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Commemoration of Our Father Among the Saints, Gregory the Dialogist, Pope of Rome

At Vespers

After the Introductory Psalm, we chant: “Blessed is the man…”, the first antiphon.

On “Lord, I have cried…”, 6 stichera, in Tone VI: Special Melody “Having set all aside…”

Arrayed in the vestments of a hierarch, O thrice-blessed one, thou didst enter into the Holy of holies, fervently sending up praise to thy Master with pure lips, like an angel; and, illumined with deifying splendor, thou didst teach the faithful the theology of the Faith, O divinely radiant Gregory, as the godly shepherd of Rome, the teacher of the Church and initiate of the mysteries of the grace of God. Twice

Ever cleaving unto the Lord, and united to the divine borning Coal in purity, O hierarch, thou didst set down the liturgy of the presanctified Gifts, hallowing the faithful therewith during the days of fasting and rescuing them from the snares of the enemy; and thou didst bring them into the fold of heaven, showing thyself to be a pillar of fire in the splendor of thy piety and the effulgence of thy divine teachings, O God-bearing father Gregory. Twice

Thou didst blamelessly preserve the holy anointing of the hierarch, O sacred Gregory, and by the grace of Christ didst cause the gifts thereof to increase, like talants, in love and meekness, in the ardor of faith, in compassion and prayer, and in all whereby thou wast well-pleasing to the only Lord of glory. Wherefore, thou didst piously tend the reason-endowed flock of Christ in the meadow of salvation, O divinely eloquent one.

Thy divine memory hath now shone forth like the sun upon the ends of the world, O most honored one, joyfully illumining all the faithful with mystic splendors; and, assembling, we honor it with sacred psalms and hymns, entreating thee to beseech Christ in behalf of those who hymn thee, O divinely glorious one.

Glory…, in Tone III

Receiving from Christ the helm of the Church of Rome, O hierarch Gregory of great renown, thou didst pilot its ship to the haven of salvation and save it from the tempests of the enemy by the teaching of thy divinely wise words; wherefore, as thou hast boldness, earnestly ask of the Lord peace for the world and salvation for our souls.

Now and ever…: Dogmatic Theotokion, in the same tone

How can we not marvel at thy giving birth to the God-man, O all-honored one? For without having accepted the temptation of a man, O all-immaculate one, without a father thou gavest birth in the flesh to a Son Who was begotten without a mother before the ages, without His undergoing change, confusion or division, and yet preserved intact the character of both essences. Wherefore, O Virgin Mother and Mistress, entreat Him, that the souls of those, who in Orthodox manner confess thee to be the Theotokos, be saved.

Entrance. Prokimenon of the day. Three Readings:

A Reading from Proverbs

The memory of the just is praised, and the blessing of the Lord is upon his head. Blessed is the man who hath found wisdom, and the mortal who knoweth prudence. For it is better to traffic for her, than for treasures of gold and silver. And she is more valuable than precious stones: no precious thing is equal to her in value. For length of existence and years of life are in her right hand; and in her left hand are wealth and glory: out of her mouth righteousness proceedeth, and she carrieth law and mercy upon her tongue. Hearken to me, O children, for I will speak solemn truths. Blessed is the man who shall keep my ways; for my outgoings are the outgoings of life, and in them is prepared favor from the Lord. Ye, O men, do I exhort; and utter my voice to the sons of men. I, wisdom, have built up; upon counsel, knowledge and understanding have I called. Counsel and safety are mine; prudence is mine, and strength is mine. I love those that love me; those who seek me shall find grace. O ye simple, understand subtlety, and ye that are untaught, imbibe knowledge. Hearken unto me again; for I will speak solemn truths. For my throat shall meditate truth; and false lips are an abomination before me. All the words of my mouth are in righteousness; there is nothing in them wrong or perverse. They are all evident to those that understand, and right to those that find knowledge. For I will instruct you in truth, that your hope may be in the Lord, and ye may be filled with the Spirit.

