Sorry that this entry is being uploaded late, tis finals week, and the auto schedule was for the wrong date.
In the Name of The Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
In our Liturgy, we pray in response to the presentation of the Holy Gifts, "One is Holy, One is Lord, Jesus Christ, to the Glory of God the Father, Amen." It is from this point, I wish to talk about the feast of the Maternity of St Anna.
God by his very nature is Holy. The Theotokos is holy by Grace, not anything on her own merit. Or put another way, Mary is by grace, what God is by nature. Traditionally this feast is not celebrated on the 8th of December, but rather the 9th, a day later, because The Theotokos is human, and Christ makes up for what is lacking. (And St John the Forerunner's conception is celebrated on the 23rd of September, one day early in anticipation, for being the greatest of the prophets....(a rather nice note))
The Troparion for the day tells us "Today, the bonds of barrenness are loosed, for God has heard the prayers of Joachim and Ana. He promised beyond hope, the birth of their godly daughter. The Indescribable, himself, born of her as a mortal commanded us through the angel to sing to her: Rejoice, O woman, full of grace, the Lord is with you."
Our Kontakion tells us: "Today the whole world celebrates how Anna becomes a mother by the power of God, She conceived the woman whose conception of the Word is beyond our words."
You'll notice, that in both of these situations, it's neither the Theotokos of Ss Joachim and Anna who are the focus, but rather Our Triune God, all through the power of God. For without God, we are nothing.
This is what we should remember on this day, the power of God can overcome anything, and we too can become by grace, what God is by nature. The Theotokos is the perfect example of this.
Let us the faithful, extol the Theotokos, the ever flowing Fountain of Life, radiant Beacon of Grace, Living Temple, and most pure Tabernacle, more spacious than earth and heaven.
In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, Amen.