The Canon to St Varus

Canon of the Holy Great-Martyr Varus, the acrostic whereof is: ”I praise the sufferings of Varus and his great glory”, the composition of Joseph, in Tone VI

Ode 1, Irmos: When Israel crossed the deep on foot as though it were dry land, beholding the tyrant Pharaoh drowned, he cried aloud: Let us sing to God a hymn of victory!

Holy Great Martyr Varus, pray to God for us.

Thou hast appeared in the heights of the Church of Christ as a radiant sun, illumining the fullness of the earth with the brilliance of thy battles, O blessed Varus.

Holy Great Martyr Varus, pray to God for us.

Embraced by the sweet ardour of divine love, O most blessed one, thou didst deny thyself and didst hasten wisely to all the tortures of the flesh, struggling mightily.

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

Having sensibly bound thyself with the bonds of godly strugglers, O athlete, thou didst break asunder the bonds of falsehood by thy mighty endurance of many torments.

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

The transcendent Word made His abode within thy womb in manner past recounting, O pure one, and, having been born in godly manner, He hath led to Him the choirs of martyrs. With them we praise thee in hymnody.

Ode 3, Irmos: There is none as holy as Thou, O Lord my God, Who hast exalted the horn of Thy faithful, O Good One, and hast established us upon the rock of Thy confession.

Holy Great Martyr Varus, pray to God for us.

Thou didst enter upon valiant struggles with mighty resolve, having made thyself steadfast by hope in the good things which are to come and by the most-wise teachings of the martyrs of Christ, O blessed one.

Holy Great Martyr Varus, pray to God for us.

Beholding the army of the holy athletes suffering lawfully, thou didst show forth their courageous strength, entering upon multifarious torments, O Varus.

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

As a valiant warrior, O Varus, thou didst find thyself in the sacred regiment, and didst cut down multitudes with the battle-sword of courage, O wise one, being glorified with victories.

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

O Virgin Mother of God, I beseech thee: By the effulgence of grace which is in thee, drive away the most profound darkness of my despair and the clouds of the passions.

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

Sedalion, Tone I, “Thy tomb, O Saviour…”: Beholding the honoured sufferings of the martyrs, and venerating their fetters with love, thou didst hasten to ascend to the summit of witness, O most wondrous one; for, suspended upon a tree, thou didst endure wounds, until thou didst commit thy spirit into the hands of the Lord.

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

Theotokion: O all-pure Virgin, thou hope of Christians, unceasingly entreat God to Whom thou gavest birth in manner past understanding and recounting, on behalf of those who hymn thee, that He grant remission of all our sins and correction of life unto those who ever glorify thee with faith and love.

Stavrotheotokion (replaces the Theotokion on Wednesdays and Fridays): Beholding Thee stretched out, dead, upon the Cross, O Christ, Thy most immaculate Mother cried aloud: “O my Son Who art equally unoriginate with the Father and the Spirit, what is this, Thine ineffable dispensation, whereby Thou hast saved the creation of Thine own all-pure hands, O Compassionate One?”

Ode 4, Irmos: Christ is my power, my God and Lord, the honoured Church doth chant in godly manner, crying out with a pure mind, keeping festival in the Lord.

Holy Great Martyr Varus, pray to God for us.

Adorned with holy wounds, thou didst show thyself to be most comely and the beloved of God Who crowned thy head, O right wondrous Varus.

Holy Great Martyr Varus, pray to God for us.

Stretched out on a cross and again upon the ground; O glorious one, thou didst endure cruel pangs. Wherefore, in gladness thou hast inherited the life which is devoid of pain.

Holy Great Martyr Varus, pray to God for us.

The godly martyrs, seeing thee suffering lawfully, strengthened thee with words of patience, O blessed one; and having completed thy valiant sufferings with them, thou hast attained blessedness.

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

With praises we crown the divine martyrs, for with divine wreaths the grace of God hath crowned them who cast down the overweening thoughts of the enemy.

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

O Mistress, from the mire of the passions and the passionate thoughts which alienate me from the one pure God lead me up, that I may bless thee with faith.

Ode 5, Irmos: With Thy divine light, O Good One, illumine the souls of those who rise early unto Thee with love, that they may know Thee, O Word of God, to be the true God Who calleth them forth from the darkness of sin.

Holy Great Martyr Varus, pray to God for us.

Strengthened by divine inclinations, O Varus, with valiant mind thou didst endure unremitting laceration, rending apart the heart of the prideful one, the author of evil.

Holy Great Martyr Varus, pray to God for us.

The glorious martyr, seeing pieces of his flesh falling to the ground, rejoiced, looking toward eternal and divine rewards with splendour of mind.

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

“I hymn, glorify and worship Thee, O Lord God, having been vouchsafed the good things prepared for those who love Thee!” the martyr cried out fervently amid his suffering.

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

In that thou hast truly been shown to be more holy than the cherubim and seraphim, O most immaculate one, do thou now sanctify all who with faith call thee sacred, and save them by thy mediation.

Ode 6, Irmos: Beholding the sea of life surging with the storm of temptations, fleeing to Thy calm haven I cry unto Thee: Lead up my life from corruption, O greatly Merciful One!

Holy Great Martyr Varus, pray to God for us.

Thou didst disdain the words of the all-iniquitous enemy and didst patiently endure unbearable pain of the flames, O much suffering Varus, who prayest for those who praise thee with faith.

Holy Great Martyr Varus, pray to God for us.

The most mindless tyrant did not cease inflicting wounds upon thee without pity, until thou didst commit thy sacred soul into the hands of God, made radiant with the beauties of thy struggles.

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

Emulating Christ, thou wast uplifted upon a tree, and hanging thereon, thou didst surrender thy soul to God, Who crowned thee, having suffered valiantly, O athlete.

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

O Mistress, ever direct my lowly soul which is tempest-tossed on the deep of evils, and guide it to the calm haven, for with unfaltering understanding it calleth thee blessed.

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 4: 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.

Ode 7, Irmos: The Angel caused the furnace to pour forth dew upon the venerable children, and the command of God which consumed the Chaldeans prevailed upon the tyrant to cry: Blessed art Thou, O God of our fathers!

Holy Great Martyr Varus, pray to God for us.

O Varus, the all-good Cleopatra helped to bury thee, who wast illumined with gifts of thy struggles, finding through thee the glory of faith manifestly fitting, which thou didst fervently show forth in thine end.

Holy Great Martyr Varus, pray to God for us.

Shedding tears over thee and embalming thee with precious unguents, the most honoured woman buried in the earth thee who hast buried wicked falsehood and hast illumined us with rays of brilliance from thy grave.

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

The ever-memorable one did not cease pleasing thee, the favourite of Christ, O wise and venerable one, until thou didst show thyself to be a mediator for her of the kingdom of heaven which she and her beloved son were vouchsafed through thee.

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

By thy mediation, O Virgin, restore me, who am crushed by my countless offences, healing my soul and granting me the words to cry out: Blessed art thou who gavest birth to God in the flesh!

Ode 8, Irmos: Out of the flame didst Thou pour forth dew upon the venerable ones, and didst consume the sacrifice of the righteous man with water; for Thou, O Christ, doest all things whatsoever Thou desirest. Thee do we exalt supremely for all ages.

Holy Great Martyr Varus, pray to God for us.

Hearkening to a mother’s entreaties, O martyr, and splendidly enrolling her son in the army of heaven, with ineffable loving-kindness thou didst show that thy glory and that of the honoured youth cannot be taken away.

Holy Great Martyr Varus, pray to God for us.

Cleopatra bore thee out of Egypt like riches beyond price, O martyr, lavishing precious gifts of healings upon all of Palestine, which honoureth thee with love.

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

In gladness thou didst complete thy struggles, O valiant warrior of the Almighty, and thou hast been crowned by Him as a victor, O most blessed Varus, thou great glory of the martyrs.

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

Sins upon sins do I add, yet I do not fear the coming dread judgment. O pure one, overcome the blindness of my soul, and converting me, save me by thine entreaty.

Ode 9, Irmos: It is not possible for men to see God, upon Whom the ranks of angels dare not gaze; for through thee, O most pure one, the Word appeared, incarnate, to men. And, magnifying Him, with the armies of heaven we call thee blessed.

Holy Great Martyr Varus, pray to God for us.

Manifestly girded about with divine power, O valiant athlete Varus, thou didst cast down the might of the adversary; wherefore, we, the faithful, praise thee, drawing forth abundant healing from thy relics.

Holy Great Martyr Varus, pray to God for us.

Thy memory hath spread forth upon the ends of the earth like light, like the dawn, like the great sun, O all-praised one, illumining all with the radiant effulgence of thine honoured struggles and driving darkness away from men’s hearts.

Holy Great Martyr Varus, pray to God for us.

The loving mother, beholding her son shining with thee in great glory, magnified the God of all, O martyr, and most earnestly glorified thee as an intercessor most great, having been manifestly enriched by thee.

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

The land on which thy most patient body lieth, O wise one, hath been divinely sanctified. By thy supplications, O Varus, grant us remission of sins, amendment of life and deliverance from all difficulties.

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

The Lord, manifesting Himself through thee, the light cloud, O Virgin, wrought utter destruction upon the graven images of Egypt; and He hath vouchsafed the multitude of His athletes to endure, becoming emulators of His honoured sufferings.

Troparion of St Varus the Martyr, Tone 5: 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.

October 7/20: the Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus

The Martyrs Sergius and Bacchus in Syria were appointed to high positions in the army by the emperor Maximian (284-305), who did not know that they were Christians. Envious people informed Maximian that his two trusted counsellors did not honor the pagan gods. This was considered to be a crime against the state.

The emperor, wanting to convince himself of the truth of the accusation, ordered Sergius and Bacchus to offer sacrifice to the idols, but they replied that they honored the One God and worshiped only Him.

Maximian commanded that the martyrs be stripped of the insignia of military rank (their belts, gold pendants, and rings), and then dressed them in feminine clothing. They were led through the city with an iron chains around their necks, and the people mocked them. Then he summoned Sergius and Bacchus to him again and in a friendly manner advised them not to be swayed by Christian fables, but to return to the Roman gods. The saints refuted the emperor’s words, and demonstrated the folly of worshiping the pagan gods.

The emperor commanded that they be sent to the governor of the eastern part of Syria, Antiochus, a fierce hater of Christians. Antiochus had received his position with the help of Sergius and Bacchus. “My fathers and benefactors!” he said. “Have pity on yourselves, and also on me. I do not want to condemn my benefactors to cruel tortures.” The holy martyrs replied, “For us life is Christ, and to die is gain.” The enraged Antiochus ordered Bacchus to be mercilessly beaten, and the holy martyr surrendered his soul to the Lord. They shod Sergius with iron sandals with nails in their soles and sent him to another city, where he was beheaded with the sword.

The Orthodox Church in America

10/17/2017

Canon of the martyrs, the acrostic whereof is: “I hymn Sergius the athlete and the ever-memorable Bacchus”, the composition of Theophanes, in Tone I

Ode I, Irmos: Thy victorious right arm hath in godly manner been glorified in strength; for as almighty, O Immortal One, it smote the adversary, fashioning anew the path of the deep for the Israelites.

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

O Sergius, thou favorite of Christ, taking the ever-memorable Bacchus as thy fellow intercessor and helper, with him thou didst with godly wisdom endure your agonies to the end. Grant a wise discourse unto me who hymn you.

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

Having set yourselves steadfastly upon the immovable rock of the Christian Faith, O holy martyrs, ye were shown to be a rampart and towers of piety established firmly upon a firm foundation.

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

Believing the words of Christ and looking toward Him with unwavering gaze, ye spat upon all transitory glory, O holy ones, and were wounded with the love of everlasting glory.

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

Having divested yourselves of family, homeland and honor for Christ’s sake, ye were filled with gladness; and when ye were clad in women’s garments ye put on the robe of incorruption with splendor and manly wisdom.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O Mother of God, entreat the Word, to Whom thou gavest birth and Who came to us in the flesh, that He be merciful and well-disposed towards the faithful; for thee have we acquired as our intercessor and salvation.

Ode III, Irmos: O Thou Who alone hast known the weakness of human nature, having in Thy mercy formed Thyself therein: Gird me about with power from on high, that I may chant to Thee: Holy is the living temple of Thine ineffable glory, O Thou Who lovest mankind!

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

He Who, as God, alone knew all things before they came into being, seeing now your offerings to Him, hath filled you abundantly with the wisdom of discourse, divine knowledge and steadfast thought, for ye are His warriors, O blessed ones.

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

O martyred athletes, favorites of Christ, desiring to suffer lawfully, with love for the Creator and divinely wise understanding ye spurned corruptible and transitory glory, this world and the prince thereof.

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

Standing before the Lord in the all-pure thoughts of your mind, and filled thence with splendor, and manifestly delighting in ineffable blessedness, deliver from dangers those who honor you, O athletes.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Adam, the first to come under the dominion of death, hath now been delivered by thy birthgiving, O only Bride of God; for in manner transcending nature thou gavest birth to the truly hypostatic Life united to the flesh hypostatically, O pure one.

