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The Service of the Sunday Vespers

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Contents

Preface
How to Use This Book
Psalm 103
Great Litany
Resurrection Stichera of the Eight Tones
“O Joyful Light”
Prokeimena
Resurrection Aposticha of the Eight Tones
Ode of Symeon
Resurrection Apolytikia and Theotokia of the Eight Tones

Preface

The success of The Service of the Sunday Orthros published by Holy Cross Orthodox Press, has made the publication of The Service of Vespers for Sunday a natural sequel. Many lay persons in the Church, as well as Reverend Fathers, who are encouraging the participation of their laity in both services, have found the bilingual texts to be of great help in this regard. The publication of the Sunday Vespers, therefore, is being offered with this hope in mind.

But such texts are almost always produced with the help of many kind and generous individuals. Many thanks are consequently due to Father Charles Sarelis of Kansas City, Missouri and to Father John Maheras of Cohasset, Massachusetts who reviewed the entire translation and offered numerous suggestions greatly enhancing the text. I have also profited from the expertise of my colleagues: Professors Evie Zachariades‑Holmberg, Father Theodore Stylianopoulos, Father George Papademetriou, all of Hellenic College/Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology. I owe thanks also to Stelyio Muksuris, Maria Koumparakis, Maria Moschoni, and Georgia Stathopoulou for their contributions to this volume. Any imperfections, of course, are my own.

Finally, I am indebted to Bishop Methodios, President of Hellenic College/Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology for his continuous encouragement.

Father N. M. Vaporis

How to Use This Book

The service of the Sunday Vespers (sung on Saturday evening) consists of fixed and variable parts. The former are read and/or sung each time the service is conducted, while the variable parts, divided into eight tones and for the most part used consecutively, vary from week to week depending on the particular tone used during that week. Hence, it is very important to know beforehand the tone of the week (found in the annual Taxis or Kanonion issued by the Patriarchate) which begins on Saturday evening and is considered to be, ac­cording to the Church calendar, the beginning of Sunday.

The variable parts of the Vespers are as follows:

  1. Psalm 140, which is sung in eight different tones depending on the tone of the week
  2. Resurrection Stichera
  3. Prokeimena
  4. Resurrection Aposticha
  5. Resurrection Apolytikia and Theotokia

For example, if the tone for Sunday is the First, we would read and/or chant everything from Tone 1. We would sing Psalm 140 in the First Tone followed by the Resurrection stichera of the First Tone. We then skip “O Joyful Light” and the Sunday prokeimenon. We then begin with the Priest saying, “Let us all say” and continue to where we sing the Resurrection aposticha of the First Tone. We then skip to where we sing the “Ode of Symeon” and continue to where we sing the Resurrection apolytikion and theotokion in the First Tone. We then take up the service where the Priest intones “Wisdom” and continue to the end.

On the following Saturday evening, we would do the same as the above except that since we would be using the Second Tone, the following would be the order. We would read and/or chant everything from Tone 2 to where we would sing Psalm 140 in the Second Tone followed by the Resurrection stichera of the Second Tone. We then skip to where we sing “O Joyful Light” and the Sunday prokeimenon. We then begin with the Priest saying, “Let us all say” and continue to where we sing the Resurrection aposticha of the Second Tone. We then skip to where we sing the “Ode of Symeon” and continue to the “Amen”. We then sing the Resurrection apolytikion and theotokion. We then take up the service where the Priest intones “Wisdom” and continue to the end.

The same order is followed on each successive Saturday evening, except that we proceed to the next tone until we reach the Eighth Tone whereupon on the next Saturday we begin all over again with the First Tone.

The Service Of The Sunday Vespers

Priest. Blessed is our God always, now and for­ever and to the ages of ages.

People: Amen.

Reader: Come, let us worship and bow down before our King and God.

Come, let us worship and bow down before Christ our King and God.

Come, let us worship and bow down before Christ himself, our King and God.

Psalm 103 (104)

Bless the Lord, O my soul. O Lord, my God, you are very great. You are clothed in praise and honor; who covers yourself with light as with a garment, spreading out the heavens as a curtain. You cover your chambers with the waters; you make the clouds your chariot; you walk on the wings of the wind, you make the angels spirits, and your ministers a flaming fire. You establish­ed the earth on its sure foundation; it shall never be moved. You covered it with the deep as with a garment; the waters shall stand on the hills. At your rebuke they shall flee; at the voice of your thunder they shall be alarmed. They go up to the mountains and down to the plains, to the place which you founded for them. You have set a boundary which they shall not pass, neither shall they turn again to cover the earth. You send forth fountains among the valleys; the waters shall run between the mountains. They shall give drink to all the beasts of the field; the wild donkeys shall quench their thirst. By them the birds of the heavens shall have their habitation; they shall sing among the rocks.

You water the mountains from your chambers; the earth is satisfied with the fruit of your miracles. You make grass grow for the cat­tle, and vegetation for the service of man that you may bring bread out of the earth, and wine that gladdens the heart of man, oil to make his face cheerful, and bread which strengthens man’s heart. The trees of the plain shall be full of sap, even the cedars of Lebanon which you have planted. There birds will build their nests; the stork has her home in the fir trees. The high mountains are a refuge for stags, and the rock for the rabbits. You ap­pointed the moon for seasons; the sun knows his going down. You make darkness and it is night; in it all the wild beasts of the forest will creep about. Young lions roar for prey, and seek their food from God. The sun rises, and they gather together, and lie down in their dens. Man goes forth to his work, and to his labor until the even­ing.

