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The 11th Day of the Month of May

Commemoration of the Holy Hieromartyr Joseph, Metropolitan of Astrakhan

At Great Vespers

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

On “Lord, I have cried…”, 8 stichera: 3 from the Pentecostarion, and 5 of the hieromartyr, in Tone V

The city of Astrakhan rejoiceth on the day of thy festival, O divinely blessed and holy hierarch Joseph, our fervent advocate and intercessor before the Lord. Twice

Come, ye faithful, and in psalms and hymns let us bless the holy hierarch Joseph; for he hath been shown to be a lamp of the right and pure Faith, and, having loved the Lord and his people with all his heart, undaunted by death he laid down his life for his sheep, and now prayeth to the Lord, that He grant us peace and great mercy.

O divinely wise and holy hierarch Joseph, thou divinely radiant beacon of the city of Astrakhan and all the lands beyond the Volga: illumined by rays of the love of Christ, thou wast shown to be a diligent advocate, a comforter of the sorrowful and a speedy helper in time of need. And now, pray thou unto the Lord, that He grant us peace and great mercy.

O holy hierarch Joseph, thou wast a faithful servant of God, sharing the starvation of thy flock, earnestly praying for victory over the enemy, and exhorting rebels to submit to God and the lawful authorities; wherefore, thou didst accept death, O blessed martyr, laying down thy life for thy sheep. And now pray thou unto the Lord, that He grant us peace and great mercy.

Glory…, in Tone I

O divinely blessed and holy hierarch Joseph, those on earth and those in heaven rejoice on the day of thy festival, the choir of hierarchs and martyrs who stand with thee before the consubstantial Trinity are glad, and the city of Astrakhan holdeth splendid festival and crieth out with faith: Rejoice, O holy hierarch Joseph, our fervent advocate and intercessor before the Lord!

Now and ever…, from the Pentecostarion.

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; they that 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 Litya, the sticheron of the temple, and this sticheron of the hieromartyr, in Tone VI

O martyred hierarch Joseph, when thou wast cast down from the rampart of the city, staining the earth with thy blood, the land of Astrakhan bitterly lamented, crying aloud: “My sun hath grown dark, hiding its spiritual light!” But now it rejoiceth and doth celebrate with splendor, for thou hast been revealed to it as a wondrous worker of miracles, a fervent advocate, and with supplication it hasteneth to thee, its intercessor; for thou pourest forth the grace of healings and illuminest the path which leadeth from the darkness of sin to the never-waning Light.

Glory…, Now and ever…, from the Pentecostarion.

At the Aposticha, these stichera of the hieromartyr, in Tone VII

Blessed art thou, O holy hierarch Joseph, for, truly walking the path of Christ, thou didst lead the people to the Lord with love and supplications, and, having suffered for the Faith, thou hast shone forth like a brilliant star. By thine entreaties lead us all up to the never-waning Light.

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

Thou didst fearlessly enter the assembly of iniquitous malefactors with the holy Cross, exhorting them to submit to God and the lawful authorities; but the rebels and brigands, stuck fast in cruel malice, wished to slay thee: they tortured thee with fire and all manner of torments, and cast thee down from the ramparts. And now, beseech the Lord, that He grant correction of our sinful life unto us who honor thee.

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

Having endured mockery and torture at the hands of the robbers, thou didst follow after Christ Who suffered for us, and, cast down from a high place, O hieromartyr, thou didst ascend to the heights of heaven, where joy is everlasting and life is immortal. May we also be vouchsafed to receive these things by thy supplications.

Glory…, in Tone VI

O divinely wise and holy hierarch Joseph, the sound of thy corrections went forth into all the lands of the Volga; wherefore, thou hast found the reward for thy labors in the heavens, didst vanquish hordes of demons and attain unto the ranks of the martyrs whose sufferings thou didst emulate. As thou hast boldness before the Lord, ask thou peace for our souls.

Now and ever…, from the Pentecostarion.

Troparion, in Tone VI

Having fought the good fight and crowned thy life with sufferings for the Truth, thou didst pass over to make thine abode in the mansions of heaven, where, standing before the throne of the Holy ­Trinity, pray thou, O holy hierarch Joseph, that the city of Astrakhan and our homeland be saved in peace.

Glory…, Now and ever…, from the Pentecostarion.

