna.”
“During Christmas time when we celebrate the Nativity of Christ, we say “God with us”. Today, on the birthday of the Theotokos, we may say, “Holy Mother of God is with us”. She may help us to follow Her Son and intercede for us before Him. Holy Mother is now with us. Let us rejoice!”