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The 28th Day Of The Month Of October

Commemoration Of The Holy Martyr Parasceva

At Great Vespers

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

On “Lord, I have cried…”, 6 stichera: 3 in Tone IV, Special Melody: “Thou hast given a sign…”

Rome presenteth thee as a garden of sweet-smelling flowers, O much suffering Parasceva, perfuming the thoughts of the faithful with the fragrance of the virtues, and ever dispelling the stench of the passions with grace, O glorious one, thou beauty of the martyrs, boast of virgins and abyss of miracles.

Thou hast been given to all as glory beyond price by Christ our God, having suffered in Rome; and, abiding therein, O glorious martyr, thou drivest away from men the wickedness of the demons by thine assistance. Wherefore, we all bless thee and praise thy holy sufferings today, O much suffering Parasceva.

Preserved by the power of Christ, O most glorious Parasceva, thou didst ignore the pain of thy body and didst enter upon thy struggles with manly resolve, paying no heed to thy womanly weakness; and, strengthened by hope, thou hast received illumination with those who came before thee.

And 3 stichera in Tone VI

Assembling, we, the faithful, praise thee with love and bless thy struggles and sufferings, O martyr Parasceva. Entreat Christ thy Bridegroom, that by thy supplications He deliver us from misfortunes and perils.

Desiring to follow after Christ, thy Bridegroom, O all-praised martyr Parasceva, thou didst zealously drain the true cup of thy blood, like a melodious swallow giving voice to a hymn unto Christ God, the Creator of all, for those who celebrate thy memory.

Honoring the sufferings of Christ, thy parents made thee the namesake of the day on which they are commemorated; and when thou didst reach maturity, thou didst withstand sufferings, enduring wounds; and, dancing in prison as in a splendid bridal-chamber, thou didst cry out: “I shall never be separated from Thee, O Lord! Send me Thine aid, and save me in Thy great mercy!”

Glory…, in the same tone

The Queen stood at the right hand of the Savior, as David doth sing; and thy soul, adorned as with vesture of gold, thou didst set before thy Lord as a sacrifice, and thou didst offer Him the blood of thy body like incense of sweet savor. O all-praised martyr Parasceva, pray for us to Christ God, the Master of all, that He save our souls.

Now and ever…: Dogmaticon, in the same tone

Who doth not call thee blessed, O all-holy Virgin? Who will not hymn thine all-pure birthgiving? For the only-begotten Son Who shone forth timelessly from the Father, came forth, ineffably incarnate, from thee, the pure one; and being God by nature, He became man for our sake, not divided into two Persons, but known in two natures without confusion. Him do thou beseech, O pure and most blessed one, that our souls find mercy!

Entrance. Prokimenon of the day. 3 Readings:

A Reading from the Prophecy of Isaiah

Thus saith the Lord: All the nations are gathered together, and princes shall be gathered out of them. Who will declare these things, or who will declare to you things from the beginning? Let them bring forth their witnesses, and be justified; and let them hear, and declare the truth. Be ye My witnesses, and I too am a witness, saith the Lord God, and My servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know, and believe, and understand that I am He; before Me there was no other God, and after Me there shall be none. I am God; and beside Me there is no Savior. I have declared, and have saved; I have reproached, and there was no strange god among you. Ye are My witnesses, and I am the Lord God, even from the beginning; and there is none that can deliver out of My hands. I will work, and who shall turn it back? Thus saith the Lord God Who redeemeth you, the Holy One of Israel.

A Reading from the Wisdom of Solomon

The souls of the righteous are in the hand of God, and there shall no torment touch them. In the sight of the unwise they seemed to die: and their departure is taken for misery, and their going from us to be utter destruction: but they are in peace. For though they be punished in the sight of men, yet is their hope full of immortality. And having been a little chastised, they shall be greatly rewarded: for God proved them, and found them worthy for Himself. As gold in the furnace hath He tried them and received them as a burnt offering. And in the time of their visitation they shall shine, and run to and fro like sparks among the stubble. They shall judge the nations, and have dominion over the people, and their Lord shall reign forever. Those who put their trust in Him shall understand the truth: and such as be faithful in love shall abide with Him: for grace and mercy is to His saints, and He hath care for His elect.