O Lord, how great are your works. In wis­dom you have made them all. The earth is filled with your creation. This great and wide sea, in which are innumerable living things both small and great. There sail the ships, and there is Leviathan which you have made to play there. All wait for you, to give them their food in due season. When you give it to them, they will gather it up; when you open your hand, they shall be filled with goodness. But when you have turned away your face, they shall be troubled. When you take away their breath, they fail, and return to their dust. You sent forth your Spirit, and they are created; and you renew the face of the earth. May the glory of the Lord endure forever; may the Lord rejoice in his works; who looks upon the earth and makes it tremble; who touches the mountains and they smoke. I will sing praises to the Lord all my life; I will sing praises to my God as long as I live. May my meditation be sweet to him; I will rejoice in the Lord. May sinners and wicked men disappear from the earth and may they be no more. Bless the Lord, O my soul.

(Again)

The sun knows its going down. You make darkness, and it is night. O Lord, how great are your works. In wisdom you have made them all.

Glory to the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, now and forever and to the ages of ages. Amen.

Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia. Glory to you, O God (3). Lord, you are our hope, glory to you.

The Great Litany

Priest: In peace let us pray to the Lord.

People: Lord, have mercy.

Priest: For the peace of God and the salvation of our souls, let us pray to the Lord.

People: Lord, have mercy.

Priest: For peace in the whole world, for the stability of the holy churches of God, and for the unity of all, let us pray to the Lord.

People: Lord, have mercy.

Priest: For this holy house and for those who enter it with faith, reverence, and the fear of God, let us pray to the Lord.

People: Lord, have mercy.

Priest: For our Archbishop (Name), and our Bishop (Name), the honorable presbyters, the deacons in the service of Christ, and all the clergy and laity, let us pray to the Lord.

People: Lord, have mercy.

Priest: For our country, the president, and all those in civil authority and public service, let us pray to the Lord.

People: Lord, have mercy.

Priest: For this parish and city, for every city and town, and for the faithful who live in them, let us pray to the Lord.

People: Lord, have mercy.

Priest: For favorable weather, an abundance of the fruits of the earth, and temperate seasons, let us pray to the Lord.

People: Lord, have mercy.

Priest: For travelers by land, sea and air, for the sick, the suffering, for captives, and for their salvation, let us pray to the Lord.

People: Lord, have mercy.

Priest: For our deliverance from all affliction, wrath, danger, and distress, let us pray to the Lord.

People: Lord, have mercy.

Priest: Help us, save us, have mercy upon us and protect us, O God, by your grace.

People: Lord, have mercy.

Priest: Remembering our most holy, pure, blessed, and glorious Lady, the Theotokos and ever‑virgin Mary, with all the saints, let us com­mit ourselves and one another and our whole life to Christ our God.

People: To You, O Lord.

Priest: For to You belong all glory, honor, and worship, of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, now and forever and to the ages of ages.

People: Amen.

(Then the people begin singing: “Lord, I have cried out to you” in the designated tone:)

Psalm 140 (141)

People: Lord, I have cried out to you, hear me. Hear me, O Lord. Lord, I have cried out to you, hear me. Receive the voice of my prayer when I cry out to you. Hear me, O Lord.

Let my prayer be set forth as incense before you, the lifting up of my hands as an evening sacrifice. Hear me, O Lord.

(If the commemorated saint has a doxastikon, we sing six resurrection stichera from the Octoechos and four of the saint; “Glory” of the saint, and “Now and always” and the Theotokion of the Octoechos. If the saint has no doxastikon, we sing seven resurrection stichera and three from the saint, “Glory… Now and always” and the Theotokion of the tone.)

Psalm 141

Verse 1. Bring my soul out of prison that I may give thanks to your name.

Verse 2. The righteous will surround me; for you will deal bountifully with me.

Psalm 129 (130)

Verse 3. Out of the depths I cry to you O Lord. Lord, hear my voice.

Verse 4. Let your ears be attentive to the voice of my supplication.

Verse 5. If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities, Lord who could stand? But there is forgiveness with you.

Verse 6. For your name’s sake I have waited for you, O Lord; my soul waits for your word. My soul has trusted in the Lord.

Verse 7. From the morning watch 'til night from the morning watch let Israel trust in the Lord.

Verse 8. For with the Lord is mercy and with him is plenteous redemption; and he shall redeem Israel from all its iniquities.

Psalm 116 (117)

Verse 9. Praise the Lord, all you nations; praise him, all you people.

Verse 10. For his mercy has been abundant toward us; and the truth of the Lord endures forever.

Resurrection Stichera of The Eight Tones

First Tone

Accept our evening prayers, holy Lord, and grant us remission of our sins, for you alone revealed the resurrection to the world.

Encircle Zion, people, and surround her. Give glory to him who is risen from the dead, for he is our God and has delivered us from our iniqui­ties.

Come, people let us praise and worship Christ, glorifying his resurrection from the dead, for he is our God and has delivered the world from the deception of the enemy.

Heavens, be glad! Foundations of the earth, sound the trumpets! Hills, shout for joy! For behold, Emmanuel has nailed our sins to the cross and he, the Giver of life, has put death to death by raising up Adam, as a loving God.

Let us praise him who of his own will was crucified for us in the flesh. He suffered, was buried and rose from the dead. Let us say: Confirm your Church in the true faith and bring peace to our lives, O Christ, for you are good and loving God.

As we the unworthy stand before your life-giving sepulcher, we offer a hymn of praise to your ineffable compassion, Christ our God. For you are without sin and have accepted the cross and death in order to grant the world resurrection, as a loving God.

Let us praise the Word who is without beginning and is co‑eternal with the Father. He came forth ineffably from the Virgin’s womb and for our sake he willingly accepted the cross and death and rose in glory. Let us say: Glory to you, O Lord, Giver of life and Savior of our souls.

Glory… Now… Theotokion.

