Wednesday Evening Compline: Supplicatory Canon in Tone III

A Canon of Supplication to the Most Holy Theotokos

Ode I, Irmos: He who of old gathered the waters * into one by His divine decree, * divided the sea for the people of Israel. * For He is our God and supremely glorious, * to Him alone let us sing, for He hath been glorified.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

О Theotokos, grant me contrition and spiritual tears, that I may weep for my many transgressions and my failure to correct my conscience. О Maiden, I entreat thy loving-kindness.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Stumbling over my thoughts, I fall headlong into the abyss of destruction. О Virgin, I now entreat thy help: set thou unshakeably the weakness of my mind upon the firm rock of the commandments of God.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

I bear the barrenness of the fig tree, and fear felling and disputation, lest my Creator and God send me into the fire. О Lady, anticipating my needs, render me fruitful in works of repentance, that I may glorify thee.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

I beseech thee, О most pure one who art full of grace, in that thou art the immaculate temple of the King, with chastity and a pure life cleanse thou my heart, which hath been defiled by unseemly passions, and enrich it with grace.

Ode III, Irmos: O Most High, Ruler of all, * who out of nothing hath established all things, * fashioned by Thy Word, * perfected by the Spirit, * confirm me in Thy love.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Many are they who war against me and afflict me, and I can find no ease of deliverance from those who beset me; yet disdain not my prayer, О pure one.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Weighed down by a multitude of evils and my manifold transgressions, I am unable to lift up mine eyes to the heights of heaven; yet do thou grant me remission, О most pure one.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

All my days the evil serpent strives to destroy my lowly soul; yet do thou break his soul-destroying fangs, О Theotokos.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

О Theotokos, deliver me from all the misfortunes which beset me, thy servant, and from tempests of sin, and by thy supplications direct me to the haven of salvation.

Ode IV, Irmos: Thou hast shown us steadfast love, O Lord, * for Thou gavest Thine only-begotten Son over to death for our sake. * Wherefore with thanksgiving we cry unto Thee, * ‘Glory to Thy power, O Lord!’

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

I tremble, considering the depths of my sins and the grievous and great billows of mine adverse thoughts; yet do thou direct and pilot me to the calm haven, О most pure one.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Grievous ignorance, incomprehension and the heedlessness of mine evils have now come upon my soul; yet do thou, О most pure one, lead me to repentance for those things which I have done.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

With streams of tears extinguish the fire of the passions and with the fire of the Spirit bum up the thorns and billows of life which choke my mind, О Theotokos, for thou art my protection and boast.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

I am wholly engulfed by the tumult and threefold billows of perils and evil thoughts, and ever dragged down into the abyss of despair, I cry to thee: О Lady, save me, thy servant! 

Ode V, Irmos: The Invisible One hath appeared on earth, * and the Unapproachable One hath willingly dwelt among mankind; * and, rising early at dawn, we hymn Thee, * O Lover of mankind.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Thou knowest the pain of my soul, the weakness of my flesh and the corruption and inconstancy of my mind, О Lady. Wherefore, grant me thy mercy and grace, that, saved by thy protection, I may glorify thee.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Deny me not thy loving-kindness and compassion, О all-immaculate Lady; but grant thy mercies, and the release and forgiveness of mine evil deeds to me who approach thee in compunction, that I may hymn thy mighty acts with thanksgiving.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

Those who hate me in vain and oppress me have now increased in number more than the hairs of my head, О pure Virgin, seeking to destroy me and make of me food for them to devour; wherefore, turn them back, filling them with shame.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

О pure Virgin who hast given peace to the world and salvation unto all, having given birth to divine Peace, with the peace and love of Christ the Saviour quell thou the battle of the passions against my soul and body.

Ode VI, Irmos: The uttermost depths of sin have surrounded me, * and my spirit perisheth. * but do Thou, O Master, stretch forth Thy lofty arm * and like Peter O Helmsman, * do Thou save me.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

There is no one on earth who lives as wickedly as I do in deed, word and action. Wherefore, О Lady, I beg thee to grant me the mercies of thy love for mankind.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Actions of evil transgression beget grief for all; wherefore, we are now beset by bitter perils. Help us, О thou who alone art the salvation of Christians!

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

Thou hast given birth, yet hast remained pure after birth-giving, О Virgin Theotokos; wherefore, do thou ever entreat thine Offspring, that we, thy servants, may be delivered from all the harm of the enemy.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Through the supplications of Thy most pure Mother, of all the prophets, martyrs and sacred disciples, О Word of God, grant us peace and the cleansing of transgressions.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Sessional Hymn, Tone III: I have passed my whole life in great slothfulness, О most pure one, and have now drawn nigh unto my departure from this time; and I am afraid of mine enemies, lest they destroy my soul, О all-immaculate one, and cast me into the abyss of destruction. Yet take pity on thy servant, О Virgin, and deliver me from their affliction.

Ode VII, Irmos: As of old Thou didst bedew * the three pious children in the Chaldean flames, * so also with the radiant fire of Thy divinity * illumine us who cry to Thee, * ‘Blessed art Thou, the God of our fathers!’

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Defiled in body and soul, and sullied by mine unclean acts, I beseech thee, the pure and immaculate Mother of God, О Lady, trusting in thy mercy: Have pity on me, О most pure one!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The multitude of my transgressions and temptation of evils fill me greatly with perplexity and drag me down into the abyss of despondency; but do thou, О most pure Lady, save me who am perishing and cruelly drowning.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

In the magnitude of the compassions of thy goodness, О Good One, overlook the multitude of our sins, and be thou well disposed toward those who cry out unceasingly: Blessed art Thou, О Lord God of our fathers!  

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

О pure and blessed one, from the mire of the passions and the depths of sorrows and the perils of life do thou draw toward dispassion and gladsome joy us who cry: Thou alone art full of the grace of God!

Ode VIII, Irmos: The flame of material fire withered * through the immaterial flame brought about by the god-seeing children, * wherefore they chanted: * Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The bitterness of pleasures, overcoming all the senses of my body, doth foully sully my soul, drawing me toward death. О Sovereign Lady of the world, be thou my salvation!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

To thee have I entrusted soul, heart and body, for I have no other help than thee, О Lady, through whom I obtain mercy; wherefore, grant me thy rich mercy and grace.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

Poisoning me with his venom, the serpent hath grievously slain my wretched soul with bodily death; yet bring it to life again, using thy supplications as remedies to counter the adversary.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

О thou who hast given birth to God the Saviour, the Prince of peace, beseech Him, that He quickly bestow peace upon the world, that we may glorify Him in peace.

Ode IX, Irmos: We magnify thee, the unburnt bush, * the holy Virgin, * and the Mother of the Light, * the Theotokos, the hope of us all.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Wash away the defilement of passionate thought from my mind, О pure one, clothing me in the splendid robe of dispassion.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Open unto me the divine portals of repentance, О Virgin, terminating and hindering my passions and pleasures.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

Hearken unto the voice of my groaning, the voice of my lamentation, and grant cleansing and salvation to my wretched soul, О all-immaculate Virgin.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Verily and in truth Daniel the Prophet beheld thine Offspring, О Virgin, and he called Him Who sitteth on the throne the Ancient of days.

The Canons for Mid-Pentecost

The first canon, in tone IV

Ode I, Irmos: Through the deep of the Red Sea, * marched dry shod Israel of old, * and by Moses’ outstretched hands, * raised in the form of a cross, * the power of Amalek was routed in the wilderness.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

The great benefactions and gifts, the graces and divine illuminations of Thine incomprehensible and divine Incarnation, do Thou abundantly pour forth and shine upon us, O Master.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

At Mid-feast Thou hast come, O Christ, manifestly sending forth the radiant flashes of Thy Godhead; for Thou art the joyous Festival of the saved and the Cause of our salvation.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Thou art become wisdom, righteousness from God, and redemption for us, O Lord. Thou dost convey us from earth to the height of Heaven, and dost grant us the Divine Spirit.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Thy flesh knew not corruption in the sepulchre, O Master. Rather, inasmuch as it was formed without seed, it received not corruption, for in a transcendent manner it was not subject to the order of nature.

Second canon, in tone VIII – a composition of Andrew of Crete

Irmos: Thou didst make the sea a wall…

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Clap your hands, O ye nations; lament, O ye Hebrews. For Christ, the Giver of Life, hath broken asunder the bonds of Hades, and hath raised up the dead and healed sicknesses by a word. This is our God, Who granteth life unto them that believe in His Name.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Thou didst show a wonder by changing the water into wine, O Master, Who didst change the rivers of Egypt into blood. Thou didst also raise up the dead, accomplishing this sign in these latter times. Glory be to Thine ineffable counsel, O Saviour; glory be to Thy self-abasement, whereby Thou hast renewed us.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Thou art an ever-flowing stream of true life, O Lord; Thou art our Resurrection. Willingly didst Thou become weary, O my Saviour, and willingly didst Thou thirst, submitting to the laws of nature. And when Thou didst come to Sychar in the flesh, Thou didst ask the Samaritan woman for water, that Thou mightest drink.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Thou didst bless the loaves and multiply the fish, O incomprehensible God; Thou didst fill the people bounteously and didst promise an ever-flowing spring of wisdom to them that thirst. Thou art our God, O Saviour, Who givest life unto them that believe in Thy Name.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

I glorify the Three Who are co-Unoriginate and of equal sovereignty: the Father, Who is Unoriginate God; the Son, Who is co- Unoriginate; and the Spirit, Who is co-eternal with the Son; one essence in three Hypostases. I praise and honour one supreme sovereign Principle of the Unoriginate Godhead and Essence.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Thou alone didst contain within thy womb the Creator, O Theotokos, ineffably conceiving Him in the flesh yet remaining a Virgin, while thy virginity in no wise suffered harm. Do thou ever entreat Him unceasingly on behalf of thy flock, since He is thy Son and God.

Katavasia: Thou didst make the sea a wall; * Thou didst overwhelm boastful Pharaoh in the deep * together with his chariots. * Thou didst save the people dry-shod, O Lord, * and didst lead them forth to a mountain of sanctification, as they cried: * We shall sing a song of victory to Thee, our God, * for Thou hast been glorified.

Ode III, Irmos: Thy Church, O Christ, rejoiceth in Thee crying aloud: * Thou, O Lord, art my strength, * my refuge and foundation.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Thou didst open unto the Church the springs of life-creating waters, O Good One, and didst cry: If any zealous man thirst, let him come and drink.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Thou didst say plainly that Thou wouldst be lifted up from earth unto Heaven, and Thou didst promise to send the Holy Spirit from thence.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The Lord, Who by nature is life-creating and Who was born of a Virgin, hath granted incorruption unto all the faithful, since He is compassionate.

Irmos: My heart is established…

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Do not judge a judgment according to appearance, O ye Jews; thus, as it is written, said the Master when He came unto the temple and taught at the Judaic Mid-feast.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Do not judge a judgment according to appearance, O ye Jews, for Christ is come. The Prophets named Him: He that cometh from Sion and hath restored the world.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Even though ye believe not His Words, O ye Jews, be convinced by the works of the Master. Why do ye deceive yourselves and disregard the Holy One, of Whom Moses wrote in the Law?

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

If the Messiah must assuredly come, O ye Jews, then the Messiah hath now come, Who is Christ. Why do ye deceive yourselves and disregard the Righteous One, of Whom Moses wrote in the Law?

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

We worship Thee, O Father, Who art Unoriginate in Thine essence, and we piously praise Thine Unoriginate Son and the all-holy Spirit, O ye Three Who are by nature one God.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Though Thou art one of the Trinity, Thou didst assume flesh, neither undergoing change in Thine essence nor burning the uncorrupted womb of her that gave birth to Thee, O Lord, Who art wholly God and Fire.

Katavasia: My heart is established in the Lord, * my horn is exalted in my God, * my mouth is enlarged against mine enemies, * and I rejoice in Thy salvation.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Sessional Hymns, Tone VIII: At Mid-feast Thou didst stand in the temple’s court * in a god-befitting manner * and didst cry aloud: * Let him who doth suffer thirst now draw nigh unto Me and drink. * He that drinketh of the sacred water that I shall give, * from within shall the springs of My teachings issue forth. * Whosoever doth believe that the Divine Father hath sent Me, * and that I came forth from Him, * with Me he shall be glorified. * Therefore we cry unto Thee: * Glory be to Thee, O Christ God, * Who dost cause the streams of Thy great love for mankind, * to abundantly well forth unto us, Thy servants.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Tone VIII: Thou, O Saviour, dost pour out for all the world living waters * of wisdom and endless life, * inviting all to partake and to drink thereof; * for he who receiveth and keepeth Thy holy law * doth thereby quench the coals of deception. * Wherefore, he shall not thirst throughout the ages, * nor fail to be filled with Thee, O Master King of Heaven. * For this cause we glorify Thy power, O Christ God, * asking that the forgiveness of sins ** be abundantly granted unto us, Thy servants.

Ode IV, Irmos: Beholding Thee, the Sun of righteousness, * lifted up upon the cross, * the Church now standeth arrayed and doth worthily cry aloud: * Glory to Thy power, O Lord!

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Having shattered the gates of death by Thy might, Thou hast made known the ways of life; and Thou didst open the gates of immortality unto them that cry with faith: Glory be to Thy power, O Lord.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Since Thou Who art Unoriginate dost have in the grasp of Thy hand the beginning of all things, and dost hold fast their middle and final end as well, Thou didst stand in the midst and cry aloud: Come, O ye of godly mind; enjoy the divine gifts.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Since Thou as God hast authority over all things, and as one mighty didst destroy the dominion of death, O Christ, Thou didst promise to send the Holy Spirit, Who proceedeth from the Father.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

O all-immaculate Mother who knewest not wedlock, thou dost bestow grace abundantly upon those who praise thee; and from the Word Who is before the ages and Who was born from thee, thou dost entreat for the forgiveness of their offences.

Irmos: With noetic eyes the Prophet Habbakuk…

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

If the Messiah must come, then Christ is the Messiah, O ye lawless ones; Why do ye not believe in Him? Behold, He is come, and the things He doth bear witness to Him: He made the water into wine and strengthened the paralytic by a word.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Since ye do not understand the Scriptures, ye are all deceived, O ye lawless Hebrews; for Christ is truly come and hath enlightened all mankind, showing forth many signs and wonders among you. In vain do ye deny Him Who is the true Life.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Christ cried unto the Jews: One work have I shown unto you, and already ye marvel. Ye circumcise a man even on the Sabbath, He saith; Why then do ye accuse Me, Who have raised up a paralytic by a word?

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

I have done many works; for which work, then, do ye stone Me? cried Christ unto the Jews, reproaching them. For by a word I have made a man completely whole; judge not according to appearance, O ye men.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Thou Who workest through the Apostles and Who, together with the Spirit, dost Thyself rest in the Prophets, O Christ, Thou immaculate Offspring of the Father’s nature, Thou didst lead the nations up unto knowledge of Thee through Thy signs.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

O Trinity, undivided Unity; Unoriginate Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; Thou Trinity in Unity; O life-creating, uncreated God, equal in honour and in rank: Save those who praise Thee, and deliver them from dangers and afflictions.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O Bride of God and pure Virgin Mother, who didst contain God in thy womb while He yet remained uncircumscribed: Cease not to intercede on our behalf, that through thee we may be delivered from adversities, for unto thee do we ever flee for refuge.

Katavasia: With noetic eyes the Prophet Habbakuk * foresaw Thy coming, O Lord; * wherefore he cried aloud: * “God shall come out of Thaeman!” Glory to Thy power! * Glory to Thy condescension!

Ode V, Irmos: Thou, O Lord, who didst come into the world, * art my light, * a holy light turning from the darkness of ignorance * those who sing Thy praises in faith.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Having reached the middle of the divine feasts, let us be godly-wise and zealously adorn ourselves with the perfection of divine virtue.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

How truly sacred is this present feast; for it marketh the mid-point of the great feasts and doth shine forth from both.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The mind of the Archangel is not able to comprehend Thine ineffable and most pure birth-giving from a Virgin, O my greatly merciful Saviour.

Irmos: O Lord our God, bestow Thy peace…

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Having adorned Thine Apostles with miracles and magnified Thy disciples with wonders throughout the World, Thou hast glorified them and bestowed upon them Thy Kingdom, O our Saviour.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

The disciples have enlightened all the ends of the earth with miracles and teachings, and in diverse ways they preached the word of Thy Kingdom, O Christ Saviour.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

We send up praise unto Thy Kingdom, and we offer a hymn unto Thee Who didst appear on earth for our sake and didst enlighten the World and restore Adam.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Glory be to Thee, O holy Father, unbegotten God. Glory be to Thee, O timeless, only-begotten Word. Glory be to Thee, O Divine Spirit, of one throne and of one essence with the Father and the Son.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Thy womb is become a holy table which holdeth the Heavenly Bread, whereof he that eateth dieth not, as the Nourisher of all hath said, O Theotokos.

Katavasia: O Lord our God, bestow Thy peace upon us; * O Lord our God, take us for Thy possession; * O Lord, besides Thee we know none other: * and we call upon Thy Name.

Ode VI, Irmos: The church crieth out unto Thee O Lord, * “I will sacrifice unto Thee with a voice of praise * having been cleansed of the blood of the demons’ * by the blood that for mercy’s sake flowed from Thy side.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

The mid-point of Pentecost hath come this day. By the former feast it is illumined with the most divine radiance of the divine Pascha, and by the latter feast it is made to shine with the grace of the Comforter.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

While standing in the temple, O Christ, Thou didst speak unto the assemblies of the Jews and didst reveal Thine own glory, thereby manifesting Thy consubstantiality with the Father.
Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Be thou my protection and mine unshaken rampart, O only Mother of God. Redeem me from the stumbling-blocks of the world, and illumine me by thy divine effulgence.