At Matins

On “God is the Lord…”, the Troparion from the Pentecostarion, twice; Glory…, that of the hieromartyr; Now and ever…, that from the Pentecostarion, once.

After the first chanting of the Psalter, this Sessional hymn, in Tone IV

Submitting to mockery and mistreatment at the hands of the rebels, and enduring torture by fire, thou didst drain the cup of sufferings, contending for righteousness and for loyalty to the rightful authorities, and, cast from the ramparts of the city and staining the ground with thy blood, thou wast shown to be a hieromartyr. Wherefore, we cry aloud: Save us by thy supplications, O holy hierarch of Christ!

Glory…, Now and ever…, from the Pentecostarion.

After the second chanting of the Psalter, this Sessional hymn, in Tone VI

O holy hierarch Joseph, thou showest thyself to be a helper amid tribulations and pangs for the pious who have recourse unto thee. And now we entreat thee: By thy supplications preserve us from all dangers.

Glory…, Now and ever…, from the Pentecostarion.

Polyeleos, and this magnification

We magnify thee, O holy hieromartyr Joseph, and we reverence thine honorable sufferings, which thou didst endure for Christ.

Selected Psalm verses

A Our God is refuge and strength. [Ps. 45: 2]

B A helper in afflictions which mightily befall us. [Ps. 45: 2]

A Therefore shall we not fear when the earth be shaken. [Ps. 45: 3]

B O God, who shall be likened unto Thee? Be Thou not silent, neither be still, O God. [Ps. 82: 2]

A For behold, Thine enemies have made a noise, and they that hate Thee have lifted up their heads. [Ps. 82: 3]

B Against Thy people have they taken wicked counsel, and have conspired against Thy saints. [Ps. 82: 4]

A They have made the dead bodies of Thy servants to be food for the birds of heaven. [Ps. 78: 2]

B The flesh of Thy saints for the beasts of the earth. [Ps. 78: 2]

A They have poured out their blood like water. [Ps. 78: 3]

B For Thy sake we are slain all the day long. [Ps. 43: 23]

A We are counted as sheep for the slaughter. [Ps. 43: 23]

B Thou hast made us a byword among the nations. [Ps. 43: 15]

A And I became a man scourged all the day long. [Ps. 72: 14]

B By fire hast Thou tried us even as silver is tried by fire. [Ps. 65: 11]

A We went through fire and water, and Thou didst bring us out into refreshment. [Ps. 65: 12]

B Be glad in the Lord, and rejoice, ye righteous. [Ps. 31: 11]

A For the Lord is in the generation of the ­righteous. [Ps. 13: 5]

B And their inheritance shall be for ever. [Ps. 36: 18]

A The righteous cried, and the Lord heard them. [Ps. 33: 18]

B A light hath dawned forth for the righteous man, and gladness for the upright of heart. [Ps. 96: 11]

A In everlasting remembrance shall the righteous be. [Ps. 111: 6]

B In the saints that are in His earth hath the Lord been wondrous; He hath wrought all His desires in them. [Ps. 15: 3]

A Wondrous is God in His saints, the God of Israel. [Ps. 67: 36]

B The righteous man shall flourish like a palm tree, and like a cedar in Lebanon shall he be multiplied. [Ps. 91: 13]

A The righteous man shall be glad in the Lord, and shall hope in Him. [Ps. 63: 11]

B And all the upright in heart shall be praised. [Ps. 63: 11]

Glory…, Now and ever… Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia, glory to Thee, O God. Thrice

After the Polyeleos, this Sessional hymn, in Tone I

Thou wast a good warrior of Christ and a preacher of salvation, O holy hierarch Joseph, when thou didst urge the rebels to submit to God and the lawful authorities, and didst instruct the people to be faithful to their duty. Wherefore, we pray: By thy supplications make our hearts steadfast in oneness of mind and love for our native land.

Glory…, Now and ever…, from the Pentecostarion.

Song of Ascents, the first antiphon of Tone IV

Prokimenon, in Tone IV

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

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

Let every breath praise the Lord.

Gospel according to John, §36 [Jn. 10: 9-16]

The Lord said to the Jews that came to Him: “I am the door: by Me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep. But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep. The hireling fleeth, because he is a hireling, and careth not for the sheep. I am the good shepherd, and know My sheep, and am known of Mine. As the Father knoweth Me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down My life for the sheep. And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear My voice; and there shall be one fold, and one Shepherd.”