Let us praise Mary the Virgin, glory of all the world and doorway to heaven, who, begotten of man, gave birth to the Lord, and who, adornment of the faithful, is hymned by the angelic hosts. For she has been shown to be heaven and the temple of the Godhead. She is the one who, breaking down the wall of enmity, ushered in peace and threw open the Kingdom. With her as the anchor of our faith, we have a defender in the Lord to whom she gave birth. Take courage, therefore, people of God, take courage, for he, the Almighty, will defeat your enemies.

Second Tone

Come, let us adore God the Word, begotten of the Father before all ages, who took flesh from the Virgin Mary. For he willingly suffered the cross and submitted himself to burial, and he rose from the dead and saved me, the one who has gone astray.

Our Savior Christ blotted out the bond that pledged us to the decree by nailing it to the cross, and he abolished the dominion of death. Let us worship his third day resurrection.

Together with the Archangels, let us praise the resurrection of Christ. He is the Deliverer and Savior of our souls. He will come again in awesome glory and mighty power to judge the world he fashioned.

The angel proclaimed you Master, crucified and buried. And he said to the women: Come and see the place where the Lord lay. For he is risen as he foretold, for he is almighty. Therefore, we worship you who alone are immortal. Have mer­cy on us, O Christ, Giver of life.

You have abolished the curse of the tree by your cross, and by your burial you have done away with the dominion of death, while by your rising you have enlightened mankind. Therefore, we cry out to you: Glory to you, O Christ, our God and benefactor.

The gates of death opened before you in fear, O Lord, and the gatekeepers of Hades, beholding you, were filled with awe. You destroyed the gates of brass and crushed the posts of iron. You led us out of the valley of the shadow of death and broke our chains.

Let us open our mouths and sing hymns of salvation. Come and fall down in the house of the Lord and say: Pardon our sins, you who hung upon the cross and rose from the dead, and yet are forever in the bosom of the Father.

Glory… Now… Theotokion.

At the coming of grace, the shadow of the law passed away. Just as the bush that burned was not consumed, so have you given birth and remained a virgin. Instead of a pillar of fire, the Sun of Righteousness shone forth; instead of Moses, Christ, the salvation of our souls appeared.

Third Tone

Your cross, Christ Savior, has destroyed the power of death and has abolished the deception of the devil. Therefore mankind saved by faith, offers you hymns of praise forever.

All of creation has been enlightened by your resurrection, O Lord, and paradise has once again been opened. Therefore, all creation extols you and offers hymns of praise forever.

I glorify the might of the Father and the Son and the power of the Holy Spirit, the undivided, uncreated Godhead, the consubstantial Trinity that reigns to the ages of ages.

We worship your precious cross, O Christ, and praise and glorify your resurrection, for by your wounds we have all been healed.

We praise the Savior who took flesh from the Virgin, for he was crucified for our sake and rose on the third day, bestowing on us his great mercy.

Going down to those in Hades, Christ gave them the good news saying: Take courage, I am now triumphant. I am the resurrection. I shall lead you forth, for I have broken the gates of death.

We who are unworthy to stand in your immaculate house send up to you our evening hymn, O Christ our God, and call upon you from the depths to deliver your people from the hands of their adversaries. You have enlightened the world by your third‑day resurrection, O loving God.

Glory … Now… Theotokion.

How can we not be amazed at your giving birth to God and man in one, most‑holy Virgin? For although you have never known man, you have brought forth without blemish and without a father a son in the flesh, begotten of the Father without a mother before all ages. He suffered no change, confusion or division, but kept in full the properties of each nature. Therefore, Lady, Virgin‑Mother, entreat him to save the souls of those who in the true faith acknowledge you to be the Theotokos.

Fourth Tone

Ever venerating your life‑giving cross, O Christ our Lord, we glorify your resurrection on the third day. By it you have restored corrupt human nature, O mighty One, and have reopened for us the upward path to heaven, for you only are a good and loving God.

Having willingly been nailed to the wood of the Cross, you abolished the penalty of disobedience committed through the tree, and by descending into Hades you have broken the bonds of death. Therefore, we worship your resurrection from the dead, and, rejoicing, we cry: Almighty Lord, glory to you.

You demolished by your Death, O Lord, the gates of hades; you dissolved the realm of death; and freed the human race from corruption, granting the world life and incorruptibility and Great Mercy.

Come, all you people, let us sing the praises of the Savior’s resurrection on the third day by which we have been delivered from the unbreakable bonds of Hades. Having received incorruption and life, we cry out: You who were crucified, buried, and rose save us by your resurrection, O only loving God.

Angels and men, O Savior, sing the praises of your third‑day rising, for it has shed light to the ends of the world. Delivered from the bondage of the enemy, we all cry out: Almighty Savior, Creator of life, save us by your resurrection, O only loving God.

You have shattered the gates of brass. You have broken asunder the chains and raised up fallen humankind, O Christ our God. Therefore, we cry with one voice: O Lord, who rose from the dead, glory to you.

Your birth from the Father is timeless and eternal, O Lord; your incarnation from the Virgin is ineffable and beyond all understanding; and your descent into Hades put fear into the devil and his angels. On the third day you rose, having trampled upon death, and granted us incorruption and your great mercy.

Glory… Now… Theotokion.

David the prophet, forefather of God through you, cried out in song concerning you to the One who has done magnificent things for you. The Queen stands at your right hand. For God, who gladly became man through you without a father, has proclaimed you mother and host of life, so that he might restore in us his image which was corrupted by passion. Having found the stray sheep caught in the mountains, he laid it on his shoulders and brought it to the Father. By his own free will he placed it among the heavenly hosts. Christ, who has great and abundant mercy, O Theotokos, will save the world.

Plagal of the First Tone

By your precious cross you have put the devil to shame, O Christ. By your resurrection, you have annihilated the sting of sin. You have saved us from the gates of death. O only‑begotten Son, we glorify you.