Irmos: The billows of life trouble me…

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

O Jesus, Who takest care for all the ends of the earth, Thou didst go up to the temple at Mid-feast, as John hath said, and taught the multitudes the Word of truth.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Thou didst open Thy lips, O Master, and didst preach to the world the most pure Father and the all-holy Spirit, preserving Thy kinship with both even after Thine Incarnation.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Thou didst accomplish the work of the Father and didst confirm Thy words by Thy deeds, for Thou didst perform healings and signs, O Saviour, raising the paralytic, cleansing lepers, and resurrecting the dead.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

The Unoriginate Son received a beginning and became a man, taking upon Himself that which is proper to our nature. And at Mid-feast He taught and said: Hasten ye unto the ever-flowing Spring, that ye may draw forth life.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

We all glorify the one Godhead in Trinity, the uncreated and undivided essence in three Hypostases, even the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, Who while being Three are One.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

We praise thee who didst remain a virgin after giving birth; thee alone do we glorify as both Virgin and Mother, O pure Maiden, Bride of God; for from thee God truly became incarnate and thus Quickened us.

Katavasia: The billows of life trouble me like the waters of the sea, * O Lover of Mankind. * Wherefore, like Jonah I cry unto Thee, O Word: * Raise up my life from corruption, O compassionate Lord.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Kontakion, Tone IV: Having come to the Mid-feast of the Judaic Law, * O Master and Creator of all things, * Thou didst cry unto those present, O Christ God: * Come hither and draw forth the water of immortality. * Wherefore, we fall down before Thee and faithfully cry aloud: * Grant unto us Thy compassions, ** for Thou art truly the Well-spring of our life.

Ikos: With the streams of Thy Blood do Thou Water my soul, which is grown dry and barren because of mine iniquities and offences, and show it forth to be fruitful in virtues. For Thou didst tell all to draw nigh Thee, O all-holy Word of God, and to draw forth the water of incorruption, which is living and which washeth away the sins of those who praise Thy glorious and divine arising. Unto them that know Thee as God, O Good One, grant from on high the strength of the Spirit, which verily was borne by Thy disciples, for Thou art truly the Well-spring of life for all.

Ode VII, Irmos: In the Persian furnace the youths and descendants of Abraham, * burning with a love of piety * rather than by a flame of fire, * cried aloud saying: * Blessed art Thou in the temple of Thy glory, O Lord.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Having dispelled the power of death by Thy might, O Saviour, Thou hast made known unto all mankind the path of life. With thankfulness they cry to Thee: Blessed art Thou in the temple of Thy glory, O Lord.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Beholding Thee bearing flesh, the assemblies of the Hebrew people did not recognise Thee, O Word of God; but we sing to Thee: Blessed art Thou in the temple of Thy glory, O Lord.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice O sanctified and divine tabernacle of the Most High; for through thee, O Theotokos, joy hath been granted to those who cry: Blessed art thou among women, O most immaculate Lady.

Irmos: The Chaldean furnace, burning with fire…

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Thou Who art rest for all didst grow weary in the flesh; Thou Who art the well-spring of miracles didst willingly thirst. Thou didst seek after water, O Jesus, promising living water.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Thou didst converse with a Samaritan woman, O Lord, thereby reproving the mindlessness of the lawless Hebrews, insofar as she believed Thee to be the Son of God, and they denied Thee.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

O Saviour, Thou ever-living well-spring, Thou didst promise to grant living water which springeth forth, the water of immortality, unto those who with faith receive Thy Spirit, which proceedeth from the Father.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

With five loaves Thou didst feed the thousands that hungered, and made the child’s morsels to be more than enough for yet another multitude, O Saviour. Thus showing Thy glory unto Thy sacred disciples.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

He that eateth Thy Bread shall live forever, and he that drinketh Thy Blood abideth in Thee, my Saviour, and Thou abidest in him, and Thou shalt raise him up at the last day.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Thou madest Thy dispensation wondrous, O Master, confirming by miracles Thy divine authority. Thou didst drive out illnesses, raise up the dead, and enlighten the blind, since Thou art God.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Thou didst cleanse the lepers and restore the lame; Thou didst strengthen the paralytics and heal the blood-streaming woman, and didst walk upon the sea. Thus showing Thy glory unto Thy sacred disciples.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

We worship Thy timeless Father and the grace of the Spirit, which Thou as God didst apportion unto Thine Apostles, sending them forth to preach, O Lord.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Thou didst contain within thy womb the uncontainable Word, thou didst suckle at thy breasts Him that nourisheth the world and didst hold in thine arms our Sustainer, O pure Theotokos.

Katavasia: The Chaldean furnace, burning with fire, * was bedewed by the Spirit * through the presence of God; * and the children chanted: * O God of our fathers, Blessed art Thou!

Irmos: Having spread his hands, Daniel closed the lions’ jaws * in their den; * while the zealously pious youths, * girded with virtue, * quenched the power of the fire and cried aloud: * Bless ye the Lord, all ye works of the Lord.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Having arisen from the grave as one comely, and adorned with the glory of the Godhead, O Lord, Thou didst appear unto Thine Apostles and didst promise to send the power of the Spirit unto those who cry aloud: Bless ye the Lord, all ye works of the Lord.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

In a manner befitting Thee, since Thou as God art the Supreme Author of life, Thou didst slay Hades and didst well forth eternal life unto all, wherefore the graces of these radiant days now constitute a most clear image of the everlasting life of those who cry: Bless ye the Lord, all ye works of the Lord.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Thou didst cause rays of righteousness to shine upon the world like the sun, O Christ, in that Thou didst send Thine Apostles unto the world. Bearing Thee, the incomprehensible Light, they drove away the darkness of ignorance, and cried: Bless ye the Lord, all ye works of the Lord.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Behold now, a prince and ruler hath manifestly come from the tribe of Judah, for thou, O all-immaculate one, hast given birth to Him Who is the Expectation of the nations which were set aside for Him aforetime. Yea, thou hast borne Christ, to Whom we chant: Bless ye the Lord, all ye works of the Lord.

Irmos: O ye angels and ye powers of heaven…

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Come, O ye peoples, and behold Him Who is praised upon a throne of glory, being blasphemed by lawless people. And as ye behold Him, praise Him as the Messiah, Who was foretold by the Prophets.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Thou art truly the Christ, Who hast come into the world. With Thee there is salvation and the remission of the failings of our fathers; Thou art indeed the Life of those who have come to believe in Thee.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

As it is written, the Wisdom of God came into the temple at Mid-feast and taught that He is truly Christ the Messiah, from Whom there cometh salvation.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

On the Sabbaths and on all days Christ wrought manifest signs, healing those in diverse illnesses. But the deceitful people were consumed with malice and wrath.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

The Jews bitterly reviled Christ and said: On the Sabbath did this Man hath healed the paralytic who had lain sick for many years, therefore He hath transgressed the Law.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Christ said to the Jews: Did not Moses in giving you the Law command that ye be circumcised? Yet ye circumcise on the Sabbath, lest the Law of your fathers be broken.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

They that were wholly ungrateful and who of old had sojourned in the wilderness, out of malice cast blasphemies at their Benefactor. They wagged their unjust tongues while they meditated vain things.

We bless the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, the Lord

Of a truth, the Trinity is one God, without the Father leaving that which is proper to Himself and assuming Sonship, nor with the Son transforming His attributes into procession. But I glorify the Three apart and together, as Light and God, throughout the ages.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Tell us, O Theotokos: How didst thou give birth unto Him Who hath shone forth timelessly from the Father and Who is praised together with the Holy Spirit? – except in a manner known only to Him Who was well-pleased to be born from thee.

Katavasia: Seated upon the throne of glory, * and unceasingly glorified as God, * O ye angels and heavens bless, ** hymn and supremely exalt Him throughout all ages!.

Ode IX, Irmos: A cornerstone not cut by hand O Virgin, * was cut from thee the unhewn mountain: * even Christ, Who hath joined together the disparate natures; * therefore rejoicing we magnify thee, * O Theotokos.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Since we have learned from Christ a new and unprecedented way of life, let us all be especially diligent to preserve it until the end, that We may enjoy the presence of the Holy Spirit.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

O Life-Giving Saviour, Thou didst clothe my mortal nature with the garment of immortality and the grace of incorruption, and didst raise it up together with Thyself. Thou didst lead it unto the Father, having dispelled my warfare of many years.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Since we have been restored again to the life of Heaven by virtue of the mediation of Him Who emptied Himself even so far as to assume the form of a servant and hath exalted us, let us magnify Him as is meet.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

All we the faithful have put our trust in thee, and we acclaim thee with songs of praise as the root, source, and cause of incorruption, O Virgin, for thou didst well forth for us the Hypostatic Immortality.

Irmos: Virginity is alien to motherhood

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

At the Judaic Mid-feast, O my Saviour, Thou didst go up to Thy temple and didst teach all. And the Jews marvelled and said: Whence knoweth this Man letters, having never learned?

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

My Redeemer performed wonders and signs, welling forth gifts of healings. He drove away illnesses and healed the ailing, but the Jews raged with frenzy at the multitude of His miracles.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

My Redeemer cried out as He reproached the disobedient Jews: Judge not according to appearance, but judge ye a righteous judgment. For the Law also commandeth that every man be circumcised, even if it be on the Sabbath.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

As Thou didst promise, O Saviour, Thou didst grant the greater miracles unto Thy disciples when Thou didst send them to preach Thy glory unto the nations. And they proclaimed unto the world Thy grace and Resurrection and Incarnation.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

Christ said unto the Jews: If ye circumcise a man on the Sabbath that the Law might not be broken, why are ye now angry with Me, in that by a word I have made a man completely whole? Ye judge according to the flesh.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

O Word, Who didst heal the withered hand by a word, do Thou heal the earth of my heart, which hath long ago become parched, and show me forth as one fruitful, that I also might bring forth fruit in fervent repentance, O Saviour.

Glory to Thee our God; glory to Thee.

I lie upon my bed of pain, O Word. Make me to stand aright by cleansing my leprous heart and enlightening the eyes of my soul, even as Thou didst raise up the paralytic who lay upon his bed.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

It is alien to the lawless to reverence the Unoriginate Trinity, even the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, the uncreated Omnipotence, through Whom the whole world was established by the might of His power.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Thou, O Virgin Mother, didst contain in thy womb Christ, the Giver of life, Who is One of the Trinity; Whom all creation praiseth and before Whom the thrones on high tremble. Do thou beseech Him, O all-blessed one, that our souls be saved.

Katavasia: Virginity is alien to motherhood, * and childbearing is a thing strange to virgins: * yet in thee, O Theotokos, both have come to pass. * Therefore we, and all the nations of the earth, * without ceasing call thee blessed.

Troparion, Tone VIII: At Mid-feast give Thou my thirsty soul to drink of the waters of piety; * for Thou, O Saviour, didst cry out to all: * Whosoever is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. ** Wherefore, O Well-spring of life, Christ our God, glory be to Thee.

Tuesday Evening Compline: Supplicatory Canon in Tone III

A Canon of Supplication to the Most Holy Theotokos

Ode I, Irmos: He who of old gathered the waters * into one by His divine decree, * divided the sea for the people of Israel. * For He is our God and supremely glorious, * to Him alone let us sing, for He hath been glorified.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Knowing thee, the Mother of God, to be a wellspring of loving-kindness and mercy, approaching thy goodness, I pray: Grant me compunction, that I may grieve and weep over my transgressions, О all-pure Lady.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Grant me drops of spiritual tears to wash away all the defilement of my acts and wicked thoughts, to cleanse my soul of impurity and make me a temple of the divine Spirit.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

Beset by the waves and threefold billows of my transgressions, and ever cruelly drowned by the works of the adversary, sinking now into the abyss of destruction, I cry to thee, О most immaculate one: Save me!

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

For the sake of thy tender compassion, О Lady of all, have mercy on my wretched soul, and deliver me from everlasting fire and the assault of the demons, for I flee now beneath thy protection, О Theotokos.

Ode III, Irmos: O Most High, Ruler of all, * who out of nothing hath established all things, * fashioned by Thy Word, * perfected by the Spirit, * confirm me in Thy love.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

With divine light illumine my mind, which hath been darkened by evil thoughts, О all-hymned one; for thou hast given birth to the everlasting Light Who hath shone forth from the Father.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Tripping the feet of my soul, the enemy of the righteous hath caused me to fall to the ground; yet with thy right hand, О pure Lady, raise me up again.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

With the voice of the publican I cry to thee, wretch that I am: Cleanse me, О Lady, and by thy supplication grant remission of sins unto thy servant.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Heal thou the wounds of my soul, О Lady, and still the most turbulent waves of my thoughts; and grant me the armour of peace.

Ode IV, Irmos: Thou hast shown us steadfast love, O Lord, * for Thou gavest Thine only-begotten Son over to death for our sake. * Wherefore with thanksgiving we cry unto Thee, * ‘Glory to Thy power, O Lord!’

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

I have defiled my flesh with pleasures and luxuries, and have besmirched the purity of my soul with vile thoughts, darkening my mind. О Lady, disdain not thy servant.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Be thou my deliverance, refuge and might, the horn of my salvation, О pure helper, ever delivering me from all sorrow and putting all mine enemies to shame.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

I am now beset by many perils, wretch that I am, and am ever engulfed by the wiles of the demons; yet I flee to thee now; by thy fervent supplication save me, thy servant.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

The night of the passions, devoid of light, embraceth me, wretch that I am; yet by thy light, О good one, dispel the clouds of my soul and guide me to the light of the precepts of God, О all-immaculate one.

Ode V, Irmos: The Invisible One hath appeared on earth, * and the Unapproachable One hath willingly dwelt among mankind; * and, rising early at dawn, we hymn Thee, * O Lover of mankind.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The time of my life hath vanished like smoke, and I have arrived at the gateway of death. I fear the assault of the demons, for I have ever done their works. О all-immaculate one, have pity and save me!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Drying up the abyss of mine evils, О Virgin, grant me rivers of tears. Quench all the flame of my passions, О Maiden, and grant that I may be delivered from fire and other torments on the day of judgment.

 Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

With the oil of thy mercy heal my soul which is tormented with the pain of my sins, and grant that I may ever observe the precepts of thy Son in humility, that I may receive His goodness.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

“Thy divine Church, stripped of its bridal raiment, О my Son, hath been arrayed in the holy blood which flowed from Thy side. And I, beholding all Thy pain on the Cross, do likewise suffer!” said the Mother of the Word, lamenting.

Ode VI, Irmos: The uttermost depths of sin have surrounded me, * and my spirit perisheth. * but do Thou, O Master, stretch forth Thy lofty arm * and like Peter O Helmsman, * do Thou save me.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The Son of God, assuming flesh from thy pure blood, hath shown thee, О Bride of God, to be a great refuge; wherefore, be thou merciful to thy servants.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

О good one, with thy radiance illumine the eyes of my heart which have been darkened by unseemly thoughts; make me a child of the Light, and cause me to dwell in a place of light.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

Waves of passionate thoughts ever batter me, О most pure one, and the tempests of the evil spirits engulf me; yet set me firmly upon the rock of dispassion.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

I have fallen asleep in the death of my soul, and lie in the grave of despondency; but grant me thy hand, I pray, and raise me up, guiding me to the life of repentance.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Sessional Hymn, Tone III: We who have acquired the Cross of thy Son as a staff of power, О Theotokos, thereby cast down the arrogance of the enemy, magnifying thee unceasingly with love.

Ode VII, Irmos: Of old the three children did not worship the golden image, * of the Persian idol, * but chanted in the midst of the furnace: * O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

О pure one, with strength do thou gird my soul, which hath grown weak through sins, and save me who cry out to thy Son: О God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Fearing the hour of death because of eternal and everlasting torment, I fall down before thee: О Lady, Theotokos, save me from the snares of those who pursue me!

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

О Theotokos who didst contain the infinite God within thy womb, free my mind, which hath been confined by many transgressions, from their condemnation.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

The race of mankind entreateth thee, О Theotokos: О Lady, have mercy on thy servants who with faith cry out to thy Son: О God of our fathers, blessed art Thou.

Ode VIII, Irmos: United together in the unbearable fire, * yet not harmed by the flame, * the children, champions of godliness, sang a divine hymn: * O all ye works of the Lord, * bless ye the Lord and supremely exalt Him throughout all ages.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Having truly emulated the prodigal and ended my whole life in sins, I now cry out: I have sinned against thee! О Lady, make me as one of the hirelings of thy Son and Creator, that I may glorify thee throughout all ages!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

My soul hath been filled with evils, and I have been reckoned with all who go down into the pit; yet do thou, О Virgin Theotokos, lead me up from the pit of the passions and from the miry clay of mine evils.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

Pray thou to Christ, О Theotokos who hast given birth to Him from thy holy womb, that He grant me forgiveness of my manifold transgressions, that I may chant: О all ye works of the Lord, hymn the Lord, and supremely exalt Him throughout the ages!

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

When my soul must needs depart from this life at the command of God, from the snares of those who pursue us, О most pure one, rescue those who cry out to thee: О all ye works of the Lord, hymn the Lord, and supremely exalt Him throughout the ages!

Ode IX, Irmos: In the shadow and the letter of the Law, * let us, the faithful, discern a figure: * every male child that openeth the womb * shall be sanctified to God. * Therefore we magnify the firstborn Word * and Son of the unoriginate Father, * the firstborn Child of a Mother who hath not known a man.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The race of mankind, now enriched by thine invincible supplication, О most immaculate one, crieth out day and night: Cease thou never to entreat thy Creator and Son, that He take pity on those who hymn thee.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The darts of unseemly passions have wounded my soul with demonic assaults, and ever trouble my mind with the arrows of adverse thought; wherefore, heal mine incurable wounds, О Maiden.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

О pure Bride of God, quickly remove from me the wounds inflicted upon me by the enemies who war against me, for, wretch that I am, I can no longer bear their assaults, their great wickedness and insolence; yet hasten thou to deliver me.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Thou knowest the weakness of my lowly body, the wounds of my soul, the groaning of my heart, and the error and deception of my mind; wherefore by thy tender compassion grant me healing of them all.

The Canon to St Edward the Martyr

Ode I, Irmos: Let us sing unto the Lord Who led His people through the Red Sea, for He alone hath gloriously been glorified.