After Psalm 50, this sticheron, in Tone VI

Thou hast been shown to be the radiant star of the Church of Astrakhan and the glory and boast of its hierarchs, O Joseph, thou diligent advocate slain by the iniquitous, who loved the Lord and thy people utterly, and laid down thy life for thy friends. Thy portion is now with the saints; wherefore, we cry aloud: O holy hierarch Joseph who wast slain, pray thou in behalf of our souls!

Canon from the Pentecostarion, with 6 Troparia, including the irmos; and that of the hieromartyr, with 8 Troparia, in Tone VIII

Ode I

Irmos: The staff of Moses, once working a wonder, striking the sea in the form of the Cross and dividing it, drowned the mounted tyrant Pharaoh, and saved Israel who fled on foot, chanting a hymn unto God.

With hymns let us radiantly hymn and praise the honored memory of the holy hierarch of Christ, for, having loved the great Christ, the Shepherd of the sheep, he did not fear the brigands, but laid down his life for his sheep.

When the robbers and criminals forced their way into Astrakhan, they committed great acts of malevolence and horror; but thou, O good archpastor, didst give shelter to men of peace in thy residence.

Thou hast passed over to the everlasting life which ageth not, O divinely wise and holy hierarch Joseph. By thy supplications vouchsafe it also unto us who entreat thee.

Theotokion: O Virgin, be thou the hope, the intercession and protection of thy people, that, delivered from misfortunes by thee, we may magnify thee with splendor as the true Mother of the true Light.

Ode III

Irmos: O Christ, Who in the beginning established the heavens in wisdom and founded the earth upon the waters, make me steadfast upon the rock of Thy commandments; for none is holy as Thee, O Thou Who lovest mankind.

Thou wast revealed as a good warrior of Christ, O holy hierarch; for, wielding the word of God like a sword, thou didst exhort the rebels from the divine Scriptures, desiring to lead them to Christ God.

Established firmly upon the rock of the commandments of Christ, O holy hierarch, thou didst boldly upbraid the brigands and rebels, saying: “Cease your evil deeds and submit to God and the lawful authorities, that ye may find forgiveness and mercy, and peace for your souls!”

The iniquitous men, cruel of heart, hearkened not unto thy words of love, and, burning with malice, condemned thee to torture by fire; for the law breaker hath no love for those who reprove him.

Theotokion: O Ever-virgin, thou hast been shown to be the Holy of holies and the heaven of heavens; for the Almighty, the Creator of heaven and earth, mystically made His abode within thee.

Kontakion & Ikos from the Pentecostarion.

Sessional hymn of the hieromartyr, in Tone I

O hieromartyr Joseph who wast slain by rebels, thou now abidest in peace and the repose of the righteous, for it is written: The souls of the righteous are in the hand of God, and no torment shall touch them. Grant peace also unto our souls, quelling the uprising of the passions, that by thy supplications we may attain unto everlasting rest.

Glory…, Now and ever…, from the Pentecostarion.

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!

When thou wast cast down from the ramparts of the city, a great noise was heard, and the malefactors were struck as dead by fear; and in the place where thy body was cast down many beheld three burning lamps; for thou didst pass from death unto life, where the never-waning light of the Holy Trinity shineth.

Girded about with power from on high, O blessed hieromartyr, thou didst fight the good fight, defending the oppressed, comforting the grieving, and denouncing and upbraiding the stubborn and the wicked with meekness. And now thou rejoicest with splendor where there is righteousness, peace and joy in our Lord.

Adorn thyself with splendor and dance, O city of Astrakhan, for thou hast a heavenly ally and protector, the holy hierarch Joseph, who standeth in celestial glory before the great King, and prayeth that those who honor his memory become children of the Light, fleeing the darkness of sin.

Theotokion: Thou wast shown to be a dwelling-place of the Light, O Mother of God, for the Lord, the Sun of glory, shone forth from thee, and thou hast opened unto us the gates to the never-waning Light.

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.

Thy soul, O hieromartyr, was grieved when the time came for thee to be taken away by the rebels; but, having strengthened thyself by prayer in the temple, thou didst manfully go forth to them.