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

Sessional Hymn, Tone VIII, Spec. Mel. “Of the Wisdom…”: Come, ye who love the martyrs, and let us honor the holy athletes Sergius and Bacchus, the noetic pearls of the Lord, for they manfully trampled the falsehood of the enemy underfoot and destroyed all the might of the idols; wherefore, having received crowns of victory from heaven, as is meet, they join chorus with the angels. With them let us all cry out: Entreat Christ God, that He grant remission of transgressions unto those who with love honor your holy memory. (Twice)

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

Theotokion: Having fallen into greatly tangled perils from enemies visible and invisible, and been beset by the tempest of my countless offenses, O pure one, I flee to the haven of thy goodness as to my fervent help and protection; wherefore, O all-pure one, earnestly entreat Him Who became incarnate of thee without seed, in behalf of all thy servants who unceasingly praise thee, ever beseeching Him, O all-pure Theotokos, to grant remission of offenses unto those who fittingly hymn thy glory.

Stavrotheotokion (in place of the Theotokion on Wednesdays and Fridays): The Ewe-lamb, beholding the Lamb, Shepherd and Deliverer upon the Cross, exclaimed, weeping, and bitterly lamenting, cried out: “The world rejoiceth, receiving deliverance through Thee, but my womb doth burn, beholding Thy crucifixion, which Thou endurest in the loving-kindness of Thy mercy. O long-suffering Lord, Abyss and inexhaustible Wellspring of mercy, take pity and grant remission of offenses unto those who hymn Thy divine sufferings with faith.

Ode IV, Irmos: Habbakuk, gazing with the eyes of foresight upon thee, the mountain overshadowed by the grace of God, prophesied that the Holy One of Israel would come forth from thee, for our salvation and restoration.

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

Two beacons shining forth from the West, holding the land against the ungodly and undertaking a journey, have arrived at Thee, the radiant East of salvation, O Christ.

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

Neither fire, nor sword, nor persecution, nor wounds were able to separate you from the pious thought of God; for, for His sake, ye despised this life which endeth, O right glorious ones, and have received blessed and imperishable delight.

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

The truly unwavering luminaries enlighten the firmament of the Church of Christ with the light of divine effulgence and gladden the souls of the pious, emitting rays of miracles.

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

The godly Bacchus and the excellent Sergius in yearly cycle spiritually summon the lovers of piety and of the martyrs to a feast, offering them their valiant deeds.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

The sword which guardeth the portal of Eden now withdraweth before the faithful; and it receiveth them with splendor, beholding them marked with the precious Blood of Him Who was born of thy womb, and with grace.

Ode V, Irmos: O Christ Who hast enlightened the ends of the world with the radiance of Thy coming and hast illumined them with Thy Cross: with the light of Thy divine knowledge enlighten the hearts of those who hymn Thee in Orthodox manner.

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

Driving away falsehood with the sword of truth and mightily enduring the tyrants’ wounds, ye became victors; and, crowned by Christ, ye now rejoice, as is meet.

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

Strengthened by the invincible power and grace of the Trinity, the two martyrs cast down the prince of darkness and those in thrall to him; wherefore, with honor they are called blessed.

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

With endurance, spiritual courage and resolute intent, the two glorious martyrs transcended all the bitter fury of the tormenters and make their abode with the angels.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O Mother of God, like the dawn thou hast shone forth the never-setting Sun of true righteousness, bearing Him in thine arms united hypostatically to the flesh; wherefore, we all glorify thee.

Ode VI, Irmos: The uttermost abyss hath surrounded us, and there is none to deliver us. We are accounted as lambs for the slaughter. Save Thy people, O our God, for Thou art the strength and correction of the weak!

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

The relics of the martyrs pour forth streams of healings in abundance. O ye faithful, let us therefore fervently draw forth therefrom and bless the athletes, the glorious Sergius and the ever-eloquent Bacchus.

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

Hating the abodes of the iniquitous and setting at nought their deception, Sergius and Bacchus made the journey to heaven in right orderly fashion and have reached the calm haven of Christ.

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

The portals of heaven are thrown open to the martyred athletes, rendering homage to their honorable suffering, which was like unto the grace-bearing passion of our God, and which driveth away legions of the demons.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

With wisdom we proclaim thee truly to be the Mother of God, O all-pure one; for thou, O Virgin, didst ineffably give birth to the only-begotten Son Who is without beginning and Who shone forth from the Father before time began.

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

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

Kontakion, Tone II, Spec. Mel. “Seeking the highest…”: Manfully arming your mind against the enemy, O most lauded martyrs, ye destroyed all their falsehood, receiving the trophy of victory from on high, and crying out with oneness of mind: How good and joyous it is to be with God!

Ikos: In that Sergius and Bacchus dwell in the heavens and are filled with divine light by Thee, O Christ, go Thou quickly before me who walk in the darkness of ignorance, and rescue me from the passions, O only Immortal One, sending down upon me the vesture of repentance, that with radiant mind I may hymn their splendid feast and cry out, rejoicing: How good and joyous it is to be with God!

Ode VII, Irmos: O Theotokos, we, the faithful, perceive thee to be a noetic furnace; for, as the supremely Exalted One saved the three youths, in thy womb the praised and most glorious God of our fathers wholly renewed the world.

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

Rejoice, ye two glorious athletes! Rejoice, ye who splendidly overcame the threat of the tyrants! Rejoice, ye who finished the good race! Rejoice, food that remaineth ever within us! Rejoice, O blessed of God, who manifestly intercede before God!

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

Walking upon the earth, O most radiant martyrs, ye darkened the eyes of the demons and the faces of the persecutors with the light of grace and the rays of your suffering, hymning our praised and all-glorious God.

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

Being animate and living temples of the living God, O most blessed athletes, truly strengthened by the power of God ye vanquished hordes of the enemy, in hymns praising God Who is mighty in battles.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O blessed and most pure Mistress, thou wast an all-pure temple and an all-holy ark, having received the infinite Creator, God, the only-begotten Word, in thy womb, containing the Unapproachable One.

Ode VIII, Irmos: The children of Israel in the furnace, shining more brightly than gold in a crucible in the beauty of their piety, said: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord; hymn and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

O Thou Who of old didst cool the flame with dew for the youths, Thou didst strengthen Thy martyrs, who stood firm amid struggles and sang: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord; hymn and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

Wisely did the athletes reject the poisonous and spiritually harmful blandishments of the tyrants, crying out to Christ and saying: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord; hymn and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

Christ hath shown Sergius and Bacchus, who are truly crowned, to be our true preservers, who protect us and chant: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord; hymn and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

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

Through the prayers of the martyrs, O Christ our Master, guide my steps to the virtues and vouchsafe that I may readily cry to Thee: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord; hymn and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

I bless thee, the true Mother of our God, O pure and most immaculate Mistress, offering thee “Rejoice!” with the angel; for thee do all the works of the Lord unceasingly chant and exalt supremely for all ages.

Ode IX, Irmos: The bush which burnt with fire yet was not consumed showed forth an image of thy pure birthgiving. And now we pray that the furnace of temptations which rageth against us may be extinguished, that we may magnify thee unceasingly, O Theotokos.

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

Ye have wholly acquired Christ, for ye forsook the whole world for His sake; and now ye dwell in the heavens with the choirs of the heavenly hosts, beholding the splendors of the blessed.

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

O excellent twain, from on high ye impart grace and remission of transgressions unto those who with love offer you praises. Entreating Him Who alone is merciful, and hastening to Him, ye paid no heed to those things which drag men down.

Holy Martyrs Sergius & Bacchus, pray to God for us.

Illumined with the splendor of the thrice-radiant Godhead, O invincible martyrs, ye rejected the deluding ungodliness of polytheism and fear of the tormenters; and ye now delight in the incorruptible delight of paradise.

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

Having finished your good race, striving to preserve the Faith of piety, O all-glorious martyrs, ye have been vouchsafed to receive the immovable kingdom, crowned with wreaths of beauty and majesty.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O Thy wonders which pass understanding! For thou alone, O Virgin Mother, in manner transcending nature, gavest birth to God the Word become flesh, Who wisely sustaineth and nurtureth all things by His will.

Troparion, Tone IV: In their sufferings, O Lord, Thy martyrs received imperishable crowns from Thee, our God; for, possessed of Thy might, they cast down the tormenters and set at nought the feeble audacity of the demons. By their supplications save Thou our souls.

Another troparion, Tone V: O much-suffering Sergius and all-glorious Bacchus, ye adornment of Christian athletes and eye of the Church of Christ, enlighten the eyes of our souls. Entreat the Lord, that we may escape the darkness of sin and may be shown to share in the never-waning light, through your supplications, O saints.

St Vyacheslav (Wenceslaus): Life and Canon

28 SEPTEMBER (11 OCTOBER CIVIL CALENDAR)

The Holy Prince Wenceslaus (Vyacheslav) of the Czechs was a grandson of the holy Martyr and Princess Ludmilla (September 16), and he was raised by her in deep piety. He began to rule at age eighteen after the death of his father Prince Bratislav (+ 920).

In spite of his youthful age, he ruled wisely and justly and concerned himself much about the Christian enlightenment of the people. The holy prince was a widely educated man, and he studied in the Latin and Greek languages.

Saint Wenceslaus was peace-loving. He built and embellished churches, and in Prague, the Czech capital, he raised up a magnificent church in the name of Saint Vitus, and he had respect for the clergy. Envious nobles decided to murder the saint and, at first, to incite his mother against him, and later to urge his younger brother, Boleslav, to occupy the princely throne.

Boleslav invited his brother to the dedication of a church, and then asked him to stay another day. In spite of the warnings of his servants, the holy prince refused to believe in a conspiracy and exposed his life to the will of God. On the following day, September 28, 935, when Wenceslaus went to Matins, he was wickedly murdered at the doors of the church by his own brother and his brother’s servants. His body was stabbed and discarded without burial.

The mother, hearing of the murder of her son, found and placed his body in a recently consecrated church at the princely court. They were not able to wash off the blood splashed on the church doors, but after three days it disappeared by itself.

After repenting of his sin, the murderer transferred the relics of Saint Wenceslaus to Prague, where they were placed in the church of Saint Vitus, which the martyr himself had constructed (the transfer of the relics of Saint Wenceslaus is celebrated on March 4). The memory of Prince Wenceslaus has been honored from of old in the Russian Orthodox Church.

The Orthodox Church in America
3/2/2017

Canon of the saint, Tone VI

Ode I, Irmos: Traversing the deep on foot, as though it were dry land, and seeing the tyrant Pharaoh drowned, Israel cried aloud: Let us chant unto God a hymn of victory!

Holy Passion-Bearer, Vyacheslav, pray to God for us.

O ye faithful, with joy let us join chorus, hymning the Savior with radiant souls, on the all-wondrous memorial of Vyacheslav, the servant of Christ!

Holy Passion-Bearer, Vyacheslav, pray to God for us.

Slain unjustly like an innocent lamb, thou didst emulate the sufferings of the Master, O glorious one; wherefore, thou dost now rejoice with the choirs of the martyrs, O thou who art blessed of God.

Holy Passion-Bearer, Vyacheslav, pray to God for us.

Receiving a death which won thee life, thou standest now in glory before the Master of all. Pray thou that we who keep thine all-wondrous memory may also obtain it, O holy one.

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

Who can tell of the countless wonders which thou workest in the world, O glorious one? For thou dost continually grant healing in abundance unto all the faithful.

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

O Lady, raise me up who have fallen among thieves through my soul-destroying deeds and am drowning in death. I pray thee: Entreat thy Son and God for me.

Ode III, Irmos: There is none as holy as Thee, O Lord my God, Who hast uplifted the horn of Thy faithful and established us on the rock of the confession of Thee, O Good One.

Holy Passion-Bearer, Vyacheslav, pray to God for us.

Thou didst ever burn with Christian love for the Holy Church, O all-blessed one, where, like an innocent lamb, thou didst look forward to thine unjust slaughter.

Holy Passion-Bearer, Vyacheslav, pray to God for us.

Adorned with thine all-splendid blood, thy Church emitteth the radiant beams of miracles, hymning thy memory, O right glorious one.

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

Enlightened from childhood by the rays of the Trinity, O venerable one, thou becamest an heir of Christ. Him do thou entreat, that He send peace unto our souls.

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

Thy divine birthgiving surpasseth every other miracle, O pure one; for, having conceived in thy womb and given birth unto the transcendent God, thou remainest Ever-virgin.

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

Sessional hymn, Tone VIII, Spec. Mel. “Of the Wisdom…”: Seeking to prevent thee from ascending thy throne, the enemies of the Orthodox Faith murdered thy pious grandmother, the saintly Ludmilla, that she might no longer guide thee with Christian counsel; yet so well grounded wast thou by her in reverence for things divine and in love for Christ, that her martyrdom in nowise moved thee from thy sacred purpose, and the wiles of thine enemies served only to strengthen thee in thy resolve, and to gain for the Holy Church another martyr in heaven.