A Reading from Proverbs

The mouth of the righteous droppeth wisdom: but the tongue of the unjust shall perish. The lips of just men drop grace: but the mouth of the ungodly is perverse. False balances are an abomination before the Lord: but a just weight is acceptable unto Him. Wherever pride entereth, there will also disgrace: but the mouth of the humble doth meditate wisdom. The integrity of the upright shall guide them, but the overthrow of the rebellious shall spoil them. Possessions shall not profit in the day of wrath, but righteousness will deliver from death. When a just man dieth, he leaveth regret: but the destruction of the ungodly is speedy and causeth joy. Righteousness traceth out blameless paths: but ungodliness encountereth unjust dealing. The righteousness of upright men delivereth them: but transgressors are caught in their own destruction. At the death of a just man his hope doth not perish: but the boast of the ungodly perisheth. A righteous man escapeth from a snare, and the ungodly man is delivered up in his place. In the mouth of ungodly men is a snare for citizens: but the understanding of righteous men is prosperous. In the prosperity of righteous men a city prospereth, but at the destruction of the wicked there is exultation. At the blessing of the upright a city shall be exalted, but by the mouths of ungodly men it is overthrown. A man void of understanding sneereth at his fellow citizens: but a sensible man is quiet.

A Reading from the Wisdom of Solomon

Though the righteous be prevented with death, yet shall he be in rest. For honorable age is not that which standeth in length of time, nor that is measured by number of years. But wisdom is the gray hair unto men, and an unspotted life is old age. He pleased God, and was beloved of Him; so that, living among sinners, he was translated. Yea, speedily was he taken away, lest that wickedness should alter his understanding, or deceit beguile his soul. For the bewitching of naughtiness doth obscure things that are honest; and the wandering of lust doth undermine the simple mind. He, being made perfect in a short time, fulfilled a long time; for his soul pleased the Lord: therefore hasted He to take him away from among the wicked. This the people saw, and understood not, neither laid they up this in their minds: that His grace and mercy is with His saints, and that He doth visit His chosen.

At the Aposticha, these stichera, in Tone IV, Special Melody: “As one valiant among the martyrs…”

Let us praise today the right glorious Gregory, the champion of the Orthodox Faith, the teacher of piety, the archpastor of the Old Rome, the adornment of hierarchs, the comforter of Christians, the helper and feeder of the poor, the healer of the ailing.

Stichos: My mouth shall speak wisdom, and the meditation of my heart shall be of understanding.

Placed by the Holy Spirit upon the exalted episcopal cathedra because of thy humility, O venerable one, thou wast a radiant lamp of the Church, illumining its magnificence with thy splendid deeds and divine teachings, and with thy hymns and prayers to the Lord in honor of His heavenly presanctified Gifts.

Stichos: Thy priests shall be clothed with righteousness, and Thy righteous shall rejoice.

Having the fire of love for God and neighbor ever in thy heart, and ready to lay down thy soul for the flock of Christ, O diligent one, thou wast shown to be an emulator of Christ, a true peer of the most lauded apostles, O holy one, and a most worthy successor of the preëminent Peter.

Glory…, in Tone II

Having adorned thyself with the struggles of fasting and pastorship, O father Gregory, thou didst use both for wings, like a golden dove, and in soul didst soar aloft to Christ, Whom thou desired. Through thy mediation may the Master of all grant that we may fight the good fight, O thou who art the chosen of God, and to share in everlasting life for the sake of His great mercy.

Now and ever…: Theotokion

Accept the supplications of thy servants, O Theotokos, our helper and refuge; for to whom shall we flee if not to thee, O Mistress? Thou art a shelter and insuperable rampart, and by thine intercession are we preserved from misfortunes. And now, forsake us not, O most good and blessed one, for in thee, after God, do we set our hope.

Troparion, in Tone IV

Receiving divine grace from God on high, and strengthened with the power thereof, O glorious Gregory, thou didst desire to walk the path of the Gospel. Wherefore, thou hast received from Christ the reward of thy labors, O most blessed one. Him do thou entreat, that He save our souls.

