Apodosis of the Dormition of our Most Holy Lady the Theotokos and Ever Virgin Mary

Apodosis of the Dormition of our Most Holy Lady the Theotokos and Ever Virgin Mary

The Feast is repeated and celebrated as it is on August 15, except for the entrance, readings, and Litya at Vespers; and the polyeleos and Gospel of the Feast at Matins.

Apodosis of the Dormition of our Most Holy Lady the Theotokos and Ever Virgin Mary

Apodosis of the Feast of the Dormition falls on August 23.

On the Apodosis of the feast, also referred to as the Leaving of the Feast of the Dormition, the burial shroud is returned in another solemn procession. This is one of the celebrations throughout the Orthodox world that could be described that demonstrate the great love for the Theotokos that resides in the hearts of the Orthodox faithful.

Concerning the Dormition of the Theotokos, this is what the Church has received from ancient times from the tradition of the Fathers. When the time drew nigh that our Savior was well-pleased to take His Mother to Himself, He declared unto her through an Angel that three days hence, He would translate her from this temporal life to eternity and bliss. After hearing this, she hurriedly went to the Mount of Olives, praying continuously. Giving thanks to God, she returned to her house and prepared whatever was necessary for her burial. While these things were taking place, clouds caught up the Apostles from the ends of the earth, where each one happened to be preaching, and brought them at once to the house of the Mother of God, who informed them of the cause of their sudden gathering. As a mother, she consoled them in their affliction as was meet and then raised her hands to Heaven and prayed for the world's peace. She blessed the Apostles and, reclining upon her bed with seemliness, gave up her all-holy spirit into the hands of her Son and God.

With reverence, many lights, and chanting burial hymns, the Apostles took up that God-receiving body and brought it to the sepulchre. In contrast, the Angels from Heaven chanted with them and sent forth her who is higher than the Cherubim. But one Jew, moved by malice, audaciously stretched forth his hand upon the bed and immediately received the wages of his audacity from divine judgment. An invisible blow severed those daring hands. But when he repented and asked forgiveness, his hands were restored. When they reached the place called Gethsemane, they buried there with honour the all-immaculate body of the Theotokos, which was the source of Life. But on the third day after the burial, when they were eating together, and raised up the artos (bread) in Jesus’ Name, as was their custom, the Theotokos appeared in the air, saying “Rejoice” to them. From this they learned concerning the bodily translation of the Theotokos into the Heavens.

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