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 concupiscence 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 hath respect unto His chosen.

At Litya, these stichera, in Tone V

Rejoice, O ewe-lamb of the Lord, who emulated well the honorable and blessed suffering of the Immortal One upon the Cross, Who hath made the sufferings of the world of no effect, O passion-bearer who art most rich, thou wellspring pouring forth miracles like water, giving drink to the withered hearts of the infirm with the gift of healings! Thou hast set at naught the feeble audacity of the idols, inheriting as thy dwelling-place the bridal-chamber of heaven. Pray thou to Christ, that He grant unto our souls peace and great mercy.

Where the abode is of those who rejoice, where the never-waning light is, in the house of the living God, in the midst of the wondrous tabernacles, where the choir is of those who keep festival with gladness, O pure one, thou dost stand, holding a lamp of undimmed brightness. Wherefore, delighting in the divinity of the Most High, and shining richly with His splendors, pray thou to Christ, that He grant our souls peace and great mercy.

Beholding Parasceva suffering in the flesh for the sake of the Creator and strengthened by His power, the hosts of heaven said: “Behold, even virgins have glorified the Lord on earth!” And, seized with trembling, men were astonished and, marvelling, rendered glory in hymnody, saying: “O the wonder! A virgin hath vanquished the enemy and entreateth the merciful Master for the salvation of the world, that He grant it peace and great mercy!”

Rejoicing, thou didst stand before the procurator, O valiant martyr Parasceva, openly professing the Faith, and thou didst manfully endure grievous maiming; and having put the tyrant to shame, thou didst betroth thyself to Christ. Standing before Him, pray for those who honor thee and celebrate thy memory with faith.

Rejoice, O ewe-lamb most good, who didst offer thyself to the Lamb and Shepherd as a sacrifice wholly consumed with fire, in that thou wast enkindled with the fire of love for Christ thy Bridegroom; who didst extinguish the flame of the vanity of idolatry and keep the lamp of thy soul ever burning; who by thy sufferings didst vanquish the dark hordes of the demons! Thou hast entered with Christ into the heavenly bridal-chamber. Pray thou for those who keep thy memory, that He grant us peace and great mercy.

Glory…, in Tone VI

Vanquished by a virgin, the wicked enemy was put to shame, for Christ God, the Word of the Father Who was immutably and ineffably born of the Virgin, as He Himself knew, hath lifted the curse from Adam and Eve, making our first mother bold against sin. He hath crowned the martyr Parasceva as is meet, and for her sake granteth cleansing and great mercy to the world.

Now and ever…: Theotokion, in the same tone

No one who hath recourse to thee, O all-pure Virgin Theotokos, departeth from thee ashamed; for he asketh grace and receiveth a gift for his profitable petition.

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

Having stained for thyself raiment of salvation using thy blood for dye, O most lauded one, and whitened it with the Spirit, thou didst commend thyself to the Lord, the immortal King, Who hath preserved thee immaculate and incorrupt for ages of ages in the mansions of heaven, as an all-comely and incorrupt virgin.

Stichos: In the saints that are in His earth hath the Lord been wondrous; He hath wrought all His desires in them.

Having partaken of wounds, been cast into the fire, endured the flaying of her skin, and valiantly borne boiling cauldrons, Parasceva remained invincible of mind and did not sacrifice to graven images; but, bowing her neck before God, through beheading by the sword she entered the heavens, wearing a crown.

Stichos: With patience I waited patiently for the Lord, and He was attentive to me, and He hearkened unto my supplication.

Stained with the drops of thy blood, thou didst manifestly shine forth like the sun and by grace didst dispel the darkness of ungodliness, O most lauded martyr Parasceva; and thou hast illumined the faithful who honor thy valiant struggles and thy radiant and luminous and all-saving memory.