Glory…, Now and ever…: Theotokion, in the same tone

The mystery hidden from before the ages and unknown even to the angels, through thee, O Theotokos, hath been revealed to those on earth: God incarnate in unconfused union, Who willingly accepted the Cross for our sake and, thereby raising up the first-formed man, hath saved our souls from death.

At Matins

At “God is the Lord…”, the Troparion of the saint, twice; and Glory…, Now and ever…, the Theotokion.

After the first chanting of the Psalter, this Sessional hymn, in Tone IV, Special Melody: “Having been lifted up…”

Assembling, in sacred hymns let us all praise the right glorious hierarch of the Lord, crying out to him: By thy supplications save those who honor thee, cast down the arrogance of the Papists, and ask a peaceful life for the Orthodox, O most wise Gregory.

Glory…, Now and ever…: Theotokion

O ye faithful, let us bless the Theotokos, the fervent aid of those in tribulation, our helper and reconciliation to God, through whom we have been delivered from corruption.

After the second chanting of the Psalter, this Sessional hymn, in Tone IV, Special Melody: “Go thou quickly before…”

Having cleansed the noetic sight of thy soul, thou didst behold the mysteries of God and therewith didst teach all the pious; and, leading them up to the summit of divine vision, thou didst instruct them to worship God in Trinity, O thrice-blessed one.

Glory…, Now and ever…: Theotokion

O all-glorious Lady and Mistress! Thou art the joy of the heavenly hosts, the adornment of hierarchs and ornament of all the saints, the bulwark of Christians and the way of sinners, the surety of those who magnify thee.

Polyeleos, and this magnification

We magnify thee, O holy hierarch Gregory, and we honor thy holy memory; for thou dost entreat Christ our God in our behalf.

Selected Psalm verses

A Hear this, all ye nations; give ear, all ye that inhabit the world. [Ps. 48: 2]

B My mouth shall speak wisdom, and the meditation of my heart shall be of understanding. [Ps. 48: 4]

A Come, ye children, hearken unto me; I will teach you the fear of the Lord. [Ps. 33: 12]

B I have proclaimed the good tidings of Thy righteousness in the great congregation. [Ps. 39: 10]

A Thy truth and Thy salvation have I declared. [Ps. 39: 11]

B I will declare Thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I hymn Thee. [Ps. 21: 23]

A That I may hear the voice of Thy praise, and tell of all Thy wondrous works. [Ps. 25: 7]

B O Lord, I have loved the beauty of Thy house, and the place where Thy glory dwelleth. [Ps. 25: 8]

A I have hated the congregation of evil-doers, and with the ungodly will I not sit. [Ps. 25: 5]

B For I have kept the ways of the Lord, and I have not acted impiously toward my God. [Ps. 17: 22]

A The mouth of the righteous shall meditate wisdom, and his tongue shall speak of judgment. [Ps. 36: 30]

B His righteousness abideth unto ages of ages. [Ps. 110: 3]

A Thy priests shall be clothed with righteousness, and Thy righteous shall rejoice. [Ps. 131: 9]

B Blessed are those who dwell in Thy house; unto ages of ages shall they praise Thee. [Ps. 83: 5]

Glory…, Now and ever…Alleluia…Thrice.

After the Polyeleos, this Sessional hymn, in Tone V, Special Melody: “The Word Who with the Father and the Spirit is equally without beginning…”

Enkindled by the fire of love, thou didst perform the liturgy of the holy presanctified Gifts, O sacred Gregory, thou boast of patriarchs. And we fervently entreat thee: Ask thou that fervent love and sanctity which cannot be taken away may be sent down upon us who glorify thee.

Glory…, Now and ever…: Theotokion

O pure Virgin, thou holy of holies, thou gavest birth to Christ the Deliverer, the Holiest of all who are holy, Who sanctifieth all. Him do thou beseech, that He purify and save thy servants.