Going fearlessly among the band of rebels, arrayed in thy hierarchal vestments and holding the holy Cross, like a prophet of God thou didst boldly say: “Wherefore have ye summoned me, ye thieves and oath-breakers? Cease your stubbornness and evil, and the king will have mercy on you. I speak the truth! Ye may rely on me!”

Like deaf serpents thine enemies listened not to thy words, O holy hierarch Joseph, and, seizing thee, they tortured thee with fire and all manner of torments, and cast thee down from a great height. And, having mounted to the heights of heaven, O hieromartyr, thou guidest all who honor thee to the city of the saints on high.

Theotokion: O most holy Virgin, Mother of the King of all, the Life and Resurrection of all shone forth from thee, that, having broken the power of death, He might as God save those who hymn thee.

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.

Heal thou our infirmities and pangs, O Savior, through the supplications of Thy holy hierarch; for, glorified by Thee, he granteth healings unto all through the imposition of his precious hairshirt.

Christ hath given thee the gift of working miracles, O holy hierarch; wherefore, by the power of the Lord thou didst open the mouth of one who was mute, and he glorified thee and gave thanks to the Lord Who hath given such authority to His elect.

The woman with an issue of blood, who in vain spent her substance upon earthly cures, touched the hem of the Lord’s robe, and received healing. And the power of Christ also abode within thee, O hieromartyr; for thy precious hairshirt, when laid upon the sick with prayer, imparteth speedy healing.

Theotokion: Be thou the salvation of those who set their hope in thee, O all-pure Virgin; for thine entreaty is able to accomplish much, O kind-hearted Mother. For thou deliverest our souls from misfortunes and sufferings.

Kontakion of the hieromartyr, in Tone II

Like an all-radiant star didst thou shine forth in Astrakhan, O holy hierarch Joseph, where thou wast born and raised, and thou didst accept a martyr’s death out of loyalty to God and the lawful authorities. And we, honoring thy sufferings, cry aloud unto thee: O holy hierarch Joseph who wast slain by rebels, entreat Christ God in behalf of our souls!

Ikos: Loving the divine commandments of Christ, and hating the pleasures of this world, O holy hierarch, thou didst earnestly approach Him, and wast a beacon enlightening all the lands of the Volga with thy radiance of spirit. Wherefore, falling prostrate, we beseech thee: Illumine the eyes of our soul, that we may hymn thy strugglesthine ascetic feats and vigilance, and thy martyric end, for which thou now enjoyest the life of blessedness. Honoring thee, we cry: O holy hierarch Joseph who wast slain by rebels, entreat Christ God in behalf of our souls!

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!

Delivered from the fire, the children joyfully hymned the Savior and Deliverer; and thou, O hieromartyr, while burned by the material fire, wast delivered from the everlasting flame, crying: Blessed art Thou, O Lord God of our fathers!

In the midst of fiery torture, like the three children thou didst direct thy mind and heart unto the Lord, O holy hierarch, crying: Blessed art Thou, O Lord God of our fathers!

In the kingdom of heaven thou joinest chorus with the children and with all the saints, O blessed one, and joyfully chantest unto the never-waning Light: Blessed art Thou, O Lord God of our fathers!

Theotokion: Blessed and all-glorious art thou forever, O boast of Christians, joy and gladness of all, O Mary, Bride of God; for thou pourest forth joy upon all who cry out to thy Son: Blessed art Thou, O Lord God of our fathers!

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!

Thou hast been shown to partake of ineffable joy, O hieromartyr, ever abiding in God; and at the hour of thy martyrdom thou didst cry out to the Lord from the depths of thy soul: Ye children, bless! Ye priests, hymn! Ye people, exalt Christ supremely forever!

When the iniquitous ones led thee to the rampart of the city, emulating Christ, O blessed one, thou didst lift up thine eyes to heaven, and didst pray for those who were mistreating thee: O Lord, remember not this sin against them! And the priests of the city, falling down at thy feet with tears, gave thee the last kiss, for thou didst depart unto the Lord, crying: Ye children, bless! Ye priests, hymn! Ye people, exalt Christ supremely forever!

