GABRIEL’S MESSAGE is a blog by a single, forty-something layman of the Orthodox Church. (See What is Orthodoxy? by Protopresbyter George Metallinos.)
I’m trying to learn more about the Orthodox tradition – the insights of contemporary Elders, the teachings of the ancient Church Fathers, and the prayers of the timeless liturgy. Long-term illness has given me a lot of unwelcome leisure.
Rather than keep what I find to myself, I thought I’d share it with anyone who may be interested.
THE angel came in unto her, and said,
HAIL, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.
And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be.
And the angel said unto her,
FEAR not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God.
And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS.
He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David:
And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever;
and of his kingdom there shall be no end.
I BEG Thee, my Jesus, my Love that is sweetest!
My Father and Savior, O sweetest pure eros!
My God and Creator and the All-holy Spirit,
O Trinity Holy in a heavenly Oneness!
O life of my soul and my heart’s delectation,
My intellect’s brightness, O Love that is perfect!
O fountain of Love and my hope and my faith,
Teach me how I must seek Thee in order to find Thee.
Yes, my Love that is sweetest, my Jesus and Savior;
Just tell me the way, for I want nothing else.
I DESIRE to find Thee and to fall at Thy feet
And to kiss with much sweetness Thy wounds and the nails;
To weep without ceasing out of pain that is heartfelt,
And wash Thy divine feet as Mary once did.
And let not any powers or dominions detach me,
Nor Belial the rival with his unholy angels,
Nor temporal pleasures of this age which is passing,
Nor all of the world with its fleeting enjoyments.
But just as I am now, come take my poor soul there
However Thou knowest, and Thy feet shall I wash then.
I YEARN to behold Thee and worship forever
My God and Creator, my Love and my Savior,
Together with all of the Righteous and Prophets,
Apostles and Martyrs, with the Monks and Saved Women,
And all hosts of the heavens: Archangels and Angels,
With the Cherubim, Seraphim, Thrones, and the Powers,
And our sweetest true Mother Panagia the Virgin,
The Lady of all, our most pure Theotokos.
Elder Joseph the Hesychast (+1959). In “Monastic Wisdom”, available at Skete.com