He who granted the human race resurrection was led like a lamb to the slaughter. The princes of hell trembled before him and the gates of agony were opened. For Christ the King of glory entered in, declaring to those in bonds: Go forth, and to those in darkness: Show yourselves. Let light surround you.

What a mighty wonder! In his love for humankind, the Creator of invisible things suffered in the flesh, and he who is immortal, rose. Come, all you nations, and let us worship him. We have learned to praise one God in three persons who in his compassion delivered us from error.

O Light who never fades, we offer you this evening worship, for in the fullness of time you filled the world with light, your flesh being a mirror of your splendor. You descended to Hades, dispelled the darkness, and made manifest to all nations the light of the resurrection. O Lord, Giver of light, glory to you.

Let us glorify Christ, the author of our salvation, for by his rising from the dead the world has been saved from error; the choir of angels rejoices; the error of demons takes flight; fallen Adam is raised; and the devil is destroyed.

The guards were thus instructed by the evildoers: keep hidden the resurrection of Christ; take the pieces of silver and say that, as we were sleeping, the body was stolen from the tomb. But who has ever seen or heard that a body, especially a body anointed and naked, was stolen from a tomb and the grave clothes left lying there? Be not deceived, O Jews, study the words of the prophets, and learn that he is in truth the Redeemer of the world and God almighty.

Lord, our Savior, you have despoiled Hades, trampled down death, and enlightened the world through your holy cross. Have mercy on us.

Glory… Now… Theotokion.

In times past, the image of the unwedded Bride was inscribed in the Red Sea. There, Moses parted the waters; here, Gabriel took part in the miracle. Then, Israel rode dry‑shod through the deep; now the Virgin has without seed given birth to Christ. After the passing of Israel, the sea remained impassible, after the birth of Emmanuel, the blameless Virgin remained incorrupt. You, O God, who are, have forever been and have appeared as man, have mercy on us.

Plagal of the Second Tone

Triumphant over Hades, O Christ, you ascended upon the cross to raise up with yourself those dwelling in the darkness of death. Free from among the dead, you pour forth life from your own light. Almighty Savior, have mercy on us.

Today, Christ, having trampled upon death, according to his word, rose up bestowing joy upon the world, so that all of us shouting this hymn might say: O Fount of life, light that no person may approach, O almighty Savior, have mercy on us.

Where shall we sinners fly from you, O Lord, who are everywhere in creation? Into heaven? Your abode is there. Into hell? You have trampled upon death. Into the uttermost parts of the sea? Your hand reaches there, O Master. We run to you and falling before you we pray: You, who rose from the dead, have mercy on us.

We exult in your cross, O Christ, and we praise and glorify your resurrection. You are indeed our God; we know no other Lord but you.

Ever blessing the Lord, we praise his resurrection. For by enduring the cross, he destroyed death by death.

Glory be to your might, O Lord, for you have destroyed the power of death, and you have renewed us through your cross, bestowing on us life and incorruption.

Your burial, O Christ, burst asunder the bonds of Hades; your resurrection from the dead gave light to the world. To you, O Lord, be glory.

Glory… Now… Theotokion.

Who will not call you blessed, most holy Virgin? Who will not sing praises of your wondrous birth‑giving? For the only‑begotten Son, timelessly having shone forth from the Father, came forth from you who are pure. And having been ineffably made flesh, he, who by nature is God, for our sake became also by nature man: not in two divided persons, but in two natures without confusion. O honored and all blessed one, beseech him to have mercy on our souls.

Grave Tone

Come, let us rejoice in the Lord who destroyed the power of death and enlightened mankind; and let us cry along with the angels: Glory to you, our Creator and our Savior.

On our account, O Savior, you endured the cross and the tomb. As God you put death to death by death. Therefore, we worship your resurrection on the third day. Glory to you, O Lord.

On beholding the resurrection of the Creator, the apostles, marveling, sang an angelic song of praise: This is the glory of the Church. These are the riches of the kingdom. Glory be to you, O Lord, who suffered death for us.

Though you, O Christ, have been taken captive by evil men, you are my God and I am not ashamed. I do not deny that your back was scourged, nor will I hide that you were nailed to the cross. I boast of your resurrection, for your death is my life. Almighty and loving God, glory to you.

Fulfilling the prophecy of David, Christ revealed to his disciples the majesty of his habitation in Zion. He showed himself praised and glorified forever with the Father and the Holy Spirit. Formerly, as the Word without flesh, and then incarnate for our sake and slain as man he rose in power as a loving God.

As God and Master, O Christ, by your will you descended into Hades despoiling death; and on the third day you rose, raising with you Adam, held captive by the chains of hell and of corrup­tion, who cried and said: Glory be to your resurrection, O only loving God.

You were laid in the tomb as if asleep, O Lord, and after three days you rose in mighty strength, raising up with you, as almighty, Adam from the corruption of death.

Glory… Now… Theotokion.

You, O Theotokos, have been acknowledged as a mother above and beyond nature, and you remain a virgin beyond words and understanding. No tongue can explain the miracle of your giving birth. For your conceiving was wondrous, pure One, and the manner of your child‑bearing impossible of understanding. For when God so wills, the order of nature is overthrown. Therefore, we all acknowledge you as the mother of God, and fervently beseech you: make supplication that our souls may be saved.

Plagal of the Fourth Tone

We offer up to you, O Christ, our evening hymn and spiritual worship, for it has pleased you to have mercy on us by your resurrection.

Lord, Lord, cast us not away from your presence, but be pleased to have mercy on us by the resurrection.

Rejoice, O holy Zion, mother of churches and dwelling place of God, for you were the first to receive remission of sins by the resurrection.

Begotten before all ages of God the Father, the Word, who in latter times took flesh of a virgin, willingly endured death by the cross and by his resurrection saved us who had been subject to death.