Song of Ascents, the first antiphon of Tone IV

Prokimenon, in Tone IV

Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints.

Stichos: What shall I render unto the Lord for all that He hath rendered unto me?

Let every breath praise the Lord.

Gospel according to John, §35 from the midpoint [Jn. 10: 1-8]

The Lord said to the Jews who came to Him: “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He who entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. But he who entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out. And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice. And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him; for they know not the voice of strangers.” This parable spake Jesus unto them; but they understood not what things they were which He spake unto them. Then said Jesus unto them again: “Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep. All that ever came before Me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them.”

After Psalm 50, this sticheron, in Tone VI

O thrice-blessed and venerable one, thou wast a diligent emulator of the virtues of the patriarch Abraham, ever feeding the hungry and in abundance giving what is needful to the impoverished. And now, entreat Christ, that He grant us great mercy.

Canon of Supplication to the Theotokos [the Paraclysis], with 6 Troparia, including its irmos; and that of the holy hierarch, with 8 Troparia.

Ode I

Canon of the Holy Hierarch, in Tone II

Irmos: Come, ye people, let us chant a hymn to Christ God, Who divided the sea and guided the people whom He had led forth from the bondage of Egypt, for He hath been glorified.

O Savior Christ, never-waning Light of the world, send thou Thy noetic light to illumine my mind, that I may hymn the divine Gregory, the primate of Rome.

That He Who foreseeth all things might show thy virtue to the world, O most wise one, He set thee upon the visible summit of the hierarchy.

Finding thee to be an honored and most pure dwelling-place, O divinely wise and holy Gregory, the all-holy Trinity dwelt within thee and filled thee with divine gifts.

Theotokion: With hymns we glorify her who gave birth to God: the pure treasure of virginity, the deliverance of the human race and the joy of the angels.

Ode III

Irmos: Establish us in thee, O Lord Who hast slain sin by the Tree, and plant the fear of Thee in the hearts of us who hymn Thee.

Thy life was holy, thy visage godly, thy demeanor serene, thy mind adorned, and thy discourse seasoned with the salt of grace, O divinely wise one.

Christ lighted thee like a candle, O most blessed Gregory, who shinest forth on the summit of the Church and dost illumine it with thy rays.

Thou didst remove thy mind wholly from the world, O hierarch Gregory, and, directing all thy desire toward the Master, thou didst attract the grace of the Spirit.

Theotokion: The oratory of the rhetors hath been silenced and the keen intellect of the sages hath been blunted by thy birthgiving, O Bride of God, for they are at a loss how to understand the mystery of thee.

Sessional hymn, in Tone V, Special Melody: “The Word Who with the Father and the Spirit is equally without beginning…”

Let us hymn the ever-glorious hierarch, the godly shepherd and champion of Rome, and let us cry out to him with compunction: Entreat Christ, O divinely eloquent Gregory, that He grant peace and the uprooting of heresies and schisms to the Churches, and great mercy to our souls.

Glory…, Now and ever…: Theotokion

O most holy Virgin, have mercy upon us who flee to thee, the compassionate one, with faith and beg thy fervent aid; for, in that thou art good and the Mother of God Most High, thou canst save all who ever implore thy maternal supplications.

Ode IV

Irmos: I have heard, O Lord, of Thy glorious dispensation, and I have glorified Thine unapproachable power, O Thou Who lovest mankind.

Thou shinest with miracles and with thy divine prayers dost drive far away the darkness of the passions, O wise one.

Proclaiming the incarnation of Christ and His divinity, O divinely eloquent one, thou didst put to shame the [Arian] tribe of the Lombards.

Entering the never-waning darkness like Moses, thou didst receive the tablets of the Gospel, O blessed Gregory.

Theotokion: We bless the Virgin, the heavenly ladder whereby God descended and elevated human nature.

Ode V

Irmos: O Lord, Bestower of light and Creator of the ages: guide us in the light of Thy commandments, for we know none other God than Thee.

