MARY, THE ALL-HOLY VIRGIN
- The Mother of our Lord Jesus Christ; Christ is God, therefore she is the Mother of God. The Orthodox venerate her with an honor above that accorded to other saints and regard her "above the Cherubim and more glorious than the Seraphim." MARY
is called Theotokos
, meaning "God-bearer" or "the Mother of God," because she bore the Son of God in her womb and from her He took His humanity. Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptist, recognized this reality when she called Mary, "the mother of my Lord" (Luke 1:43)
. Mary said of herself, "All generations will call me blessed" (Luke 1:48)
. So we, in our generation, call her blessed. Mary lived a chaste and holy life, and we honor her highly as the model of holiness, the first of the redeemed, the Mother of the new humanity in her Son. It is bewildering to Orthodox Christians that many professing Christians who claim to believe the Bible never call Mary blessed nor honor her who bore and raised God the Son in His human flesh.