We glorify your resurrection from the dead, O Christ, by which you have set free the race of Adam from the torment of Hades and, as God, have granted to the world eternal life and your great mercy.

Glory to you, O Christ, Savior, only begotten Son of God who were nailed to the cross and on the third day rose from the tomb.

We offer you glory, O Lord, who of your own will have endured the cross for our sake; and we worship you, almighty Savior, who love mankind. Cast us not away from your presence, but hear us and save us by your resurrection.

Glory… Now… Theotokion.

In his love for mankind, the King of heaven appeared upon earth and dwelled among us. For he took flesh from the pure Virgin, and thus in­carnate he came forth from her. The only Son is he: two‑fold in nature, but not in person. For this reason proclaiming him to be truly perfect man and perfect God, we confess Christ to be our God. Therefore, beseech him, O virgin Mother, to have mercy on our souls.

O Joyful Light

(While the doxastikon is being sung, the priest exits from the sanctuary:)

Priest: Wisdom. Let us stand.

(And he sings the O Joyful Light:)

Priest: O joyful light of the holy glory of the im­mortal Father, the heavenly, holy, blessed Jesus Christ. Now that we have reached the setting of the sun and behold the evening light, we sing to God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. It is fitting at all times to praise you with cheerful voices, O Son of God, the Giver of life. Behold, the world sings your glory.

Priest: The evening prokeimenon.

People: The Lord reigns; he has clothed himself with honor (3).

Prokeimena

(The following are the Prokeimena of the rest of the days of the week:)

On Sunday Evening

Behold now, bless the Lord all you servants of the Lord.

On Monday

The Lord will hear me when I cry out to him.

On Tuesday

Your mercy, O Lord, shall follow me all the days of my life.

On Wednesday

O God, by your name save me, and judge me by your might.

On Thursday

My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.

On Friday

O God, you are my helper, and your mercy shall go before me.

(On major feast days there are also readings.)

Priest: Let us all say with our whole soul, and with our whole mind, let us say.

People: Lord, have mercy (3).

Priest: Lord Almighty, God of our fathers, we pray you, hear us and have mercy.

People: Lord, have mercy (3).

Priest: Have mercy on us, O God, according to your great mercy; we pray you, hear us and have mercy.

People: Lord, have mercy (3).

Priest: Let us pray for pious and Orthodox Christians.

People: Lord, have mercy (3).

Priest: Let us pray for our Archbishop (Name) and our Bishop (Name).

People: Lord, have mercy (3).

Priest: Let us pray for our brethren, priests, hieromonks, deacons, and monastics, and all our brotherhood in Christ.

People: Lord, have mercy (3).

Priest: Let us again pray for the blessed and ever-memorable founders of this holy church, and for all our fathers, mothers, brothers, and sisters who are asleep here in the Lord and for the Orthodox everywhere.

People: Lord, have mercy (3).

Priest: Let us again pray for mercy, life, peace, health, salvation, protection, and forgiveness of the sins of all pious and Orthodox Christians living and visiting in this community and city, and everywhere on earth.

People: Lord, have mercy (3).

Priest: Let us again pray for those who do charitable work, for those who serve in this holy house, for those who labor, teach, and sing, and for all the people here present who await your great and rich mercy.

People: Lord, have mercy (3).

Priest: For you are a merciful and loving God, and to you we give glory, to the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, now and forever and to the ages of ages.

People: Amen.

Priest: O Lord, keep us this evening without sin. Blessed are you, O Lord, God of our fathers, and praised and glorified is your name to the ages. Amen. O Lord, let your mercy be upon us for we have set our hope in you. Blessed are you, O Lord, teach me your commandments. Blessed are you, Master, grant me understanding of your commandments. Blessed are you, Holy One, enlighten me with your commandments. Lord, your mercy is forever. Do not despise the works of your hands. To you is due praise, to you is due song, to you is due glory, to the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, now and forever and to the ages of ages.

People: Amen.

Priest: Let us complete our prayer to the Lord.

People: Lord, have mercy.

Priest: Help us, save us, have mercy upon us, and protect us, O God by your grace.

People: Lord, have mercy.

Priest: For a perfect, holy, peaceful, and sinless day, let us ask the Lord.

People: Grant this, O Lord.

Priest: For an angel of peace, a faithful guide, a guardian of our souls and bodies, let us ask the Lord.

People: Grant this, O Lord.

Priest: For forgiveness and remission of our sins and transgressions, let us ask the Lord.

People: Grant this, O Lord.

Priest: For all that is good and beneficial to our souls, and for peace in the world, let us ask the Lord.

People: Grant this, O Lord.

Priest: For the completion of our lives in peace and repentance, let us ask the Lord.

People: Grant this, O Lord.

Priest: For a Christian end to our lives, peaceful, without shame and suffering, and for a good account of ourselves before the awesome judgment seat of Christ, let us ask the Lord.

People: Grant this, O Lord.

Priest: Remembering our most holy, pure, blessed, and glorious Lady, the Theotokos and ever‑ virgin Mary, with all the saints, let us commit ourselves and one another and our whole life to Christ our God.

People: To you, O Lord.

Priest: For you are a good and loving God, and to you we give glory, to the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, now and forever and to the ages of ages.

People: Amen.

Priest: Peace be with all.

People: And with your spirit.

Priest: Let us bow our heads to the Lord.

People: To you, O Lord.

Priest: May the might of your kingdom be blessed and glorified, of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, now and forever and to the ages of ages.

People: Amen.

(The people then sing the resurrection aposticha of the Octoechos. “Glory” of the Saint (if celebrated), then the “Now and forever” and the Theotokion of the tone; otherwise “Glory… Now and forever” with the Theotokion of the tone.)

