Icon of the Annunciation (Ochrid) – F40

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In this dynamic 14th c. Byzantine icon of the Macedonian School, the Archangel Gabriel is shown moving forward with his manifestation of God’s Will to announce the good tidings that God will be born on Earth as a little child to this young Virgin.  The iconographic convention indicates that the Holy Virgin is indoors, as she sits and listens to the mighty Archangel’s words.  Saint Nicholas Cabasilas says that, “The Incarnation was not only the work of the Father, of His Power and His Spirit: it was also the work of the will and the faith of the Virgin.”  In the words of another holy hierarch, “All of Creation held its breath, wondering what her answer would be.”  

God challenges us to move from the merely known boundaries of this fallen world to expand into the awareness of the limitless boundaries of the restored Kingdom already present here for those who would humbly and prayerfully go inside themselves, for “the Kingdom of God is within.”  The door to this Kingdom is open from the inside, but we close it by our unbelief and hardness of heart.  O Lord, change our hearts from base metal into gold.

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Church Feast Day 1



Egg Tempera


St. Clement's Church, Ochrid, Macedonia


14th c. (Early)