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

Theotokion: All of us, the generations of men, bless thee as the Virgin who, alone among women, gavest birth without seed to God in the flesh; for the fire of the Godhead made His abode within thee, and thou didst nurture the Creator and Lord with milk as a babe. Wherefore, we, the race of angels and men, cry out to thee together: Entreat Christ God, that He grant remission of offenses unto those who with faith worship thine all-holy birthgiving.

Ode IV, Irmos: Christ is my power, my God and my Lord, the honored Church doth sing, crying out in godly manner with a pure mind, keeping festival in the Lord.

Holy Passion-Bearer, Vyacheslav, pray to God for us.

Lovingly raised in the pure Faith from childhood, by thy pure works thou didst lovingly follow the Master and didst put His false enemy to shame by thy hope.

Holy Passion-Bearer, Vyacheslav, pray to God for us.

Shining with radiance, O holy Vyacheslav, by thy supplications enlighten those who are benighted by sins, for with the choirs of the martyrs thou hast boldness to pray for us.

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

Cut down by the sword, O invincible saint, thou didst cut down the wicked foe with the sword of patience; wherefore, thou hast received a crown from the hand of the Almighty.

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

Truly the mysteries of thy divine birthgiving are ineffable and unattainable for those on earth and those in heaven, O Ever-virgin Theotokos.

Ode V, Irmos: With Thy divine light illumine the souls of those who with love rise at dawn unto Thee, O Good One, that they may know Thee, O Word of God, to be the true God Who calleth all forth from the darkness of sin.

Holy Passion-Bearer, Vyacheslav, pray to God for us.

Having received through thy sufferings the life which is devoid of pain, O all-praised and holy Vyacheslav, thou hast been shown to be a help for all who suffer and with faith call upon thee for aid.

Holy Passion-Bearer, Vyacheslav, pray to God for us.

With the all-radiant beams of thy miracles thou hast enlightened the north, the south and the west more than the sun, O blessed one; wherefore, illumine us who celebrate thy memory, O saint.

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

Thou wast a helper of those amid misfortunes, the sustainer of the poor, and the comfort of the grieving; wherefore, even after thy death, O holy one, thou deliverest all who with faith call upon thee for help.

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

O good Mistress of the world, save those who with all their soul confess thee to be the Theotokos; for we have thee, who art truly the Theotokos, as our help, O immaculate one.

Ode VI, Irmos: Beholding the sea of life surging with the tempest of temptations, fleeing to Thy calm haven I cry unto Thee: Lead up my life from corruption, O greatly Merciful One!

Holy Passion-Bearer, Vyacheslav, pray to God for us.

Having acquired a pure life through fasting, O all-wondrous Vyacheslav, thou hast been shown to be a fellow citizen with the angels. With them pray thou for the salvation of our souls.

Holy Passion-Bearer, Vyacheslav, pray to God for us.

Forsaking a transitory earthly princedom, and receiving a royal adornment from the right hand of the Master, through corruptible things thou didst acquire what is eternal, in that thou art wise.

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

O holy one, accept praise from the accursed lips of one who is unable to fashion worthy praises for thee, and entreat the merciful God, that He grant us great mercy.

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

O all-pure Mistress who for mortals gavest birth to the Helmsman and Lord, confound my wicked lusts, and grant serenity unto my heart.

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 I, Spec. Mel. “The choir of the angels…”: Standing with the choirs of the angels, O blessed Prince Vyacheslav, thou delightest in divine and ineffable goodness; and drawing thence the goodly gifts of miracles, thou pourest forth the boon of cures upon all who with faith flee to thy holiness.

Ikos: Great is the consternation of the enemy of men’s salvation! For, seeking to destroy the Christian Faith which was planted in Bohemia by the pious Borivoy and the holy Ludmilla, he instilled within the accursed Prince Boleslaus the perfidious intention to murder his godly brother, the holy Prince Vyacheslav, and thus unjustly to usurp his throne. Yet the Savior bestowed upon His martyr so great an abundance of the grace of miracles that the people of Bohemia were amazed and hastened to be enlightened. Thus were the machinations of the devil utterly foiled, and the Holy Orthodox Church grew and throve. And even to this day the precious relics of the martyr pour forth the boon of cures upon all who with faith flee to his holiness.

Ode VII, Irmos: The Angel caused the furnace to pour forth dew upon the pious youths, and the command of God, which consumed the Chaldæans, prevailed upon the tyrant to cry out: Blessed art Thou, O God of our fathers!

Holy Passion-Bearer, Vyacheslav, pray to God for us.

The ancient malefactor envied thy sacred life and incited the mindless band to slay thee; but with a pure conscience thou didst unceasingly cry out to thy Creator: Blessed is the God of our fathers!

Holy Passion-Bearer, Vyacheslav, pray to God for us.

Prague, thine all-glorious city, danceth with gladness today, honoring thy memory, and, radiantly emitting thy miracles, it calleth the whole land to cry aloud: Blessed is the God of our fathers!

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

Through the deception of the all-wicked one, of old the ground was stained by the hand of Cain, who slew his own brother; but sprinkled now with blood, it offereth sacrifices of sweet savor unto Christ, crying: Blessed is the God of our fathers!

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

Through thee, O Virgin, hath Light shone forth upon those in darkness, for thou hast given birth to the Creator and God of all. Him do thou beseech, O all-pure one, that He ever send down great mercy upon us, the faithful.

Ode VIII, Irmos: From the flame didst Thou pour forth dew upon the venerable ones, and didst consume the sacrifice of the righteous one with water; for Thou, O Christ, dost do all things soever Thou desirest. Thee do we exalt supremely for all ages!

Holy Passion-Bearer, Vyacheslav, pray to God for us.

Sanctified from on high by rays of grace, O all-glorious one, thou didst shine forth more brightly than the sun in the land of Bohemia with the beauties of gladness, exalting Christ supremely forever.

Holy Passion-Bearer, Vyacheslav, pray to God for us.

Receiving thy holy body today, O blessed one, Prague, thine all-praised city, proclaimeth thine all-wondrous miracles unto the world, exalting Christ supremely forever.

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

Adorned with meekness and illumined with the understanding of Orthodoxy, O all-wondrous one, thou wast truly shown to be a herald of the all-holy Trinity, exalting Christ supremely forever.

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

Thou didst ineffably conceive and give birth unto the Transcendent One, the Word, the Bestower of light, Who is begotten of Light, O Virgin, for the Spirit of God made His abode within thee. Wherefore, we hymn thee, O pure one, for all ages.

Ode IX, Irmos: It is not possible for men to behold God, upon Whom the ranks of angels dare not gaze; but through thee, O most pure one, hath the Word appeared incarnate unto men; and magnifying Him with the armies of heaven, we call thee blessed.

Holy Passion-Bearer, Vyacheslav, pray to God for us.

Thou wast accounted worthy of great grace, O glorious one, and hast illumined the whole world, granting healings in abundance unto all.

Holy Passion-Bearer, Vyacheslav, pray to God for us.

Accept the joy of the angels, O holy one, and, standing before thy Creator, pray for us who magnify thee.

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

Thou hast now received blessed repose, O all-glorious one. Cease thou never to pray that those who magnify thee may continually share in holy blessedness.

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

O Virgin Theotokos, who after the word of the archangel gavest birth to thy Creator in manner past recounting, entreat Him, that our souls be saved.

Troparion, Tone IV: Today angels and men share a common joy. Heaven and earth join together in splendid chorus for thy memorial, O holy one. And we sinners earnestly cry aloud unto thee: Pray thou to the Master in our behalf, that from dangers and from visible and invisible foes, He may deliver us who honor thine all-honored memory.

Canon to St Sophia of Rome and Her Three Daughters

Canon of the Martyrs, the acrostic whereof is: “I hymn the children of Sophia, who are manifest as exceeding splendid,” the composition of Theophanes, in Tone I

Ode I, Irmos: Thy victorious right arm hath in godly manner been glorified in strength; for as almighty, O Immortal One, it smote the adversary, fashioning anew the path of the deep for the Israelites.

Holy Martyrs Sophia, Vera, Nadezhda and Liubov, pray to God for us.

O Master Christ, grant me the effulgence of Thy transcendent and ineffable wisdom, that I may hymn Thy magnificent and right glorious martyrs, the offspring of Sophia.

Holy Martyrs Sophia, Vera, Nadezhda and Liubov, pray to God for us.

Thy name was manifestly adorned by thy manner of life, O divinely wise and glorious Sophia; for, illumined with the grace of wisdom, thou didst spend thy whole life in desiring wisdom.

Holy Martyrs Sophia, Vera, Nadezhda and Liubov, pray to God for us.

Thy most blessed fruit, adorned with the number of the all-divine Trinity, struggled like athletes for Him, O most wise Sophia, thou namesake of the divine Wisdom.

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

The three virgin maidens, Faith, Hope and glorious Charity, having cleansed body and soul with the virtues, were brought in martyrdom to Thee, O Christ, the noetic Bridegroom.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

He Who made His abode as God in thy womb, O all-pure one, Who took upon Him my whole form and was seen before in the form of God, hath renewed all. Wherefore, all we, the faithful, glorify thee as the Theotokos.

Ode III, Irmos: O Thou Who alone hast known the weakness of human nature, having in Thy mercy formed Thyself therein: Thou dost gird me about with power from on high, that I may chant to Thee: Holy is the living temple of Thine ineffable glory, O Thou Who lovest mankind!

Holy Martyrs Sophia, Vera, Nadezhda and Liubov, pray to God for us.

Hearkening to the voice of Christ calling them to a life devoid of death and suffering, the crowned virgin martyrs followed Thee, crying out to Thee, O Holy One: O Thou Who lovest mankind, holy is the animate temple of Thy pure glory!

Holy Martyrs Sophia, Vera, Nadezhda and Liubov, pray to God for us.

As He promised, Christ gave you strength as ye stood before the tribunal as martyrs; and He filled you with divinely inspired wisdom and showed you forth as radiant, O victorious martyrs, resplendent in the grace of virginity.

Holy Martyrs Sophia, Vera, Nadezhda and Liubov, pray to God for us.

Ye dulled the greatly arrogant mind of the enemy and cast down his pride, contending with great wisdom; and with the streams of your blood ye drowned him who of old boasted that he would destroy the sea.

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

Filled to abundance with the exalted wisdom of Christ, with elect and sage wisdom the three daughters of Sophia put to shame the savagery of the torturers and their unbearable cruelty, giving utterance to divine teachings.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

In holy manner thou gavest birth to Christ, the Holy of Holies, the holy tabernacle of sanctity, Who resteth in the saints; and to Him do we cry out: Holy is the animate temple of Thine ineffable glory, O Thou Who lovest mankind!

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

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

Sessional hymn, Tone I, Spec. Mel:.“The choir of the angels…”: O reason-endowed ewe-lambs of the Lamb and Shepherd, ye were given over to cruel torments and have been shown to be equal in honour with the angels. Wherefore, in gladness of heart we all celebrate your sacred memory, O divinely wise maidens.

Ode IV, Irmos: Habbakuk, gazing with the eyes of foresight upon thee, the mountain overshadowed by the grace of God, prophesied that the Holy One of Israel would come forth from thee, for our salvation and restoration.

Holy Martyrs Sophia, Vera, Nadezhda and Liubov, pray to God for us.

Strengthened by divine grace, the right victorious Faith, Charity and Hope manfully put to shame the threats of the tyrant; and burnt by the fire, the most wise ones were led to Christ the Bridegroom.

Holy Martyrs Sophia, Vera, Nadezhda and Liubov, pray to God for us.

Protected by the armour of the Cross, the holy Faith, Charity and Hope were able to endure the wounds of their torturers with fortitude, opposing sin most mightily even to the shedding of their blood.

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

Faith, Charity and Hope, the three radiant lamps of the wisdom of the Trinity, illumined and manifestly shining, enlighten the Church most splendidly, for our salvation and defence.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O most lauded Theotokos, thou holy of holies, from thee shone forth the Deliverer, the expectation of the nations and the salvation of the faithful, the Lord and Bestower of life, unto the salvation of us who hymn thee.

Ode V, Irmos: O Christ Who hast enlightened the ends of the world with the radiance of Thy coming and hast illumined them with Thy Cross: with the light of Thy divine knowledge enlighten the hearts of those who hymn Thee in Orthodox manner.

Holy Martyrs Sophia, Vera, Nadezhda and Liubov, pray to God for us.

The three God-bearing virgins, bound by faith and nature, endured tortures with patience of will, and they put to shame the audacious one, uttering mysteries of wisdom which are in God.

Holy Martyrs Sophia, Vera, Nadezhda and Liubov, pray to God for us.

Our first mother rejoiceth, seeing the deceiver, who of old drove her from Eden, vanquished by Hope, Faith and Charity, the divinely wise women born of Sophia.

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

Wounded by Thy love and Thy divine ardor, O Christ, the honoured maidens spurned the venomous flattery of the tyrant and willingly endured the wounds of tortures.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Beholding thee, the hosts of heaven rejoice, and with them the assemblies of men make merry; for they have been united by thy nativity, O Virgin Theotokos, which we glorify as is meet.

