We magnify Thee, O Most Pure Virgin, and we honor Thy Protection!
The spiritual protection and intercession before God, which we receive according to the great mercy and love that the Mother of God has for us, do we hymn today. For from the time that the Divine Sufferer and Savior of the world willed to give to the Mother of God as an adopted child the human race in the person of His disciple, St. John the Theologian, this protection has not ceased for a single day; and throughout all times and human history it has been this way—Mother and child! Penetrate these words with your thought; think upon their great depth of meaning, and on the most sacred kinship, purer and holier than which there is none on earth.
In the reign of the Roman Emperor Hadrian (117-138) there lived a widow called Sophia which in Greek means "wisdom". She was a Christian, and in accordance with her name, she lived her life wisely. She had three beautiful daughters whom she called by the names of the three Christian virtues: the first was called Faith, the second Hope, and the youngest Love. She taught her daughters to live in u way pleasing to God by prayer, fasting and helping the poor. As the children grew in age, so also they grew in virtue, being obedient to their mother, They read diligently and knew well the books of the Prophets and Apostles; they were fervent in prayer and house-work. Their beauty combined with their virtuous lives attracted the attention of many.
Interview with His Eminence Metropolitan of Diokleia Kallistos Ware
In Piva Monastery, Montenegro, The Feast of the Dormition of Theotokos, August, 28/15, 2012.
Your Eminence, as a president of the society „The Friends of Mt. Athos“, could you tell us a couple of words about the role and significance of Athonite spirituality in the United Kingdom and in the Western world.
The first think to keep in mind is that Athonite monasticism is something universal. It belongs to entire Orthodox Church. Of course, the greater part of the monasteries on the Holy Mountain belongs to the Greek tradition, but Athos has never been exclusively Hellenic, as we know, there are Russian, Bulgarian and above all Serbian monasteries on the Holy Mountain. In the Byzantine era there was even a Latin monastery on the Mount Athos with monks using Latin in their services. So in this way, for us Orthodox in the West, Athos also is a center. The universal center of attraction, representing the highest ideals of Orthodox monastic prayer and spirituality.
Majority of the residents of the Serbian capital does not know that the oldest educational institution in the Belgrade in the city is the Saint Sava Seminary, founded in 1808 by then minister of education Dositej Obradovic.
The next year the school was closed because of the collapse of the First Serbian Uprising, but it was opened again in 1836 thanks to the devotion and the effort of Metropolitan Petar Jovanovic.
The Dormition fast was established as preceding the great feasts of the Transfiguration of the Lord and of the Dormition of the Mother of God. It lasts two weeks—from August 1/14–August 14/27 (old style/new style).
The Dormition fast comes down to us from the early days of Christianity.