The Troyan Monastery „The Dormition of the Mother of God“ today celebrated its feast.
Тhe Divine Liturgy was inaugurated by His Eminence Metropolitan Nikolay of Plovdiv and Patriarch Neophyte turned with sermon to the believers.
“I shall open my mouth and it shall be filled with the Spirit; and I shall pour out a word to the Queen and Mother; and I shall be seen cheerfully celebrating; and rejoicing, I shall sing of her miracles.
Your Graces, God-loving fathers,
Beloved in the Lord brothers and sisters,
The memory of the Church for one of the most extraordinary events of theanthropic history gathers us today in the temple, under the veil of the Mother of God, to sing and glorify once again her glorious Dormition. Let us celebrate brightly, as the Divine Service calls us for, and raise together our prayers to the heavens, thanking for the great grace of God and all His generosity to us.
Let us speak a word filled with the Spirit, in glorification of the one who today ascends gloriously to the heavens to reassure us once more that the salvation offered by the Lord is true and to enter into the joy of the kingdom of her Son and our God, to rejoice with Him and with all His saints, and with them to pray diligently for all the human race.
The one who, due to her virtuous life and her pure heart, has been honoured to become a participant in the mystery of the Incarnation, the one who has amazed even the angelic community, is now rising from the earth to the heavens where is the true homeland of each of us, in order to fully fulfill the vocation determined by the Creator for the whole human race – to achieve that „unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God… having reached the very fullness of Christ“, about which her Son taught and preached , and which the apostle of the nations spoke as early as in the first century (Eph 4:13).
The one who gave birth to, nurtured and raised the Son of God, the one who shared all of His thorny way – from the suffering and death on the cross to His glorious Resurrection – is taken today by Him to live in eternity, to inherit His Kingdom and to receive „the crown of life, which the Lord promised to those who love him“ (James 1:12).
Today, the Most Holy Virgin shows to all of us the fulfillment of what we are called for – the baptized in the name of her divine Son. With the end of our earthly life, she points to us what should be the personal destiny of all of us who profess Christ the Savior, who live in His Church, and who, according to our powers, walk on the narrow path to salvation showed to us by Him. As the life of God’s Mother is a model and example for the lives of each of us, so her glorious Dormition is that glorious end of every Christian life and that holy crown which the Most Gracious and Philanthropic God wants to be an ending and crowning for each of us. Because, as the Apostle testifies, now, being made free from sin and having become servants of God, the fruit of our lives must be „sanctification, and the result of eternal life”. (Rom 6:22).
I am happy to be here on this bright and festive day of celebration, to be here in my dear Troyan Monastery, where my monastic journey once began, and in which I myself felt the power of the divine grace under the Protecting Veil of God’s Mother. In accordance with all her holy prayers and her zealous heavenly intercession, for anyone who has set out on the difficult but blessed monastic path, may God generously condescend to this holy place and strengthen the brethren who are in it, and for all the pious pilgrims that are assembling here, may the Troyan Monastery always be a place for consolation and strengthening the Christian life and feat, for blessing and spiritual joy.
The countless miracles having witnessed here since the foundation of this wonderful holy monastery until today, which the Most Holy Theotokos has obtained by prayer from our Heavenly Father after a diligent supplication before her miraculous icon „Mother of God Three Handed“, are a clear sign of God’s benevolence to this monastery and to all our nation and a bright testimony of the power of the Mother of God’s prayers and of her heavenly help for all who, by faith, pure hearts and trust, come to her holy image and beg for her heavenly intercession.
Therefore, on the bright day of her divine Dormition, let us once again raise our hearts upwards and in one voice let us say: „It is truly meet to bless you, O Theotokos, ever-blessed and most pure, and the Mother of our God. More honorable than the Cherubim, and more glorious beyond compare than the Seraphim, without defilement you gave birth to God the Word. True Theotokos we magnify you!”
According to the prayers of our Sovereign Lady and always Virgin Theotokos, may God our Lord have mercy and save all of us!
Happy and blessed Feast!
Patriarch of Bulgaria”