Holy, right-believing king, Edward the Martyr, pray to God for us.

Edward the King, who shone forth in piety and was glorified by God with many miracles, let us hymn with songs of divine beauty.

Holy, right-believing king, Edward the Martyr, pray to God for us.

Now let the English land keep festival, and let the Church be glad, glorifying the memory of the divinely wise king.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Having suffered out of season a murder unrighteous, thou didst acquire boldness before God, O Edward. Wherefore, thou dost bestow healings upon them that honour thee.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

The ranks of angels and the choirs of the righteous, monks and laymen, paupers and kings, together hymn the Theotokos.

Ode III, Irmos: Thou art the confirmation of them that flee to Thee, O Lord. Thou art the Light of the benighted, and my spirit doth hymn Thee.

Holy, right-believing king, Edward the Martyr, pray to God for us.

Born in accordance with the providence of God, that thou mightest shine forth in the virtues and show forth an example of piety unto thy people, thou didst bring to a good end the short course of thy life.

Holy, right-believing king, Edward the Martyr, pray to God for us.

To Christ, the King of all, thou wast a good and faithful servant who increased the talent given thee by Him, O wise King Edward. Wherefore, thou didst enter into the joy of thy Lord.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

Like unto Abel who was slain in his innocence, thou didst endure unrighteous murder; yet deprived of thy fleeting life, thou now dost dwell in the mansions of Heaven.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

The Virgin Theotokos, Queen of Heaven and boast of earthly kings, unshaken pillar of the Church of Christ and unassailable rampart of the Kingdom of God, let us unceasingly hymn.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Sessional Hymn, Tone III: As said the pre-eminent Peter, in every nation he that feareth God and worketh righteousness is acceptable to Him; thus, from the ends of the earth, the saints and the righteous have entered into the Kingdom of Heaven. Wherefore, do thou also, O holy passion-bearer and king, partaking of everlasting joys together with them, now remember us that honour thee and cry out: Truly wondrous in Thy saints art Thou, O God!

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Theotokion, same tone: As an uncultivated vine, O Virgin, thou hast put forth the most comely Cluster of grapes Which poureth forth the wine of salvation for us, gladdening the souls and bodies of all. Wherefore, blessing thee as the cause of good things, with the Angel Gabriel we ever cry out to thee: Rejoice, O greatly joyous one!

Ode IV, Irmos: I have heard of the mystery of Thine Providence, O Lord; I have understood Thy works, and have glorified Thy Divinity.

Holy, right-believing king, Edward the Martyr, pray to God for us.

Emulating a lamb led to the slaughter, O holy Edward, thou didst not struggle against the evildoers that slew thee, but yielded up thy soul into the hands of God in a moment.

Holy, right-believing king, Edward the Martyr, pray to God for us.

Celebrating thy joyous memory, we call thy wonders to mind, O Edward, for thou dost heal the leprous, the paralysed and them that are blind from birth by thy most bold supplications to Christ.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

Desiring to glorify thee openly, Christ God bestowed healing power upon thy precious relics, that, beholding the miracles worked thereby, the pious people might praise the Lord for ever.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

The divine prophets have announced thee, O Theotokos; the apostles have proclaimed thee; the martyrs have confessed thee, and the divine minstrels and the venerable have hymned thee in songs of beauty divine.

Ode V, Irmos: Waking early, I cry to Thee: Save me, O Lord! For Thou art our God, and we know none other than Thee!

Holy, right-believing king, Edward the Martyr, pray to God for us.

A divine light enlightened the woman who was blind from birth when she touched thy body, O King Edward. Wherefore, her eyes were opened, and she glorified God and thine assistance.

Holy, right-believing king, Edward the Martyr, pray to God for us.

Thy tomb hath been shown to be a wellspring of healings for all that have recourse to it and call upon thee in prayer, O king, beseeching enlightenment and consolation.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

Open thou the eyes of our hearts, O Edward who gavest light to the eyes of the blind woman, that we may perceive God’s most wise providence concerning us, and glorify his power.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Let us not fall idle in our unceasing praise of her that is more honourable than the cherubim and beyond compare more glorious than the seraphim, gazing with the eyes of our minds upon her greatness, and magnifying her loving-kindness with ardent heart and love divine.

Ode VI, Irmos: As Thou didst deliver the prophet from the nethermost abyss, O Christ our God, as Thou art the Lover of mankind deliver me from my sins, and direct my life, I beseech Thee.

Holy, right-believing king, Edward the Martyr, pray to God for us.

When the impious learned of the uncovering of thy relics and of the miracles which had come to pass, O Edward, they desired to fall prostrate in repentance before them, but the power of the Lord forbade them.

Holy, right-believing king, Edward the Martyr, pray to God for us.

With other kings, thou didst bring glory to the Heavenly Jerusalem, O Edward, laying at the feet of the Lord the twofold crown of kingship and martyrdom, and receiving fitting honour from Him.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

Thou didst escape the vile pit of destruction, rendering justice and righteousness and feeding the wretched, claiming for thyself a throne of royal honour, O Edward most wise and right glorious.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

May they that do not honour thee as the Theotokos be clothed with shame and confusion, denounced by all creation which unceasingly doth hymn thee.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Kontakion, Tone IV: Celebrating the memory of the holy Edward today, and honouring his bright image, let us radiantly weave a wreath of hymns for the twice-crowned king and passion-bearer, crying out to him with fervour: Never cease to beseech Christ our God, that He establish thy homeland in the Orthodox Faith!

Ikos: Lo! the fullness of time is come! Arise, ye Christian people, and, putting off your sackcloth, gird yourselves in gladness, heaping not ashes upon your heads, but joining chorus in God. For behold! the righteous Judge, Who seeth all things, mindful of His mercies and compassion, and wishing to fill the dried-up wellspring of piety with life-bearing streams, hath disclosed unto us the relics of His favourite and passion-bearer, Edward the King, which for many years lay hidden beneath the earth; for when the tempest of persecution was raised against the saints of God by impiety and the holy shrines were destroyed, they were buried in the convent of the Mother of God as a priceless treasure, and there they remained even until these days. But now, through the providence and good pleasure of God, the holy relics are once more given to the faithful, and again the light of Orthodoxy shineth forth in the English land. Wherefore, stand fair adorn thyself, O England, thou land of kings! And all ye that dwell therein, rejoice, crying out to the blessed King Edward, whom the King of kings would fain glorify: Cease not to beseech Christ our God, that He return thy homeland to the Orthodox Faith

Ode VII, Irmos: O Lord God of our fathers, Who in the beginning founded the earth and established the heavens by a word: blessed art Thou unto the ages.

Holy, right-believing king, Edward the Martyr, pray to God for us.

Having fought against the foe, and battling the passions yet more, thou wast shown to be a victor over both: but conquered by humility thou didst render glory unto God, crying out: Blessed art Thou, O God of our fathers!

Holy, right-believing king, Edward the Martyr, pray to God for us.

The ranks of angels and the choirs of the righteous, accompanying the holy king who is received into the Kingdom of Christ, hymn God Who is wondrous in His saints, crying out: Blessed art Thou, O God.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

Departing the sin-loving world out of season, thou didst reach the heavenly home, O Edward, where thou dost pray unceasingly to the blessed God of thy fathers on behalf of thine earthly homeland.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Fearing not the fiery furnace, the children that prefigured thee, O Virgin, cried out in thanksgiving concerning thee: Blessed art Thou, O God of our fathers!

Ode VIII, Irmos: The Lord Who was glorified on the holy mount and Who revealed the mystery of the Ever-Virgin in the fiery bush, hymn and supremely exalt ye unto all ages!

Holy, right-believing king, Edward the Martyr, pray to God for us.

Celebrating the memory of the divinely honoured king, and marvelling at the wonders that have been wrought by him, rejoicing in God we cry aloud: Hymn ye the Lord, and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Holy, right-believing king, Edward the Martyr, pray to God for us.

Having vanquished all the wiles of hades and put to shame the schemes of the impious, called to the Heavenly Kingdom thou didst sing, O holy king: Hymn ye the Lord, and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

Bowing down before thy precious image and calling upon thy name in prayer, O Edward most God-loving king, we hymn the Lord and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

To men thou didst reveal Him upon Whom the angels dare not gaze. Reveal to us also His ineffable mercy, that we may exalt thee supremely for all ages.

Ode IX, Irmos: Saved by thee, O pure Virgin, we confess thee to be the true Theotokos, magnifying thee with the bodiless choirs.

Holy, right-believing king, Edward the Martyr, pray to God for us.

Thou pourest forth healings and receivest the prayers of the faithful, earnestly praying for them that honour thy memory; wherefore, O Edward, we thankfully magnify thee.

Holy, right-believing king, Edward the Martyr, pray to God for us.

Thy memory is glorious and thy rest is with the saints, for thou dost ever stand before the throne of God. Wherefore, we magnify Christ Who gaveth thee to the people as a new intercessor.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. 

From the East even unto the West the Orthodox Faith doth reach. Wherefore, the saints of God are glorified throughout the world.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Thy kinswoman Elizabeth hath taught us to cry out to thee, O all-pure Theotokos: blessed art thou among women and blessed is Christ, the Fruit of thy womb, Whom we magnify unceasingly.

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Troparion, Tone IV: Celebrating the newly-manifest commemoration of the holy King Edward who shone forth of old in the virtues and suffered undeservedly, and bowing down before his precious image, in gladness we cry out: Truly wondrous art Thou in Thy saint, O God!

Canon to Saints Cyril and Methodius

Ode I, Irmos: He Who of old gathered the waters into one at His divine behest, and parted the sea for the people of Israel, is our God and is most glorious. To Him let us chant, for He hath been glorified!

Holy Fathers, Cyril and Methodius, pray to God for us.

At a loss how to traverse the waters of life’s tumult, O venerable Methodius, thou didst abandon all the beauties of this world and, fighting the invisible foe in the angelic habit, thou didst serve the one God, joyously singing: to Him alone let us chant, for He hath been glorified!

Holy Fathers, Cyril and Methodius, pray to God for us.

Thou wast shown to be a chosen vessel from thine infancy, O blessed Cyril, in nowise desiring to receive milk from a stranger’s breasts, thereby showing that thy mind would not be deceived by a strange doctrine, but would be illumined by the teaching of the holy Orthodox Church, and that thou thyself wouldst become the teacher and enlightener of many.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Bedewed by the waters of your teachings, even to this day the Slavic lands bring forth fruit right pleasing unto Christ the Master; wherefore, the Holy Church doth bless you, crying aloud: Deliver us from tribulations, for ye have been glorified!

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

The waters of sin have entered in unto my soul, O Mistress, and I am sunk in the mire of the passions. To thee do I flee, O most immaculate one: still thou the turmoil of impure thoughts and grant me peace of mind.

Ode III, Irmos: O Most High, Thou Ruler of all, Who out of non-existence hast brought all things, which are fashioned by Thy Word and made perfect by the Spirit: Confirm me in Thy love!

Holy Fathers, Cyril and Methodius, pray to God for us.

O venerable Methodius, hearing with the ear of thy heart: “He who would come after Me, let him take up his cross and follow after Me,” thou didst follow Christ, shouldering the cross of the monastic life. Him do thou entreat, that in His love He establish me, who am cold.

Holy Fathers, Cyril and Methodius, pray to God for us.

He Who of old showed Jacob, in a dream, a ladder which extended up into the heavens, O holy Cyril, when thou wast a boy also in a wondrous dream betrothed thee to a maiden more lovely than all others, Sophia by name. And, behold! the wisdom which sitteth at His throne hath established thee in the love of the Most High.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

He Who hath brought all things out of non-existence, O right wondrous fathers, sanctified you for Himself as chosen vessels from your mother’s womb, that ye might bring His name before the nations. Wherefore, celebrating your honored memory, we entreat you, O Cyril and Methodius, to establish your wavering mind in the confession of the right Faith.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O pure one, who hast given peace to the world and given birth to the Origin of tranquility, still the waves of my passions and establish me upon the rock of dispassion.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Sessional hymn of the saints, Tone IV: Thou didst liken the holy consubstantial Trinity to the sun, O divinely inspired Cyril, declaring that the visible, created sun in the sky is an image of the Holy Trinity, saying: “The solar disc is an image of God the Father, Who hath neither beginning nor end; and as a ray of light issueth forth from the solar disc, illumining the earth, so is the Son, the Effulgence of the Father, begotten of God the Father; and the warmth which giveth life to the whole world, and with the ray is poured forth from the same disc, is an image of the Holy Spirit, Who proceedeth from the same Father.” Heeding thy wondrous teaching, we also worship the one God in Trinity, blessing thy memory, O right wondrous one. Twice

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Repeat the foregoing hymn.

Ode IV, Irmos: Thou hast shown us constant love, O Lord, for Thou didst give Thine only-begotten Son over to death for us. Wherefore, in thanksgiving we cry to Thee: Glory to Thy power, O Lord!

Holy Fathers, Cyril and Methodius, pray to God for us.

Thou didst set the keeping of the commandments as thy corner-stone, O venerable Methodius, and building the house of thy soul thereon thou didst make it a habitation of the Holy Spirit. And I, who am the abode of sin, fall down before thee, O most blessed one: cleanse me with the dew of thy prayers, that I may cry out in thanksgiving: Glory to Thy power, O Lord!

Holy Fathers, Cyril and Methodius, pray to God for us.

“Grant that I may understand what is pleasing unto Thee, O Master!”, thou didst cry out, O blessed Cyril, when thou wast given over to study with the young emperor; wherefore, in addition to outward philosophy, thou didst receive the wisdom of the Spirit and the fear of God from on high, and didst regard earthly wisdom as nought, crying: Glory to Thy power, O Lord!

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Thou didst set love for thy Creator like a seal upon thy heart, O most blessed Cyril; wherefore, thou didst reject an earthly betrothal and the glory of this world, and, escaping like a bird from the hunters’ snares, thou didst attain unto the calm haven of monastics and wast clothed in the robe of joy, chanting with Methodius: Glory to Thy power, O Lord!

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Setting mine iniquities and injustices before me, I see that they have multiplied more than the sands of the sea. To thee do I flee, O most immaculate one: heal the sores of my soul, that in thanksgiving I may cry out to Him Who was born of thee: Glory to Thy power, O Lord!

Ode V, Irmos: In a vision Isaiah beheld God exalted upon a throne borne aloft by angels of glory, and he cried: O accursed am I, for I have beheld beforehand the incarnate God, the unwaning Light, Who reigneth with peace!

Holy Fathers, Cyril and Methodius, pray to God for us.

Thou didst flower like a fragrant lily in the wilderness, O venerable Methodius, adorning thy soul with prayer, vigils and fasting; and, having lived angelically upon the earth, with the angels thou dost now contemplate in splendour the never-waning Light Who reigneth with peace.

Holy Fathers, Cyril and Methodius, pray to God for us.

Praying in the wilderness to Him Who is upborne by the angels of glory, O Cyril, thou wast prevailed upon to return to the Imperial City and adorned with priestly rank, that thou mightest show the way of salvation to men, illumining them with the light of doctrine and offering up the unbloody sacrifice to the never-waning Light Who reigneth with peace, for all.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Thou wast shown to be an inexhaustible well of wisdom, O God-bearing Cyril, when thou wast sent by the emperor to dispute with the Saracens, who blaspheme the all-holy Trinity; and they were unable to drown in the turgid waters of their false religion thee who art illumined from on high by the never-waning Light.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

How can I fail to fear the dread felling, since I am a barren tree, wretch that I am? Make haste quickly to her who is full of grace, O my soul; for if she will not help thee, thou wilt never behold the never-waning Light Who reigneth with peace!

Ode VI, Irmos: The uttermost abyss of sins hath engulfed me, and my spirit doth perish. But, stretching forth Thine upraised arm, O Master, save me as Thou didst Peter, O Helmsman!

Holy Fathers, Cyril and Methodius, pray to God for us.

“Our God is like the deep of the sea, unfathomable by the mind and indescribable in words,” thou didst say to the Moslems who disputed with thee, O all-wise Cyril; “and some who attempt to sail across this deep in the leaky boats of their own intellect are drowned, falling into errors and heresies, while others are buffeted by incomprehension and doubt, knowing not how to chant: O Helmsman, save us, as Thou didst Peter!”

Holy Fathers, Cyril and Methodius, pray to God for us.

Sunk deep in the abyss of their false understandings, the Moslems secretly offered thee deadly poison. But He Who said: “If ye drink anything deadly, it will not harm you”, preserved thee whole and returned thee with honor to the Imperial City. And, fittingly blessed by the emperor and patriarch, thou wast supremely exalted, crying: “O Helmsman, Thou hast saved me as Thou didst Peter!”

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

The Holy Spirit once said to the disciples: “Separate for Me Barnabas and Saul for the task to which I have called them,” the enlightenment of the nations who are perishing in the abyss of ignorance of God; and He likewise commanded that ye be sent to the lands of the Slavs, O venerable fathers. And, illumined by the light of your teaching, people who sat in darkness and the shadow of death have cried out: “O Helmsman, Thou hast saved us as Thou didst Peter!”

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

The uttermost abyss of sins hath encompassed me, and, beset with trembling and terrified of utter drowning, I offer thee entreaty, O all-immaculate one: Have mercy upon my passion-plagued soul! Stretch forth thy hands, in that thou art good, and as Thy Son saved Peter, so do thou save me, O thou who dost steer my soul.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Kontakion, Tone III: Let us honour our two sacred enlighteners, who poured forth upon us a spring of divine knowledge through their translation of the divine Scriptures. Drawing forth abundantly therefrom to this very day, we bless you, O Cyril and Methodius, who stand before the throne of the Most High and fervently pray for our souls.

