On March 25th we celebrate the great feast of the Annunciation. It is the day that God announced, through the Archangel Gabriel, and the cooperation of a young Jewish virgin girl, His plan of our salvation – our freedom from Satan and sin. We cannot just celebrate the Annunciation and keep it to ourselves. Like Gabriel, we must ANNOUNCE this Good News – this Evangelion. The salvation that God brings about is for all people, regardless of their background. St. Paul tells us in Gal. 3:28: “There is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female; for all of you are one in Christ.” We are all called to proclaim His salvation – to be missionaries. Archbishop Anastasios of Albania writes: “Church without mission is a contradiction in terms…A static Church which lacks a vision and a constant endeavor to proclaim the Gospel to the oikoumene could hardly be recognized as the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church, to whom the Lord entrusted the continuation of His work.”
Troparion — Tone 4
Today is the beginning of our salvation, / the revelation of the eternal mystery! / The Son of God becomes the Son of the Virgin / as Gabriel announces the coming of Grace. / Together with him let us cry to the Theotokos: / Hail, O Full of Grace, / the Lord is with You!
Kontakion — Tone 8
O Victorious Leader of Triumphant Hosts! / We, your servants, delivered from evil, sing our grateful thanks to you, O Theotokos! / As you possess invincible might, set us free from every calamity / so that we may sing: Hail, O unwedded Bride!
Icon and hymnography from oca.org