Ode VI, Irmos: The uttermost abyss hath surrounded us, and there is none to deliver us. We are accounted as lambs for the slaughter. Save Thy people, O our God, for Thou art the strength and correction of the weak!

Holy Martyrs Sophia, Vera, Nadezhda and Liubov, pray to God for us.

Rejoicing, O Master, the three honoured and laudable maidens, equal in number to the Trinity, placed their hope in Thine all-pure hands.

Holy Martyrs Sophia, Vera, Nadezhda and Liubov, pray to God for us.

Resplendent with the beauties of virginity, they adorned themselves with the wounds of martyrdom, and have received from on high a twofold crown from Christ, the most compassionate Bestower of life.

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

Into the temple of Thee, Who reignest over all, were the precious treasures of virginity brought, O Master, to share in Thy kingdom; for Thou art their light and gladness.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

The forefathers of our race rejoice in thee, O all-pure Virgin, receiving Eden through thee which they had lost through their transgression; for thou wast pure before giving birth and art pure even after thy birth-giving.

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

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

Kontakion of the Martyrs, Tone I, Spec. Mel. “Thy tomb, O Saviour…”: Faith, Hope and Charity, revealed as most sacred branches of the honoured Sophia, through grace made foolish the wisdom of the Hellenes; and having suffered and been shown to be victorious, they were crowned with an incorruptible crown by Christ the Master of all.

Ode VII, Irmos: O Theotokos, we, the faithful, perceive thee to be a noetic furnace; for, as the supremely Exalted One saved the three youths, in thy womb the praised and most glorious God of our fathers wholly renewed the world.

Holy Martyrs Sophia, Vera, Nadezhda and Liubov, pray to God for us.

Manifestly illumined with the thrice-radiant grace of unity, the virgins destroyed the utter darkness of the demons, theologising concerning the Light in three Hypostases, and chanting: Praised and all-glorious is the God of our fathers!

Holy Martyrs Sophia, Vera, Nadezhda and Liubov, pray to God for us.

Possessing mansions in the heavens, O light-bearing souls, with gladness ye now join chorus with the angels, gazing upon eternal glory and saying: Praised and all-glorious is the God of our fathers!

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

Showing steadfast opposition like the three youths, the maidens manfully trampled upon the fire; for, being equal in number with them, the God-bearing virgins acquired the same understanding of the praised and all-glorious God of our fathers.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O pure one, thou givest remission of transgressions unto those who hymn thee with faith, delivering them from temptations and every evil circumstance; for we have now acquired thee as a refuge, O Bride of God, in that thou didst bear the praised God of our fathers in thine arms.

Ode VIII, Irmos: The children of Israel in the furnace, shining more brightly than gold in a crucible in the beauty of their piety, said: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord; hymn and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Holy Martyrs Sophia, Vera, Nadezhda and Liubov, pray to God for us.

The divinely radiant virgins Faith, Hope and Charity, were more lustrous than gold in the beauty of their piety, saying: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord; hymn and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Holy Martyrs Sophia, Vera, Nadezhda and Liubov, pray to God for us.

The virgins who are radiant and were manifestly splendid amid their torment let us hymn, O ye faithful, saying: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord; hymn and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

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

The shrines of the athletes ever pour forth a stream of healing abundantly, copiously and richly upon those who with faith cry out: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord; hymn and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Holy ground wast thou, O pure one, giving birth to the life-bearing Ear of grain: Christ, the Mediator of everlasting life, to Whom we all cry out: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord; hymn and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Ode IX, Irmos: The bush which burnt with fire yet was not consumed showed forth an image of thy pure birth-giving. And now we pray that the furnace of temptations which rageth against us may be extinguished, that we may magnify thee unceasingly, O Theotokos.

Holy Martyrs Sophia, Vera, Nadezhda and Liubov, pray to God for us.

Filled with thrice-radiant light, and delighting now in the divine radiance, O ye who are equal in number to the virtues and bear their names: love, hope and faith, make us steadfast by hope, love and faith.

Holy Martyrs Sophia, Vera, Nadezhda and Liubov, pray to God for us.

Let the might of heaven now subdue the tempest of heresy which besetteth us, O invincible athletes. We entreat you, O good virgins: pray ye unceasingly, that God grant oneness of mind to the faithful.

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

Having passed through the night of this life, O most wise ones, ye have reached the unwaning day, making merry as martyrs and boasting in grace as virgins, being counted worthy of the divine and incorruptible kingdom.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O, how hath the Virgin given birth unto the eternal and hypostatic Word, the effulgence of the hypostasis of the Father, our Benefactor and Lord, Who became incarnate of her, whom we magnify as is meet.

Troparion, Tone IV: In their sufferings, O Lord, Thy martyrs received imperishable crowns from Thee our God; for, possessed of Thy might, they set at nought the tormentors and crushed the feeble audacity of the demons. By their supplications save Thou our souls.

Canon for the Meeting of the Vladimir Icon

Canon to the Most Holy Mother of God In Honour of the Meeting of Her Vladimir Icon and the Deliverance of Moscow from the Invasion of Tamerlane in the Year 1395

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 Mistress, illumine our souls with divine radiance, with thy grace which passeth understanding, and grant me the bountiful gift to hymn thee as the helper of human nature, O all-hymned one, faithful ally against all heresies for our pious Orthodox hierarchs.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Come ye, let us gather together, O ye assemblies of Russia, in the all-honourable temple of the most immaculate Mistress, and let us chant with compunction, praying before the precious image, and crying aloud: O Theotokos who knewest not wedlock, save those who praise thee!

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

The most godly Luke, the divinely eloquent recorder of the glad tidings of Christ, in painting thy most precious image, O Mother of God, depicted the Creator of all in thine honoured arms. And those who have recourse thereto thou deliverest from perils and grief, and coverest all with thy mercy.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

The Creator of all, finding thee alone to be an all-comely temple, made His abode within thee and hath deified men. Pray thou to Him for us, O Theotokos, that He save us from capture by the heathen and from every other tribulation which assaileth us, that with all honour we may celebrate the meeting of thine image today.

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.

Putting aside all earthly thought, O ye divinely wise, come ye to greet the all-comely beam who holdeth the all-luminous Ray Who enlighteneth and enricheth the whole world with mercy.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Having acquired thy most precious and wonder-working icon as a mighty ally and an impregnable rampart, O Mother of God, the princes of Russia pray to thee, that thou grant victory over all heresies to our pious Orthodox hierarchs.

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

Thou hast been shown to be a radiant cloud washing clean the defilements of our bodies with the dew of grace and enlightening our souls, O thou who alone art most hymned.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Thou hast been revealed as a most fruitful tree delighting all with food which perisheth not, and gladdening men’s souls, O pure Bride of God. Pour forth goodly gifts upon all, and save us from violent tribulations.

Sessional Hymn, Tone IV:, Spec. Mel “Joseph marvelled…”: O ye God-loving people, come to greet the Virgin! For, lo! she who surpasseth all the prophets doth arrive, bearing in the arms of her precious image Him Who bestoweth life upon the world, that she might preserve her suffering city, cast down the boldness of the barbarians and show herself to be the steadfast guardian of all who entreat her might and protection with faith.

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

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

The foregoing is repeated.

Ode IV, 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!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The true and radiant Sun hath shown forth the all-great mountain, from whence came the Stone that was cut not by the hand of man, which hath crushed all temptations to dust and illumined the faithful, shedding light in rays, O Ever-virgin Theotokos.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The children of Hagar arm themselves against thy people, O pure Theotokos, taking evil counsel, razing cities and destroying the faithful; yet do thou annihilate them all by thy mercy, O most hymned one, granting ascendancy to the Orthodox Faith over their false religion.

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

O only Mother of God, thou animate heaven who received the great Light, illumining all, dispel the darkness of the misfortunes which have beset us, and vouchsafe unto us communion with the Most High.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

David danced before the ark, and the Levites chanted hymns; and all the more doth Russia sing praises before thee as Queen, O pure Theotokos, earnestly giving utterance to thee with voices of entreaty: Rejoice, O ally of our city!

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.

Thee, O Mother of God, did Isaiah, great among the prophets, behold in the Spirit as containing within thy womb the burning Ember Who illumineth the faithful and utterly consumeth all temptations, saving the human race.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Thou didst put forth the Rod of Aaron and hast uprooted the root of evil, O Virgin Bride of God, having given birth for the world unto the Bestower of life. Him do thou beseech, that this city be saved from manifold perils.

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

With gladness approach ye now the most honoured Mother of God, O divinely chosen flock, ye assemblies of Russia, and lovingly receive her precious image. For, lo! her grace is inexhaustible, pouring forth divine waters in abundance. Her do we honour, and we bow down before her precious image.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

From the root of Jesse the Tree of life hath grown forth for all, and thou didst produce its Fruit in thy womb, O pure Virgin, nurturing all men with thy mercy.

Ode VI, 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.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

From thee, O Mother of God, hath a Torrent of sweetness issued forth, giving drink to all men and washing their souls clean of defilement. O Mistress Theotokos, save all who with faith bow down before thy precious image.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Having assembled together, let us all hymn the pure Virgin, the divinely chosen Maiden of Jacob, the fleece of Gideon, the mediatress of joy, the might and boast of those who are saved, the pure Theotokos.

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

Behold, gladness now draweth nigh, and sorrow is destroyed! The faithful are saved, drawing forth joy as from a wellspring, and they chant continually in praise: Rejoice, O pure Mistress, thou inception of our salvation, bulwark and boast of all the faithful!

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

By thine entreaties grant us thine aid, O all-pure Theotokos, for sorrows descend upon us, griefs have multiplied, and the enemy array themselves against us. Yet, interceding, O all-pure one, deliver us: cast down the arrogance of our foes and grant us victory over our enemies, that all who do evil to thy servants may be put to shame.

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

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

Kontakion, Tone VIII, Spec. Mel. “To thee, the chosen leader…”: As ones delivered from evils by the arrival of thy precious image, O Mistress Theotokos, do we splendidly chant hymns of victory to thee, the chosen leader, on the feast of thy meeting, and we cry to thee as is our wont: Rejoice, O Bride unwedded!

Ikos: An angelic messenger was sent from heaven to say to the Theotokos: “Rejoice!”, with his incorporeal voice, O Lord; And perceiving Thee incarnate, he was filled with awe and stood, crying out to her such things as these: Rejoice, thou through whom Joy hath shone forth; rejoice, thou who didst annul the curse! Rejoice, restoration of fallen Adam; rejoice, deliverance of Eve from tears! Rejoice, height not easily scaled by the thoughts of men; rejoice, depth not easily plumbed even by the eyes of angels! Rejoice, for thou art the throne of the King; rejoice, for thou bearest Him Who bearest all things! Rejoice, thou star who revealest the Sun; rejoice, womb of the incarnation of God! Rejoice, thou through whom creation hath been restored; rejoice, thou by whom the Creator is worshipped! Rejoice, O Bride unwedded!

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.

Arrayed by thee as in purple and fine linen dyed scarlet, O Mistress Virgin Theotokos, thy city magnifieth Christ and glorifieth the arrival of thy precious image, which hath appeared outshining the rays of the sun and illumining with light undimmed those who sing aloud thy praises.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The tablets divinely inscribed by the finger of the Spirit did Moses break in anger; yet the all-glorious Creator Who made His abode within thee, O pure one, preserved thee unharmed. To Him do we chant: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

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

Accept the entreaties of thy servants, O all-pure Virgin Theotokos. By thy supplications still thou the restless tempest, and drive away the councils of the adverse foe who fall upon thy flock, O most immaculate Mistress.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

By His nativity the Creator of all signified that thou alone art the helper of the human race, O Theotokos Mary, and the prophet prefigured thee: one as the gate, another as the bower of God. And we hymn thee as the Mother of God, our mediatress before God, our ally against all the evils which assail us.

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.

How can we hymn thee as is meet, O Virgin: our steadfast help, the preserver of our life, our sure mediatress before thy Son and our God? Him do we hymn and exalt supremely forever!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

O Mary Theotokos, thou all-comely flower, rich fragrance: thou fillest all with sweet savour, savest and deliverest from infirmities, and dispellest the demons; wherefore, we cry out to thee: Rejoice, O helper of all the faithful who pray to thee!

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

Thou hast shown thyself to be a tower repelling the assaults of the adversary, O Mother of God; for thou hast been revealed as a bulwark and rampart, a refuge of salvation for all who honour thee with ardent hearts.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Like David we chant a hymn to thee, calling thee the mountain of God, O all-pure Virgin; for thou hast poured forth upon us the ever-flowing Wellspring. Him do we hymn and exalt supremely forever.

Ode IX, 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!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

O pure Theotokos, mediatress of Joy, gladden thou our minds, that we may cry to thee: Rejoice, O our guardian, might and protection, our refuge of salvation!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Let heaven and earth praise thee together, in that thou gavest birth to the Bestower of life for the world: Rejoice, O tranquil haven, thou inexhaustible wellspring of the water of life, O Mistress!