Resurrection Aposticha Of The Eight Tones

First Tone

By your passion we were set free from our passions, O Christ, and by your resurrection we were redeemed from corruption. O Lord, glory to you.

The Lord reigns: he has clothed himself with honor; the Lord has clothed and girded himself with strength.

Let creation rejoice, the heavens be glad, the nations clap their hands with joy. For Christ our Savior, in his love for mankind, has nailed our sins to the cross, put death to death, and given us life by raising the fallen Adam, father of all mankind.

For he has established the world and it shall not be moved.

You are beyond all understanding, King of heaven and earth, and because of your love for us all, you were crucified of your own will. Hades was filled with bitterness when it met you below, and the souls of the just rejoiced at receiving you. What a miracle this is! That the life of all should taste death in his desire to give light to the world that cries and says: Glory to you, O Lord, risen from the dead.

Holiness becomes your house, O Lord, for length of days.

The myrrh‑bearing women brought spices, and hastened in mourning to your tomb. And when they found your immaculate body gone and learned from the angels of the new and strange miracle, they said to the apostles: The Lord is risen, granting great mercy to the world.

Glory … Now… Theotokion.

Behold, the prophecy of Isaiah is fulfilled. As a virgin you gave birth, and after giving birth you remained as before. For it was God who was born, and the nature of mankind was thereby restored. O Mother of God have compassion for us your servants, you who bear in your arms the compas­sionate One. Entreat him, that our souls may be saved.

Second Tone

Your resurrection, O Christ our Savior, has illumined the entire earth and has recalled your creation. O almighty Lord, glory to you.

The Lord reigns; he has clothed himself with splendor; the Lord has clothed and girded himself with strength.

By the wood of the cross, O Savior, you abolished the curse of the tree, and by your burial you have destroyed the dominion of death, and have enlightened mankind by your resurrection. Therefore, we cry to you: Glory to you, O Christ our God, the Giver of life.

For he has established the world, and it shall not be moved.

When you appeared, O Christ, nailed upon the cross, you altered the beauty of created things. Cruelly the soldiers pierced your side with a lance; and the Jews asked that your tomb might be sealed. But you, O Lord, because of your mercy submitted to the tomb and rose on the third day. Therefore, glory to you.

Holiness becomes your house, O Lord, forever.

O Christ, Giver of life, for the sake of us mortals you willingly endured the passion and descended into Hades with power, snatching from the hands of the tyrant those who awaited you there, granting them an abode in paradise. Therefore, to us who give glory to your rising on the third day, grant pardon of our sins and your great mercy.

Glory… Now… Theotokion.

Here is a new miracle greater than all the miracles of old! For who has ever known a mother to bear a child without the help of man, and hold in her arms him who encompasses the whole of creation? It was the will of God to be born, and you most pure Virgin, have carried him, an infant in your arms. The boldness of a mother is yours. Pray, therefore, to him unceasingly for us who honor you, and entreat him to have mercy on us and save our souls.

Third Tone

By your passion, O Christ, you have darkened the sun. By your resurrection, you have given all things light. Accept our evening hymn, O lover of mankind.

The Lord reigns; he has clothed himself with honor; the Lord has clothed and girded himself with strength.

Your life‑giving resurrections O Lord, has brought light to the entire earth aid revived your creation that lay in corruption. Therefore, we, released from the curse of Adam, cry aloud: Glory to you, almighty Lord.

For he has established the world and it shall not be moved.

Suffering in the flesh, you, O God, who by nature cannot be changed, have changed yourself. Creation, unable to bear the sight to you hanging, was prostrate with fear, and it groaned as it sang the praises of your long‑suffering. You descended into Hades, and rose on the third day, granting life and great mercy to the world.

Holiness becomes your house, O Lord, for length of days.

You, O Christ have suffered death to deliver us from death, and you arose on the third day from the dead resurrecting with yourself those who acknowledge you as God. And you have enlightened the world. Lord, glory to you.

Glory …Now… Theotokion.

By the will of the Father, you have, without seed, conceived by the Holy Spirit the Son of God, who was begotten of the Father without a mother before the world began. He was born for our sake in the flesh of you without a father. Therefore, never cease to intercede to deliver our souls from danger.

Fourth Tone

Ascending upon the cross, O Lord, you abolished our ancestral curse; and descending into Hades, you set free those in eternal bonds. And you bestowed on humankind incorruption and life. We therefore praise and glorify your resurrection on the third day.

The Lord reigns; he has clothed himself with honor; the Lord has clothed and girded himself with strength.

Hanging upon the tree, O only mighty One, you shook all creation, and when you were laid in the tomb, you raised up those dwelling there and bestowed life and incorruption on our kind. Therefore, we praise and glorify your resurrection on the third day.

For he has established the world, and it shall not be moved.

The lawless people who gave you, O Christ, to Pilate condemned you to be crucified, and showed themselves thankless towards their benefactor. But you willingly suffered burial, and of your own will you arose as God on the third day, and bestowed on us everlasting life and great mercy.

Holiness becomes your house, O Lord, for length of days.

The women who sought you came in tears to your tomb, and when they found you not, they lamented and exclaimed: Our Savior and King of all, how is it that you have been stolen away? Where is your life‑giving body? But an angel then stood before them and replied: Do not weep, but go and proclaim the good tidings that the Lord is risen and grants us joy for he alone is compassionate.

Glory … Now… Theotokion.

Look down, most pure Virgin, upon the supplica­tions of your servants, and crush the assaults of our enemies, delivering us from all affliction. You are the only sure and secure anchor that we have, and you are our protection. Never permit us who call upon you, our Lady, to be put to shame. Hasten to fulfill the entreaties of those who in faith cry to you: Rejoice, O Lady, helper of all, the joy and protection, and the salvation of our souls.

