The Annunciation of the our Lord to the Blessed Virgin Mary
On the 25 March the church celebrates Mary, the mother of Jesus, being told by the Angel Gabriel that she would give birth to Jesus Christ, the son of God.
The Bible tells the story in Luke Chapter 1. Mary was a young girl, engaged to be married to Joseph.
She was shocked and afraid to be told by the Angel Gabriel that she was to bear a child. The Angel told her: “Rejoice, favoured one! The Lord is with you! Don’t be afraid, Mary. God is honouring you. Look! You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be great and he will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of David his father. He will rule over Jacob’s house forever, and there will be no end to his kingdom.”
The angel explained, “The Holy Spirit will come over you and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. Therefore, the one who is to be born will be holy. He will be called God’s Son.”
Then Mary said, “I am the Lord’s servant. Let it be with me just as you have said.” Then the angel left her.
Jesus called his mother blessed – not because she had given birth to him but because she accepted God’s plan for her life and was obedient to God.
The picture of the Annunciation is a mosaic in Kariye Mosque, Edirne Kapi, Istanbul. The picture shows Mary at a well, turning round to hear what the Angel Gabriel is saying to her.
Before being turned into a mosque the building was used as a church dedicated both to Mary, the mother of Jesus and to Jesus. It is also known as the Church of the Holy Saviour. Tourists can still visit and see the mosaics that tell the story of Mary’s life and Jesus ministry here on earth.