Ikos: Come, ye faithful, let us praise our God-bearing fathers Methodius and Cyril, the preachers of piety who shone forth in virtue, the true pillars and foundation of the Church, the divine clarions of Christian dogmas; for having driven the darkness of unbelief away from us and burned up the impieties of heresy with the fire of the Spirit, by their translation of the Scriptures they transformed the Slavic race from wild olive-trees into a fruitful grove, through divine baptism have brought them into the Christian Faith, and have filled the whole world with a multitude of miracles; wherefore, they stand, crowned, before God Almighty. And we cry out to them: O divine fathers, peers of the apostles, entreat Christ, that He grant all the Slavic peoples steadfastness in Orthodoxy and oneness of mind, bring peace to the world, and save Thou our souls.

Ode VII, Irmos: The three children would not bow down before the golden image, the object of the Persians’ worship, but chanted in the midst of the furnace: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Holy Fathers, Cyril and Methodius, pray to God for us.

Abiding alone in solitude before, O Methodius, thou didst make thy soul like a divinely planted garden; but later, undertaking the apostolic preaching with the divinely wise Cyril, thou didst labor in the lands of the Slavs, where, unburnt by the fire of impiety like the youths in the furnace, ye chanted: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Holy Fathers, Cyril and Methodius, pray to God for us.

Thou didst best the Jews and Saracens in argument, O all-wise Cyril, and didst enlighten the land of the Khazars with holy baptism, freeing a multitude of captives, and didst transform brackish water in an arid wilderness into potable water; and, saved by thee, the people chanted: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

O venerable fathers, ye were vessels chosen to bear the name of the Lord before the nations; wherefore, the Slavic peoples desired to be illumined by the light of your doctrine. And ye deemed it better to exchange the sweetness of solitude for apostolic labor, that ye might win a great many for Christ; and together with them ye chant: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

I am a vessel full of the passions, O all-holy Virgin Theotokos, and fear ultimate death and the threat of the fire. But do thou save me who am perishing, O all-pure one, and gird my spirit about with strength, that, bursting the bonds of sin, I may chant in thanksgiving: Blessed art thou who gavest birth to Him Who hath delivered the captives!

Ode VIII, Irmos: With immaterial flame the God-seeing children caused the flame of the material fire to die out, and they chanted: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

Holy Fathers, Cyril and Methodius, pray to God for us.

Continually illumined by the immaterial fire of grace, thou didst receive the rank of priest, O blessed Cyril; and with the aid of the Holy Spirit, thou didst devise an alphabet for the Slavs, that the people, enlightened by the translation of divinely inspired books into their native speech, might chant: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

Holy Fathers, Cyril and Methodius, pray to God for us.

O most lauded fathers, ye first thundered out the chief heading of our Faith, the unearthly words of the son of thunder: “In the beginning was the Word”, and then the melodious Psalter, wherewith the Holy Church crieth out in gladness: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Ye have enriched us with an immaterial treasure, O right wondrous fathers, for thanks to you the divine liturgy began to be celebrated in the Slavonic language; and partaking of this grace to this day, we bless you, chanting: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

The fire of temptations and evil perils hath surrounded me. To thee do I flee, O Virgin Theotokos. Disdain not the supplications of thy servant, O pure one, but deliver me from the cruel ones who beset me, that, uttering blessing, I may bless thee and exalt thy name supremely forever.

Ode IX, Irmos: Thee, the unconsumed bush, the holy Virgin, the Mother of the Light, the Theotokos, the hope of us all, do we magnify!

Holy Fathers, Cyril and Methodius, pray to God for us.

Who can praise thee fittingly, O most glorious Methodius? And who can reckon the labours thou didst apostolically undertake for the salvation of an erring people, O Cyril? We who have been taught by you to glorify God Most High in our native tongue magnify you in oneness of mind.

Holy Fathers, Cyril and Methodius, pray to God for us.

When thou hadst completed thy work and finished the race, O blessed Cyril, thou didst receive word of thy repose from on high, and, accepting it joyfully, thou didst chant: “My spirit was glad because of them that said unto me, Let us go into the courts of the Lord!” And yearning for the heavens, thou wast borne aloft in soul, where with the hosts of heaven thou dost continually magnify the consubstantial Trinity.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Receiving the episcopacy of the Church of Moravia, O venerable Methodius, in proclaiming the Holy Faith thou didst undertake many labours and struggles, and didst endure many tribulations and persecutions; and, rejoicing now in the highest with the holy Cyril, pray for us, that we may continually magnify you as our helpers and mediators.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Theotokion: O thou who art more exalted than the angels and more honourable than the cherubim, we pray thee: through the intercession of the holy Cyril and Methodius have pity on our lowliness, lead us up from the depths of sin, and deliver us from everlasting damnation, that with them we may magnify thee, the Theotokos and Mother of the Light, and our hope.

Troparion, Tone IV: In that ye share the ways of the apostles, O divinely wise Cyril and Methodius, ye teachers of the Slavic lands, entreat the Master of all, that He confirm all the Slavic nations in Orthodoxy and oneness of mind, grant peace to the world and save our souls.

Canons for the Translation of the Relics of St Nicholas the Wonderworker

The Canon of the Saint, Tone VIII

Ode I, Irmos: O ye people, let us send up a hymn unto our wondrous God, Who freed Israel from bondage, singing and crying out a hymn of victory unto Thee Who alone art Master.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Accept Thou the song of my lips, O Christ my Benefactor, and cleanse Thou my tongue, being not mindful of my manifold sins; that I may extol in song the honourable life of Thy hierarch, in memory of the translation of his relics.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Having received the gift of working miracles, and crowns of patience, and being adorned with thy hierarchal office, do thou beseech God, O our Father, that He grant remission of transgressions to us who glorify the translation of thy relics.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

O Father, shepherd of the flock of Christ, thou art sent to other sheep, of the Latin tongue, that thou mayest astonish all with thy wonders and lead them to Christ. O blessed one, pray thou unceasingly in our behalf.

Most Holy Mother of God, save us.

The heathen nations formerly far removed have drawn nigh unto God through thy birth-giving, O Theotokos; and, deified and set free from the ancient curse by thy blood, I have been given rebirth by thee.

Another Canon to the Holy Hierarch, Tone IV

Irmos: I will open my mouth, and with the Spirit will it be filled; and I shall utter discourse unto the Queen and Mother, and shall appear, keeping splendid festival; and, rejoicing, I will hymn her wonders.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Illumine my soul and heart, I pray thee, O Bestower of light and Fashioner of creation. Grant unto me the gift of praising in song Thy most honoured favourite, by whom do Thou deliver the world from misfortune.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Illumine my soul and heart, I pray thee, O Bestower of light and Fashioner of creation. Grant unto me the gift of praising in song Thy most honoured favourite, by whom do Thou deliver the world from misfortune.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Having acquired heavenly wisdom, thou didst invest it as a talent entrusted to thee; for, having set at nought the guile of those opposed to God, thou didst enlighten the people with divine instruction.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

From a Maiden is the Infant born, pre-eternal of origin and preserved in perfection, Whom thou didst preach in two Natures and in one Hypostasis, O divinely blessed one.

Ode III, Irmos: O Lord, Fashioner of the vault of heaven and Creator of the Church: establish me in Thy love, O Summit of desire, confirmation of the faithful, Who alone lovest mankind.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Guileless in manner and meek in demeanour, possessed of an angelic life, O divinely blessed Nicholas: cease thou never to pray to Him Who loveth mankind, in behalf of us all.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

What city doth not have thee as a helper, O blessed one? What soul uttereth not thy name? And what place dost thou not visit in spirit, astounding all with thy wonders, O Nicholas?

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Though the city of Bari hath received thy body, yet thy spirit dwelleth in the heavenly Jerusalem, where thou exultest with the prophets, apostles and holy hierarchs, praying in our behalf to Him Who alone loveth mankind.

Most Holy Mother of God, save us.

Beg thou enlightenment for me who am engulfed in darkness because of my many sins, O all-pure Lady who gavest birth to the Light of the whole world; and drive far from me the gloom of the passions, O divinely blessed one.

Irmos: O Theotokos, thou living and abundant fountain: in thy divine glory establish those who hymn thee and spiritually form themselves into a choir; and vouchsafe unto them crowns of glory.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

The grieving have found great consolation; they that are in darkness have acquired the light; and those assailed by sorrows have in thee received deliverance from evils, O most sacred father.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

The grieving have found great consolation; they that are in darkness have acquired the light; and those assailed by sorrows have in thee received deliverance from evils, O most sacred father.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

O holy hierarch Nicholas, who wast the mouth of God: thou hast delivered men from the maw of the diabolic wolf, O glorious one, and hast borne them to the Creator as a gift, granting healing unto all.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O most pure Mother of God: the Word Who chose for Himself a servant, the hierarch Nicholas, as a teacher of His people, did will to be born of thee alone in the flesh, in manner past all recounting.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Sessional hymn, Tone I, Spec. Mel. “Thy tomb, O Saviour…”: The translation of thy precious relics is for us an occasion of splendid celebration, O Nicholas, holy hierarch of the Lord whom we piously praise, joyously honouring thee, the light of the never-setting Sun, thou adornment of the faithful. 

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Repeat the foregoing hymn.

Ode IV, Irmos: Thou didst mount Thy steeds, Thine apostles, O Lord, and didst take their bridles in Thy hands; and Thy chariot hath become salvation for those who chant with faith: Glory to Thy power, O Lord!

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Enlighten my heart and dispel from it the gloom of sin, O holy hierarch who art illumined by the light of the Most High, that I may joyously hymn the holy translation of thy relics.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Having ascended the ladder of the virtues, O blessed one, thou wast revealed to all the world as a wonder-worker, O Nicholas; wherefore the people of Bari removed thy holy relics from Myra.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Faithful priests rejoice in thee, and Christ-loving princes call upon thee as an ally in battle; and we, unworthy though we are, exhort thee to pray to God in our behalf, O Nicholas.

Most Holy Mother of God, save us.

The depth of thy mystery doth astound the ranks of the angels, O Theotokos, and thine icon doth cast the demons into confusion; and honouring thee as the Mother of God, we bow down before it.

Irmos: Perceiving the inscrutable counsel of God – the Incarnation of Thee, the Most High, from the Virgin – the Prophet Habbakuk cried aloud: Glory to Thy power, O Lord!

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

O herald of God, through partaking of the primal light of God, thou wast shown to be a secondary luminary, enlightening with thy splendour them that are in darkness, in that thou art a lover of virtue, soaring aloft in glory.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

O herald of God, through partaking of the primal light of God, thou wast shown to be a secondary luminary, enlightening with thy splendour them that are in darkness, in that thou art a lover of virtue, soaring aloft in glory.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Deliver thy flock from the tempests of sins, from waves of tribulation and hostility, guiding us ever to the calm haven by thy saving prayers.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

He to Whom thou gavest birth in an ineffable manner is by nature the unutterable Light of the Most High, Who is rich in mercy, and hath enriched us, impoverished as we are, with the gifts of God.

Ode V, Irmos: O Christ God, Bestower of light, Who didst dispel the primeval darkness of the abyss: disperse the gloom of my soul, and grant me the light of Thy commandments, O Word, that, rising early, I may glorify Thee.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Thy cathedra was in Myra, but thy body was transported to Bari; yet in spirit thou dwellest with the apostles in heaven, in that thou art their successor. With them pray for us who hymn the translation of thy relics.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

O hope of all Christians and great defender of the oppressed, healer of the afflicted, consolation of the grieving and intercessor before the Lord for the human race: beg thou peace for our land, and save us from the incursions of the aliens.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Through thine intercessions, O Nicholas, do thou enliven my soul which hath drowned because of its many passions and hath been slain by the fall; and guide it to repentance, that I may glorify the translation of thy relics with all the faithful.

Most Holy Mother of God, save us.

O Virgin, thou dost nourish as a babe Him Whom the myriads of angels and multitudes of the seraphim fear, and before Whom all reason-endowed creatures tremble; and, beholding Him in thine arms, we ever worship Him, as is meet.

Irmos: All things are filled with awe at thy divine glory; for thou, O Virgin who hast not known wedlock, didst contain within thy womb Him Who is God over all, and gavest birth to the timeless Son, granting peace unto all who hymn thee.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Having acquired beautiful feet through the working of many wonders, thou didst bring glad tidings of good things to all. Freeing all from the ancient enmity by thy divine teaching, save us, O sacred hierarch.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Having acquired beautiful feet through the working of many wonders, thou didst bring glad tidings of good things to all. Freeing all from the ancient enmity by thy divine teaching, save us, O sacred hierarch.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Embarking upon the crest of the sea by God’s will, thou didst arrive at the city of Bari, having traversed the deep with many pious men, O blessed Nicholas.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

We truly glorify thee, O Virgin Mother of God, as the shield of the faithful, crying out to thee as did the angel: Rejoice, thou who art blessed and full of grace, awesome rumor and report, wondrous place of rest for the Master of all creation!

Ode VI, Irmos: As Thou didst deliver the prophet from the uttermost abyss, O Christ God, in that Thou lovest mankind deliver me from my sins, and direct my life, I beseech Thee.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Health of body and cleansing of soul do we receive abundantly from thy divine church as from a pool, O holy hierarch Nicholas; for through grace wonders pour forth upon them that trust in thee with faith unfeigned.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

As thou art the most glorious favorite of Christ, O father, deliver thy servants, who honour the translation of thy holy relics, from all manner of danger, from grievous misfortunes and the sorrows that beset us.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Blighted by the frost of sin and driven by the wind of life, let me be warmed by thy prayers, gazing upon the likeness of thy divine image; for thou art a second sun, O father Nicholas, thou servant of Christ.

Most Holy Mother of God, save us.

The earthly mind cannot comprehend heavenly mysteries; neither can a creature attain to knowledge of the Creator: for the birth of the Lord from the Virgin passeth man’s understanding. And entreating her with faith, we shall receive remission of sins.

Irmos: Celebrating this divine and most honoured festival of the Mother of God, come, ye divinely wise, let us clap our hands and glorify God Who was born of her.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Save us by thy guidance, O Nicholas, preacher and teacher of the nations, who hast led to salvation the people of God Who appeared in the flesh for the benefit of many.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Save us by thy guidance, O Nicholas, preacher and teacher of the nations, who hast led to salvation the people of God Who appeared in the flesh for the benefit of many.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

O thou who didst have the sea as thy way and the waters as thy paths: beseech the Lord, that we may navigate the sea of life unharmed, and may reach the heavenly kingdom by the waters of our tears.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Thou art the portal of the King of the heavens and the temple of His glory, O all-hymned Virgin. Open thou the gates of mercy, and lead us into the abode of heavenly glory by thy supplications.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Kontakion, Tone III, Spec. Mel. “Today the ­Virgin…”: Thy relics have moved like a star, from the East unto the West, O holy hierarch Nicholas; and the sea hath been sanctified by thy passage. The city of Bari receiveth grace through thee, for thou hast been shown forth for us as a wonder-worker: illustrious, most wondrous and merciful.

Ikos: Let us now praise with hymns the holy hierarch, pastor and teacher of the people of Myra, that by his entreaties we may be enlightened. For he is shown to be wholly pure, incorrupt of spirit, bringing unto Christ an unblemished sacrifice, pure and well-pleasing unto God, in that he is a hierarch pure of both body and soul. Wherefore, he is truly an intercessor and champion for the Church, and a wonder-worker: illustrious, most wondrous and merciful.

Ode VII, Irmos: On the plain of Dura the tyrant once built a furnace to torment the God-bearers; and therein the three youths chanted hymns unto the one God, and sang, all three together, saying: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Today the angels of God rejoice and a multitude of demons lamenteth; for He hath delivered the people from temptation and hath driven away the spirits of darkness. Wherefore, thou, O Nicholas, art worthily called victor; for which cause we chant unto the Lord: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

They that are taken with the grief of sickness, who are heavy laden with divers afflictions, hasten to thy shrine with faith, and, having received thy mercy, depart in haste, joyfully chanting unto the Lord: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

The assemblies of the people stand before thee, O blessed one, and the teachers of the Church rejoice in thee. Kings glorify thee as their defender; and we entreat thee, O Nicholas: Save us who chant unto the Lord: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Most Holy Mother of God, save us.

O how can I chant unto my Saviour, Whom even the angels praise with trembling? But do thou, O Mother, direct me, and by thy compassion move the mercy of thy Son to have pity on us who set our hope on thee. As thou dost beseech Him in our behalf, deliver us from torment.

Irmos: The divinely wise youths worshipped not a creation rather than the Creator, but, manfully trampling the threat of the fire underfoot, they rejoice, chanting: Blessed art Thou, the all-hymned God of our fathers!

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

By thy word grant healing to the whole human soul which, like salt, hath lost its savor through the vanity of things; and teach us to chant unto the Lord: O all-hymned Lord and God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

By thy word grant healing to the whole human soul which, like salt, hath lost its savor through the vanity of things; and teach us to chant unto the Lord: O all-hymned Lord and God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

O most glorious are the wonders thou hast wrought! For thou healest infirmities and deliverest from misfortunes, commanding all to chant unto the Lord: O all-hymned God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O pure Theotokos, thou art the defender and rampart of our lowliness, and we, thy servants, ever cry unto the Lord: O all-hymned God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Ode VIII, Irmos: O ye angels and heavens, bless, hymn and exalt supremely Him Who sitteth upon the throne of glory and as God is glorified unceasingly forever!

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

The angels of the heavens accept thee as a minister, and the prophets greet thee as a fellow servant. The Lord Himself receiveth thee. And we sinners ask thee for mercy.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Great is the authority given thee by God, O Nicholas: the sea is subject to thee; the winds obey thee; and the nations, beholding thy most glorious wonders, submit themselves to thee.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

O Saviour, Thou hast shown Thy holy hierarch Nicholas to be more glorious than Moses, delivering from all tribulation the New Israel, the Christian people.

Most Holy Mother of God, save us.

In that thou art the Mother of God, ask for us remission of sins, O Lady, and stretch forth thy hand unto me, who am sunk in the abyss of despair, that, raised up by hope, I may exalt thee supremely for all ages.

