Mary: A letter to us from God

YOU yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everybody.

You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.

Such confidence as this is ours through Christ before God.

2 Corinthans 3:2-4.

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A detail from an icon of Mary the Mother of God

A detail from an icon of Mary the Mother of God

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IN the prayer which follows, I’ve added some relevant Biblical texts in italics.

The message is, that Mary is the New Temple, where God himself meets with man and dwells with us incarnate, that hers is the first heart of flesh on which God writes his law for all to read.

*

DANIEL foresaw in her the mountain of God.
The God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed, nor will it be left to another people. It will crush all those kingdoms and bring them to an end, but it will itself endure forever. This is the meaning of the vision of the rock cut out of a mountain, but not by human hands. (Dan 2:44-45)

She is the spiritual Sanctuary,
Have them make a sanctuary for me, and I will dwell among them. (Ex 25:8-9)

The honourable tablet,
When the LORD finished speaking to Moses on Mount Sinai, he gave him the two tablets of the Testimony, the tablets of stone inscribed by the finger of God. (Ex 31:18)

The consecrated place of glory,
There I will meet you and speak to you; there also I will meet with the Israelites, and the place will be consecrated by my glory. So I will consecrate the Tent of Meeting. (Ex 29:42-44)

The table which held the divine bread;
Put the bread of the Presence on this table to be before me at all times. (Ex 25:25-30)

Let us sing the praise of the holy Virgin in songs.

At Matins on December 19. Source.

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Pavel Chesnokov (1877-1944)

REVEALING to Thee the pre-eternal counsel,
 Gabriel came and stood before Thee, O Maiden, 
and in greeting said:

Rejoice, earth that has not been sown!
Rejoice, burning bush that remains unconsumed!
Rejoice, unsearchable depth!
Rejoice, bridge that leads to Heaven!
Rejoice, ladder raised on high that Jacob saw!
Rejoice, divine jar of manna!
Rejoice, deliverance from the curse!
Rejoice, restoration of Adam;
the Lord is with Thee!

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