Plagal of the First Tone

We lift up our voices in song to magnify you, Christ Savior, who became incarnate yet were never separated from heaven. For you, O Lord who love all, suffered the cross and death for our sake; and destroying the gates of Hades, you rose on the third day and saved our souls.

The Lord reigns; he has clothed himself with honor; the Lord has clothed and girded himself with strength.

Your pierced side, O Giver of life, poured streams of remission, life, and salvation upon us all. By accepting death in the flesh, you have granted us immortality; by taking up your abode in the tomb, you have set us all free, and as God you have raised us up with you in glory. Therefore, we cry aloud; Glory to you, Lord and loving God.

For he has established the world, and it shall not be moved.

Your crucifixion and descent into Hades are strange, O loving God. For after despoiling Hades, you as God raised up in glory with yourself those held captive in times of old, and you opened paradise and permitted them to enjoy it. Cleanse us, therefore, from sin, who glorify your resurrection on the third day and make us worthy to dwell in paradise, for you alone are merciful.

Holiness becomes your house, O Lord, for length of days.

For our sake you accepted suffering in the, flesh and rose on the third day from the dead.. Heal the passions of our flesh and raise us from our grievous iniquities and save us, O loving God.

Glory… Now… Theotokion.

Most reverent Virgin, you are the temple and the gate, the palace and the throne of kings. Christ the Lord, my deliverer, appeared through you to those asleep in darkness, for he, the Sun of Righ­teousness, wished to enlighten those he created in his own image with his own hands. Therefore, having the boldness of a mother towards a son, we entreat you to ever intercede with him to save our souls.

Plagal of the Second Tone

Angels in heaven sing the praises of your resurrection, Christ our Savior. Grant that we too on earth may with pure hearts glorify you.

The Lord reigns; he has clothed himself with honor; the Lord has clothed and girded himself with strength.

After smashing the gates of brass and breaking the bolts and bars of Hades, you, almighty God, raised up fallen mankind. Therefore, with one accord, we cry: O Lord, risen from the dead, Glory to you.

For he has established the world, and it shall not be moved.

Wishing to lift us out of the ancient corruption, Christ was nailed upon the cross and laid in the tomb. In tears the women bearing myrrh searched for him and said lamenting: Woe to us! O Savior of all, how did you consent to stay in a tomb? And as you stayed there willingly, how were you stolen? How were you moved? What place now hides your life‑giving body? O Master, appear to us as you have promised, and dry up the fountain of our tears. Thereupon as they wept, an angel came to them and cried: Cease your weeping and tell the apostles that the Lord is risen, granting the world forgiveness and great mercy.

Holiness becomes your house, O Lord, for length of days.

Crucified according to your will and despoiling death by your entombment, O Christ, you rose in glory on the third day as God, granting the world life everlasting and great mercy.

Glory… Now… Theotokion.

Most holy Virgin, Christ the Lord, Creator and Redeemer, proceeded from your womb, and clothing himself in me and set me free from the ancient curse of Adam. Therefore, most‑pure Virgin, we praise you without ceasing as Mother of God and true Virgin with the greeting of the angel: Rejoice! Lady, advocate, defender, and salvation of our souls.

Grave Tone

Rising from the tomb, Savior of the world, you have, together with your flesh, raised up mankind. Glory to you, O Lord.

The Lord reigns; he has clothed himself with honor; the Lord has clothed and girded himself with strength.

Come, let us worship him, who rose from the dead and enlightened all. For by his resurrection on the third day he set us free from the tyranny of Hades, granting us life and great mercy.

For he has established the world, and it shall not be moved.

You have descended into Hades, O Christ, despoiling death. Rising on the third day, you have also raised us up, and we glorify your almighty resurrection, O Lord and loving God.

Holiness becomes your house, O Lord, forever.

O Lord, what an awful sight it was to see you lying as if asleep in the tomb. Yet you rose on the third day in power also raising Adam who cried: Glory to your resurrection, O only loving God.

Glory… Now… Theotokion.

All of us who dwell on earth, taking refuge under your protection, O Lady, cry aloud to you: O Theotokos, you are our hope. Deliver us from our countless sins and save us.

Plagal of the Fourth Tone

You ascended the cross, Jesus, and came down from heaven and went to your death, O life eternal. You are the true light to those in darkness and the resurrection of all those who have fallen. Our enlightener and Savior, glory to you.

The Lord reigns; he has clothed himself with honor; the Lord has clothed and girded himself with strength.

Let us praise Christ who has risen from the dead. For he took upon himself soul and body, and by his passion separated them one from the other. He despoiled Hades when his pure soul descended there. But the holy body of our Redeemer lay uncorrupted.

For he has established the world, and it shall not be moved.

We glorify your resurrection from the dead, O Christ, in psalms and hymns, for by it you have freed us from the torments of Hades, and have, since you are God, granted us eternal life and great mercy.

Holiness becomes your house, O Lord, for length of days.

O Lord of all, incomprehensible creator of heaven and earth, through your passion on the cross you have freed me from passion. After en­during burial, you rose in glory, raising up Adam with your almighty arm. Glory to your resurrection on the third day, by which you have endowed us with eternal life and granted us pardon of our sins, for you alone are compassionate.

Glory… Now… Theotokion.

O Virgin unwedded, O Mother of God on high, you ineffably conceived God in the flesh. Receive the petitions of your suppliants, all-­blameless Lady, and grant us all purification of our transgressions. Accept now our supplication and pray that we may all be saved.

Ode of Symeon

(After the completion of the aposticha, the priest in­tones the Ode of Symeon, Luke :.29‑32.)

Priest: Lord, now let your servant depart in peace, according to your word; for my eyes have seen your salvation which you have prepared in the presence of all peoples, a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and for the glory of your people Israel.

People: Amen.

People: Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal, have mercy on us (3).