Glory…, in Tone VIII

These things did Parasceva say to the tyrant: “O ungodly and perverse governor, wherefore dost thou rage against the Christians? I have neither deprived thee of a kingdom, nor destroyed thy city, yet thou thinkest to persuade me with foolish words. I shall pay no heed to thee or to thy mindless words; for I will not spare my flesh for my Christ, for He loveth me and shall bestow a kingdom upon me. To Him will I go to be His bride, and He will save me from the hands of mine enemies and grant me life everlasting.”

Now and ever…: Theotokion, in the same tone

O unwedded Virgin who ineffably conceived God in the flesh, Mother of God Most High: accept the entreaties of thy servants, O most immaculate one, granting unto all cleansing of transgressions; and, accepting now our supplications, pray thou that we all be saved.

Troparion, in Tone IV

O all-wise and most lauded Parasceva, martyr of Christ, having received manly might and set aside thy womanly weakness, thou didst vanquish the devil and put the tyrant to shame, crying out and saying: “Come ye, cut my body asunder with your swords and burn me with fire; for, rejoicing, I shall go to Christ my Bridegroom!” Through her supplications, O Christ God, save our souls.

Glory…, Now and ever…: Theotokion

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 martyr, twice; Glory…, Now and ever…: Theotokion.

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

Loving the Bridegroom, thy Creator and God, thou didst forsake a corruptible bridegroom, O honored martyr Parasceva, and, rejoicing, didst endure torments, maiming and torture by fire. Wherefore, wearing a crown, thou hast entered into the divine bridal-chamber, asking remission of sins for all. Twice

Glory…, Now and ever…: Theotokion

O all-immaculate Virgin who gavest birth to the transcendent God, with the passion-bearer do thou unceasingly entreat Him, that before the end He grant remission of transgressions and correction of life unto us who hymn thee with faith and love, O thou who alone art all-hymned.

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

Loving Christ thy Bridegroom, and making thy lamp radiant with light, thou didst shine forth with the virtues, O glorious one; wherefore, thou hast ascended to the heavenly bridal-chamber, having received the crown of martyrdom. From misfortunes deliver us who celebrate thy memory, O Parasceva. Twice

Glory…, Now and ever…: Theotokion

O Theotokos, after God it is to thy divine protection that I flee, lowly as I am; and, falling prostrate, I pray: Have mercy, O all-pure Mistress, for my sins have passed over my head, and I fear the torments and tremble. Offer up supplication to thy Son, O pure one, that He deliver me from them.

Polyeleos, and this magnification

We magnify thee, O holy passion-bearer Parasceva, and we reverence thine honored 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 VIII, Special Melody: “Of the Wisdom…”

Wedded to the Lord in godly manner, thou didst offer Him thy blood and sacrifice as a gift, O passion-bearer and maiden Parasceva; and as is meet thou hast reached the divine bridal-chamber, continually full of ineffable radiance. Wherefore, spiritually celebrating thy holy and honored memory, we glorify the Savior and cry out to thee with faith: Entreat Christ God, that He grant remission of sins to those who honor thy holy memory with love. Twice.

Glory…, Now and ever;: Theotokion

All of us, the generations of mankind, bless thee who without seed gavest birth to God in the flesh, as the one who alone among women was Virgin; for the fire of the Godhead made its abode within thee, and thou didst give suck unto our Lord and Creator as a babe. Wherefore, we, the race of angels and of men, glorify thine all-holy birthgiving as is meet, and with one accord cry out to thee: Entreat Christ God, that He grant remission of transgressions unto those who with faith worship thine all-holy birthgiving.

Song of Ascents, the first antiphon of Tone IV

Prokimenon, in Tone IV

Wondrous is God in His saints, the God of Israel.

Stichos: In congregations bless ye God, the Lord from the wellsprings of Israel.

Let every breath praise the Lord.

