Festival of the Holy Name

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Sunday January 1, 2023 All Day
Annually on January 1

Festival of the Holy Name

Almighty God, whose blessed Son was circumcised in obedience to the law for our sake and given the Name that is above every name: give us grace faithfully to bear his Name, to worship him in the freedom of the Spirit, and to proclaim him as the Saviour of the world; who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

“On the eighth day after His Nativity, our Lord Jesus Christ was circumcised in accordance with the Old Testament Law. All male infants underwent circumcision as a sign of God’s Covenant with the holy Forefather Abraham and his descendants [Genesis 17:10-14, Leviticus 12:3]. After this ritual, the Divine Infant was given the name Jesus, as the Archangel Gabriel declared on the day of the Annunciation to the Most Holy Theotokos [Luke 1:31-33, 2:21]… The Lord was circumcised so that later no one would doubt that He had truly assumed human flesh, and that His Incarnation was not merely an illusion, as certain heretics had taught. In the New Testament, the ritual of circumcision gave way to the Mystery of Baptism, which it prefigured [Colossians 2:11-12].” [1]


“The circumcision of Christ has an interesting origin and symbolism. It dates back to the time of Abraham, around 1900 BC. The book of Genesis records that when Abraham was 99 years old, God made a covenant with him, promising to multiply his offspring and to give them the land of Canaan for an everlasting possession.” [2]

Click here to read our devotional for this feast day:


[1] Orthodox Church in America. (n.d.). The Circumcision of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Retrieved December 29, 2020, from https://www.oca.org/saints/lives/2001/01/01/100001-the-circumcision-of-our-lord-and-savior-jesus-christ


[2] Writers, S. (2013, December 19). The circumcision of Christ. Retrieved December 29, 2020, from https://catholicleader.com.au/people/guest-writers/the-circumcision-of-christ

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