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

O ye people, having assembled today to greet the all-pure Mother of God who bore the Fruit of the noetic vine Who ever exudeth the Wine which filleth all with gladness, let us glorify the Theotokos as is meet.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O Mother of God, thou divine river of the waters of life who watereth all valleys: drown thou our temptations, and destroy them utterly.

Troparion, Tone IV: Today the most glorious city of Moscow is adorned, having received thy wonder-working icon like the radiance of the sun; and we, hastening to it and entreating thee, O Mistress, do thus cry out: O all-wondrous Mistress Theotokos, entreat Christ our God, Who became incarnate through thee, that He deliver this city, and all cities and lands where Christians dwell, unharmed by all the assaults of the enemy, and save thou our souls, in that thou art compassionate.

The Five Prayers in Honour of the Mother of God

One of the holy fathers, standing in prayer and being in ecstasy, heard the voice of our Lord Jesus Christ speaking to the Immaculate and Holy Mother of God, His Mother, saying to her: “Tell me, My Mother, which were the greatest of your sufferings, when you lived in the world, which you suffered for My sake?” The Immaculate One replied: “My Son and God, five times I have endured my greatest suffering for you: First, when I heard from the Prophet Simeon that you were to be killed; Second, when I looked for you in Jerusalem, and did not see you for three days; Third, when I heard that you were seized and bound by the Jews; Fourth, when I saw you on the Cross crucified between the robbers; Fifth, when I saw you placed in the Tomb.” And the Lord said to her: “I tell you. My Mother, whoever reads every day each of your sufferings with My prayer, i.e. ‘Our Father,’ for the first suffering I will give the knowledge of his sins and sorrow for them; for the second, I will give the forgiveness of all his sins; for the third, I will restore to him the virtues lost through sin; for the fourth, I will refresh him at death with my Divine Body and Blood; for the fifth, I will appear to him Myself at his death, and receive his soul into eternal life. Amen.”

After this vision of the Holy Father, the following prayers were added by St. Dimitri of Rostov:

+

“Glory to Thee, Christ my God, that Thou hast not destroyed me a sinner, with my sins, but even till now hast borne – with my sin.” Bow

“Vouchsafe, O Lord, to keep me this day without sin. Grant, O Lord, that I may not anger Thee, my Creator, in thought, word or deed, but that all my actions, counsels and thoughts may be to the glory of Thy Holy Name.” Bow

“God be merciful to me, a sinner, throughout my whole life. In my passing and after death, forsake me not.” Bow

Falling low on the earth, say:

“Lord, Jesus Christ, Son of God, accept me, dead in mind and soul, accept me, a sinful prodigal, impure in soul and body. Take from me all shameless enmity and resistance, and turn not Thy Face from me, O Lord, nor say: I know not who thou art. But hear the voice of my prayer: save me, for Thou hast a wealth of compassion and desirest not the death of a sinner. I will never leave Thee nor depart from Thee, my Creator, till Thou hearest me and givest me forgiveness of all my sins, through the prayers of Thy Most Pure Mother, the intercession of the honourable Bodiless Powers of Heaven, of my holy and glorious Guardian Angel, of Thy Forerunner and Prophet, the Baptist John, of the God-speaking Apostles, of the holy and victorious martyrs, of our Reverend and God-fearing fathers, and all Thy Saints, have mercy and save me, a sinner.”

O Heavenly King, Comforter…

Holy God…

Most Holy Trinity, have mercy on us…

Our Father…

Virgin Mother of God, rejoice, Mary full of grace; the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, for thou hast borne the Saviour of our souls.

First Prayer: “O merciful Mother, Virgin Mary, I thy sinful and unprofitable servant, remembering thy suffering on hearing from the Prophet Simeon of the merciless murder of thy Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, offer thee this prayer and the Angelic Salutation. Accept it in honour and memory of thy suffering, and pray thy Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, to grant me the knowledge of my sins and sorrow for them.” Bow

Our Father …

Virgin Mother of God, rejoice…

Second Prayer: “O Divinely-blessed and Immaculate Maiden, Mother and Virgin, accept from me, thy sinful and unprofitable servant, this prayer and the Angelic Salutation, in honour and memory of thy suffering when thou didst lose thy Son our Lord Jesus Christ, in the Temple, and for three days didst not see Him. Pray and beg of Him the forgiveness and remission of all my sins, O only Blessed One.” Bow

Our Father …

Virgin Mother of God, rejoice…

Third Prayer: “O Mother of Light, most blessed Virgin Mother of God, accept from me, thy sinful and unprofitable servant, this prayer and the Angelic Salutation, in honour and memory of thy suffering on hearing that thy Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, had been seized and bound. Pray Him to restore to me the virtues lost through sin, that I may magnify thee, O Most Pure One, forever.” Bow

Our Father …

Virgin Mother of God, rejoice, Mary full of grace; the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, for thou hast borne the Saviour of our souls.

Fourth Prayer: “O Fountain of Mercy, Virgin Mother of God, accept from me, thy sinful and unprofitable servant, this prayer and the Angelic Salutation, in honour and memory of thy suffering when thou didst see thy Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, on the Cross between the robbers. Pray Him, O Lady, to grant me the gift of His mercy in the hour of my death, and to refresh me with His Divine Body and Blood, that I may glorify thee, my Defender, forever.” Bow

Our Father …

Virgin Mother of God, rejoice…

Fifth Prayer: “O my Hope, Most Pure Virgin, Mother of God, accept from me, thy sinful and unprofitable servant, this prayer and the Angelic Salutation, in honour and memory of thy suffering when thou didst see thy Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, placed in the Tomb. Pray Him, O Lady, to appear to me in the hour of my death, and to receive my soul into eternal life. Amen.”

Canons of the Dormition and the Icon of the Saviour “Not Made by Human Hands

Canon of the Dormition, the acrostic whereof is: “Let the divinely wise hold festival”, the composition of Cosmas of Maiuma, in Tone I

Ode I, Irmos: Thy sacred and glorious memory, all-adorned with divine glory, O Virgin, hath gathered all the faithful in gladness, who, led by Miriam with choirs and timbrels, hymn thine only-begotten Son, for gloriously hath He been glorified.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Let the immaterial ranks accompany thy divine and immaterial body to Sion. For the multitude of the apostles, coming together of a sudden from the ends of the earth, stood before thee, O Theotokos. With them we also glorify thine honored memory, O pure one.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The honors of victory over nature hast thou taken, having given birth unto God, O pure one; yet, emulating thy Creator and Son, thou submittest to the laws of nature in supernatural manner. Wherefore, having died, thou risest with thy Son unto everlasting life.

Canon of the Image, the acrostic whereof is: “O Savior, I honor the impress of Thy visage”, the composition of Patriarch Germanus, in Tone VI

Irmos: Traversing the deep on foot, as though it were dry land, and seeing the tyrant Pharaoh drowned, Israel cried aloud: Let us chant unto God a hymn of victory.

Glory to Thee, our God; glory to Thee!

He Who before was incorporeal did not disdain to assume our fleshly form at the good pleasure of the Father, and hath given us His divine depiction.

Glory to Thee, our God; glory to Thee!

The immutable Essence, the most renowned delineation of the Father, Who entered human flesh, left us His features on earth when He ascended to the heavens.

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

Thine inheritance, which was shaken by the deceit of the adversaries, didst thou justify, O Christ, confirming it by Thy precious sufferings and the depiction of Thy countenance.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

He Who supernaturally took flesh of thy pure womb, Who bringeth all men into existence, was seen, O all-immaculate one, without leaving the place where He was before.

Canon of the Dormition, Ode III, Irmos: O Christ, Thou creative and almighty Wisdom and Power of God, establish the Church immovable and unshaken; for Thou alone art holy Who restest in the saints.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The glorious apostles, seeing thee to be a mortal woman, yet, in manner transcending nature, the Mother of God, O all-immaculate one, with awe touched with their hands thee who art resplendent in glory, perceiving thee to be a habitation acceptable to God.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The glorious apostles, seeing thee to be a mortal woman, yet, in manner transcending nature, the Mother of God, O all-immaculate one, with awe touched with their hands thee who art resplendent in glory, perceiving thee to be a habitation acceptable to God.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

When God preserved with the glory of His divinity the honor of the animate ark wherein the Word became flesh, the judgment of retribution overtook the insolent one through the severing of his audacious hands.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

When God preserved with the glory of His divinity the honor of the animate ark wherein the Word became flesh, the judgment of retribution overtook the insolent one through the severing of his audacious hands.

Canon of the Image, Irmos: There is none as holy as Thee, O Lord my God, Who hast uplifted the horn of Thy faithful and established us on the rock of the confession of Thee, O Good One.

Glory to Thee, our God; glory to Thee!

O Savior, Thou hast clothed the honored Church in the raiment of the virtues, moving the heart of the king to seek out Thy likeness as a defense.

Glory to Thee, our God; glory to Thee!

The father of envy, desiring to strip the good naked and cut short their time, shamelessly betrayed them into the hands of the abominable; but he hath been reproved, plotting in vain.

Glory to Thee, our God; glory to Thee!

David once rejoiced with splendor, dancing before the holy ark; and now he who hath received the royal scepter to govern rejoiceth greatly in the divine depiction.

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

Thou Who of old fashioned man in Thine image straightway formed Thyself therein in Thy loving-kindness. Wherefore, with the angels we glorify Thee Who truly assumed the immutable likeness, O Christ.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Desiring to cut off at every root the disobedience of our forefather which had sprung forth, thy Son, O pure Virgin, assumeth all humanity from thy womb.

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

Kontakion of the feast, Tone II: The tomb and mortality could not hold the Theotokos, who is untiring in her supplications and our certain hope in her intercessions. For, as the Mother of Life, she hath passed over to the Life Who dwelt within her ever-virgin womb.

Ikos: Guard thou my thoughts, O my Christ, for I make bold to hymn the bulwark of the world, Thy pure Mother. Establish me firmly in the bastion of my words, and help me in the midst of difficult thoughts; for Thou fulfillest the entreaties of those who cry out and ask with faith. Wherefore, grant unto me a deft tongue and a ready mind, for every good deed of enlightenment cometh down from Thee, O Bestower of light, Who dwelt within her ever-virgin womb.

Sessional Hymn of the Image, Tone I, Spec. Mel. “Thy tomb, O Savior…”: The king of Edessa, acknowledging Thee as the King of all, Who wielded neither scepters nor armies, but multitudes of miracles at Thy word, begged that he might offer hospitality to Thee, the God-Man. And in Thine image he beheld Thee, and cried out: Thou art God and Lord!

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

Sessional Hymn, Tone I, Spec. Mel. “When the stone was sealed…”: The choir of the divine apostles gathered together to bury thee with all honor, O most pure Theotokos; and with them the ranks of angels hymned thy repose, crying aloud with all praise. And with them we the faithful, leaping up with love, O pure one, offer thee praise with sounds of hymnody, and cry out: Rejoice, thou intercessor for those who ever honor thee!

Canon of the Dormition, Ode IV, Irmos: The sayings and images of the prophets revealed Thine incarnation from the Virgin, O Christ. The splendor of Thine effulgence goeth forth unto the enlightenment of the nations and the abyss gave forth her voice to Thee with gladness: Glory to Thy power, O Thou Who lovest mankind.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Behold, O ye people, and marvel, for the holy and openly manifest mountain of God is exalted on high to the mansions of heaven: the earthly heaven becometh a celestial and incorrupt habitation.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Behold, O ye people, and marvel, for the holy and openly manifest mountain of God is exalted on high to the mansions of heaven: the earthly heaven becometh a celestial and incorrupt habitation.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.Thy death became a passage to an everlasting and better life, O pure one, translating thee from transitory life to that which is truly divine and eternal, that thou mightest behold thy Son and Lord in gladness, O pure one.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The gates of heaven were raised and the angelic choirs chanted; and Christ received the vessel of His Mother’s virginity. The cherubim lifted her up with gladness, and the seraphim glorify her, rejoicing.

Canon of the Image, Irmos: Christ is my power, my God and my Lord, the honored Church doth sing, crying out in godly manner with a pure mind, keeping festival in the Lord.

Glory to Thee, our God; glory to Thee!

Sweet is the sun, which lighteneth our eyes; but sweeter yet is the sight of Thy likeness, O Christ; for the sun lighteneth our physical eyes, but Thine image illumineth our noetic eyes.

Glory to Thee, our God; glory to Thee!

The might of the Ishmaelites hath failed; for in his land the emperor wise in government hath set in his right hand the full fortification of the weaponry of the Cross.

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

O all ye princes and judges of the earth, with the chief bishops, hierarchs and all the people, bless ye Christ, having been vouchsafed to behold Him.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Make thou entreaty, we pray thee, O all-pure one, that thy city may be preserved unharmed by barbarian invasion; for see what the beseigers devise against it.

