The feast of the Annunciation of the Virgin Mary comes nine months before Christmas on the twenty-fifth of March. It is the celebration of the announcing of the birth of Christ to the Virgin Mary as recorded in the Gospel of Saint Luke.

In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. And he came to her and said, “Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with you!” But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and considered in her mind what sort of greeting this might be. And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give to Him the throne of His father David, and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever; and of His kingdom there will be no end.” And Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I have no husband?” And the angel said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the Child to be born will be called holy, the Son of God. And behold, your kinswoman Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. For with God nothing will be impossible.” And Mary said, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her (Lk 1.26–38).

The services of the feast of the Annunciation, the Matins and the Divine Liturgy, stress again and again the joyous news of the salvation of men in the birth of the Saviour.

Fasting and Great Lent


The Crucifixion, fragment (Studenica Monastery, Serbia).Great Lent is the 40-day season of spiritual preparation that comes before the most important Feast of the Christian year, Holy Pascha (which means “Passover” and is commonly called “Easter”,). It is the central part of a larger time of preparation called the Triodion season.

The Triodion begins ten weeks before Easter and is divided into three main parts: three Pre-Lenten weeks of preparing our hearts, the six weeks of Lent, and Holy Week. The main theme of the Triodion is repentance—mankind's return to God, our loving Father.

This annual season of repentance is a spiritual journey with our Savior. Our goal is to meet the risen Lord Jesus, Who reunites us with God the Father. The Father is always waiting to greet us with outstretched hands. We must ask ourselves the question, “Are we willing to turn to Him?”

During Great Lent, the Church teaches us how to re­ceive Him by using the two great means of repentance— prayer and fasting.

A Serbian Orthodox Church cleric defended postdoctoral project at the School of Theology in Thessaloniki

Deacon Dr. Aleksandar Prascevic defended his postdoctoral project on “The Contribution of the Serbian Orthodox Church to the Dialogue with Muslims (1920-2020)” at the School of Theology of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, under scientific supervision of professor Dr. Angeliki Ziaka.

The event took place on January 14, 2021.  This postdoctoral thesis in Greece is a continuation of Prascevic’s committed study of the historical development of relations between Orthodox Christians and Muslims in the Balkans, which he began with a doctorate in Russia, then continued with another doctorate in Canada, a postdoctoral project in Switzerland and another postdoctoral project in Russia.   

Protopresbyter-staurophor Velibor Dzomic: Election of the Patriarch and epidemics - church-legal analysis

The question * of the date of the election session of the Holy Assembly of Bishops at which the 46th Serbian Patriarch should be elected is primarily a church issue and primarily concerns the bishops, clergy, monastics and the faithful of the Serbian Orthodox Church.

Having in mind the importance of the Saint Sava throne, as well as the dignity and role of the Serbian Patriarch on a wider level, the issue of electing the Serbian Patriarch, with which the issue of the date of the election session of the Holy Synod of Bishops is connected, has a wider, social significance, and exceeds the framework of Serbia.

Why Study the Book of Revelation?

Photo: oranta.moscowThe Revelation of St. John the Theologian. Talk 1

We are beginning a study of the book of Revelation by St. John the Theologian. Perhaps it would be useful to ask ourselves: Why should we read and analyze this book?

To answer this question, we have to understand why God gave such a book to the Church.

Christianity is a religion of acute eschatological expectation. The Church always remembers that the world is moving towards its end and the subsequent transformation. Only God knows the times and the seasons (cf. Acts 1:7), but Scripture warns that this time is near. Little children, it is the last time (1 John 2:18), St. John the Theologian wrote already in the first century. Therefore, since the very beginning of its existence, the Church has been “look[ing] for the Resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come.”

Fulfillment of the Creator’s Dispensation

Commentary on the Troparion of the Feast of the Entrance of the Most Holy Theotokos Into the Temple

On December 4, the Church commemorates the Entrance of the Most Holy Theotokos Into the Temple—an event connected with the vow of her parents, Sts. Joachim and Anna. They led their three-year-old daughter Mary to the Jerusalem Temple, where she was led by the High Priest Zacharias into the Holy of Holies and was brought up until the age of twelve. On this Great Feast, we offer our readers a theological-philological commentary on the troparion for the day.    

The peculiarity of this feast is that it is based on the apocrypha—the Protoevangelium of James. This tradition has sufficient authority, since it was used by the holy fathers: