Congratulations on the Nativity of the Most Holy Mother of God!
I wholeheartedly congratulate you, dear brothers and sisters, on the Nativity of the Most Holy Theotokos – the first of the Twelve Great Feasts in the new church year!
Feasts in honour of the Most Holy Theotokos sparkle with special joy. In them, the joy that we are loved by God is combined with the joy that we ourselves can respond to His love with all sincerity.
An ideal example and unattainable height of such divine-human relations is the life of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Her love for the Creator was so holy, great, unconditional and selfless. Her soul was so reverent, pure and beautiful that only She could become the Mother of God.
Today we are celebrating Her Birthday.
She came to this world as a gift from God to righteous elderly parents – Saints Joachim and Anne – who had already despaired of ever having children. She was born as the crown of the spiritual labours of many generations: men and women, saints and sinners – all those who dedicated themselves to the centuries-old struggle for the happiness of being free from the bondage of sin and death.