Today Gregory, the emulator of Christ and adornment of hierarchs, calleth the faithful to celebrate his honored memory and to receive grace.

Ever rendering magnification unto God, O right glorious one, thou wast exalted by Him as is meet, for the Lord knoweth how to glorify those who glorify Him.

Having lived thy life peacefully, thou hast attained unto the habitations of peace, O God-pleaser, for Christ, the Peace Who passeth all understanding, hath received thee.

Theotokion: O Mary, thou wast shown to be holy earth unbroken by the plough, which put forth the Grain of life, and he who eateth thereof with piety shall not see death, in that he partaketh of life.

Ode VI

Irmos: Whirled about in the abyss of sin, I call upon the unfathomable abyss of Thy loving-kindness: Lead me up from corruption, O God!

Constantly abiding with God, O right wondrous one, by His splendors thou wast shown to be a pillar of fire going before the faithful people.

Noetically joining thyself to the immaterial angels, O venerable one, in thy repose thou hast been glorified with them, just as thou wast heavenly before thine end.

Thy lips poured forth the words of the Spirit like living water, O sacred preacher, and they gladden the hearts of those who follow thee with faith.

Theotokion: Thou wast the remitter of the debt of Eve, O pure one, for, through the new Adam Who shone forth from thee thou didst richly repay her debt.

Kontakion, in Tone III

Thou didst show thyself to be an emulator of Christ, the Chief Shepherd, O father Gregory, guiding the ranks of monks to the fold of heaven; and from thence thou didst teach the flock of Christ His commandments. And now thou dost rejoice and join chorus with them in the mansions of heaven.

Ikos: Having Jesus, the Son of God, the great High Priest Who hath passed above the heavens, O hierarch Gregory, thou didst hold fast to the confession of piety, rightly dividing the word of the Truth like the apostles. Wherefore, having lived in accordance with the Gospel and greatly increased the talant given thee, thou didst come with boldness before the throne of the grace of the Most High, and, vouchsafed ineffable joy, thou joinest chorus in the mansions of heaven.

Ode VII

Irmos: The command of the iniquitous tyrant, opposed to God, raised up a lofty flame; but Christ, Who is blessed and all-glorious, spread a spiritual dew upon the pious youths.

God gave strength unto thee, His faithful servant, to crush the invisible enemy and to save the flock of Christ unharmed.

Offering up the unbloody sacrifice to Him Who seeth all things, thou wast shown to be greater than Aaron, O God-pleaser, for not with the blood of bullocks and goats, but with the Blood of Christ, dost thou sanctify the people.

Thou didst glorify the uncreated Trinity all throughout thy life, and now, with the angels and all the saints, thou dost chant to God the thrice-holy hymn, O wise Gregory.

Theotokion: Thou art our unashamed refuge, O Theotokos; wherefore, we beseech thee earnestly: Protect and preserve from evils thy servants who glorify thee.

Ode VIII

Irmos: Once, in Babylon, the fiery furnace divided its activity at the command of God, consuming the Chaldæans, but bedewing the faithful, who chant: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

As a successor to the apostles in throne, grace, faith and purity, thou wast shown to be a healer of illnesses and passions and an expeller of evil spirits, O venerable one.

By abstinence thou didst vanquish the passions and the sowers thereof, O Gregory, and, having attained dispassion, thou didst chant to thy Master: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

Anointed with noetic myrrh, thou hast poured forth myrrh, both tangible and noetic, from thy divinely inspired words and the shrine of thy relics, as a wonderworker.

Theotokion: O Virgin, we know thee to be another ark of the covenant and a house full of the glory of God; for the All-divine One chose thee before all generations and was pleased, as God, to make His abode within thee.

Ode IX

Irmos: God the Lord, the Son of the unoriginate Father, hath revealed Himself to us incarnate of the Virgin, to enlighten those in darkness and to gather the dispersed. Wherefore, we magnify the all-hymned Theotokos.