Irmos: The birth-giving of the Theotokos saved the pious children in the furnace – then in figure, but now in deed – and it moveth all the world to chant to Thee: Hymn ye the Lord and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Thou didst grow as a sweet-smelling flower in the land of Myra, O glorious one, wafting gifts of healing like fragrant perfume upon all that praise thee and sing: O ye works, chant unto the Lord and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Thou didst grow as a sweet-smelling flower in the land of Myra, O glorious one, wafting gifts of healing like fragrant perfume upon all that praise thee and sing: O ye works, chant unto the Lord and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Having poured out the sweetness of God’s grace like oil from the Mount of Olives, thou didst have in the sea a path made safe by the grace of the Lord, to Whom we sweetly cry: O ye works, chant unto the Lord and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Thou gavest birth, yet remainest ever Virgin, to the astonishment of the choirs above; for thou didst bear the Word, Who was man unaltered by His divinity, and to Whom we sing: O ye works, chant unto the Lord and exalt Him ­supremely for all ages!

Ode IX, Irmos: Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, Who hath exalted the horn of salvation for us in the house of David His child, wherein the Dayspring from on high hath visited us, and directed us to the path of peace.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Blessed be the Lord our God, for He hath glorified His holy hierarch throughout all lands, who gusheth forth streams of wonders, who worketh healing in all the lands of Myra and of the Latins, who visiteth us with mercy.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Blessed be the Lord our God, for He hath glorified His holy hierarch throughout all lands, who gusheth forth streams of wonders, who worketh healing in all the lands of Myra and of the Latins, who visiteth us with mercy.

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Thou didst fall into an honourable sleep and didst permit thy body to go to Bari for the good of all; for by thy supplications thou art an ever-vigilant defender for all that call upon thee with faith, O Nicholas.

Most Holy Mother of God, save us.

At a loss for words, I am unable to praise thee fittingly, who art higher than the heavenly hosts and more honourable than all creation, who gavest birth to God the Creator in the flesh. Entreat Him, O Theotokos, to have mercy upon us on the day of judgment.

Irmos: Let every mortal leap for joy, enlightened by the Spirit; and let the nature of the incorporeal intelligences keep festival, honouring the sacred feast of the Mother of God, and let them cry aloud: Rejoice, O most blessed Theotokos, pure Ever-virgin!

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Thy memorial is for us an occasion of festivity this day. The choir of the apostles, the assembly of martyrs and the spirits of the righteous rejoice; and we, the faithful, glorify thee with hymns, crying aloud: O holy hierarch of Christ, deliver us from all sorrows!

Hierarch of Christ, Nicholas, pray to God for us.

Thy memorial is for us an occasion of festivity this day. The choir of the apostles, the assembly of martyrs and the spirits of the righteous rejoice; and we, the faithful, glorify thee with hymns, crying aloud: O holy hierarch of Christ, deliver us from all sorrows!

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Thy most glorious memory hath shown forth upon us, illumining the faithful with splendour, O wise Nicholas, holy hierarch of Christ. Wherefore, we beseech thee: be thou mindful of us all, and deliver us from all the temptations of the adversary by thine intercessions.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Mortify our carnal passions and lusts, O pure Theotokos; still the tempest of our passions; calm the tumult of our thoughts; and strengthen the hearts of them that honour thee as their defender, O most pure and blessed one.

Troparion, Tone IV: The day of splendid solemnity is come; the city of Bari rejoiceth, and with it the whole world doth exult with hymns and spiritual songs. For today is the sacred feast of the translation of the precious and much-healing relics of the hierarch Nicholas the wonder-worker. For like the never-setting Sun, he shineth with brilliant beams of light, driving away the darkness of temptations and misfortunes from them that cry out with faith: Save us, O Nicholas, for thou art our intercessor!

Radonitsa and Praying For the Non-Orthodox

Christ is Risen!

On and around Radonitsa, we are very much focussed on the remembrance of the departed, and have chanted a panikhidas in the Oratory Church and the chapel in Llanelli, and a litia for the departed at the end of yesterday’s vespers in St Alban’s. Our memorials have resounded with the Paschal canon and other paschal hymns reminding us that as Orthodox Christians, our understanding of death and our relationship with this ultimate conclusion of our earthly life is shaped by the Lord’s Resurrection.

However, many parishioners have departed loved ones who were not Orthodox Christians, whether this is the fruit of Soviet atheism, or having family of non-Orthodox backgrounds. What of them?

The fact that the Church (whatever may happened in various places) does not liturgically commemorate the non-Orthodox departed is a challenge for us – particularly for those who saw devotion in Faith in loved ones, even if they were outside Orthodoxy. Indeed, some people can say that they have seen and continue to see greater prayer, spiritual observance and active Faith in their heterodox loved ones and friends than in relation to many nominally Orthodox people. This is a trying and challenging truth.

By tradition, the Church has turned to the Great-Martyr Varus to pray for those who have died outside the Church, and there is a special canon to St Varus for their prayerful commemoration. However, throws up challenges, as it supposes – in a very black and while way reflecting the time and place in which it was written – that those whom we commemorate were impious, sinful unbelievers who rejected the Orthodox Church and God… even though our loved ones may have been geographically distant of Orthodox lands and lived pious lives in the traditions of their forebears.

Many of us may respond that although our loved ones were not Orthodox, they heeded the Gospel, were prayerful, and served and worshipped God to the best of their abilities, in the only way and in the only tradition they knew. As such, we cannot pretend that the canon and associated prayers do not throw up challenges, and given that it is for para-liturgical / private use, I cannot imagine that it does not get adapted in its personal prayerful use.

We are reposting the canon as it was written, with the hope that it will prove useful to those who wish to intercede for their non-Orthodox departed loved-ones.

We have previously posted the life of St Varus from Orthodox Life: https://russianorthodoxchurchcardiff.com/st-varus

The Slavonic Canon may be found here: https://akafist.ru/saints/muchenik-uar/kanon-uaru-za-umershix-bez-kreshenija

The link to the festal Canon to St Varus in English may be found here: https://russianorthodoxchurchcardiff.com/varus-life-canon?fbclid=IwZXh0bgNhZW0CMTEAAR13cs3jvQPL5pfzxh0XWen5rC4_PeMyXZryxaRQ6dw7yTG9mtcVjPzuoY0_aem_AaD611FWV4GiGyTpeYkkz5G9XPFhPbjXIof6aIg3JNfvA2sPiyPihaotOPKl-YdP8CHSZh8Rq65u9gamrRpEyzl0

A Canon Of Supplication To The Holy Martyr Varus, To Whom The Grace Was Given To Pray For Those Deceased Ancestors Of Cleopatra Who Had Not Been Vouchsafed To Receive Holy Baptism: Tone VIII

Ode I, Irmos: The staff of Moses, once working a wonder, striking the sea in the form of the Cross and dividing it, drowned the mounted tyrant Pharaoh, and saved Israel who fled on foot, chanting a hymn unto God.

Holy Martyr, Varus, pray to God for us.

O Lord, be Thou entreated by Thy holy martyr Varus, and clothe Thyself in mercy and compassions! Lo! they will be poured out even unto hades, O Thou Who lovest mankind, and, through Thy rich lovingkindness will bring pity unto NN., for whom we pray.

Holy Martyr, Varus, pray to God for us.

O great martyr of Christ, be thou mindful of the afflicted and helpless NN. Who sit, unenlightened, in the gloom of darkness; and do not cease to fall down before the compassionate Lord, until He comfort them with His rich lovingkindness.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Thou wast able to make entreaty for the family of the wondrous Cleopatra, O glorious passion-bearer; wherefore, rendering aid today, thou art likewise able to free from torments NN., who are remembered by us, if it is fitting for thee to pray to the Lord for them: for the Master will comfort them with His rich lovingkindness for thy sake.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O good helper and Mistress, look down from thy glory upon the helpless who are in the gloom of hades, and behold the misfortunes of the pitiful NN. whom we remember to thee; and cease thou never to entreat thy Son, the compassionate Lord and Master, in their behalf, until He comfort them with His rich lovingkindness.

Ode III, Irmos: O Christ, Who in the beginning established the heavens in wisdom and founded the earth upon the waters, make me steadfast upon the rock of Thy commandments; for none is holy as Thee, O Thou Who lovest mankind.

Holy Martyr, Varus, pray to God for us.

Move thou the choir of the holy hosts of heaven to make supplication with thee, O martyr, and do thou a thing all-wondrous, great and honourable, which will bring even greater joy unto those who have no hope and consolation and are without expectation: our ancestors who died a bitter death outside the Faith, and NN., who are remembered with them, that the Lord may grant them forgiveness and great mercy.

Holy Martyr, Varus, pray to God for us.

O excellent passion-bearer, beloved of Christ! Thou knowest how desirable and joyful freedom is for those in torment; wherefore, the joy of our kin and NN. with them, who have incurred everlasting torments because of their unbelief, will know no bounds if thou wilt ask the Lord to grant them forgiveness and great mercy.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

O Varus, right victorious athlete, be thou merciful to our entreaties, and look upon NN., who are in desperate need; and moved by pity, do thou thyself earnestly pray to the Master Who loveth mankind, that He grant them forgiveness and great mercy.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O Mary our Mistress, thou hope of the universe, divinely acceptable habitation, our reconciliation with God: Accept the petitions of this present intercession, and cease not to beseech thy Son, the Lord of all, that for thy sake He grant forgiveness and great mercy unto the hopeless NN.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Sessional hymn, Tone V: Pray thou for the whole world, O great-martyr, and cease not to ask mercy for all sinners who have in divers ways grievously offended the Master and continue to offend him, who by mortal works have utterly done themselves to death and acquired nought, since they have wrought evil. And intercede also, O passion-bearer, for our departed kinfolk, NN., beginning as is possible; and cease not to pray and fall down before the Lord Who hath mercy on all, that He forgive and have mercy on those who sit in darkness and are embittered with exceeding great bitterness.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Another sessional hymn, Tone III: O great Varus, dweller in everlasting joy and namesake of heavenly rest: With boldness thou darest to remember before the Lord the redeeming qualities of our forebears; for even though we cannot place thee in their graves, yet do we beseech thee to add thy prayers to our earnest supplications that they be granted pity. Wherefore, fall down and pray, for the Master will not reject thine intercession, but, inclined by His infinite goodness, will send deliverance and great mercy upon those who are embittered with exceeding great bitterness.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O all-radiant Lady, who art hymned above all and art continually magnified by the heavenly hosts, Mother of the King of all: Since thy glory and greatness are increased where and when He desireth, when thou helpest sinners and coverest the whole world with thy supplications, O Mistress, increase the majesty of thy sublimity, and by thy fervent supplications deliver from grievous torments our unbelieving and unbaptised kinfolk and NN., who are commemorated with them; and grant them deliverance and great mercy.

Ode IV, Irmos: Thou art my strength, O Lord, Thou art my power; Thou art my God, Thou art my joy, Who, without leaving the bosom of the Father, hast visited our lowliness. Wherefore, with the Prophet Habbakuk I cry unto Thee: Glory to Thy power, O Thou Who lovest mankind!

Holy Martyr, Varus, pray to God for us.

Since thou lovest all who have recourse to thee with faith, O passion-bearer, thou hast won the love of those who make entreaty unto thee. What other thing, desiring to glorify thee, will He Who loveth mankind do if not to bestow the asked-for mercy upon the compunctionate, the eternal prisoners bereft of all joy, NN. As before, O valiant martyr, fail not in thy prayers for them.

Holy Martyr, Varus, pray to God for us.

Cruel winter, barren of salvation, and joyless lamentation lie upon the ungodly who have died, in the place where NN., whom we remember, are assigned. But haste thou, O passion-bearer, to unite them to the race of the righteous, and fail not in thy prayers for them.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Let not the gloomy prison of hades forever hold our ancestors and kinfolk, and all who are remembered with them, NN. Since thou, the wondrous athlete, hast set at nought the power of unbelief and the might of sin, so as before with the family of Cleopatra, fail not in thy prayers for them, that they may be forgiven, O martyr.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Through thee, O all-pure one, have we come to know how to glorify the Creator of all things; through thee are we wont to magnify the true Saviour Who came forth from thee bearing flesh. We praise and bow down before thee, the Mistress, and pray: Have mercy on the our kinfolk NN. who have died in unbelief, and fail not in thy prayers to thy Son, that He deliver them.

Ode V, Irmos: Wherefore hast Thou turned Thy face from me, O Light never-waning? And why hath a strange darkness covered me, wretch that I am? But turn me, and guide my steps to the light of Thy commandments, I pray.

Holy Martyr, Varus, pray to God for us.

Every gift and every mercy poured forth from the merciful Lord, though all-wondrous and all-marvellous, when brought to bear to accomplish the forgiveness of NN. who have died in impiety, impart excellent magnitude thereto. Wherefore, today also do thou make haste to entreat the Master, O martyr, that He work great things.

Holy Martyr, Varus, pray to God for us.

Turn not away from our compunction, O Lord, neither be Thou mindful of the multitude of our sins; rather, remember Thy mercies which are from of old, and in Thy compassions, and for the sake of the valiant athlete Varus, exhaust not the riches of Thine infinite lovingkindness, but pour forth Thy mercies and forgiveness upon NN., whom we remember.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

If the Master’s love for mankind extendeth even unto those afar off at sea, O great-martyr, stand forth today and, falling down, beseech Him to have mercy on those far away from the Faith, our kinfolk who have died unbaptised, and NN., who are commemorated with them, that He may grant them forgiveness and great mercy.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Intercede, O Mistress, for our weakness, and be thou constantly with us in time of need, helping us everywhere and always; for thou art the hope and expectation of Christians. Wherefore, reject not our petitions, but fulfil and perfect them by thine incomprehensible grace.

Ode VI, Irmos: Cleanse me, O Saviour, for many are my transgressions; and lead me up from the abyss of evils, I pray, for to Thee have I cried, and Thou hast hearkened to me, O God of my salvation.

Holy Martyr, Varus, pray to God for us.

Let not the pride of the enemy rejoice, having seized men’s souls as plunder; but by thy fervent supplications do thou, O martyr, destroy his desires, entreating the Lord to forgive NN., whom we remember, and to deliver them and us from everlasting torment.

Holy Martyr, Varus, pray to God for us.

The inspiration for our feat of prayer is the forgiveness of the family of Cleopatra, whence we have conceived the thought to move thee to make supplication. Disdain not NN., whom we remember, O great-martyr, and reject not their sinful state; but making haste, ask of Christ the Master that He grant them forgiveness and deliverance from bitter torments.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Assuming boldness, O passion-bearer, ask of the King of heaven that He grant the joy of remission instead of dread punishment unto those who have met an evil end because of their unbelief, and whose hope of good things hath utterly perished because they have angered God; and having led them up from bitterness, preserve them in the mercy of the Master.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

What evil can prevail over thy maternal supplications, O Mistress? For truly, if thou wilt stand forth today and make supplication for NN., for whom we ask thee to pray, thou shalt obtain for them joyous forgiveness, deliverance and great mercy.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Kontakion, Tone IV: Following Christ, O martyr Varus, and draining His cup, thou wast crowned with the wreath of martyrdom and joinest chorus with the angels. Pray thou without ceasing for our souls.

Ikos: Be thou mindful of our words, O splendid denizen of heaven, glorious Varus, great-martyr of Christ, namesake of everlasting rest, who by thy great sufferings didst obtain an impassable and splendid resting-place, far from inescapable imprisonment, unceasing retribution and want: Haste thou by thy God-pleasing supplications to deliver His compunctionate servants NN., for whose sake we entreat thee, standing before thee and crying out with earnestness: Fulfil our petitions, O holy one, and beseech Christ God unceasingly in behalf of our souls.

Ode VII, Irmos: Once, in Babylon, the fire stood in awe of the condescension of God; wherefore, the youths, dancing with joyous step in the furnace, as in a meadow, chanted: Blessed art Thou, O God of our fathers!

Holy Martyr, Varus, pray to God for us.

As Thou dost enlighten all like the sun, O Lord, and lettest rain fall in abundance upon all, and unceasingly bestowest mercy upon those who anger Thee, hearken now unto Varus, Thine athlete, and pour forth Thy mercy utterly upon our kinfolk who have been separated from Thee, and upon the unbelieving NN., whom we remember, O Thou Who lovest mankind.

Holy Martyr, Varus, pray to God for us.

Now as before, be Thou compassionate, O Lord, and allowing Thyself to be entreated, O Master, as Thou didst with Cleopatra, so do Thou deal with us, O Merciful One: Send forth Thy compassions and lovingkindness upon NN., whom we remember, for Thou art the inexhaustible Well-spring of mercy.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

The prophet, soaring aloft, hymneth Thy mercies, O Lord, unto the ages, and we also believe that Thou hast not diminished in Thy compassions, for the bounds of Thy lovingkindness are infinite. We entreat Thee to pour forth mercies from the abyss thereof upon NN., who have been drowned in the depths, and fill them therewith, for the sake of the martyr, O our Master.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

He who is most wise among the prophets calleth thee the mountain; and we believe him when he saith that from thee, without the interference of man, the Stone of the divine Offspring issued forth, from Whom we have received salvation and release from the depths of hades. O Mistress, lead up from hades NN., whom we remember today, that we may unceasingly magnify thee, the most merciful one.

Ode VIII, Irmos: When the musical instruments sounded and innumerable were those who worshiped the image in Dura, the three youths, refusing to obey the tyrant’s command, hymned and glorified the Lord for all ages.

Holy Martyr, Varus, pray to God for us.

Let Thine ancient words of mercy, which bespeak the hope that we will be lifted up, be fulfilled, O Lord, for Thou didst hearken to Thy saints when they besought Thee to have mercy on those who died in unbelief. And today we bring them before Thee, O Lord, to pray that for the sake of their entreaties Thou mightest have pity on NN., who have died outside of Orthodoxy, O Master, and have offended Thee, whether knowingly or unknowingly.

Holy Martyr, Varus, pray to God for us.

