THE FEAST OF THE ENTRANCE OF THE THEOTOKOS IN THE TEMPLE AT THE PATRIARCHATE
On Monday 21st November/4th December 2017, the Patriarchate celebrated the Feast of the Entrance of the Theotokos in the Temple, at the Holy Monastery dedicated in this event, know under the name “Megali Panagia”.
On this feast, the Church commemorates the event of St. Joachim and Anna dedicated the “three-year-old” Theotokos to the Temple of Solomon, and she entered in the “Holy of Holies” being fed by the Angels until the Priests delivered her to Joseph her betrothed, in order to protect her as a chosen vessel of God, so that she would incarnate by the Holy Spirit the Son and Logos of God, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
In honour of the Entrance of the Theotokos in the Temple, who “gathered us in the grace of the Holy Spirit” Vespers was held in the evening in the aforementioned H. Nunnery, and the Divine Liturgy was celebrated in the morning of the feast, led by the Most Reverend Archbishop Demetrios of Lydda and Secretary of the Holy and Sacred Synod, with co-celebrants Hagiotaphite Hieromonks, the ministering Priest of the Monastery Archimandrite Makarios and Hegoumen of the H. Monastery of St. Nicodemus, Archimandrite Ignatios Hegoumen of the Holy Monastery of the Shepherds, Archimandrite Ieronymos Hegoumen in Fhes of Jordan; the Choir Leader of the All-holy Church of the Resurrection Archimandrite Aristovoulos led the choir along with the left choir singer of the All-holy Church of the Resurrection Mr. George Alvanos, and the students of the Patriarchal School of Zion. The service was attended by the full congregation of the nuns of the Monastery and other nuns of the Patriarchate, local Arab-speaking faithful and pilgrims from various Orthodox countries.
After the Divine Liturgy the good keeper and renovator of the Monastery Abbess Melani offered a reception to the Episcopal Entourage and all congregation at the Hegoumeneion.