We remember specially the falling asleep of Mary , Mother of God on the Feast of Dormition together with the Church all over - August 15 in Gregorian calendar. see links by Rincy Raju to read on the feast
The tradition of the Girdle of St. Mary given to St. Thomas is so dear and found in the various hymns of the Church and recorded in the Synaxarium within Eastern and Oriental Orthodox Christian traditions. See how it is noted in the hymn after the Gospel is heard on the Feast of Dormition in our tradition . ( Translation as in living sacrifice prayer book)
"1. St. Thomas told me how he reached Jerusalem from India . When praying the Holy Spirit asked to go to take part in the burial of the Mother of God. A cloud came and brought me here . I saw angels, carrying the dead body of the mother to Heaven . I pleaded to stop. Let me get the blessings from that Holy body. Angels stopped and bowed. I was given the towel and girdle as a witness to the coming of Paradise of Eden. I sing songs of praise along with angels of God who allowed to celebrate the day of Dormition in earth and heaven.
2. St. Thomas spoke to the other disciples seen near the tomb of St, Mary in Gethsamen. He asked to open the tomb to receive blessings along with them. When opened the did not find the body there. They wondered when the disciples showed the place where her body was placed, St. Thomas showed the towel and girdle o the mother and said that she reached heaven. The Lord who honored the Dormition of His mother is praiseworthy. "
It is believed that the Tomb of St. Thomas who was buried in Mylapur in India held the girdle of St. Mary and was moved along with the bones of St. Thomas . Tradition has its relics in Homs , Syria and in Mount Athos.
We typically fast on Dormition Lent and on every Wednesday as well as have these as the feast days called to commemorate.
On the feasts , It is interesting that Syrian Orthodox Church has these feasts , which is not found in other traditions - January 15 as feast for sowing, May 15 as feast for harvest and August 15 as the feast for vine. Through the mercy of God because of our interaction with the Syrians Church , the Indian Church adopted them as well.
The special song for commemorating Mother Mary at the end of the Holy Qurbana in Indian Church showed the history of these feasts to be coming to the Syrian Church through St. John the Apostle . Remember we know St. John lived in Ephesus and ...to whom Mother Mary was bestowed by our Lord and God Jesus Christ. See the translation from Malayalam in English
'John the Apostle when he came to Ephesus brought a book written about the Virgin Mother. In it, it is asked to celebrate three feasts every year to remember the blessed lady. - To remember the spike of corn in the month of Edavam ,to remember the seed in the month of Makram , to remember grapes in the month of Children. Let her prayers be our refuge.'
In all through eternity the Lord Honors her , while the Church too will continue to praise and seek the intercession of Mary, Mother of God. May the Lord Jesus Christ, our God and Saviour save us through the prayer of His Mother Mary the Holy Theotokos as we too remember her on this day
August 15, 2017