Feast of the All Merciful Savior and the Most Holy Theotokos

9th Sunday after Pentecost / Tone 8

 

Before Vespers, the priest (wearing his phelonion) approaches the Table of Oblation, where the precious Cross, decorated with various flowers and lying on a tray that is covered with an Aer, has been prepared. The Royal Doors and the curtain are closed. Priest: Blessed is our God. Deacon or Reader (in the altar): Trisagion Prayers. During this, the priest censes the precious Cross and then gives up the censer. Priest: For Thine is the Kingdom. Then are sung the troparion of the Cross, G/N and the Kontakion. During the singing, the priest makes a prostration, then places the tray with the Cross (covered by the Aer) on his head and carries it to the Holy Table, preceded by two candle-bearers. The priest puts the Cross on the Holy Table in the place of the Gospel Book, which has previously been set upright at the back of the Holy Table. The priest censes three times around the Holy Table. Then the curtain and the Royal Doors are opened and the vigil begins.

 

Great Vespers: Blessed is the man.

Lord I have Cried, Tone 8, on 10: Octoechos 4; Feast 3 (We all-radiantly honor Thy city, O most merciful Lord); Cross 3 (Today the godly multitude of the faithful rejoiceth); G: Cross (To Thy precious Cross, O Christ God); N: Dogmatic Theotokion in the Tone of the week.

Entry; O Gladsome Light; Prokimenon of the day, Tone 6: The Lord is King. 3 Readings for the Feast.

Litia stichera of the Cross 3 (Today the holy words of David); G/N: Cross (Beholding Thee, the Creator and Fashioner of all).

Aposticha: Octoechos; G: Feast (Without leaving the bosom of the Father); N: Cross (O God, the words of Moses Thy prophet have been fulfilled).

Troparia: O Theotokos and Virgin x2; Cross (O Lord, save Thy people) x1.

 

Matins: God is the Lord, Tone 8; Troparia: Troparia: Resurrection x2; G: Feast (O most merciful Savior); N: Cross (O Lord, save Thy people).

After each Kathisma: Sessional hymns from the Octoechos.

Polyeleos and Magnification of the Feast (chanted in front of the Holy Table, on which the Cross is lying): We magnify Thee, O Christ, the Giver of life, and we honor Thy holy Cross, whereby Thou hast saved us from bondage to the enemy. Evlogitaria (The assembly of angels was amazed). This is sung in front of the Holy Table, on which the Cross is lying.

Hypakoe of the Tone, all the Sessional hymns of the Feast. Hymns of Ascents, and Prokimenon, Tone 8.

Matins Gospel 9, John 20:19-31 (65).

Having beheld the Resurrection; Psalm 50; G: Through the prayers of the Apostles; N: Through the prayers of the Theotokos; Have mercy on me, O God; Jesus having risen. Save, O God, Thy people. The Gospel is not brought out for veneration on this day, because the Cross is brought out later.

 

Canon: Resurrection 4 Glory to Thy Holy Resurrection, O Lord.

Theotokos 2 O Most Holy Theotokos, save us.

Feast 4 Glory to Thee, our God, glory to Thee.

Cross 4 Glory, O Lord, to Thy precious Cross.

Irmos of the Canon of the Resurrection, Tone 8.

Katavasia of the Cross: Inscribing the invincible weapon of the Cross.

 

After Ode 3, Kontakion and Ikos of the Feast (I have become a committer of every abomination); Sessional hymn of the Feast (O most Merciful One); G/N: (Of old, Joshua, the son of Nun).

After Ode 6, Kontakion (O Thou Who wast lifted up willingly on the Cross) and Ikos of the Cross.

At Ode 9, More Honorable.

Exapostilaria: Resurrection; G: Feast (O Christ, Thou never-waning Light); N: Cross: (The Cross is the guardian of the whole world).

Praises, Tone 8, on 8: Resurrection 3; Feast 2 (We honor Thy heavenly city, O most merciful Lord); Cross 3 (The precious Cross with doxasticon (O Lord Who enabled the meek David), and the final two psalm verses: Exalt ye the Lord our God, and worship the footstool of His feet; for He is holy. & God is our King before the ages, He hath wrought salvation in the midst of the earth); G: Gospel Sticheron; N: Most blessed art thou. The Great Doxology.

 

For the rubrics concerning the bringing out of the Cross, see Festal Menaion, p. 153f; or p. 195f of the Menaion. During the Great Doxology the priest, wearing all his vestments, censes three times around the Holy Table. While the choir sings the concluding Holy God to a slow and solemn melody, the priest takes the Cross with the tray and carries it upon his head out of the Altar through the north door, preceded by two candles, stopping in front of the Royal Doors. When the final Holy God has ended, he says Wisdom! Aright! Then we sing the troparion of the Cross, thrice. The priest places the decorated Cross on an analogion it in the middle of the church, and censes around it three times (in Cathedrals the rite of the Elevation is served). Then he sings three times: Before Thy Cross, and this is also repeated three times by the people. Then, the priest, clergy, and the people (one by one) venerate the precious Cross. And as the clergy and people venerate the Cross, the choir sings the Stichera in the Menaion.

 

After the conclusion of the stichera, the two remaining Litanies and the Festal Dismissal: My Christ our True God, through the intercessions of His most pure Mother, through the power of the precious and life-creating Cross; First Hour.

 

Hours: Troparia: Resurrection; G: Cross & Feast, alternating; Kontakion: Resurrection, Cross, and Feast, alternating.

 

Liturgy: Beatitudes on 12: Octoechos 4; Feast 4, from Ode 3; Cross 4, from Ode 6.

At the entrance, the Troparion of the Resurrection; Cross; Feast; G: Kontakion of the Resurrection; G: Feast; N: Cross.

The Trisagion is sung as usual.

Prokimenon, Tone 6: Save, O Lord.

Epistle: I Cor. 3:9-17 (128); I Cor. 1:18-24 (125).

Alleluia, Tone 1.

Gospel: Matt. 14:22-34 (59); John 19:6-11,13-20,25-28,30-35 (60).

It is truly meet.

Communion Hymn: The light of Thy countenance, O Lord, hath been signed upon us.

Resurrectional Dismissal.

 

After the Liturgy, the lesser blessing of the waters is performed as set forth in the Book of Needs. Where possible, there is a procession to a well, river, or lake.

 

Before the All-Night Vigil on Saturday, the Cross is brought into the holy altar, and placed on the holy table.