O assemblies of the pious, come ye together to celebrate the solemnity of the divine Gregory; for he granteth health to the bodies and sanctification to the souls of those who honor him with love.

Restrained by the bonds of my countless offenses, I flee to thee, O God-pleasing father, praying with faith, that I may receive liberation therefrom through thine intercession.

Having increased the talant of grace, thou didst stand forth with joy, saying to the Master: “Behold, I have brought Thee much more than was given me!” Wherefore, as a good and faithful servant, thou hast entered into the joy of thy Lord.

Theotokion: Rejoice, O Bride of God, thou divinely glorified tabernacle, joy of the angels and ornament of hierarchs! Rejoice, O most lauded one, thou beauty of the faithful and boast of all men.

Exapostilarion

A pillar of fire descending on thee from heaven showed thee to be an archpastor of the Romans most worthy, O Gregory; for, afire with divine love, thou wast shown to be a lamp of the Church for the enlightenment and salvation of many.

Glory…, Now and ever…: Theotokion

Unto thee do we flee, O Mother of the Light, crying aloud: With the shining radiance of thy grace dispel the dark cloud of our passions, that, through thy supplications, O Theotokos, we may be shown to share in the never-waning Light .

On the Praises, 4 stichera, in Tone I

Let Gregory now be praised: the treasury of spiritual gifts, the most sacred primate of Rome, the divinely inspired clarion, who was truly pleasing to the Trinity. Twice

Instructing the people in the mysteries, thou didst piously teach them the word of God, as an initiate of the mysteries of Christ’s apostles and a brilliant theologian of Orthodoxy, O Gregory, thou boast of patriarchs.

From all sorrow and temptations, from infirmities of soul and body, from the harm wrought by enemies visible and invisible, by thy supplications save those who hymn thee, O holy hierarch Gregory.

Glory…, in Tone II

Let us hymn Gregory as one perfected in the labors of asceticism, who struggled well for the sake of life everlasting, and raised up monasteries and temples to the glory of God; and let us say: Rejoice, thou majesty of hierarchs, confirmation of the faithful, who hath illumined the ends of the earth with thy virtues and doctrines. Entreat the all-good Savior in behalf of those who celebrate thine honored memory.

Now and ever…: Theotokion

All my hope do I set on thee, O Mother of God. Keep me under thy protection.

At Divine Liturgy

On the Beatitudes, 8 Troparia: 4 from Ode III, and 4 from Ode VI of the saint’s canon.

Prokimenon, in Tone I

My mouth shall speak wisdom, and the meditation of my heart shall be of understanding.

Stichos: Hear this, all ye nations; give ear, all ye that inhabit the world.

Epistle to the Hebrews, §335 [13: 17-21]

Brethren: Obey those who have the rule over you, and submit yourselves; for they watch for your souls, as those who must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you. Pray for us: for we trust we have a good conscience, in all things willing to live honestly. But I beseech you the rather to do this, that I may be restored to you the sooner. Now the God of peace, Who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is well-pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to Whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

Alleluia, in Tone II

Stichos: The mouth of the righteous shall meditate wisdom and his tongue shall speak of judgment.

Stichos: The law of his God is in his heart, and his steps shall not be tripped.

Gospel according to Luke, §24 [6: 17-23].

At that time, Jesus stood in the plain, and the company of His disciples, and a great multitude of people out of all Judæa and Jerusalem, and from the seacoast of Tyre and Sidon, who came to hear Him, and to be healed of their diseases; and those who were vexed with unclean spirits: and they were healed. And the whole multitude sought to touch Him: for there went virtue out of Him, and healed them all. And He lifted up his eyes on His disciples and said: “Blessed be ye poor: for yours is the kingdom of God. Blessed are ye who hunger now: for ye shall be filled. Blessed are ye who weep now: for ye shall laugh. Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man’s sake. Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven.”

Communion Verse

In everlasting remembrance shall the righteous be; he shall not be afraid of evil tidings.

The Menaion of the Orthodox Church © Isaac E. Lambertsen