On the feast of the Nativity of the Virgin Mary (September 8), the story of Jacob’s Ladder (Genesis 28:11-19) is read. In this story, the Patriarch Jacob has a vision of a ladder reaching from earth up to heaven, with angels ascending and descending on it.
This story is considered to be a foreshadowing of the Theotokos. Just as the ladder in Jacob’s dream allowed the heavenly angels to come down to earth, so the Virgin Mary provided a way for God to come down to our level by giving birth to God in the flesh. She is the physical bridge between God and humanity.
Hail, heavenly ladder, by whom God came down!
Hail, bridge leading earthly ones to heaven!
—Akathist Hymn to the Theotokos