Canon of the Dormition, Ode V, Irmos: We confess the divine and ineffable beauty of Thy virtues, O Christ; for having shone forth from eternal glory as the co-eternal and hypostatic Effulgence, incarnate of the Virgin’s womb Thou hast shone forth as the Sun upon those who are in darkness and shadow.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The choir of the apostles assembled, borne as on a cloud to Sion from the ends of the earth, to serve thee, the light cloud through whom God Most High, the Sun of righteousness, hath shone forth upon those who are in darkness and shadow.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The choir of the apostles assembled, borne as on a cloud to Sion from the ends of the earth, to serve thee, the light cloud through whom God Most High, the Sun of righteousness, hath shone forth upon those who are in darkness and shadow.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

More melodious than clarions, the God-­pleasing tongues of the theologizing men sounded forth to the Theotokos, playing a funeral hymn inspired by the Spirit: Rejoice, O incorrupt fountain of God’s life-creating incarnation which saveth all!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

More melodious than clarions, the God-­pleasing tongues of the theologizing men sounded forth to the Theotokos, playing a funeral hymn inspired by the Spirit: Rejoice, O incorrupt fountain of God’s life-creating incarnation which saveth all!

Canon of the Image, Irmos: With Thy divine light illumine the souls of those who with love rise at dawn unto Thee, O Good One, that they may know Thee, O Word of God, to be the true God Who calleth all forth from the darkness of sin.

Glory to Thee, our God; glory to Thee!

Of old a little city prepared to receive Thee, O Christ, and the coming of Thaddæus cureth its ills with the letter written in Thy hand and the divine impress of Thy countenance.

Glory to Thee, our God; glory to Thee!

Of old a little city prepared to receive Thee, O Christ, and the coming of Thaddæus cureth its ills with the letter written in Thy hand and the divine impress of Thy countenance.

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

The eyes of the Lord are upon just kings, and His ears are open to the entreaty of kings wise in piety, who magnificently honor His likeness, which He Himself wrought.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Bring an end to the frequent attacks of our enemies, O Virgin, destroy their counsels, and help thine inheritance; for thou seest how we, the afflicted, are in despair.

Canon of the Dormition, Ode VI, Irmos: The inner fire of the sea from the deep which giveth rise to the whales was a prefiguring of Thy three-day burial, whereof Jonah was shown to be the proclaimer; for, remaining unharmed as he was before he was sent forth, he cried: I will sacrifice to Thee with a voice of praise, O Lord!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

God, the King of all, giveth thee that which transcendeth nature; for, as He kept thee a virgin during thy birthgiving, so did He preserve thy body untouched by corruption in the tomb; and He glorified thee with Himself by a divine translation, rendering thee honor as a Son to His Mother.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

God, the King of all, giveth thee that which transcendeth nature; for, as He kept thee a virgin during thy birthgiving, so did He preserve thy body untouched by corruption in the tomb; and He glorified thee with Himself by a divine translation, rendering thee honor as a Son to His Mother.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Truly, O Virgin, thine Offspring set thee in the Holy of Holies as the splendid candlestick of the immaterial Light, the golden censer of the divine Coal, the jar and the staff, the divinely inscribed tablet, the holy ark, the table of the Word of life.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Truly, O Virgin, thine Offspring set thee in the Holy of Holies as the splendid candlestick of the immaterial Light, the golden censer of the divine Coal, the jar and the staff, the divinely inscribed tablet, the holy ark, the table of the Word of life.

Canon of the Image, Irmos: Jonah was swallowed, but was not held fast in the belly of the monster; for, serving as an image of Thee, Who didst suffer and wast given over for burial, he issued forth from the whale as from a bridal chamber. And he said to the watchmen, the vain and false guardians: Ye have forsaken His mercy!

Glory to Thee, our God; glory to Thee!

O Savior, Thou art more comely in beauty than all the sons of men: for if Thou wast bereft of form and beauty at the time of Thy passion, yet Thou didst enlighten all things and reveal the form of Thy countenance, whose likeness, depicted upon an aged napkin, hath been given unto us as a treasure.

Glory to Thee, our God; glory to Thee!

The depiction of Thy face hast Thou now given to the new Israel as strength against the hordes of the Moslems, as of old Thou gavest the ark against the Philistines, O Christ. And it hath acquired glory; for it is not fitting to cast holy things to dogs.

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

Thou didst send Thine apostle unto Abgar who was ignorant of Thy heavenly kingdom, to which Thou, O Christ, hast led us up from corrupt things which drag us down, O Good One Who art unapproachable even to the immaterial cherubim; and he revealed the mysteries, that Thou didst descend even unto hades.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

I am now left without the strength of Thine arm, O Savior, yet Thou hast withdrawn Thy wounding from me through the supplications of her who gave Thee birth without knowing wedlock, O Word, that I might not be left foundering in the storm of sin and barely afloat, O only Deliverer.

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

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

Kontakion, Tone II, Spec. Mel. “In thy supplications…”: O uncircumscribable Word of the Father, knowing the victorious image, uninscribed and divinely wrought, of Thine ineffable and divine dispensation towards man, of Thy true incarnation, we honor it with veneration.

Ikos: Persuading men of the dread mystery of His incarnation, the Lord Himself imprinteth the image of His divine manhood upon the napkin and, taking up the Prototype from the Mount of Olives, He seateth it on the throne of the Father to be worshipped by the bodiless angels; and embracing it with heart and soul, we honor it with veneration.

Canon of the Dormition, Ode VII, Irmos: The divine will, opposing the shameless rage and the fire, bedewed the fire and put wrath to shame by the divinely inspired three-stringed lyre of the venerable youths, opposing the musical instruments amid the flames, chanting: O all-glorious God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Enraged, Moses smashed the divinely wrought tablets which had been inscribed by the divine Spirit; but the Master, preserving unharmed her who gave birth to Him, hath now caused her to dwell in the mansions of heaven. Celebrating with her, let us cry out to Christ: O all-glorious God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Enraged, Moses smashed the divinely wrought tablets which had been inscribed by the divine Spirit; but the Master, preserving unharmed her who gave birth to Him, hath now caused her to dwell in the mansions of heaven. Celebrating with her, let us cry out to Christ: O all-glorious God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

On the cymbals of pure lips, with the music of a radiant heart, on the high-sounding clarion of exalted thought, clapping our diligent hands on the renowned and chosen day of the repose of the pure Virgin, let us cry aloud: O all-glorious God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Gather ye together, O divinely wise people, for the dwelling-place of the glory of God is translated from Sion to the habitation of heaven, where is the pure voice of those who keep festival, the voice of the unutterable rejoicing of those who cry out to Christ in gladness: O all-glorious God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Canon of the Image, Irmos: The children in Babylon did not fear the flame of the furnace, but, cast into the midst of the fire, bedewed, they sang: Blessed art Thou, O Lord God of our fathers!

Glory to Thee, our God; glory to Thee!

Walking the earth, by Thy word Thou didst drive away every illness, O Word of God; yet ascending to the throne of the Father, Thou healest our illness by Thine image.

Glory to Thee, our God; glory to Thee!

O Thou Who created all things by Thy word, and took on a form not Thine own, Thou didst leave the portrait of Thy countenance unto us, and taking it up we rejoice in gladness.

Glory to Thee, our God; glory to Thee!

The faithful emperor, who sought the lineaments of Thy features with all his soul, received that which he sought, O Lord, his wish being the fulfillment of God’s desire.

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

Let us prepare our eyes for the vision of God, and let us worthily strive to see the most precious image of Christ, unto our salvation.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Humanity hath been loosed from the ancient condemnation by Thy birthgiving; for God, finding thee alone to be more spacious than the heavens, made His abode within thee, O most immaculate one.

Canon of the Dormition, Ode VIII, Irmos: The almighty Angel of God showed forth for the youths a flame which bedewed the venerable and utterly consumed the ungodly; and He made the Theotokos a life-creating well-spring pouring forth destruction for death and life for those who chant: O ye who have been delivered, let us hymn and exalt the one Creator for all ages!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

With discourses the whole multitude of theologians accompanied the sacred coffin of the Theotokos in Sion, exclaiming: Whither goest thou, O tabernacle of the living God? Cease not to regard those who chant with faith: O ye who have been delivered, let us hymn and exalt the one Creator for all ages!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

With discourses the whole multitude of theologians accompanied the sacred coffin of the Theotokos in Sion, exclaiming: Whither goest thou, O tabernacle of the living God? Cease not to regard those who chant with faith: O ye who have been delivered, let us hymn and exalt the one Creator for all ages!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Thou goest forth, O all-immaculate one, lifting up thine hands, the hands wherewith thou didst bear God in the flesh; and as a Mother thou didst with boldness say to Him Who was born of thee: Preserve Thou forever those whom Thou hast given to me, who cry out to Thee: O ye who have been delivered, let us hymn and exalt the one Creator for all ages!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Thou goest forth, O all-immaculate one, lifting up thine hands, the hands wherewith thou didst bear God in the flesh; and as a Mother thou didst with boldness say to Him Who was born of thee: Preserve Thou forever those whom Thou hast given to me, who cry out to Thee: O ye who have been delivered, let us hymn and exalt the one Creator for all ages!

Canon of the Image, Irmos: The blessed youths in Babylon, braving danger for the laws of their fathers, reviled the mindless command of the ruler, and, united by the fire which burned them not, they chanted a fitting hymn unto the Almighty: Hymn the Lord, ye works, and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Glory to Thee, our God; glory to Thee!

Hoping to come upon Thee, the Lord, face to face, all the most elect people of the city arranged a wondrous greeting for Thee. The divine choir of hierarchs, leading, bore Thee on their shoulders; and drawn to Thine inheritance, O Compassionate One, Thou didst rest in the church of Thy Mother.

Glory to Thee, our God; glory to Thee!

The mouths of innocent children sang hymns to Thee of old as Thou didst enter the city which murdered the prophets; but the iniquitous assembly of the Jewish Sanhedrin armed its murderous hand in rage against Thee. But now, the lawful city, beholding Thee coming forth as Creator, rejoiceth, receiving the image of Thy countenance.

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

More than Moses who beheld God and received the divinely inscribed tablets hast thou, the honorable local prince, been magnified, who received the precious letter of the Word of God, which blesseth thee who believed in piety without having beheld any of His miracles.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

The Angel of the Great Counsel of the Father, Who willed to assume the flesh, acted perfectly within thy womb, O all-pure one, and hath restored human nature which had grown old. Him do we all bless as Creator and exalt supremely for all ages.

Canon of the Dormition, Ode IX, Irmos: In thee are the laws of nature overcome, O pure Virgin, for thy birthgiving is virginal and death is betrothed to life. A Virgin giving birth and alive after death, O Theotokos, thou hast saved thine inheritance.

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The angelic hosts were amazed, seeing their Master in Sion, bearing in His arms a woman’s soul; for as befitteth a Son, He exclaimed to her in all-pure manner: Come, O pure one, and be glorified with thy Son and God!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The angelic hosts were amazed, seeing their Master in Sion, bearing in His arms a woman’s soul; for as befitteth a Son, He exclaimed to her in all-pure manner: Come, O pure one, and be glorified with thy Son and God!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The choir of angels buried thy body, which had received God, gazing upon it with fear, and exclaiming with a loud voice: O Theotokos who ascendest to thy Son in the heavenly mansions, thou ever savest thine inheritance!

Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

The choir of angels buried thy body, which had received God, gazing upon it with fear, and exclaiming with a loud voice: O Theotokos who ascendest to thy Son in the heavenly mansions, thou ever savest thine inheritance!

Canon of the Image, Irmos: Come, ye faithful, and with minds uplifted let us delight in the hospitality of the Master and the feast of immortality in a high place, learning from the Word, Whom we magnify, and Who hath ascended.

Glory to Thee, our God; glory to Thee!

The mindless people spat upon Thee, O Savior, and in return for Thy benefactions audaciously did unseemly things to Thee; but we who stood afar off have been adopted through Thy sufferings.

Glory to Thee, our God; glory to Thee!

Give aid against the enemy to pious and faithful kings, for, having acquired the standard of Thy flesh as an unassailable fortress, O Master, in it they see their salvation.

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

O immutable Image of the Father, Effulgence of the glory of the eternal Light, Seal of the Most High, O Word, Power and Wisdom: be Thou easily reconciled to those who theologize concerning Thee.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Through thee the Word was seen on earth in the flesh, dual in nature through the bestowal of the Godhead, O most immaculate one, but one in hypostasis, having brought the union together without confusion. Him do we glorify.

Troparion of the Image, Tone II: We bow down before Thine all-pure image, O Good One, asking forgiveness of our transgressions, O Christ God; for Thou wast well pleased to ascend the Cross in the flesh of Thine own will, that what Thou hadst created Thou mightest save from slavery to the enemy. Wherefore, we cry out to Thee in thanksgiving: Thou hast filled all things with joy, O our Savior, Who hast come to save the world.

The Canon to St Tikhon of Zadonsk

Ode I, Irmos: Having traversed the water as though it were dry land, and escaped the evil of Egypt, the Israelite cried aloud: Let us chant unto our Deliverer and God!

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

O Tikhon, holy hierarch of Christ: do thou thyself grant me understanding and speech, that I may worthily hymn the glory wherewith Christ the Lord hath glorified thee.