Gospel according to Matthew, §62 [Mt. 15: 21-28]

At that time, Jesus went into the coasts of Tyre and Sidon. And, behold, a woman of Canaan came out of the same coasts, and cried unto Him, saying: “Have mercy on me, O Lord, Thou Son of David! My daughter is grievously vexed with a devil.” But He answered her not a word. And His disciples came and besought Him, saying: “Send her away; for she crieth after us.” But He answered and said: “I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” Then came she and worshipped Him, saying: “Lord, help me.” But He answered and said: “It is not meet to take the children’s bread, and to cast it to dogs.” And she said: “Truth, Lord: yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table.” Then Jesus answered and said unto her: “O woman, great is thy faith: be it unto thee even as thou wilt.” And her daughter was made whole from that very hour.

After Psalm 50, this sticheron, in Tone I

Thou hast been reckoned among the ranks of those on high, O glorious one, having forsaken the world and loved Christ. O all-honored Parasceva, ask for us peace and great mercy.

Canon of Supplication to the Theotokos [the Paraclysis], with 6 Troparia, including the irmos; and two canons of the greatmartyr, with 8 Troparia.

Ode I

Canon of the greatmartyr, in Tone IV

Irmos: I will open my mouth, and with the Spirit will it be filled; and I shall utter discourse unto the Queen and Mother, and shall appear, keeping splendid festival; and, rejoicing, I will hymn her wonders.

Illumined from on high with divine light, dispel the darkness of mine ignorance, and through thy supplications grant me the grace to hymn the multitudes of thy wonders, O martyr Parasceva.

Like the dawn thou hast truly shone forth more radiantly than the sun, in that thou art the confirmation of the Church, O martyr Parasceva, and with the rays of thy struggles and thy miracles thou hast illumined the ends of the world.

Loving Christ, the immortal Bridegroom, thou didst show thyself to share in His sufferings through faith, and hast received the everlasting kingdom and an imperishable crown, O glorious martyr Parasceva.

Theotokion: O most immaculate Virgin who gavest birth to Christ and didst bear Him wholly in thine arms, dispel the darkness of my soul and enlighten me, that I may hymn thee, O thou who art truly well named.

Another canon of the martyr, in Tone VIII

Irmos: Let us chant unto the Lord, Who led His people through the Red Sea, for He alone hath gloriously been glorified.

Let us chant unto the Lord Who hath glorified the memory of the martyr and leadeth earthly choirs unto praise today.

Spurning riches, thou didst also disdain glory, O honored martyr Parasceva, and didst give thyself over to suffering.

The Master desired thy beauty, O martyr, and caused thee to dwell in the bridal-chamber of heaven.

Theotokion: Having found a paradise of blessedness through thee which passeth understanding, O Theotokos, we, the race of Adam, praise thee as is meet.

Katavasia: I will open my mouth…


Canon I

Irmos: The bow of the mighty is become weak, and the strengthless have girded themselves with power; wherefore, my heart is established in the Lord.

Mercilessly beaten with staves, her sinews and bones broken, the ever-memorable martyr Parasceva rejoiced, crying: “Naught will separate me from Thy love, O Christ!”

The mouths and boastful tongues of the ungodly who uttered iniquity against the Righteous One were stopped when the martyr Parasceva cried out, preaching the Savior.

With the sprinkling of thy blood thou didst extinguish the fire of ungodliness, O much suffering martyr Parasceva, and hast enlightened the understanding of the faithful.

Theotokion: Piously are the words of Isaiah fulfilled; for the Virgin gave birth in the flesh to Christ, the Bestower of life, the Savior of our souls.

Canon II

Irmos: Thou art the confirmation of those who have recourse to Thee, O Lord; Thou art the light of the benighted; and my spirit doth hymn Thee.

“Thou art my confirmation, O Lord,” said the martyr, “Thou art my help; and to Thee have I fled, O King of the world!”

Thou didst appear at the tribunal, possessed of a manly-wise soul, and didst vanquish the enemy as a coward, O most lauded one.

Heal thou the eyes of my soul by thy supplications, O most lauded martyr, and set my mind aright.

Theotokion: Grant us aid through thy supplications, O all-pure one, fending off evil circumstances by thy counsels.