Glory to Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, now and forever and to the ages of ages. Amen.

All‑holy Trinity, have mercy on us. Lord, forgive our sins. Master, pardon our transgressions. Holy One, visit and heal our infirmities for your name’s sake.

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

Glory to the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, now and forever and to the ages of ages. Amen.

People: Our Father, who are in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

Priest: For yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory, of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, now and forever and to the ages of ages.

People: Amen.

(Immediately the people sing the resurrection apolytikion of the tone, “Glory” the troparion of the saint; “Now and always” the Theotokion of the tone or otherwise “Glory… Now and always” the Theotokion.)

Resurrection Apolytikia and Theotokia Of the Eight Tones

First Tone

Though the tomb was sealed by a stone and soldiers guarded your pure body, yet you arose on the third day, giving life to the world. Therefore, O Giver of life, the heavenly powers praise you: Glory to your resurrection, O Christ! Glory to your kingdom! Glory to your plan of redemption, O only loving God.

At the sound of Gabriel’s voice calling out to you: Hail, Virgin, the Master of all became incarnate in you, the holy Tabernacle as David the righteous said. By bearing your Creator, you have shown yourself to be more spacious than the heavens. Glory to him who dwelled in you! Glory to him who came forth from you! Glory to him who by your childbirth has set us free!

Second Tone

O life immortal, when you descended unto death, you destroyed Hades with the splendor of your divinity, and when you raised the dead from the depths of darkness, all the heavenly powers shouted: O Giver of life, Christ our God, glory to you.

Your mystery O Theotokos, is most glorious and surpasses all understanding. For sealed with purity and inviolate in virginity, you are acknowledged without doubt to be the mother who gave birth to the true God. Beseech him to save our souls.

Third Tone

Let the heavens rejoice and the earth be glad, for the Lord has shown the power of his reign: he has conquered death by death, and become the first born of the dead. He has delivered us from the depths of Hades, and has granted the world great mercy.

We sing your praise, O Virgin Theotokos. You intercede for the salvation of our race; for by taking flesh of you and by the cross, your Son and our God has delivered us from corruption as a loving God.

Fourth Tone

The joyful news of your resurrection was told to the women disciples of the Lord by the angel. And throwing off the ancestral curse, they boastingly told the Apostles: death has been vanquished, Christ our God is risen, bestowing great mercy on the world.

The mystery hidden from all ages and unknown to the angels was made manifest to those on earth through you, O Theotokos. God took flesh in a union without confusion, and for our sake he willingly accepted the cross. Thereby he raised the first‑created man and saved our souls from death.

Plagal of the First Tone

O faithful, let us give praise and worship to the Word, co‑eternal with the Father and the Spirit, born of the Virgin for our salvation. Of his own will he mounted the cross in the flesh, suffered death, and raised the dead through his glorious resurrection.

Rejoice! Impassable gateway of the Lord. Rejoice! wall and protection of those who take refuge in you. Rejoice! you who have not known wedlock and have given birth to your Son and Maker and God in the flesh. Cease not in your intercession on behalf of those who praise and worship your Son.

Plagal of the Second Tone

The angelic powers appeared at your tomb, and those guarding it became as dead. Mary stood at your grave seeking your pure body. You stripped the power ‑of Hades, yet remained untouched by its corruption. You met the Virgin and bestowed life. O Lord, who rose from the dead, glory to you.

You called your mother blessed when you went of your own will to your passion shining upon the cross. Seeking Adam, you said to the angels: Rejoice with me, for the lost piece of silver has been found. O God, you have ordered all things wisely, glory to you.

Grave Tone

Through your cross you destroyed death and opened paradise to the thief. You transformed the sorrow of the Myrrh‑bearers, Christ our God. You commanded the apostles to proclaim that you have risen from the dead, and granted great mercy to the world.

You are praised by all the world, O Virgin, and are the treasure house of the resurrection. Lead those who have put their faith in you out of the pit and abyss of their offenses. Before bearing a child you were a virgin, and in childbirth and after childbirth you remained a virgin. By giving birth to salvation, you have saved us who were guilty of sin.

Plagal of the Fourth Tone

O merciful Lord, you descended from on high and endured the three‑day burial to free us from our passions. O Lord, our life and resurrection, glory to you.

O good Lord, for our sake, you were born of a virgin and endured crucifixion, despoiling death by death, and, as God, you have shown forth the resurrection. Do not despise the work of your hands. Show your love for all, O merciful Lord. Accept the intercession made on our behalf by the Theotokos who gave birth to you, and, our Savior, save your despairing people.

Priest: Wisdom.

Reader: Father, bless.

Priest: Blessed are you, Christ our God, always now and forever and to the ages of ages.

People: Amen.

Reader: Make firm, Lord our God, the holy and pure faith of the pious Orthodox Christians, together with the Holy Church and this city forever.

Priest: All Holy Theotokos, save us.

Reader: More honorable than the Cherubim, and beyond compare more glorious than the Seraphim, without corruption you gave birth to God the Word. We magnify you, the true Theotokos.

Priest: Glory to You, Christ our God and our hope, glory to you. May Christ our true God, who rose from the dead as a good, loving and merciful God, have mercy upon us and save us, through the intercessions of his most pure and holy Mother; the power of the precious and life-giving Cross; the protection of the honorable, bodiless powers of heaven; the supplications of the honorable, glorious prophet and forerunner John the Baptist; the holy, glorious, and praise­worthy Apostles; the holy, glorious, and triumphant Martyrs; our holy God‑bearing Fathers; the holy, and righteous ancestors of God Joachim and Anna; of Saint (of the day) whose memory we com­memorate today, and all the saints.

Priest: Through the prayers of our holy fathers, Lord Jesus Christ, our God, have mercy on us and save us.

People:Amen.