O Lamb of God Who hast redeemed us by Thy precious Blood, Who didst hearken to the plea of Thecla and the blessed Gregory, who didst accept the petitions of Methodius, Macarius and many others, bestowing joy and deliverance upon those who died in wicked religions, and moved Chrysostom to write that we pray for them: Accept, O Master, with him the glorious Varus, and by their supplications forgive and have mercy on NN., whom we remember.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Entreat joy for us, O great-martyr, for we will be filled with gladness if we find that our kinfolk NN. are delivered from everlasting torments; for the Master always listeneth to thy supplications and fulfilleth thy petitions. Wherefore, fail not therein, praying even now, that we may continually glorify thee.

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O all-immaculate Mistress, wondrous and unwedded Mother of the King, increase to abundance the multitude of thy lovingkindness and compassions for us who seek mercy. For where else may we find it if we do not make haste to fall down before thee? For thou gavest birth for us to the most abundant Torrent of delight, O all-blessed one.

Ode IX, Irmos: Heaven was stricken with awe, and the ends of the earth were amazed, that God hath appeared in the flesh, and that thy womb became more spacious than the heavens. Wherefore, the ranks of men and angels magnify thee as the Theotokos.

Holy Martyr, Varus, pray to God for us.

O glorious Varus, in God thou art able by thy divinely acceptable supplications to obtain and pour forth mercies upon those who have been utterly separated therefrom. For there is but one Father of compassions and lovingkindness, and as Master all things are possible for Him. Unfailingly beseech Him, O athlete, that He forgive and have mercy on NN., whom we remember.

Holy Martyr, Varus, pray to God for us.

O great-martyr, accomplish thou an all-wondrous deed attendant upon thy glory: Ask forgiveness from the Lord and the assuaging of His righteous anger for our ancestors, who are embittered because of their dark unbelief, and for NN., who find themselves in bitterness and the expectation of the most grievous of torments, that thou mightest raise them up to a deliverance free of fear, where are the mansions wherein the Master placeth the forgiven to live.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

What miracle is more wondrous than this, what glory more remarkable, what lovingkindness greater than when thou, O martyr, takest pity and entreatest the merciful Lord to remit the sin of impiety from NN., whom we remember, and to deliver them from grievous punishment?

Now & ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O merciful Mistress, who lovest mankind and art not mindful of evil: Accept the urgency of our petition, and unfailingly intercede for mercy with thy Son and Master, that He have mercy and forgive the sin of heterodoxy for our deceased kinfolk, and for NN. who are remembered with them, and that He bestow upon them remission and a place of mercy which shall not be taken away.

Prayer: O Holy, wondrous Martyr Varus, who, burning with zeal for the Heavenly King, didst confess Him before thy torturers and didst greatly suffer for Him! Now the Church doth venerate thee, as one glorified with the glory of heaven by Christ the Lord, Who granted thee the abundant grace to approach Him boldly. And now, standing before Him together with the Angels, rejoicing on high, beholding the Most Holy Trinity clearly, and enjoying the Uncreated Light, remember the suffering of our relatives (and those we remember, and those we hold in our hearts) who have died outside the Faith, and accept our pleas, and as thou didst intercede for the unbelieving ancestors of Cleopatra and didst free them from eternal suffering, remember those who have died unbaptised or have been buried in an ungodly manner, or died suddenly, or by their own hand, or unjustly, N.N. …. and pray earnestly that they may be delivered from eternal darkness, that we may all, with one mouth and one heart, praise the Most Merciful Creator unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Translated from the Church Slavonic by the reader Isaac E. Lambertsen from The Holy Martyr Varus: Prayers for Those Who Have Died Unbaptised, 5th printing (Moscow: Dunkan Service, 1996), pp. 4-13. Copyright © 2001. All rights reserved by the translator.

Troparion, Tone V:  Thou didst follow in the steps of the martyrs and contend for the glory of Christ. Thou wast tied to a beam and restored by the Tree of Life, and thine intercessions gladden our souls.

The Canons for the Entry of the Mother of God

Canon I of the Theotokos: The acrostic whereof is: “O Lady, grant me the grace of discourse”, the composition of George, in Tone IV.

Ode I, Irmos: I shall open my mouth, * and be filled with the Spirit, * and utter discourse to the Queen and Mother; * and be seen radiantly keeping festival, * joyfully praising her entry.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

O most pure one, we know thee to be a treasury of wisdom and an ever-flowing fountain of grace; and we pray thee rain down upon us knowledge, that we may praise thee forever.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Being a temple and palace more exalted than the heavens, O most pure one, thou wast set apart in the Temple of God to be prepared as a divine dwelling-place for His advent.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Shining with the Light of grace, the Theotokos hath illumined all and assembled us to adorn her most splendid festival. Come ye, let us draw nigh to her!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The glorious portal which surpasseth human thought, having opened the doors of the Temple of God, doth now command us who have assembled to delight in her divine wonders.

Canon II of the Theotokos, the composition of Basil, in Tone I:

Irmos: Let us all chant a triumphant hymn unto God * Who wrought
wondrous miracles * with His upraised arm, * and saved Israel, * for He hath been glorified.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Let us hasten today, honoring the Theotokos with hymns, and let us celebrate a spiritual feast; for she is offered as a gift to God in the temple.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

With songs let us hymn the glorious arrival of the Theotokos; for today, as the prophets foretold, she is borne as a gift of great price into the temple, though she is herself the temple of God.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

The blameless Anna rejoiced, maternally bringing a gift of great price to God in the temple; and with her Joachim keepeth splendid festival.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Of old, David, thine ancestor, hymned thee, O Virgin Bride of
God, calling thee the daughter of Christ the King; and, having given birth to Him, as a Mother thou didst feed Him with milk as a babe.

Katavasia: Christ is born, render ye glory. * Christ cometh from heaven, meet ye Him. * Christ is on earth, be ye exalted. * O all the earth, sing unto the Lord, * and sing praises in gladness, O ye people, * for He hath been glorified.

Ode III, Canon I, Irmos: O Theotokos, thou living and plentiful fount, * establish in spiritual fellowship those who sing hymns of praise * of thine honored entry: * grant them crowns of glory.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Receiving the pure and undefiled one, who is more splendid than all creation, the animate bridal chamber of God, the beautiful Temple and chamber doth appear today like a bride adorned for her wedding.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

David, preceding the chorus, doth leap and dance with us, declaring thee, O allpure one, to be the queen all-adorned, standing in the Temple before our King and God, O most pure one.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

From her, whom transgressions issued forth among the race of mankind, hath her correction and incorruption blossomed forth, the Theotokos, who is led today into the house of God.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The angelic armies and the multitudes of all mankind leap for joy, and they advance as lamp-bearers before thy countenance, proclaiming thy majesty in the house of God.

Canon II, Irmos: Let my heart be established in Thy will O Christ God, * Who hath established a second heaven over the waters, * and founded the earth upon the waters, * O all-powerful One.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

O ye who love the feasts of the Church, let us keep festival and rejoice today together in spirit, and in gladness, on the holy feast of the daughter of the King, the Mother of our God.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice today, O Joachim! Be thou glad in spirit, O Anna, leading to the Lord the three year old child born from thee, as though she were a pure and most immaculate heifer.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Mary, the Theotokos, the habitation of God, is led into the holy temple, being three years of age in the flesh; and, going before her, virgins bear lighted lamps.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

The pure ewe-lamb of God, the undefiled turtle-dove, the tabernacle containing God, the sanctuary of glory, hath chosen to dwell within the holy tabernacle.

Katavasia: To the Son who was begotten of the Father * without change before all ages, * and in the last times, without seed, was made flesh of the Virgin, * to Christ our God let us cry aloud: * Thou hast raised up our horn, holy art Thou, O Lord.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. 

Sessional Hymn, Tone IV, Spec. Mel. “Joseph marvelled …”: Tell us, O David: what is this present festival? Who is she whom of old thou didst hymn in the Book of Psalms as the daughter, divine Maiden and Virgin? “The virgins that follow after her,;together with those near her,” said he, “shall be mystically brought unto the King.” Make this a wondrous and universal feast for those who cry aloud: the Theotokos is come unto us, the mediatress of salvation!

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Tone IV & same melody: With gladness Mary, the Theotokos, is most gloriously brought into the house of God: the unblemished ewe-lamb, the undefiled bridal-chamber, whom the angels of God, escort with faith and all the faithful ever call blessed and hymn her unceasingly with a loud voice in thanksgiving: Thou art our glory and salvation, O most immaculate one!

Ode IV, Canon I, Irmos: Perceiving the profound counsel of God, * that the incarnation of Thee the Most High, * will be from a Virgin, * the Prophet Habbakuk cried aloud: * Glory to Thy power, O Lord!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The Temple of God, receiving today the portal through whom none may pass, hath ceased to perform any service of the Law, crying: Truly truth hath appeared to those who are on earth!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The mountain overshadowed, which Habbakuk beheld of old, prefigured her who hath made her abode in the inaccessible chambers of the Temple, flourishing with virtues, for she doth cover the ends of the earth therewith.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

All the earth hath seen most glorious things, things strange and marvelous, for the Virgin, receiving food from an angel, doth receive tokens of God’s dispensation.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Revealed as the temple and palace and animate heaven, O divine bride of the King, thou art brought today to the Temple of the Law to be kept for Him, O most pure one.

Canon II, Irmos: Foreseeing in the Spirit O Prophet Habbakuk, * the incarnation of the Word, * thou didst proclaim, crying aloud: * When the years draw nigh, Thou shalt be known; * when the season cometh, Thou shalt be shown forth! * Glory to Thy power, O Lord!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

O Prophet Isaiah, prophesy unto us: Who is the Virgin Who will conceive in her womb, who springing forth from the root of Judah, and who shall give birth to the right glorious Fruit of the holy seed of King David?

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

O virgins, commence ye to chant hymns, holding candles in your hands, and praising the arrival of the pure Theotokos who now cometh to the temple of God, celebrating with us!

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Rejoice now, O Joachim and Anna, leading into the temple of the Lord, like a heifer three years of age, the pure one born from you, who will become the Mother of God.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

As the holy of holies, O pure one, thou didst love to dwell in the holy temple, remaining there and conversing most gloriously with the angels, receiving bread from heaven, O Virgin, thou nourisher of Life.

Katavasia: Rod of the root of Jesse, * and flower that blossomed from his stem, * O Christ, Thou hast sprung from the Virgin. * From the Mountain overshadowed by the forest * Thou hast come, made flesh from her that knew not wedlock, * O God who art not formed from matter. * Glory to Thy power,
O Lord.

Ode V, Canon I, Irmos: All creation stands in awe of thy divine glory; * for thou, O Virgin who hast not known wedlock, * didst enter into the temple of the Lord; * thyself being a most pure temple, * bestowing peace, upon all who hymn thee.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The most pure Virgin, the glorious sanctity and sacred offering which is brought today to the Temple of God, is preserved as a habitation for our one God, the King of all, as He Himself knoweth.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Zachariah, having of old beheld the beauty of thy soul, cried out in faith: Thou art the deliverance, thou art the joy of all, thou art our restoration, through whom the Uncontainable One shall appear unto me contained.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

O, thy wonders which pass understanding, O all-pure one! Strange is thy birthgiving; strange is the manner of thy maturation; strange also, most glorious and unutterable by mortals, are all thy wonders, O Bride of God.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

As a most radiant lamp, O Bride of God, hast thou shone forth today in the house of the Lord, illumining us with the precious gifts of thy wonders, O pure and allhymned Theotokos.

Canon II, Irmos: Shine forth thy radiant and everlasting light * upon us who rise early at dawn, * unto the judgments of Thy commandments, * O Master, Lover of mankind, * Christ our God.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

O all ye Orthodox, let us take up lamps, hastening to glorify the Mother of God, for she is led to the Lord today as a right acceptable sacrifice.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Let thine ancestors be glad today, O Lady; and let her who gave birth to thee rejoice with thy father, for their fruit is offered to the Lord.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Celebrating with faith, let us all hymn the unblemished heifer, most glorious and of great renown, for she gave birth to the divine Bullock in the flesh.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

The divine tokens of thy betrothal, of thy birthgiving which passeth understanding, O pure Virgin; are recorded today by the Holy Spirit in the house of God.

Katavasia: As Thou art the God of peace and Father of compassions, * Thou hast sent unto us Thine Angel of great counsel, * granting us peace. * Wherefore guided towards the light of the knowledge of God, * and watching by night we glorify Thee, * O Lover of mankind.

Ode VI, Canon I, Irmos: Celebrating the divine and solemn feast * of the Mother of God * O ye divinely wise, * let us come, clapping our hands, * and glorify God who was born of her.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Thou Who hast upheld all things by Thy word hast hearkened to the prayer of the righteous ones. Wherefore, Thou hast loosed the infirmity of the barren woman, in that Thou art compassionate, and given them her who is the cause of joy.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Wishing to make His salvation known to the Gentiles, the Lord hath now taken from among mankind her who hath not known wedlock, as a sign of reconciliation and renewal.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

As a house of grace, wherein treasures of the ineffable dispensation of God are laid up, O all-pure one, thou didst share in unfading delight in the Temple.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Receiving thee as a royal diadem, O Bride of God, the Temple hath been rendered splendid and been elevated to better things, beholding in thee the fulfillment of the prophecies.

Canon II, Irmos: Emulating the Prophet Jonah, I cry aloud: * Free Thou my life from corruption, O Good One; * and save me who crieth out: * O Savior of the world, Glory be to Thee!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

O ye faithful, let us celebrate the spiritual feast of the Mother of God, chanting piously; for she is more holy than the heavenly intelligences.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

With spiritual hymns let us praise the Mother of the Light, O ye faithful, for she hath appeared to us today, going forth into the temple of God.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

The unblemished ewe-lamb, the pure turtle-dove, is brought to dwell in the house of God, for, as one all-immaculate, she was chosen beforehand to be the Mother of God.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

The temple of God, the heavenly tabernacle, maketh entry into the temple of the law, and from her hath the Light shone forth upon us who are in darkness.

Katavasia: The sea monster spat forth Jonah as it had received him, * like a babe from the womb: * while the Word, having dwelt in the Virgin and taken flesh, * came forth from her yet kept her incorrupt. * For being Himself not subject to decay. * He preserved His Mother free from all harm.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. 

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Kontakion of the feast, Tone IV, Spec. Mel. “Having been lifted up …”: The most pure temple of the Savior, * the precious bridal chamber and Virgin, * the sacred treasury of the glory of God, * hath been brought into the house of the Lord this day, * bringing with her the grace that is in the divine Spirit. * To her do the angels of God chant the hymn: ** She is the heavenly tabernacle!

Ikos: Beholding the grace of the ineffable and divine mysteries of God made plainly manifest in and filling the Virgin, I rejoice; yet I know not how to understand this strange and ineffable image. How hath the pure one alone been shown to be above all creation, visible and immaterial? Wherefore, wishing to praise her, I am greatly in awe in mind and word; yet, bold, I proclaim and magnify her, saying: She is the heavenly tabernacle!

Ode VII, Canon I, Irmos: Refusing to worship created things * in place of the Creator, * the divinely wise youths bravely trampled down the threatening fire * and rejoicing they sang aloud: * O supremely hymned Lord and God of our Fathers, Blessed art Thou.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Lo, today a joyous spring hath dawned upon the ends of the earth, enlightening our souls, thoughts and minds with grace: the festival of the Theotokos. Let us mystically make festival this day!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Let all things – heaven and earth, the ranks of angels and the multitudes of mankind – bear gifts today unto the Queen and Mother of God; and let them cry aloud: Our joy and deliverance is brought into the Temple!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The Scriptures have come to pass, the Law hath faded like a shadow, and rays of grace have shone forth upon thee who hast entered into the Temple of God, O pure Virgin Mother wherein thou art blessed.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Heaven and earth and the netherworld are subject to thine Offspring as Creator and God, O all-pure one, and every nation of mortals doth confess that the Lord and Savior of our souls hath appeared.

Canon II, Irmos: The furnace became bedewed, O Savior, * and the children dancing, chanted: * O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

O ye who love the feasts of the Church let us join chorus and hymn the pure Lady honoring Joachim and Anna as is meet.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Prophesy, O David, speaking in the Spirit: The virgins who follow after thee shall be brought to thee into the temple of the Queen and Mother.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

The ranks of the angels rejoiced and the souls of the righteous were gladdened, for the Mother of God is led into the Holy of holies,

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Receiving heavenly food, she who was to become the Mother of Christ God in the flesh, excelled in wisdom and grace.

Katavasia: Scorning the impious decree of the godless one, * the Children brought up together in godliness * feared not the threat of fire, * but standing in the midst of the flames, they sang: * O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou.

Ode VIII, Canon I, Irmos: Hearken, O pure Virgin Maiden, * that Gabriel may tell thee the true counsel of the Most High of old. * Make ready to receive the Godhead; * for through thee the Infinite One hath come to dwell among mankind. *

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Wherefore, rejoicing, I cry aloud: * Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord! Anna, once, leading the most pure temple to the house of God, faithfully said unto the priest, crying aloud: Now accept thou this child, given me by God; lead her into the Temple of the Creator; and, rejoicing, chant unto Him: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

And Zachariah then, beholding them in the Spirit, said unto Anna: Thou dost bring hither the true Mother of Life, whom the prophets of God have clearly foretold as the Theotokos! How, therefore, can the Temple hold her?

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Wherefore, marveling, I cry out: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord! The handmaid of God have I been, answered Anna unto him, and I call upon Him with faith and prayer to accept the fruit of my birth-pangs, that, having received this child, I might bring her that was born unto Him that bestowed her. Wherefore, I cry aloud: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Truly this is a matter of the Law, the priest said to her, and strange doth this thing seem unto me, beholding her that doth most gloriously surpass the holy ones in grace led into the house of God. Wherefore, rejoicing, I cry out: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

Canon II, Irmos: Him of whom the angels and all the hosts of heaven are in awe * as their Lord and Creator, * ye priests hymn, ye children praise, * ye peoples bless and supremely exalt * throughout all ages.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Joachim rejoiceth today in splendor, and the blameless Anna offereth to the Lord God a sacrifice: the holy daughter given her according to God’s promise.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The holy David and Jesse render praise, and Judah offereth homage; for the pure Virgin, of whom the pre-eternal God was born, grew forth as fruit from their root.