Sessional hymn, in Tone VIII, Special Melody: “Of the Wisdom…”

Drying up the torrents of ungodliness with the streams of thy blood, O most lauded Parasceva, martyr of Christ, thou dost water the reason-endowed furrows with the rain of grace and therein dost cause the grain of faith to spring up. And for this, O glorious one, thou hast appeared after death, pouring forth life for thy martyrdom’s sake, O most lauded passion-bearer. Entreat Christ God, that He grant great mercy to our souls.

Glory…: Another Sessional hymn, in Tone IV, Special Melody: “Go thou quickly before…”

Having adorned the purity of thy soul with fasting, thou dost illumine the faithful with the rays of thy suffering, O much suffering martyr Parasceva. Wherefore, celebrating thy holy and radiant day with faith, we piously cry out: As thou hast boldness before the Lord, entreat Him, that we be saved!

Now and ever…: Theotokion

By thy divine birthgiving, O pure one, thou didst renew the mortal essence of those born of earth, which had become corrupt in the passions, and thou hast raised all up from death to the life of incorruption. Wherefore, as is meet, we all bless thee, O exceedingly glorious Virgin, as thou didst foretell.


When she beheld thee suspended upon the Cross, O Word of God, Thine all-pure Mother exclaimed, lamenting maternally: “What is this new and strange wonder, O my Son? How is it that Thou, the Life of all, dost taste of death, desiring to bring life to mortals, in that Thou art compassionate?”

Ode IV

Canon I

Irmos: Seated in glory upon the throne of the Godhead, Jesus most divine hath come on a light cloud, and with His incorrupt arm hath saved those who cry: Glory to Thy power, O Christ!

Wounded with the love of Christ, with thy might thou didst slay the hordes of the tyrants and pourest forth the grace of life everlasting; and thou hast received reward for thy sufferings, O Parasceva, adornment of the martyrs of Christ.

Surpassing all in the love of Christ thy Bridegroom, and hating carnal love, thou didst mightily endure painful sufferings, O martyr Parasceva, crying out: “Cut me not off from Thy desire, O Christ, that I may finish the contest of martyrdom!”

Rejecting all the vanity of the world, thou didst cleave to God alone, enduring the pangs of suffering, O martyr Parasceva, manly minded bride of God.

Theotokion: As the prophet said of old, O most immaculate one, the Lord descended into thy womb like dew upon the fleece, and thou gavest birth to Him in two natures. To Him do we cry out: Glory to Thy power, O Lord!

Canon II

Irmos: I have heard, O Lord, the mystery of Thy dispensation; I have understood Thy works, and have glorified Thy divinity.

Hearing the commandment of the Gospel, O Lord, the martyr Parasceva glorified Thy divinity.

Thou didst in nowise offer sacrifices to the vile demons, but didst give thyself over to the Lord as a living sacrifice.

Standing mightily before the tribunal, the martyr cried out: “When I have been crucified with Christ my Bridegroom, I shall reign with Him!”

Theotokion: As Thou art sinless, grant us cleansing of our offenses; and as Thou art good, bestow peace upon Thy people, through the supplications of her who gave Thee birth.

Ode V

Canon I

Irmos: Thou hast come, O my Lord, as a light into the world: a holy light turning from the darkness of ignorance those who hymn Thee with faith.

The never-waning Light dwelt within thy soul, that thou mightest shine forth with virtue, illumining those who glorify thee without ceasing.

Thou didst dry up the stream of impious ungodliness, O martyr Parasceva, and with the torrents of thy blood unjustly shed thou didst quench the fire of falsehood.

Possessed of a brilliant mind, thou wast vouchsafed the gift of prophecy and to all didst manifestly foretell things to come, O much suffering Parasceva.

Theotokion: O Mother of God who ineffably gavest birth to God the Word, thou hast healed the evil of my soul; wherefore, all generations call thee blessed.

Canon II

Irmos: Waking at dawn, we cry to Thee: Save us, O Lord! For Thou art our God, and we know none other than Thee.

Waking at dawn, the martyr Parasceva cried aloud: “Naught will separate me from the love of Christ!”

In his resolve to weaken the godly martyr, the wicked one was himself shown to be a laughing-stock.

