The Feast of Theophany

The Vigil

Note: Nothing of the Resurrectional material from the Octoechos is sung, but rather the service is entirely of the Feast.


Great Compline (with Litia): The Priest in Phelonion exclaims: Blessed is our God, and censes the entire church. Reader: Amen. And the order of Great Compline continues with the singing of God is with us (The Royal Doors are opened during the singing of God is with us, and at the troparion, and at the Kontakion).

After the first Trisagion: Troparion of the Feast (When Thou, wast baptized in the Jordan).

After the second Trisagion: Kontakion of the Feast (Thou hast appeared today).

After the Doxology: Litia of the Feast (He that doth clothe Himself with light); G: Feast (Desiring to fulfill that which Thou hast established); N: Feast (Today creation is enlightened).

Aposticha: Feast (Seeing Thee coming to him at the River Jordan); G/N: Feast (Beholding the Sun Who shone forth from the Virgin).

Now lettest Thou Thy servant, Trisagion; Troparia: Feast x3. Blessing of the Bread. Blessed be the name of the Lord x3. Psalm 33: to …but they that seek the Lord shall not be deprived of any good thing.

Priest: The blessing of the Lord. And the reader begins the Six Psalms.


Matins: God is the Lord, Tone 1; Troparia: Feast x2 (When Thou wast baptized in the Jordan); G/N: Feast

After each Kathisma: Sessional hymns of the Feast.

Polyeleos and Magnification of the Feast: We magnify Thee, O Christ the Giver of life, Who for our sake now art baptized in the flesh by John, in the waters of the Jordan. Psalm verse: God be gracious unto us and bless us, cause Thy face to shine upon us, and have mercy on us.

Small litany; Sessional hymns of the Feast; Hymns of Ascents, First Antiphon of the 4th Tone: From my youth.

Prokimenon of the Feast, Tone 4: The sea beheld and fled, Jordan turned back.

Matins Gospel: Mark 1: 9-11 (§2).

Psalm 50; G: Let all things rejoice today; N: Repeat; Have mercy on me, O God; Sticheron of the Feast (God the Word appeared); Save, O God, Thy people.


Canon:   Feast (both canons)   12     Glory to Thee, our God, glory to Thee.

               Irmoi: The Lord mighty in battle. & Israel passed through the storm-tossed deep (Each Irmos is repeated twice).

               Katavasia: The Irmoi of both canons.


After Ode 3, Hypakoe of the Feast (When Thou didst illumine all).

After Ode 6, Kontakion (Thou hast appeared today) and Ikos of the Feast.

At Ode 9, we do not sing More Honorable. We instead sing the refrains of the Feast, with the canon of the feast: Magnify, O my soul, the all-pure Virgin Theotokos, who is more honorable than the armies on high; and the others.

Exapostilarion: Feast x3 (The Savior appeared).

Praises, Tone 1: Feast 4 (Christ our Savior, the Light of Light); G: Feast (Thou didst clothe Thyself); N: Feast (Today Christ hath come). After the Great Doxology: Troparion of the Feast. The two remaining Litanies, and the Festal Dismissal: May Christ our true God, Who for our salvation deigned to be baptized by John in the Jordan; First Hour.


Hours: Troparion: Feast; Kontakion: Feast.


Liturgy of St. Basil the Great, which is served early due to the labor of the vigil.

The festal antiphons are sung in place of the usual Typical Psalms and Beatitudes.

At the entrance, the deacon (or priest if there is no deacon) says the Festal Introit in place of the usual O come let us worship: Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord. We have blessed you out of the house of the Lord. God is the Lord, and hath appeared unto us. And immediately the Troparion of the feast (When Thou, wast baptized in the Jordan), G/N: Kontakion of the feast (Thou hast appeared today unto the whole world).

Instead of the Trisagion: As many as have been baptized into Christ.

Prokimenon, Tone 4: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.

Epistle: Titus 2:11-14; 3:4-7 (§302).

Alleluia, Tone 4.

Gospel: Matt. 3:13-17 (§6).

Instead of It is truly meet, we sing the refrain Magnify, O my soul, with the Irmos of the Ninth Ode, second canon (Every tongue is at a loss to praise thee as is due).

Communion Hymn: The grace of God that bringeth salvation unto all men hath appeared.

After the prayer behind the Ambon, we process out for the Great Blessing of the Water, as at the end of Vespers (usually an outdoor blessing is done at this liturgy); Afterwards, we return into the temple.

Blessed be the name of the Lord x3.

And the Festal Dismissal: May Christ our true God, Who for our salvation deigned to be baptized by John in the Jordan…