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Dormition

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The Orthodox feast of the Dormition is very similar to what [[Roman Catholic Church|Roman Catholicism]] calls the ''Assumption of Mary''. According to Orthodox [[Tradition]], [[Theotokos|Mary]] died like all humanity, "falling asleep," so to speak, as the name of the feast indicates. (Roman Catholic theologians are divided on the issue of whether Mary died. Today most would favor an actual death before the Assumption.) The [[Apostles]] were miraculously summoned to this event, and all were present except [[Apostle Thomas|Thomas]] when Mary passed from this life. She was then buried.
Thomas arrived a few days later, and desiring to see her one more time, convinced the others to open her tomb. Upon doing so, the Apostles discovered that her body was no longer present. This event is seen as a firstfruits of the [[General Resurrection|resurrection of the faithful]] that will occur at the [[Second Coming]] of Christ. The event is normally called the ''Dormition'', though there are many Orthodox parishes in English-speaking countries with the name ''Assumption''. In Greek, ''Dormition'' is ''Kimisis'' -- falling —falling asleep in death -- from death—from which the word ''cemetery'' derives.
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