8th SUNDAY OF MATTHEW, Matthew 14: 14-22
For the first two weeks of August, we are in the Dormition Fast which leads to the Feast of the Dormition of the Theotokos on August 15. “Dormition” means “falling asleep” and every year at this time we commemorate the end of the earthly life of the Mother of God, after which she followed her Son body and soul into the Kingdom of Heaven. We fast during this time just as we do in Lent, for we all need to humble ourselves and fight self-centred desires if we are to follow her example of complete obedience and receptivity to the Lord. During this period, we will pray the Paraklesis service to the Theotokos, for there is no better intercessor with the Son of God for us than His Mother. We need her prayers now especially, with so much violence and hatred around the world and so many who have health problems.