COME, let us greatly rejoice in the Lord,
As we sing of this present mystery.
The wall which divided God from man has been destroyed.
The flaming sword withdraws from Eden’s gate;
The Cherubim withdraw from the Tree of Life,
And I, who had been cast out through my disobedience,
Now feast on the delights of Paradise:
For today the Father’s perfect image,
marked with the stamp of eternity,
Has taken the form of a servant.
Without undergoing change he is born of an unwedded Mother;
He was true God, and he remains the same,
But through his love for mankind, He has become what he never was: true man!
Come, O faithful, let us cry to him:
O God, born of a Virgin, have mercy on us!
– Vesperal Divine Liturgy (service for the morning of Christmas eve)
image: Holy Apostles Orthodox Church, Lansing NY, before the Liturgy.