We bless the Father, the son and the Holy Spirit, the Lord:

The most pure Mary, the animate tabernacle, is brought today into the house of God; and Zachariah taketh her in his arms as the sanctified treasure of the Lord.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O ye faithful, let us truly honor the Virgin Mother of God, who is blessed by the hands of the priests, as the portal of salvation, the noetic mountain and the animate ladder.

Katavasia: The furnace moist with dew showed forth an image * of a wonder past nature, * for it burned not the youths whom it had received; * neither did the fire of the Godhead consume the Virgin * when it descended into her womb. * Wherefore, chanting, we sing: * Let all creation bless the Lord and supremely exalt Him throughout all ages!

Ode IX,  Canon I, Irmos: In nowise may the hand of the defiled * touch the animate ark of God; * and let the lips of the faithful * never-silently cry out with joy to the Theotokos, * chanting the words of the angel: * Rejoice, O thou who art full of grace! * The Lord is with thee!

Refrain: The angels, beholding the entry of the all-pure one, were amazed to see the Virgin enter into the Holy of holies.

O pure Theotokos, as thou hast the most radiant beauty of purity of soul and art full of the grace of God from heaven, with the ever-existent light thou dost ever enlighten those who cry out with joy: Truly thou art more highly exalted than all, O pure Virgin!

Refrain: The angels, beholding the entry of the all-pure one, were amazed to see the Virgin enter into the Holy of holies.

Thy wonder doth surpass the power of words, O pure Theotokos, for in thee I perceive a body impervious to the movement of sin. Wherefore, thankfully I cry out to thee: Truly thou art more highly exalted than all, O pure Virgin!

Refrain: The angels, beholding the entry of the all-pure one, were amazed to see the Virgin enter into the Holy of holies.

Most gloriously did the Law prefigure thee, O pure one, as the tabernacle, the divine jar, the awe-some ark, the veil, the staff, the inviolable temple and portal of God. Wherefore, all these things teach us to cry to thee: Truly thou art more highly exalted than all, O pure Virgin!

Refrain: The angels, beholding the entry of the all-pure one, were amazed to see the Virgin enter into the Holy of holies.

In hymnody David cried out to thee prophetically, calling thee the daughter of the King in the comeliness of thy virtues, beholding thee standing, elaborately adorned, at the right hand of God. Wherefore, in prophecy he cried out: Truly thou art more highly exalted than all, O pure Virgin!

Refrain: The angels, beholding the entry of the all-pure one, were amazed to see the Virgin enter into the Holy of holies.

Foreseeing thee who art pleasing to God, Solomon proclaimed thee to be the bower of the King, the living and sealed fountain, from whence untroubled waters have issued forth for us who cry out with faith: Truly thou art more highly exalted than all, O pure Virgin!

Refrain: The angels, beholding the entry of the all-pure one, were amazed to see the Virgin enter into the Holy of holies.

O Theotokos, thou givest to my soul the tranquility of thy gifts, pouring forth life upon those who honor thee as is meet, defending, protecting and preserving them thyself, that they might cry to thee: Truly thou art more highly exalted than all, O pure Virgin!

Canon II, Refrain: Magnify, O my soul, her who hath been led into the temple of the Lord and been blessed by the hands of the priest.

Irmos: The light-bearing cloud upon whom * the beginningless Master of all descended from heaven, * like the dew upon the fleece, * and of whom He was incarnate, * becoming a man for our sake, * let us all magnify as the pure Mother of God.

Refrain: Magnify, O my soul, her who hath been led into the temple of the Lord and been blessed by the hands of the priest.

The divine maiden Mary, the fruit of the promise, issued forth from the righteous Joachim and Anna, and, a babe in the flesh, she is brought into the holy sanctuary like pleasing incense, to dwell in the Holy of holies.

Refrain: Magnify, O my soul, her who hath been led into the temple of the Lord and been blessed by the hands of the priest.

With hymns let us praise her who was a babe by nature and was supernaturally revealed as the Mother of God; for she is led unto the Lord in the temple of the law, as the fragrance of sweet savor for the righteous, as the spiritual fruit of her righteous parents.

Refrain: Magnify, O my soul, her who hath been led into the temple of the Lord and been blessed by the hands of the priest.

O ye faithful, with the angel let us fittingly cry out to the Theotokos “Rejoice!” Rejoice, O most comely Bride! Rejoice, O radiant cloud, from whom the Lord hath shone forth upon us who sit in the darkness of ignorance! Rejoice, thou hope of all!

Refrain: Magnify, O my soul, her who hath been led into the temple of the Lord and been blessed by the hands of the priest.

O pure Mary Mother of God, thou Holy of holies, from the snares of the enemy and from all heresy and tribulation do thou free us by thy supplications, who bow down with faith before the image of thy holy countenance.

Refrain: Magnify, O my soul, her who hath been led into the temple of the Lord and been blessed by the hands of the priest.

With the Angel Gabriel all creation uttereth a fitting hymn to the Theotokos, crying: Rejoice, O most immaculate Mother of God, by whom we have been delivered from the primal curse, coming to share in incorruption!

Refrain: Magnify, O my soul, her who hath been led into the temple of the Lord and been blessed by the hands of the priest.

O Virgin, thou hast been shown to be greater than the cherubim, more exalted than the seraphim and more spacious than the heavens, for thou didst contain within thy womb our God Whom naught can contain, and hast given birth to Him ineffably. Him do thou earnestly beseech on our behalf.

Refrain: Magnify, O my soul, her who hath been led into the temple of the Lord and been blessed by the hands of the priest.

Triadicon: Let us glorify the indivisible Trinity, the Essence in three Hypostases, the undivided glory, Who in a single Godhead, is unceasingly hymned in heaven and on earth, piously worshiping the Father, the Son and the Spirit.

Refrain: Magnify, O my soul, her who hath been led into the temple of the Lord and been blessed by the hands of the priest.

O Virgin Birthgiver of God, pray thou, that we who flee with faith beneath thy compassion and piously worship thy Son as God and Lord of the world be delivered from corruption, misfortunes and all manner of temptations.

Refrain: The angels, beholding the entry of the most pure one, were amazed to see the Virgin enter into the Holy of holies.

O Virgin Birthgiver of God, pray thou, that we who flee with faith beneath thy compassion and piously worship thy Son as God and Lord of the world be delivered from corruption, misfortunes and all manner of temptations.

Katavasia: A strange and most wondrous mystery do I see: * the cave is heaven; * the Virgin the throne of the cherubim; * the manger a room, in which Christ God, * whom nothing can contain, is laid. * Whom we praise and magnify.

Troparion, Tone IV: Today is the prelude of God’s good will * and the proclamation of the salvation of mankind. * The Virgin hath manifestly appeared in the temple of God, proclaiming Christ unto all. * To her let us cry aloud: ** Rejoice, thou fulfillment of the Creator’s dispensation!

 

A Canon of Preparation For the Nativity

 

In the middle of Thursday’s confessions in Nazareth House, there was a blessed opportunity to sing a special moleben (supplicatory service) with hymns, verses and prayers of preparation for the Nativity.

Together with the canons for the saints celebrated during the season, the canon posted below would make a beautiful, seasonal addition to Advent prayers, with the images and themes focussing us on the coming feast.

Ode One, Irmos: A triumphant force once laid low all the armed hosts of Pharaoh in the deep: even so the glorious Lord, the Word made flesh, hath blotted out malignant sin; for He hath been greatly glorified.

Glory to Thee, our God. Glory to Thee.

O King of All, wishing man to be enrolled in the book of life, Thou hast enrolled Thyself according to the law of Caesar. As a stranger hast Thou come unto Thine own, calling back to heaven those who were unhappily estranged from paradise.

Glory to Thee, our God. Glory to Thee.

O King of All, wishing man to be enrolled in the book of life, Thou hast enrolled Thyself according to the law of Caesar. As a stranger hast Thou come unto Thine own, calling back to heaven those who were unhappily estranged from paradise.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

O Bethlehem, receive Christ: for, made flesh, He cometh to dwell in thee, opening Eden to me. Make ready, O cave, to behold most strangely contained in thee, Him Who cannot be contained, who now is made poor in the wealth of His tender mercies.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Christ comes to be born, granting in His goodness a strange rebirth to those sprung from Adam. Be glad, the whole nature of mortal man, thou that art barren and bearest not: the Master hath come to make thee a mother of many children.

Ode III, Irmos: The desert flowered as a lily at Thy coming, O Lord, even the Church of the Gentiles that was barren: and in that same coming is my heart established.

Glory to Thee, our God. Glory to Thee.

Redeeming me from the bands of evil, O Lord who lovest mankind, Thou comest to be wrapped as a babe in swaddling bands. I venerate Thy divine condescension.

Glory to Thee, our God. Glory to Thee.

Redeeming me from the bands of evil, O Lord who lovest mankind, Thou comest to be wrapped as a babe in swaddling bands. I venerate Thy divine condescension.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

The Virgin draweth nigh to bear Thee, O Lord, who, shining timelessly from the Father, hast now come to be in time, setting us loose from the temporal passions of our souls.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Lord most merciful and full of pity, seeking me who had gone astray in transgression, Thou hast come to dwell in a cave as in Heaven, thereby preparing the Heavenly mansions for me.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. 

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen. 

Sedalion, Tone I: Rejoice exceedingly, O Sion: make ready, O Bethlehem. The Upholder of All Things, sending a star before Him, hath made known His condescension without measure. He before Whom the heavenly powers tremble, our only God, without suffering change, is born in very truth from the Virgin.

Ode IV, Irmos: Thou hast come forth from a virgin, neither as an angel nor an ambassador, but the Lord Himself made flesh, and to me who am man Thou hast brought salvation. Therefore, I cry unto Thee: ‘Glory to Thy power, O Lord.’

Glory to Thee, our God. Glory to Thee.

Let the creation now cast off all things old, beholding Thee the Creator made a child. For through Thy birth Thou dost shape all things afresh, making them new once more and leading them back again to their first beauty.

Glory to Thee, our God. Glory to Thee.

The magi who had been led on their way by a divine star, stood before Thee, in wonder at Thy marvellous birth; and bearing gifts, they saw the Sun that rose from the virgin cloud.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Behold, the Virgin cometh like a young heifer, bearing in her womb the fatted calf that takest away the sins of the world. Let the creation, as it keeps feast, rejoice exceedingly.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

The preaching of the prophets, foretelling the manifestation of Christ, hath today received its saving fulfilment: for He has come in the flesh to enlighten those in peril of darkness.

Ode V, Irmos: Thou art become mediator between God and man, O Christ our God; for through Thee, O Master, we have access from the darkness of ignorance to Thy Father, the Author of Light.

Glory to Thee, our God. Glory to Thee.

Let the people that once sat in darkness see the Light that knoweth no evening shine forth: Him whom the star once made known to kings from Persia, who worshipped fire.

Glory to Thee, our God. Glory to Thee.

Let the people that once sat in darkness see the Light that knoweth no evening shine forth: Him whom the star once made known to kings from Persia, who worshipped fire.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

The great King cometh in haste to enter a small cave, that He may make me great who had grown small, and that, as transcendent God, by His poverty without measure He may enrich me who had grown poor.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

‘Now is Christ born of Jacob,’ so Balaam said: ‘And He shall rule over nations, and His kingdom shall be exalted in grace and shall remain perpetually.’

Ode VI, Irmos: Compassed about in an abyss of sin, on the unsearchable abyss of Thy tender mercies do I call: raise me out of corruption, O God.

Glory to Thee, our God. Glory to Thee.

Christ in strange wise cometh to His own. Let us make ourselves strangers to sin, and let us receive Him who dwellest in the souls of the meek.

Glory to Thee, our God. Glory to Thee.

Christ in strange wise cometh to His own. Let us make ourselves strangers to sin, and let us receive Him who dwellest in the souls of the meek.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Thou, O Bethlehem, art not least among cities: for in thee is born the King and Lord who shall tend as a shepherd the people that is His own.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

How shall a small cave receive Thee, for whom the world cannot find room, O Thou Whom none can comprehend? O Thou, Who with the Father art without beginning, how shalt Thou appear as a small child?

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. 

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen. 

Kontakion, Tone III: Spec. Mel.: “Today the Virgin…”: Today the Virgin cometh to give birth ineffably to the preëternal Word in the cave. Dance, O world! And having heard this, with the angels and shepherds glorify the preëternal God, Who is to appear as a little babe.

Ikos: The sacred sayings of the prophets have received their fulfilment, for, lo! the Virgin giveth birth to the All-perfect One in the city of Bethlehem, within a cave! All creation hath been refashioned! Rejoice and dance! The Master of all hath come to dwell with His servants, delivering from the dominion of the alien us who were cast down by corruption, and He is seen as an infant, wrapped in swaddling-clothes, in the manger, the preëternal God, the little babe.

Ode VII, Irmos: The profane command of a lawless tyrant fanned the flame exceeding high; but Christ cast the dew of the Spirit over the children who feared God: blessed is He and exalted above all.

Glory to Thee, our God. Glory to Thee.

Let clouds drop water from on high; He who in glory maketh the clouds His chariot, cometh borne upon a cloud, that is the Virgin. The Light that knows no evening, He cometh to shine on those who before were in darkness and in peril.

Glory to Thee, our God. Glory to Thee.

Let clouds drop water from on high; He who in glory maketh the clouds His chariot, cometh borne upon a cloud, that is the Virgin. The Light that knows no evening, He cometh to shine on those who before were in darkness and in peril.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

O army of divine angels, make ready to sing the praises of the ineffable condescension of the Lord. O ye magi, come with all speed; O shepherds, make haste. Christ is come, the predestined expectation of the nations and their deliverance.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

‘What is this great and strange wonder? How do I uphold Thee who upholdest all the world by Thy word? O my Son Who art without beginning, Thy birth is beyond all speech!’ So spake the All-Pure, fearfully holding Christ in her arms.

Ode VIII, Irmos: In Babylon of old, by the command of God, the fiery furnace worked in contrary ways: burning the Chaldeans, it refreshed the faithful as they sang: ‘O all ye works of the Lord, bless ye the Lord.’

Glory to Thee, our God. Glory to Thee.

The blameless Lady was amazed at the height of the mystery, in truth past speech, that covered the heavens with knowledge, and she said: ‘The heavenly throne is consumed in flames as it holds Thee; how is it, then, that I carry Thee, my Son?’

Glory to Thee, our God. Glory to Thee.

The blameless Lady was amazed at the height of the mystery, in truth past speech, that covered the heavens with knowledge, and she said: ‘The heavenly throne is consumed in flames as it holds Thee; how is it, then, that I carry Thee, my Son?’

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

‘Thou dost bear the likeness of Thy Father, O my Son. How then hast Thou become poor and taken upon Thyself the likeness of a servant? How shall I lay Thee in a manger of beasts without reason, Who dost deliver all men from unreason? I sing the praises of Thy compassion.’

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Be joyful all the earth: behold, Christ draws nigh to be born in Bethlehem. Be glad, O sea; dance for joy, thou congregation of prophets, seeing the fulfilment of your words; rejoice, O all ye righteous.

Ode IX, Irmos: The Son of the Father without beginning hath appeared to us, God the Lord made flesh of the Virgin, to give light to those in darkness, and to gather the dispersed. Therefore, the far-famed Theotokos do we magnify.

Glory to Thee, our God. Glory to Thee.

Let the kings of the whole earth sing rejoicing, and let the companies of the nations be in exceeding joy. Mountains and hills and hollows, rivers and seas, and the whole creation, magnify the Lord who now is born.

Glory to Thee, our God. Glory to Thee.

As far as it was right, Thou wast seen by the prophets. Made man in the last times, Thou hast appeared to all in Bethlehem, city of Judah, and a star showed Thee to the star-gazers, O Thou Who passest all interpretation.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Behold, the Most Holy Word comes unto His own in a holy body that is not His. By a strange birth He maketh His own the world that was estranged. To Him let us sing in praise, Who became poor for us.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

‘O sweetest Child, how shall I feed Thee Who givest food to all? How shall I hold Thee Who holdest all things in Thy power? How shall I wrap Thee in swaddling clothes, Who dost wrap the whole earth in clouds?’ So cried the all-pure Lady whom in faith we magnify.

O God and Father, the Almighty One, Thou didst create the human race in Thine image and likeness, and when we fell through disobedience, Thou didst promise to send a Saviour. When the fullness of time had come, Thy favour rested on Thine Only-Begotten Son, and He was born of the Virgin Mary. Thus, that which Isaiah the prophet foretold was fulfilled: “Behold, the Virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Emmanuel, which meaneth ‘God with us.’ “ His birth filled all creation with light; He gave us the baptism of repentance, and didst restore our ancient dignity. Now, most compassionate Lord, Thou bringest us to these honoured days of the Nativity Fast, that we may do battle with the desires of the flesh and draw strength from the hope of the resurrection. Receive us, then, as penitents and forgive our iniquities, whether comitted knowingly and unknowingly, through malice and through weakness. And may our prayers, our fasting, and our works of mercy rise up before Thee as incense, as a sweet spiritual fragrance, that in company with the Magi and the shepherds, we too, with pure hearts, may be found worthy to bow down before the Nativity of Jesus Christ, Thy beloved Son. To Whom, together with Thee and Thine All-Holy Spirit, belongeth glory, honour, and worship, now and ever and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

The Canons to the Mother of God in Honour of Her Kazan Icon

Canon to the Directress, the all-holy Theotokos, the composition of the Hieromonk Ignatius, in Tone IV 

Ode I, Irmos: I will open my mouth, and with the Spirit will it be filled; and I shall utter discourse unto the Queen and Mother, and shall appear, keeping splendid festival; and, rejoicing, I will hymn her wonders.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

O pure one, joyously do I now offer my foremost praise: Rejoice! And with gladsome voice I cry out to thee, O Directress: Rejoice, and fill me with understanding as I begin to hymn thee!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, O all-hymned one who gavest birth unto Christ our everlasting Joy! O Directress, thou hope of the Orthodox, all-hymned Virgin, fill me with the joy which the world hath desired.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

All men and angels join chorus, ever crying out together in heaven and on earth, O Directress: Rejoice, O Virgin, for by thy birthgiving thou hast filled all things with joy!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

O Directress, vouchsafe joy unto those who with fear cry out to thee Rejoice!, in that thou art the Mother of joy who deliverest from all tribulations; and have mercy on all that have recourse unto thee.

