/The Annunciation of Our Lord

The Annunciation of Our Lord

The subject of this feast day is the appearance of the angel Gabriel to the Virgin Mary to announce that she would give birth to the baby Jesus. The Annunciation has inspired other names for the feast in other languages, such as Evangelismus, the Feast of Good Tidings. Christianity holds that the promise given to Mary shows the wealth of God’s grace.
The Annunciation of Our Lord has also been called the Beginning of the Redemption. The angel’s visit to the Virgin Mary was believed to have occurred exactly 9 months before Christmas. Jesus was conceived of the Holy Spirit within Mary’s womb when the angel told her of his forthcoming birth.
In early times, the Annunciation occurred at the beginning of the new year. In many languages, including English, the names of the autumn months refer to months that are two ordinals earlier than they are today: September means the seventh month, October the eighth, November the ninth, and December the tenth month.
The Annunciation is one of the 12 Great Feasts of the Orthodox Church. For Catholics, the Annunciation is one of the 24 most important feasts of the year. The Lutheran Church marks the Annunciation on March 25, but it is celebrated on the Sunday that falls between March 22 and 28. If that Sunday is Palm Sunday or Easter Sunday, the Annunciation is celebrated a week before Palm Sunday.