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

A ray of divine light hast thou shone upon us. Come, ye children of the light, that we may be illumined thereby, that, magnifying the holy hierarch with hymns, we may become warmed by the Spirit.

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

Let us glorify the blessed Tikhon, the successor to the apostles, enthroned with the holy hierarchs, dweller with the venerable, by whose intercession we obtain salvation.

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

The Master of all, having taken flesh of thee ineffably, O Mary Theotokos, became perfect man; and when thou gavest birth, He kept thee as pure as thou hadst been before giving birth. Him do thou entreat, that He save our souls from misfortune.

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, Tikhon, pray to God for us.

Wounded with the love of Christ, O blessed one, from thy youth didst thou follow Him with unwavering desire, disdaining every carnal pleasure.

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

The passions of youth which vex the flesh didst thou cut down with the sword of the love of wisdom, offering thyself as a sacrifice to Christ the Master.

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

O Tikhon, with greater love didst thou cleave unto wisdom, made steadfast in the fear of God, for it is the beginning of wisdom.

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

Let us hymn the divine temple of God! Let us bless the holy Virgin, deified and delivered from misfortunes by her!

Sessional Hymn of the saint, Tone VIII: From thy youth wast thou a temple of the Holy Spirit; for, having cleansed thy soul of passions through thy faith, the grace of the Comforter doth dwell therein. Wherefore, even after thy repose, thy body hath been preserved incorrupt. Entreat Christ God that those who honor thee be delivered from corrupting passions.

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.

Sessional Hymn of the feast, Tone IV, Spec. Mel. “Joseph marvelled…”: Thou wast transfigured on Mount Tabor, O God, in the midst of the all-wise Elijah and Moses, with James, Simon and John. And Peter, who was there, said to Thee: “It is good for us to make here three booths: one for Moses, one for Elijah, and one for Thee, Christ our Master!” O Thou Who then shone forth Thy light upon them, illumine our souls!

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!

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

Like a lamb wast thou tended by Christ; like a shepherd didst thou tend thy flock, leading them to the pasture of thy life-bearing teachings.

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

An initiate of the mysteries of the doctrine of Christ, thou didst illumine the people with the knowledge of Him, showing forth His truth by word and deed.

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

A true and faithful guard wast thou over the house of God, watching over it in deed, giving an example by thy life, and by word, for thou didst diligently instruct, and by thought, for thou didst take thought for its well-being.

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

Finding thee to be a haven and rampart, a refuge and hope, a protection and a fervent intercessor, the faithful have recourse to thee and earnestly cry out to thee, as the blessed Tikhon hath taught us: O all-holy Theotokos, save us!

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.

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

O holy hierarch, Christ, Whom thou didst love, Whom thou didst desire, for Whose sake thou didst struggle, do thou now beseech in behalf of thy servants, that, being merciful, He may grant a peaceful life to all of us that honor thy memory.

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

Filled with faith and the love of Christ, thou didst show thyself to be as a river, abundantly watering all the land of Russia with the word of thy teachings, O blessed Tikhon.

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

Like a bee gathering sweet honey from quickly fading blossoms, O father, thou didst gather spiritual treasure from the corruptible world, and thereby thou dost satisfy us all.

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

Fill thou our hearts with gladness, O most pure and divine Maiden, who gavest birth to the Cause of joy, destroying all the grief of sin.

Ode VI, Irmos: Cleanse me, O Savior, 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.

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

Being pure of heart, thou didst cleave unto the pure Christ; being holy, unto the Holy One; being loving, unto Him Who loveth; being meek, unto the Meek One, crying unceasingly: It is good for me to cleave unto God!

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

The comfort, pleasure, honor, wealth, glory and all the treasures of the world didst thou despise, soaring aloft to the heavenly Jerusalem, to the home of thy Father, where there are many mansions.

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

Insults, sorrows and abuse didst thou joyfully endure, mindful that there is no crown without a victory, no victory without a contest, no contest without battle, and no battle without a foe.

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

O Virgin Lady, Mother of the Creator: thou art the joy of the heavenly hosts, the blessed helper of the human race. Pray thou that our souls be saved!

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: Successor to the apostles, adornment of holy hierarchs, teacher of the Orthodox Church: beseech the Master of all to grant peace to the world and great mercy to our souls!

Ikos: Having adorned thy soul with virtue and enlightened thy mind with love of wisdom, thou didst show thyself to be a good shepherd of the flock of Christ, teaching it by word and writing, admonishing and instructing, giving an example of what thou didst say by thy life. Wherefore, by Christ, the Chief Shepherd, hast thou been adorned with a crown of glory in heaven, shining forth on earth in the incorruption of thy relics and pouring forth abundant streams of wonders upon those who call upon thee in faith, O divinely wise Tikhon. Pray to the Lord, that He grant our souls great mercy!

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!

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

In patience didst thou possess thy soul, O blessed one, and thou didst traverse the narrow path which alone leadeth to everlasting life, ever directing thy gaze toward the way of the Cross of Christ, the Judge of the contest, and setting an image thereof as a model for thy life.

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

Thy whole self didst thou surrender to the love of God: soul and body, heart and mind, memory and will, purpose, ambition, word, deed and thought didst thou consecrate out of love for God.

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

O blessed Tikhon, thou didst show thyself to be a father of orphans, a defender of widows, the wealth of the poor, the consolation of the sick and admonition of the wealthy, a staff for the aged, the instructor of the young, and a model of virtue for monastics.

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

Rejoice, O Mary! Rejoice, thou who gavest birth to the Savior of the world! Be thou a haven for us who are tempest-tossed by the storm of life, a calm harbor amid the deep of sorrows, and guidance to the heavenly mansions.

Ode VIII, Irmos: Madly did the Chaldæan tyrant heat the furnace sevenfold for the pious ones; but, beholding them saved by a higher Power, he cried out to the Creator and Deliverer: Ye children, bless; ye priests, hymn; ye people, exalt Him supremely for all ages!

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

A son of the Kingdom while yet on earth, thou didst ever yearn for the Son of God, crying out to Him: Be Thou my food and drink; be Thou the light of my soul; be Thou my surcease amid sorrows; be Thou life everlasting according to the resurrection, that I may supremely exalt Thee unto the ages!

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

Ever mindful of the fall of Adam, the redemption through the sufferings of Christ, the hour of death, the dread Judgment, the torment of sinners and the blessed state of the righteous, thou didst lament, setting us an example of compunction and purifying thyself aforetime for eternal glory.

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

Having undertaken travails in this life out of faith and piety, thou didst sweetly rest from thy labors and wast granted repose; for thou didst descend into the grave, ripening like wheat for the harvest of God at the time of the reaping.

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

With the hyssop of the life-creating Blood of the Lamb, Who was slain for the salvation of the world, and Who took flesh of thy most pure blood, do thou sprinkle and cleanse me, who am defiled, O Mistress, that I may be made whiter than snow by thy maternal assistance.

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.

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

A mediator and fervent intercessor for us before God hast thou been shown to be, O hierarch, making supplication to the Master through thy prayers. Ask thou remission of transgressions, O father, for those who faithfully celebrate thy sacred memory and magnify thee with heartfelt love.

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

O thou who hast been illumined with the radiance of God the Light, enlighten us who are benighted by the passions of life; and, having received of Him the authority to loose and to bind, loose thou our transgressions and vouchsafe the kingdom of heaven unto those who celebrate thy memory and magnify thee as is meet.

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

Mercifully accept this, our hymn of praise, which is offered up to thee with abundant fervor, from our unworthy and wretched souls, O holy hierarch, granting us withal grace abounding in compassion.

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

Thou didst raise up fallen Adam, O Mother of God, who gavest birth to the new Adam. Do thou also raise us up, who are fallen like Adam of old, but who fervently believe in the grace of the New.

Troparion, Tone VIII: From thy youth thou didst love Christ, O blessed one; and thou wast an example unto all by word, life, love, spirit, faith, purity and humility. Wherefore, thou hast made thine abode in the heavenly mansions, where, standing before the throne of the all-holy Trinity, do thou pray that our souls be saved, O holy hierarch Tikhon.

Troparion, Tone IV: O guide of Orthodoxy, teacher of piety, preacher of repentance, emulator of Chrysostom, most excellent pastor, new beacon and wonderworker of Russia: well didst thou shepherd thy flock, and by thy writings thou hast instructed us all. Wherefore, adorned with a crown of incorruption by the Chief Shepherd, do thou entreat Him that our souls be saved.

 

10/23 August – The Feast of St Laurence of Rome

The Martyrs Archdeacon Laurence, Pope Sixtus, Deacons Felicissimus and Agapitus, and the soldier Romanus were citizens of Rome, and suffered in the year 258 during the reign of Emperor Valerian (253-260). Saint Sixtus was born in the city of Athens, and at first he was a philosopher, but later he became a follower of Christ. When he arrived in Rome, he showed himself to be a wise and devout member of the Church. Over a period of time, he passed through the various ranks of the clergy, and became the Bishop of Rome following the martyric death of Saint Stephen (August 2). Several Roman Hierarchs preferred to die rather than offer sacrifice to idols. Soon, Saint Sixtus was also arrested and imprisoned together with his deacons Felicissimus and Agapitus.

When Archdeacon Laurence visited Saint Sixtus in prison, he cried out with tears, “Where are you going, Father, without your son? Where do you hasten without your Archdeacon? Never have you offered the Bloodless Sacrifice without me. Take me with you, so that I may join you in shedding our blood for Christ!”

Saint Sixtus replied, “I am not forsaking you, my son. I am old and I accept the lesser battle, but greater suffering awaits you. You must achieve the greater victory and triumph over your tormentors. Three days after my death, you shall follow after me.”

Then he entrusted Archdeacon Laurence with the Church’s treasures and sacred vessels, telling him to distribute these to the poor. He gathered them up and went around the city on foot, to the clergy and impoverished Christians who were in hiding, helping them according to their needs.

When he heard that Saint Sixtus had been brought to trial with his deacons, Saint Laurence went there in order to witness the outcome. Seeing that the martyrs were obstinate in their refusal to offer sacrifice to the idols, Valerian ordered them to be taken to the temple of Mars outside the city walls, and put to death if they did not offer incense to the idols. When he saw the pagan temple, Saint Sixtus prayed for it to be destroyed. There was an earthquake which caused part of the temple to collapse, and the statue of Mars was shattered to pieces. Saint Laurence cried out, “Father, I have fulfilled your command, and have distributed the treasures of the Church which you entrusted to me.”

After hearing about treasure, the soldiers placed him under guard. Saint Sixtus and the other martyrs were beheaded in front of the temple on August 6, 258. Afterward, the soldiers brought Saint Laurence to the Emperor, informing him that they had heard the Archdeacon mention something about the Church’s hidden treasures. The Emperor ordered him to reveal where the treasures were, and the Archdeacon asked for three days in order to collect them. Then Saint Laurence gathered all the poor and the needy, and brought them to the Prefect, saying, “Behold the treasures of the Church.”

The ruler became very angry at this and ordered Hippolytos (Iππόλυτος) who was in charge of the prison, to throw the Archdeacon into the dungeon with other prisoners. There the Saint restored the sight of a man named Lucillus. Hippolytos was amazed at this, and asked to see the Church’s treasures. Saint Laurence told him that if he believed in Christ and was baptized, he would find true wealth and everlasting life. Hippolytos said that if this was true, he would do as he asked.

Hippolytos took Saint Laurence to his home, where he instructed and baptized the jailer and all his household, consisting of nineteen persons. Soon afterward, Hippolytos was ordered to bring the Archdeacon to Emperor Valerian. Seeing that the Saint had not agreed to offer sacrifice, he ordered that Saint Laurence be tortured. Still, the Archdeacon refused to sacrifice to the idols. As the Martyr endured these torments, a soldier named Romanus cried, “Laurence, I see a radiant youth standing by you, and wiping your wounds. Entreat Christ, Who has sent His Angel to you, not to abandon me.”

Then Valerian commanded Hippolytos to return the Saint to prison. Romanus brought a pitcher of water and asked the Martyr to baptize him. Immediately after the soldier was baptized, he was seized by other soldiers and taken to the Emperor. Before anyone could question him, Romanus shouted, “I am a Christian.”

The Emperor ordered him to be taken outside the city and beheaded on August 9.

The next day, Saint Laurence was placed on a rack, scourged with whips with sharp iron points attached to them, and then was stretched out naked on a red-hot iron gridiron with burning coals underneath it. The Holy Martyr glanced at the ruler and said, “You have already roasted one side of my body, now turn me over to the other side so you may taste what you have roasted.”

Then he glorified God, saying, “I thank You, Lord Jesus Christ, that You have found me worthy to enter Your gates.”

Saint Laurence received the unfading crown of martyrdom on August 10, 258.

That night, Saint Hippolytos took the Saint’s body he wrapped it in a shroud with spices. Then he and the priest Justin brought the relics to the home of a widow named Kyriake, where it remained until evening. Later, many Christians escorted the Saint’s body to a cave on the widow’s property. After praying all night, they buried the Martyr there with honor. Then Father Justin served the Divine Liturgy, and everyone partook of the Holy Mysteries.