Thou didst live angelically upon the earth, O Joseph, and since thy repose thou hast made thine abode with the angelic choirs in the mansions of heaven, crying: Ye children, bless! Ye priests, hymn! Ye people, exalt Christ supremely forever!

Theotokion: Thy Son and our God, Who freed the three children from the furnace, delivereth all from the furnace of perils by thy mediation, O all-pure one. To Him do we cry aloud: Ye children, bless! Ye priests, hymn! Ye people, exalt Christ supremely forever!

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.

Thou now enjoyest incorruptible food, divine light and everlasting glory, O hieromartyr, magnifying the Lord with the angelic ranks and all the saints.

O holy hierarch, in hymns and songs we all honor thee as a beacon of the Church, magnifying thee as is meet.

Standing in glory before God the King, O hieromartyr Joseph, by thy supplications preserve the land of Russia and our city from all misfortunes.

Theotokion: Glory to thee, O all-blessed Mary, Mother of our Lord and Creator! May we be vouchsafed His eternal glory by thine entreaties!

Exapostilarion

O lamp of the Church of Astrakhan, holy hierarch Joseph, standing now before the preëternal Light, instruct us also to walk in the light of the commandments of God, that we too may come to the abodes of light.

Glory…, Now and ever…, from the Pentecostarion.

On the Praises, 6 stichera: 3 from the Pentecostarion, and 3 of the hieromartyr, in Tone II

Ye angels in heaven and men on earth, hymn and glorify our great helper, the holy hierarch Joseph! For he was shown to be an earthly angel and a heavenly man by his righteous life and love, ­emulating his Master and Lord in faith and purity, and he laid down his life for his people. And dwelling now in the highest, he danceth in splendor.

Thou wast shown to be a clarion of the righteousness of God, O holy hierarch; for thou didst lead all to the true Light, fearlessly telling the truth to all, undaunted by tortures and death. Through thee may we come to the Sun of righteousness, to gaze with enlightened minds upon eternal righteousness in the Holy Trinity.

Instructing thy people to be faithful to God and the authorities, thou didst accept fiery torture and death, and wast cast down from the heights of the rampart. And now, worshiping the Lord with the martyrs and holy hierarchs, pray thou that our souls be saved.

Glory…, in Tone VI

O ye people, come, let us rejoice today in splendor and glorify our holy hierarch Joseph, chanting together: Rejoice, O hieromartyr! Rejoice, O wonder-worker! Rejoice, O holy hierarch Joseph our speedy helper!

Now and ever…, from the Pentecostarion.

At Divine Liturgy

On the Beatitudes, 8 Troparia: 4 from the appointed ode of the canon from the Pentecostarion, and 4 from Ode VI of the canon of the hieromartyr.

Prokimenon, in Tone VIII

The saints shall boast in glory, and they shall rejoice upon their beds.

Stichos: Sing unto the Lord a new song; His praise is in the church of the saints.

Epistle to the Hebrews, §334 [Heb. 13: 7-16]

Brethren: Remember those who have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation: Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever. Be not carried about with divers and strange doctrines. For it is a good thing that the heart be established with grace; not with meats, which have not profited them that have been occupied therein. We have an altar, whereof they have no right to eat which serve the tabernacle. For the bodies of those beasts, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin, are burned outside the camp. Wherefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people with His own blood, suffered outside the gate. Let us go forth therefore unto Him outside the camp, bearing His reproach. For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come. By Him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to His name. But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.

Alleluia, in Tone II

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

Stichos: For the Lord hath elected Sion, He hath chosen her to be a habitation for Himself.

Gospel according to Luke, §67 [12: 32-40]

The Lord said: “Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. Sell what ye have, and give alms; provide yourselves bags which wax not old, a treasure in the heavens that faileth not, where no thief approacheth, neither moth corrupteth. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. Let your loins be girded about, and your lights burning; and ye yourselves like unto men that wait for their lord, when he will return from the wedding; that when he cometh and knocketh, they may open unto him immediately. Blessed are those servants, whom the lord when he cometh shall find watching: verily I say unto you, that he shall gird himself, and make them to sit down to meat, and will come forth and serve them. And if he shall come in the second watch, or come in the third watch, and find them so, blessed are those servants. And this know, that if the goodman of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched, and not have suffered his house to be broken through. Be ye therefore ready also: for the Son of man cometh at an hour when ye think not.”

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