Filseta: Weddassie Mariam [Praise of St. Mary]: Recited and interpreted
O Theotokos, Mother of God, to who do we tell the sorrow of our heart except thee?
Who will give us comfort and consolation except thee?
In our Church Tradition the fifteen days preceding the feast of the assumption is dominated with a lot of prayer. There is liturgy in each sixteen days. One of the special prayers that is recited and interpreted communally is Weddassie Mariam [Praise of St. Mary]. On weekdays, before liturgy, clergy and congregation gather and in their midst, a deacon sits at the feet of a learned Scholar [Mergeta or Memhir, holding an open manuscript of the Wedassie Mariam. The deacon begins reading the day’s prayer Wedassie Mariam one verse at a time, and the Scholar recites from memory the meaning of the text as he has learned from the Church's Holy Tradition [not from his own insight]. The interpretation which the teacher gives is full of touching analogies and stories which illustrate the holiness, mercy and tenderness of the Mother of God. Through his explanation, a deep love, devotion and knowledge is awakened and renewed in the heart of the faithful listeners.
is the praise of St. Mary arranged into seven parts for seven days of the week
Weddassie Maryam is recited both in private and communal worship. It is usually learned by heart.
During the fast of St Mary that leads to the assumption of St. Mary, every day, there is recitation of the daily St. Mary prayer with its commentary
Generally it speaks about the holy will of God to save humanity and God’s favor toward the virgin Mary in choosing her to be the principal instrument of His work for salvation.
It's main focus is on both the mystery of Incarnation and the one favored by God, St. Mary.
It has sixty four sections representing the age of St Mary on earth.
St. Ephream -the lyre of the Holy Spirit
Weddassie Mariam is the work of St. Ephream the Syrian [fourth century Church Fathers].
Had a very deep love for Holy Virgin whose perfect sinlessness he described in such absolute terms
He was praying and wishing that his eye may see and his brain to perceive the vast and wondrous mysteries of the blessed Virgin and to have a voice to praise the unspeakable beauty of the Mother of God.
St. Mary appearance to St. Ephream
Not only did God answer his prayer, St Mary accompanied by angels and saints appeared to him in a glorious throne of light granting him his wish-- to praise her
Out of humility, St Ephream responded, “how shall I praise you, when not even the heavenly angels and earthly saints are able to render proper praise to you?
The Virgin commanded him to speak only works the Holy Spirit revealed to him, recalling her own wonder and humility at the angels annunciation .. “How can this be, since I do not know a man?” And the angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you” [Lk 1],
He then task himself of praising the Holy Virgin, composing prayer for seven days, each day’s section highlighting and explaining the mystery of Incarnation and the Virgin’s favor with God.
Saint Ephraim the Syrian (Doctor) known as the lyre of the Holy Spirit said the following regarding total sinless of Our Lord and St Mary:
"You [Christ] alone and your Mother
are more beautiful than any other
For there is no blemish in you
nor any stains upon your Mother.
Who of my Children” [Song of Solomon 4:7]
“Salutation onto Mary, the queen, the vine, uncultivated and pure, on which thou shalt find blessed fruit. The Son of God indeed came from her, and she has given birth to Him who saves and pardon us all our sins. Because the Son has come down and taken upon Himself her human nature she has found grace, and all speak highly of her great honor.”