Why Do We Love/Venerate St. Mary In Tewahdo Orthodox Church?
"We exalt you, the Mother of true light. We glorify you, O saint, the Theotokos, for you have brought forth unto us the Savior of the whole world; He came and saved our souls"
In the Name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit One God Amen
Your aroma is above all scents
Your praise is sweeter than honey
It. quenches and remove all trouble
Intercede for us, O Mary.
It is very important for any Christian to understand fully what St. Mary has played in God’s work of Salvation to humankind. It is very difficult to explain about the mystery/miracle of Incarnated God, God’s relationship with humanity, God’s love and charity without her willingness to participate in the Salvation of humanity to bear the Word of God Himself. She is the birth-giver of our Savior, Jesus Christ; in this she has contributed to the incarnation of Christ, and therefore to one of the most important aspects of His work of salvation. We Orthodox Tewahdo Love/ due the utmost veneration to St. Mary for the following reasons:
She is the Means for our Salvation- God has extended His grace to humanity in the mystery of the incarnation of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ through the Holy Virgin. She stood between God and the whole human race [Is. 1:9] , God became the Son of Man and made men sons of God [Is. 7:14, Jn 1:1-14]. We love her because it is through her Fruit that the earthly [we] become heavenly.
She is a Mother of God the Son [Theotokos] She willingly chose to participate in our salvation to bear the Word of God Himself and become the Mother of God. It is through her that our salvation has become accessible in her Son, Our Lord Christ. In the Anaphora of St. Mary (Qidasie Maryam), we say "O Mary for this we love and we exalt you because you did bear for us the true food of righteousness and the true drink of life. " It is because of St. Mary that we are able to take Holy Communion, because God chose her to come into flesh for our sake.
Currently she is in a perfect state in Heaven standing at the right hand of the King of all [Ps. 44:8] interceding, pleading, praying and helping all of us until the final judgment. Who is better to intercede on our behalf than the Holy St. Mary who enjoys a resurrected glorified body who lives in Heaven with Her Son? At the wedding Cana, The mother of the Lord, discovered what had happened to her people and therefore shouted out to the heavenly Bridegroom, saying, "they have no wine?". He alone could provide an endless flow of wine and oil (Jn 2:7). On behalf of all mankind, she echoes what her father David says in Psalm 51: ‘ Restore to me the joy of Your salvation...’ The way the holy Virgin Mary acted reveals the motherhood of a believer and the concern to respond to the needs of others rather than one’s own needs. God is exceedingly generous and He does not despise us as we struggle and hunger for His riches [St. Cyril the Great] and granted her request at the wedding in Cana of Galilee to change the water to wine [Jn 3]. That is why we say, "Since we have no favor, nor excuse, nor justification because of our many sins, we, through you, implore to Him who was born of you, O Theotokos, the Virgin, for abundant and acceptable is your intercession with our Savior. O holy mother, do not exclude sinners from intercession with Him who you bore, for He is merciful and able to save us, because He suffered for us to deliver us". St. John describe St. Mary current status in heaven as, “.. a great wonder in Heaven; a woman clothed with the sun and moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars…” [Rev 12].
Lastly but not least, she has left us a good example of spiritual virtues on how we could live while we are on earth. She is the Mother of all virtues without exception. Some of the virtues we see in her are holiness, purity, meekness, humility, faith, hope, love...She is the perfect example of how we should obey and become a good servant of God while on earth.
“The glory of MARY is greater than that of all the saints….greater than the Cherubim, and superior to the Seraphim, for she was the Ark (or, Tabernacle) of One of the Holy Trinity [the Son]” [Praise of St Mary on Wednesday].
May Her intercession and blessings be with us now and forever. Amen.