Saint Hippolytos and the other Christians suffered martyrdom three days after the death of Saint Laurence, on August 13.

Source: https://www.oca.org/saints/lives/2022/08/10/102258-martyr-and-archdeacon-laurence-and-those-with-him-of-rome

The canon of the saint, the acrostic whereof is: “Most wisely do I hymn the mighty Laurence”, in Tone IV:

Ode 1, Irmos: O Thou who wast born of the Virgin, * drown I implore Thee, in the depth of dispassion * the triune nature of my soul, * as Thou didst the mighty strongholds of the warriors, * that in the mortality of my flesh * as on a timbrel * I may chant a hymn of victory.

Holy Martyr and Archdeacon Laurence, pray to God for us.

Taking delight in the garden of sweetness and joining chorus with the angelic hosts as is meet, as a warrior of Christ, pray thou that He grant effulgent radiance unto me who hymn thee, O blessed Laurence.

Holy Martyr and Archdeacon Laurence, pray to God for us.

Entering upon the feats of honoured torment, O Laurence, in steadfastness of soul thou didst show thyself to be a victorious spiritual athlete, magnificently arrayed in the crown of righteousness and a diadem of victory.

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

As thou wast a child of the light and of the day, thou hast shone forth upon us sensibly like the sun from the west, illumining the ends of the earth with a most splendid radiance, O all-glorious martyr Laurence.

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

Delivered from the bonds of Hades and corruption, and from the condemnation of the law, by thine honoured birth giving, O most holy Virgin, we cry to thee in thanksgiving: Rejoice, O thou who art full of joy, thou saving portal of grace!

Ode 3, Irmos: The bow of the mighty hath waxed feeble * and the weak have girded themselves with strength: * therefore is my heart established * in the Lord.

Holy Martyr and Archdeacon Laurence, pray to God for us.

With the Cross as thy standard, thou didst valiantly array thyself against the enemy, and wast shown to be crowned with victory, O right-wondrous one.

Holy Martyr and Archdeacon Laurence, pray to God for us.

Protected by the law of Christ, as one invincible thou didst oppose the laws of the impious with courageous endurance, O all-blessed one.

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

Strengthened by the power of God, thou didst destroy the feebleness of polytheism and didst elucidate the pre-eternal divinity of Christ.

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

Equal to the Father and the Spirit in nature, essence and divinity, and to men also, was the Word Who didst become incarnate of thee, O all-immaculate one.

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

Sessional Hymn, in Tone 8, Spec. Mel – “Of the Wisdom …”: Having amassed heavenly riches and brought them to the poor, thou didst distribute them, and gave thy bread also to the hungry, and thereby having acquired life incorruptible, thou didst shine forth in thy confession of Christ, O glorious one. Wherefore, having courageously suffered under the law, thou didst receive from God a crown for thy labours, O spiritual athlete Laurence. Entreat Christ God, that He grant forgiveness of sins unto those who with love honour thy holy memory.

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

Repeat sessional hymn.

Ode 4, Irmos: He who sitteth in glory upon the throne of the Godhead, * Jesus the true God, * is come in a swift cloud * and with His sinless hands he hath saved those who cry: * Glory to Thy power, O Christ.

Holy Martyr and Archdeacon Laurence, pray to God for us.

For love of the Word, the servant of the Word, adorned with eloquence and spirituality, hath been slaughtered, and now reigneth in righteousness with the Word, enjoying gladness and His glory.

Holy Martyr and Archdeacon Laurence, pray to God for us.

Piously fighting off the slumber of impiety with divine vigilance, O sacred martyr of Christ, by thy martyr’s stand thou didst cut off from thine eyes the sleep which is unto death.

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

Protected by the true armour of piety against the proponents of the impious opposition, for the sake of the Faith thou didst utterly cast down the memory of them by thy love of morality.

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

Having put aside all the defilement of the primeval food, we are nurtured with the Grain of Life from heaven, Which arose from the earth from the Virgin. Let us hymn her as the mediatress of good things.

Ode 5, Irmos: The wicked will not behold Thy glory, O Christ, * but we who rise early to hymn Thee shall behold Thee, * the Only-Begotten effulgence of Thy Father’s divinity, * O Lover of mankind.

Holy Martyr and Archdeacon Laurence, pray to God for us.

Thine eyes fixed with unwavering vision upon divine beauties, O right wondrous Laurence, Thou didst spurn all the beautiful things on earth and the cruel pangs of thy body.

Holy Martyr and Archdeacon Laurence, pray to God for us.

Having recognized Christ, Who became a servant for us, through gifts received from the Father, and having become His servant, thou didst depart unto Him through the shedding of thy blood, O most blessed one.

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

O blessed one, thou didst offer thyself unto Christ as a sacred oblation and a magnificent adornment; and having adorned the tabernacle of heaven, thou dost now abide there delighting in radiance.

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

The only-begotten Son, of the same essence and like unto the Father, of His own will becameth akin to mankind, the Most High being incarnate from thy womb, O Virgin Mother.

Ode 6, Irmos: I have reached the depths of the sea * and the tempest of my many sins hath engulfed me; * but do Thou raise up my life from the abyss * O Greatly-Merciful One.

Holy Martyr and Archdeacon Laurence, pray to God for us.

Kindling a material fire, thou didst prepare thyself as sweet food for the King of all, Who loveth and craveth our salvation, O all-glorious one.

Holy Martyr and Archdeacon Laurence, pray to God for us.

Thou didst draw nigh wholly to the light of the ruling Trinity, and being radiant, as God’s servant, thou dost illumine those who hymn thee, O spiritual athlete.

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

Strengthened with divine power, lying on the heated grill thou didst endure torment for the love of Christ, enkindling thy soul with fire and spiritual dew.

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

O Virgin Mother, thou wast the place of God’s lodging, an animate throne, the holy mountain, the ark, the divinely wrought tabernacle, and the golden candle-stand.

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

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

Kontakion of the saint, in Tone 2, Spec. Mel – “Seeking the highest …”: Kindling thy heart with divine fire, * thou didst utterly reduce the fire of the passions to ashes, * O God-bearing martyr Laurence, * thou confirmation of spiritual athletes; * and in the midst of thy sufferings * thou didst cry aloud with faith: ** Nothing can separate me from the love of Christ!

Ikos: Assembling, O ye faithful, with hymns let us all honour the spiritual athlete Laurence, who shone forth in the world like a steady beacon, as an initiate of ineffable mysteries; for by his supplications we are delivered from grievous transgressions. And having cleansed our hearts, let us glorify Christ Who glorifieth him who is mighty amid sufferings and who saith: Nothing can separate me from the love of Christ!

Ode 7, Irmos: Thou didst save the children of Abraham in the fire * and slay the Chaldeans, * who unjustly entrapped the righteous ones. * O supremely hymned Lord, God of our fathers, * blessed art Thou.

Holy Martyr and Archdeacon Laurence, pray to God for us.

Forechosen to celebrate the Mysteries and serve the Word, thou wast shown to be a sacred vessel and oblation of the temple of heaven, chanting unto the Creator: O supremely hymned Lord God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Holy Martyr and Archdeacon Laurence, pray to God for us.

Covered by the law of the life which is in Christ, O most blessed Laurence, thou didst not bow thy mind to those who imposed laws of death and corruption, but chanted: O supremely hymned Lord God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

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

Clad in a body as one who manifestly felt no pain, O most blessed one, with valorous mind, and as one most noetically rich, thou didst dare the all-devouring fire, crying aloud: O supremely hymned Lord God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

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

Thou wast shown to be the noetic eastward portal of the Most High Who, in a manner beyond speech and understanding, appeared to mankind on earth through thee, O Bride of God: the blessed God of our fathers.

Ode 8, Irmos: O almighty Redeemer of all, * having descended and bedewed the children * in the midst of the flame, * Thou didst teach them to sing: * All ye works bless and hymn the Lord.

Holy Martyr and Archdeacon Laurence, pray to God for us.

In thy steadfastness of mind thou wast mightier than the unbearable flame, burning as if in another’s body, O blessed one, yet chanting with faith: All ye works bless and hymn the Lord!

Holy Martyr and Archdeacon Laurence, pray to God for us.

Like unto the three children, thou didst quench the burning embers of the fire with the dew of divine grace, crying aloud and chanting: All ye works bless and hymn the Lord!

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

As Christ was thine enlightenment, He girded thee about with His own might, and led thee up to Himself as thou didst piously chant: All ye works bless and hymn the Lord!

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

A rod sprung forth from the root of Jesse wast thou, and in a manner past nature thou gavest rise to Christ my God and Lord, the Flower of the Godhead. Let all works bless thy birthgiving, O Virgin!

Ode 9, Irmos: Eve dwelt under the curse of sin * because of the infirmity of disobedience; * but thou, O Virgin Theotokos, * hast through the Offspring of thy pregnancy * blossomed forth blessing upon the world. * Wherefore, we all magnify thee.

Holy Martyr and Archdeacon Laurence, pray to God for us.

Thou didst offer thyself as a perfect sacrifice and incense pleasing unto the Master, being tried by the fire of suffering like gold in a crucible; whereby thou didst become a foremost adornment of the Church, O right wondrous one.

Holy Martyr and Archdeacon Laurence, pray to God for us.

Deified by the direct sight of God and by a higher union, O Laurence, in word and by divine vision thou wast radiantly illumined by the uttermost Light. Wherefore, we all call thee blessed.

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

Thou didst shine forth from the West like the sun, O blessed one, O great and most glorious wonder; illumining all the Church with thy beams, O right wondrous one; and warming all with the fervor of faith. Wherefore, we all call thee blessed.

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

The prophets, beholding images of thy birthgiving, O all-immaculate one, were instructed thereby from afar by divine inspiration, loudly proclaiming it to the world, and we now marvel at their fulfilment.

Troparion, tone 4: In his sufferings, Thy martyr Laurence O Lord, * received an imperishable crown from Thee, our God; * for, possessed of Thy might, * he set at naught the tyrants and crushed the feeble audacity of the demons. ** By his supplications save Thou our souls.

Prayers to the Seven Youths of Ephesus

Prayer from the Great Euchologion “For One Who Is Ill and Cannot Sleep”

O God, Great, Praised, Incomprehensible and Ineffable, Who didst fashion man with Thy hands, taking dust from the earth, and Who didst honour him with Thine Image, O Jesus Christ, Most-desired Name, together with Thy Father Who is without beginning, and Thy Most-Holy, Good, and Lifegiving Spirit: Do Thou manifest unto Thy servant, N., and visit him (her) in soul and body, being entreated by our most-glorious Sovereign Lady, the Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary; by the holy Bodiless Powers of Heaven; by the honourable and glorious Prophet, Forerunner and Baptist John; by the holy, glorious and all-praised Apostles; by the holy, glorious and right-victorious Martyrs; by our Fathers among the Saints and ecumenical Teachers: Basil the Great, Gregory the Theologian, and John Chrysostom; by Athanasius and Cyril, Nicholas of Myra in Lycia, Cyril and Methodius, Teachers of the Slavs, Spyridon the Wonderworker, and all the holy Hierarchs; by the holy Apostle, Protomartyr and Archdeacon Stephen; by the holy, glorious Great-Martyrs: George the Trophy-bearer, Demetrius the Myrrhgusher, Theodore Stratelates, and all the holy Martyrs; by our Venerable and God-bearing Fathers: Anthony, Euthymius, Savvas the Sanctified, Theodosius (Founder of the Common Life), Onouphrius, Arsenius, Athanasius the Athonite, and all the Venerable Ones; by the holy Unmercenary Physicians: Cosmas and Damian, Cyrus and John, Panteleimon and Hermalaeus, Samson and Diomedes, Thalelaeus and Tryphon, and all the rest; by Saint(s), N. (of the Day); and by all Thy Saints; and grant unto him (her) a peaceful sleep, the sleep of bodily health and salvation, and life and strength of soul and body, as once Thou didst visit Abimelech, Thy favourite, in the house of Agrippa, and gavest him the consolation of sleep, that he not see the Fall of Jerusalem, and having nourished him with sleep, didst raise him up again in the twinkling of an eye, to the glory of Thy goodness; and as Thou didst make manifest Thy holy glorious Seven Youths, confessors and witnesses of Thine Appearance in the days of the Emperor Decius and the Apostate, having sustained them in the cave for 372 years, as infants kept warm in their own mother’s womb, none having endured corruption, to the praise and glory of Thy love for mankind, and for a testimony and confession of our regeneration and the resurrection of all. Do Thou Thyself, therefore, O Lover of Mankind and King, be present now also with the infusion of Thy Holy Spirit, and visit Thy servant, N., and grant unto him (her) health, strength and power, by Thy grace, for with Thee every action is good, and every gift is perfect. For Thou art the Physician of our souls and bodies, and unto Thee do we send up glory, thanksgiving and worship, together with Thy Father Who is without beginning, and Thy Most-Holy, Good, and Lifegiving Spirit, now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.