On Monday, December 4, 2023, the Patriarchate of Jerusalem celebrated the feast of the Entry of the Most Holy Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary into the Temple.
During this feast, the Church, especially that of Jerusalem, remembers that the parents of the Mother of God, fulfilling their promise, dedicated her when she was three years old to the Temple of Solomon, where she remained in the Holy of Holies, nourished by the angels and obeying the Priests of the Temple. She prayed for the Lord’s people, and for the virgins and prepared for the great work of the incarnation of the Son and Word of God, our Lord Jesus Christ by the Holy Spirit. With the entry of the Theotokos into the Temple, the Divine Grace in the Spirit of God is brought into humanity.
In honor of this great feast of the Theotokos, Great Episcopal Vespers was held in the afternoon and the Divine Liturgy on the morning of the feast, in the Nunnery of the Entry of the Theotokos – “Megali Panagia”, adjacent to the Holy Sepulchre Brotherhood in the south. The services were presided over by the Patriarchal Commissioner and President of the Finance Department, Metropolitan Isychios of Kapitolias, with the co-celebration of the ministering Priest of the Monastery, Archimandrite Makarios, the Archimandrites Claudios, Amfilochios and Christodoulos and Hierodeacon Dositheos. The chanting was delivered by Hierodeacon Simeon and Mr. Angelos Yiannopoulos with the Patriarchal School of Sion students as the attendance of the nuns of the Monastery, nuns and monks from other Monasteries, and faithful Christians from Jerusalem, and representatives of the Greek Consulate in Jerusalem.
During the Divine Liturgy, the Holy Monastery was visited by Patriarch Theophilos of Jerusalem and Holy Sepulchre Fathers for veneration.
The Patriarchal and Episcopal entourages and the pious congregation were offered a reception by the Abbess Melani, who has renovated the Church of the Monastery and preserved its icons.
The Feast was also celebrated in the Monastic and Patriarchal Church of Saints Constantine and Helen, under the lead of Patriarch Theophilos, who chanted the Christmas Katavasiae, thus declaring the beginning of the festive sounds of the Christmas hymnology.
Source: Patriarchate of Jerusalem