Lives of Saints - Dormition (Keemeesis) of the Theotokos Christianity - Books
I am Yahweh your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.                You shall have no other gods before me.                You shall not make for yourselves an idol, nor any image of anything that is in the heavens above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:                you shall not bow yourself down to them, nor serve them, for I, Yahweh your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, on the third and on the fourth generation of those who hate me,                and showing loving kindness to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.                You shall not take the name of Yahweh your God in vain, for Yahweh will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.                Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.                You shall labor six days, and do all your work,                but the seventh day is a Sabbath to Yahweh your God. You shall not do any work in it, you, nor your son, nor your daughter, your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your livestock, nor your stranger who is within your gates;                for in six days Yahweh made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day; therefore Yahweh blessed the Sabbath day, and made it holy.                Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land which Yahweh your God gives you.                You shall not murder.                You shall not commit adultery.                You shall not steal.                You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.                You shall not covet your neighbor's house. You shall not covet your neighbor's wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor's.
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Dormition (Keemeesis) of the Theotokos
   

The dominions and the thrones, the rulers, the principalities and the powers, the cherubim and the fearful seraphim glorify thy Dominion (Vespers Sticheron, Tone 1).

The sacred Feast of the Dormition of the Theotokos marks her repose, which was followed by the translation of her sacred body three days later into heaven. This feast, therefore, marks her soul being commended into her Son's hands and the short sojourn of her body in the tomb. Unlike the Resurrection of Christ, the mysterious character of her death, burial, resurrection and ascension were not the subject of apostolic teachings, yet they were recorded by the tradition of the Holy Orthodox Church and writings of the Church Fathers.

The Dormition of the Theotokos took place while Apostle Thomas was preaching the gospel in India. The other Apostles had been caught up from various lands on the clouds of heaven, and were transported to Gethsemane, to the bier of the all-blessed Virgin. This was permitted by the will of God, so the faithful might be assured that the Mother of God was bodily assumed into heaven. For just as they were more greatly assured of the Resurrection of Christ, through the disbelief of Thomas, so did they learned of the bodily assumption into heaven of the all-pure Virgin Mary through the delay of Thomas.

On the third day after the burial St. Thomas was suddenly caught up in a cloud in India and transported to a place in the air above the tomb of the Virgin. From that vantage point, he beheld the translation of her body into the heavens, and cried out to her, "Whither goest thou, O all-holy one?" She removed her girdle and gave it to him saying, "Receive this, my friend." And then she was gone.

He then descended to find the other disciples keeping watch over the sepulchre of the Theotokos. He sat down beside them, with the girdle in his hand, greatly saddened that he had not been there when she reposed, as had been the other Apostles. Hence, he said, "We are all disciples of the Master; we all preach the same thing; we are all servants of the one Lord, Jesus Christ. How, then, is it that ye were counted worthy to behold the repose of His Mother, and I was not? Am I not an Apostle? Can it be that God is not pleased with my preaching? I beseech you, my fellow disciples: open the tomb, that I also may look upon her remains, and embrace them, and bid her farewell!"

The Apostles took pity on St. Thomas and opened the tomb. All were aghast when they found it empty, not realizing that moments before she had been bodily transported to paradise to be the mediatress of Christians. All that remained were her burial clothes, which emitted a wonderful unearthly fragrance.

The Feast's kontakion speaks of her as an unfailing hope and mediation, reminding us of her intercessory role in paradise. Neither the tomb nor death had power over the Theotokos, who is ever watchful in her prayers and in whose intercessions lies unfailing hope. For as the Mother of Life she has been translated unto life by Him Who dwelt in her ever-virgin womb.

Source: http://www.orthodoxchristian.info

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