Another canon of the feast, in the same tone:

Irmos: Same as that of the preceding canon.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The captains of the angels reverence thee, O Theotokos; and the ranks of the saints minister to thee with honor; the righteous adorn themselves and bless thee as the Mediatress of heavenly things; heaven and earth together praise thee splendidly in gladness. And we sinners ask mercy: Illumine our hearts, O Mistress, that we may chant a hymn to the revelation of thy holy icon.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Come ye, O Christian people, having mystically cleansed your minds, and assemble in the holy church of the Mother of Christ our God; for from her holy icon there poureth forth upon us inexhaustibly a spiritual wellspring which healeth the souls and bodies of those who cry out in song: Blessed is our God Who was born of thee!

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

The strange wonder of thy divine birthgiving striketh every ear with wonder and awe, O all-immaculate one: how thou didst conceive the Creator of the cherubim; how thou didst bear in the flesh Him Who is life, and for the whole world didst give birth to life: the God and Man!

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Beneath thy shelter do all of us, the generations of man, flee, O Virgin Lady. With the light of thy birthgiving enlighten us, thy sinful servants who earnestly pray, bowing down before thine all-pure icon, asking to receive from thee great mercy.

Ode III, Irmos: O Theotokos, thou living and abundant fountain: in thy divine glory establish those who hymn thee and spiritually form themselves into a choir; and vouchsafe unto them crowns of glory.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, O unshakable, pure and animate palace of Christ the King Most High! Rejoice, O Directress, Rejoice! For by thee is our city preserved intact!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

In thy womb which tasted not of wedlock thou didst bodily contain Him Whom creation cannot contain, O Virgin Directress. Wherefore, magnifying thee as is meet, we chant, Rejoice!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

O all-hymned joy of the world, ever hymning thee with joy, O pure one, we are vouchsafed everlasting joy by thy maternal supplications unto Him Who was born of thee, O Directress.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

O Directress, we invoke thee as the golden jar, the candlestick, the rod and the table, O pure one, and we ever raise the cry, Rejoice! to thee when we use these terms.

Same Irmos

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

What worthy praise can our utter infirmity offer thee? For through the manifestation of thine all-pure, divine icon thou pourest forth bountiful streams of healing upon thy servants who faithfully have recourse to thee.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The holy revelation of thy divine icon, O Virgin Theotokos, hath shone upon us like the radiant sun, emitting rays of all-glorious miracles, and dispelling a myriad of evil circumstances by thy sacred intercessions, O Mistress.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Thou didst once fill thy first-painted icon with grace, O Virgin Lady Theotokos; and now that same grace speaketh forth truly in the effulgence of the wonders of faith, as the first one did for the sake of thee who wast first depicted thereon, unto those who with faith have recourse to thee after God.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

We bow down before the all-pure image of thee and thy Babe all-sweet, Christ the preëternal and never-waning Light, O Theotokos, by Whom thou hast saved all human nature from cruel evils and mortal corruption.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Sessional Hymn, Tone VIII, Spec. Mel. “Of the Wisdom…”: The divine apostles of the Word, the clarion-voiced universal heralds of the Gospel of Christ, having founded a divine temple in thine all-holy name, O Theotokos, approached thee, entreating thee to come to its consecration. But thou didst say, O Mother of God: “Go in peace, and I shall be with you there!” And they, going forth, there found, on the wall of the church, the likeness of thine image limned powerfully in colored hues; and seeing it, they did thee homage and glorified God. And we also, with them, bow down before thy divine icon, asking of thee great mercy. Grant remission of sins to thy servants, O thou who alone art blessed.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

The above Sessional hymn is repeated.

Ode IV, Irmos: Seated in glory upon the throne of the Godhead, Jesus most divine hath come on a light cloud, and with His incorrupt arm hath saved those who cry: Glory to Thy power, O Christ!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, O Mistress Directress, thou wonder of wonders! Rejoice, joy of all cities and towns, impregnable fortress and bulwark for Christians amid misfortunes, thou victory over the enemy!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, rejoice, O boast of Orthodox kings, for thou, O Queen of all, dost accompany Christ-loving armies! Rejoice, O Directress, thou refuge and confirmation of us all!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, deliverance for all amid misfortunes! Rejoice, ready consolation for all the sorrowful! Rejoice, O all-hymned one! Rejoice, most blessed Directress, healer of all the infirm!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, thou whose mighty works all creation doth make haste to glorify as is meet; yet it is unable, O Directress, and therefore it crieth out to thee: Rejoice, O Mistress, thou dwelling-place which contained God!

Same Irmos

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

O ye pure people, in purity let us cherish the icon of the Virgin Theotokos and of the divine Infant Christ our God; and let us kiss it and glorify her with fear and trembling; for we right honorably venerate the icon and honor even more the pure Mother of God.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

David, the divine and wondrous prophet, foreseeing as from a great distance, said: The rich among the people shall entreat thy countenance. And let us, O ye faithful, bow down and venerate the precious icon, sanctified body and soul.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Luke, the divinely eloquent recorder of the Gospel, at the behest of God set down thine all-immaculate image, O Theotokos, depicting the preëternal Infant in thine arms; and from temptations and misfortunes thou deliverest those who have recourse thereto, and thou protectest and savest them all by thine image.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Thou art the boast and crown of all the saints, O Queen; after God, thou art our hope and helper, and on thee have we all set our hope of salvation. Thee do we entreat as the Mother of God: Rain down thy rich and soul-saving mercies upon thy sinful servants.

Ode V, Irmos: All things are filled with awe at thy divine glory; for thou, O Virgin who hast not known wedlock, didst contain within thy womb Him Who is God over all, and gavest birth to the timeless Son, granting peace unto all who hymn thee.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Thou art an abyss of goodness and compassions. Rejoice, O Virgin Directress! Rejoice, thou who makest all faithful! O rejoice, most speedy helper of those who are in misfortune and sorrow!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Beholding the mighty works of the fullness of thy wonders, we, the faithful, are filled with joy, even those among us who hear of them yet see them not. Wherefore, in every place we all ever chant unto thee, Rejoice, O Directress!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

O rejoice, O Virgin Directress, thou dwelling-place of Christ our God and habitation of His ineffable and all-divine glory! O rejoice, palace all adorned! Rejoice, animate city ever reigning!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Looking upon thee as a sea of joy inexhaustible, O Virgin Maiden Directress, rejoicing we all cry out to thee, Rejoice! And chanting, we ever expect of thee divine gifts invisibly bestowed.

Same Irmos

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Every being is at a loss how to hymn thee, O all-pure one; for thou art exalted far above the heavenly intelligences, having given birth unto the unapproachable and dread King and God of all. But as thou art merciful and the ready helper of men, attend unto the entreaty of thy servants, and grant us thy help.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Where thy grace overshadoweth, O Theotokos, the demons vanish in fear and their wickedly devised phantasy is destroyed; the dark demons flee and the whole multitude of the faithful rejoice, crying out a hymn of praise to thee from their hearts: Rejoice, thou divine protection of our souls!

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Sweet sight is given to the eyeless, hearing to the deaf, goodly speech to the mute, the ability to walk to the lame, cleansing to the leprous, chastity to the demonized, and healing to those who suffer from divers sicknesses, through the overshadowing of thine all-pure icon, O Theotokos.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O joyous Theotokos, let us never fail to hymn thy mighty works with psalms and hymns; for thou truly gavest birth unto the incarnate God unto our universal salvation and deliverance.

Ode VI, Irmos: Celebrating this divine and most honored festival of the Mother of God, come, ye divinely wise, let us clap our hands and glorify God Who was born of her.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Receiving Christ within thyself, O pure Virgin Directress, thou didst hear the cry, Rejoice! And having given birth unto Him ineffably, thou dost ever hear the salutation Rejoice! from all.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Thou hast filled all with joy, and hast united those who are on high with them below, O Directress. Wherefore, with joy heaven and all the earth now cry out to thee together.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, O all-hymned Directress, consolation of widows and all orphans! Rejoice, thou who pourest forth inexhaustible riches upon all the destitute!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, O Directress, dwelling-place of Christ, more lustrous than any gold and more splendid than the dawning of the sun! Rejoice, O Virgin! Rejoice, O Bride unwedded!

Same Irmos

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

O Virgin Lady, by thine exclamation of old thou didst impart to thine all-pure image the all-rich grace of thy divine birthgiving, that it work great and all-glorious miracles in abundance, unto the salvation of those who set their hope on thee.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Where the holy name of the joyous Theotokos is glorified, streams of every good thing pour forth. Come ye in purity, O people, for, lo! by the manifestation of the divine icon of the Virgin is the presence of the Queen revealed, unto the salvation of all the faithful.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Approaching with faith, O all-immaculate Mistress and Mother of God, from thine all-pure icon we receive healing of maladies, the dispelling of the passions, salvation which nourisheth the soul, forgiveness of sins, and everlasting deliverance.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

To thee, O Lady, do the generations of the earthborn flee, and ask great mercy; and they that are infirm receive healing in abundance, release from the passions, and consolation amid grief. O Mistress, let fall upon me a drop of soul-saving rain, that with all I also may hymn thy magnitude.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Kontakion, Tone VIII, Spec. Mel.” To thee, the champion leader…” : O ye people, let us flee to that calm and good haven, the speedy helper and ready and fervent salvation, the protection of the Virgin, and let us make haste to prayer and speed to repentance. For the all-pure Theotokos poureth forth upon us inexhaustible mercies; she cometh in advance to help us and delivereth her good-hearted and God-fearing servants from great misfortunes and evils.

Ikos: Having cleansed thought and mind, let us make haste to the Theotokos, calling her blessed in splendid hymns; and let us glorify and honor her all-pure icon; and falling down before it, let us do homage as to herself; for the veneration shown an icon ascendeth unto the Prototype, and he that honoreth and boweth down before it, honoreth the Prototype Himself, as the divine fathers have said. And if one doth not reverence the all-holy Theotokos, and doth not venerate her icon, let him be anathema. For she putteth to shame and destroyeth those who honor her not, and delivereth from great misfortunes and evils her good-hearted and God-fearing servants.

Ode VII, Irmos: The divinely wise youths worshipped not a creation rather than the Creator, but, manfully trampling the threat of the fire underfoot, they rejoice, chanting: Blessed art Thou, the all-hymned God of our fathers!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, rejoice, O Directress, who dost ever direct all the faithful to tread the path to all salvation! Rejoice, O Mistress, for by thee are we ever delivered from the present tribulations brought about by the barbarians!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, rejoice, O Theotokos Directress, who keepest watch and prayest to God for us, delivering all the people from every sorrow and from all evil by thy mediation!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, rejoice, O all-holy Directress, who fulfillest those of our petitions which are for our profit, and ever desirest for all good and brotherly unity, especially among the leaders.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, rejoice, O Directress of ships which must needs sail, who deliverest the faithful, and quickly loosest them from divers and long-standing ailments, O deliverance of all from every sorrow!

Same Irmos

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Come ye, let us draw forth remission from the inexhaustible wellspring which poureth forth sanctity, the all-pure Virgin and her all-pure Infant, God the Word, Who became incarnate for our sake. And let us cry out to Him: O Creator and Deliverer Who art God glorified with the Father and the Spirit, blessed art Thou!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Possessed of ever-vigilant and God-pleasing prayer, O pure one, and an insuperable dominion of might, crush thou the audacity of the enemy which is directed against us, that we, thy servants, may rejoice in thee, crying out to thy Son: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

O ye faithful people, let us rejoice and be glad in the wondrous appearance of the icon of the all-pure Mistress, the Theotokos; for it hath been shown to be an inexhaustible river pouring forth the water of healing. For it giveth sight to the blind, hearing to the deaf, the ability to walk to the lame, and free healing to all amid their infirmities.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

An unfathomable abyss, an incomprehensible mystery is the unapproachable image of thy conception, O Virgin; for thy conception was seedless; thou gavest birth without a husband; the Incorporeal One became incarnate, the Preëternal One became an infant, the Son of God became thy Son, O Virgin. To Him do we cry aloud: Blessed art Thou, O God!

Ode VIII, Irmos: The birthgiving of the Theotokos saved the pious children in the furnace — then in figure, but now in deed — and it moveth all the world to chant to Thee: Hymn ye the Lord and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, O most blessed Mary, for through thee the most blessed God hath arrayed Himself wholly in me; and having arrayed Himself in man, He hath united man to His divinity in an ineffable union, O Virgin Directress! Rejoice, O joyous one, thou joy of all the world!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, dispeller of evil spirits! Rejoice, O Theotokos Directress! Rejoice, thou whom the invisible armies of heaven ever glorify and magnify as the Mother of God! Rejoice, thou who hast joined those who are below with those above!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, rejoice, O Directress who without exception surpassest all the heavenly hosts! Rejoice, O all-hymned Mistress, who gavest birth to the God of all creation, and hast dominion over it! Rejoice, O pure one, who even after giving birth remainest a virgin!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, glory of all women, all-hallowed temple of our God! Rejoice, O Directress! Rejoice, thou who savest the souls of all the world! Rejoice, protecting cloud broader than the heavens! Rejoice, phial full of divine oil of myrrh!

Same Irmos

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The minds of angels and men are filled with awe, O Theotokos, in contemplating how thou gavest flesh unto the God of heaven, containing Him in thy womb, and how, having given birth unto Him as a babe, thou bearest Him as a Son in thine arms. Before Him doth creation stand in awe and the heavenly thrones tremble, crying out unceasingly: Holy, holy, holy art Thou, O God Who art all-hymned and supremely exalted above all forever!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, thou who art the joy of all the world! With the Archangel Gabriel we cry out to thee, O Theotokos: Rejoice, thou who didst contain the Infinite One! Rejoice, O thou who art full of grace, bearer of the whole Divinity! Rejoice, restoration of Adam, the Lord is with thee, saving us for thy sake! Him do we hymn and exalt supremely forever.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

O sanctified root of Jesse, thou hast plucked forth the root of our sin, O rod of Aaron which blossomed, giving rise to a Blossom, Christ the Bestower of life! O jar which received the Manna, thou hast crushed all the power of death, and hast brought the human race to the generation of life. Wherefore, we hymn thee, the cause of that which is good.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Thou art the boast of Christians, O Mistress; thou art a sword against our enemies and a rampart for those who have recourse unto thee. We now call upon thee for aid, O Lady: permit not the foe to rise up against thy people, for they praise neither thee nor thy Son, O Theotokos, nor do they bow down before thine icon. Vanquish them, and save thou our souls.

Ode IX, Irmos: Let every mortal leap for joy, enlightened by the Spirit; and let the nature of the incorporeal intelligences keep festival, honoring the sacred feast of the Mother of God, and let them cry aloud: Rejoice, O most blessed Theotokos, pure Ever-virgin!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, O lamp who bore the never-waning Light and who in thy birth-giving hast destroyed the darkness of polytheism and delivered thy people from the abyss of hades! Rejoice, O Theotokos Directress, mediatress of all good things!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, O earth from whence the Ear of heavenly grain hath budded forth for the faithful; and deliver the whole world from soul-destroying famine, O noetic and animate one! Rejoice, O vine who gavest birth to the Cluster of life, O pure Theotokos Directress!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Rejoice, most comely paradise of mystic flowers! Rejoice, Virgin Mother, O Theotokos who by purity hast most strangely vanquished the understanding of the invisible foe! Rejoice, O Maiden, rejoice, O Directress, thou universal wonder and report!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

By thine aid, keep thou the remaining time of our life untouched by harm, O Virgin Maiden, and count us worthy to receive a good end, for we hymn thee and cry aloud: Rejoice, O most blessed and pure Theotokos and Directress!

Same Irmos

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Thee, the steadfast helper of the human race, O Theotokos Mary, did the choir of the prophets foretell in many and divers ways, as the holy tabernacle more spacious than the heavens, the tablet divinely inscribed, the bush unconsumed by the Fire, the portal through which God passeth, the mountain and the ladder, the bridge and the rod which blossomed forth. And we truly magnify thee as the Theotokos.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The mystery of the depth of thy birthgiving moveth the mind of the angels to awe, O Virgin, and thine all-pure icon driveth the demons away, darkeneth the countenances of the ungodly, and putteth them to shame. For they cannot bear to look upon its power, and they flee and vanish away. And we lovingly bow down and venerate it, and magnify thee as the Theotokos.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

As a constant intercessor before the King Most High, in that thou art possessed of undaunted boldness, establish thou the life of the Orthodox in peace profound, exalt our right-believing hierarchs, and ever grant unto thy servants all things profitable, that we may magnify thee as the Theotokos.

Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O most merciful helper of Christians, the mind of men or angels cannot hymn thee as is meet, for thou art more honorable than all creation, more glorious than all things of heaven and earth; for thou gavest birth unto the Creator and God of all. O Mistress, mercifully accept the hymn which we have composed for thee from the depths of our heart, and ever save us, for on thee have we set our hope.

Troparion, Tone IV: O earnest helper, Mother of the Lord Most High, thou dost entreat Christ, thy Son and our God, on behalf of all, and dost cause all to be saved who have recourse to thy mighty protection. O Lady, Queen and Mistress, help us all who, amid temptations, sorrows and sickness, are heavy laden with many sins, who stand before thee and with tears pray to thee with compunctionate soul and contrite heart before thine all-pure image, and who have unfailing hope in thee: Grant deliverance from all evils, and things profitable unto all, O Virgin Theotokos, and save us all, for thou art the divine protection of thy servants.