Grant me enlightenment, O most praised one, and illumine my much-troubled mind by thy supplications.

Theotokion: Still thou the ever-raging tempest of the passions, O thou who gavest birth to Christ, the Helmsman and Lord.

Ode VI

Canon I

Irmos: I will sacrifice to Thee with a voice of praise, O Lord, the Church crieth unto Thee, cleansed of the blood of demons by the blood which, for mercy’s sake, flowed from Thy side.

Having shone forth from Rome like the radiant sun, O holy martyr, thou drivest away from men the darkness of the demons by thine entreaties, O much-suffering Parasceva.

By touching the shrine of thy relics those who approach it receive healing; lepers and those with an issue of blood are cleansed, and the demonic hordes flee the invocation of thy holy name.

Thou didst rise at dawn unto Christ, the never-setting Sun, and with His splendors thou didst illumine thy soul and heart, O divinely wise and honored Parasceva; and, rejoicing, thou didst pass over to the light of the Trinity.

Theotokion: Heal thou the passions of my soul, O most immaculate one who gavest birth to the Wellspring of dispassion, and dispel the torment which continually vexeth my heart.

Canon II

Irmos: Grant me a robe of light, O Thou Who coverest Thyself with light as with a garment, O most merciful Christ our God.

Parasceva cried out: “Cover me with a robe from heaven, O greatly Merciful One Who dost clothe the heavens with clouds!”

As the Lord hearkened unto Daniel in the lions’ den, so did He grant healing to thee as thou didst pray in prison.

Thou didst cast down the pride of the tyrant, and, remaining unharmed, didst thyself withstand torture.

Theotokion: The Word of God hath shown thee to mortals as a heavenly ladder, for by thee hath He descended to us.

Kontakion, in Tone III, Special Melody: “Today the Virgin…”

Bearing to Christ, the immortal Bridegroom, as a dowry thine all-holy and undefiled torment, thou didst gladden the choir of the angels and didst foil the wiles of the demons. Wherefore, we cherish thee with honor and faith, O much suffering martyr Parasceva.

Ikos: Who can describe the powers of the Lord? Who can recount thy sufferings and virtues, O martyr? What tongue can hymn thee as is meet? Even so, unworthy though I am, I shall attempt to hymn, praise and glorify the Master, the Bestower of life, Who granted strength in the arena to thee who confessed Him to be the true God, that thou mightest not fear the tyrants. Wherefore, we honor thee with faith and love, O much suffering martyr Parasceva.


Canon I

Irmos: O all-hymned Lord God of our fathers, Who saved the children of Abraham in the fire, slaying the Chaldæans whom justice rightly overtook: blessed art Thou!

O martyr Parasceva, thou turtle-dove with wings of gold, protected by the weapon of the Cross thou didst drive away the Saracens who advanced upon thy city at night, saving from slaughter the faithful who chant: O all-hymned God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Having endured multifarious pangs for the sake of Christ, O martyr Parasceva, thou didst obtain from Him rest devoid of pain; and, rejoicing, thou criest out: O all-hymned God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

How invincible was thine understanding, O honored Parasceva! For thou wast undaunted by the tortures of the choir of leading tormenters, and, contending against them, thou didst repose as a servant of the mystery of divine glory, chanting: O all-hymned God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Theotokion: Blessed is the Fruit of thy blessed womb, O blessed one, Whom the hosts of heaven bless and the assemblies of men praise, Who hath delivered from the ancient curse us who chant: O all-hymned God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Canon II

Irmos: Once, in Babylon, the youths who had come forth from Judæa trod down the flame of the furnace with their faith in the Trinity, chanting: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

The wonders of the divine martyr have been shown to be past understanding, for in her virginal youth she vanquished the tyrant, crying: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Standing in the midst of the tribunal, thou didst shut the mouths of the foolish which are hateful to God, and didst confess God, crying: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Unmindful of thy womanly weakness, and manfully strengthening thyself with patience, amid thy suffering thou didst cry out: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Theotokion: Incarnate of the Virgin’s womb, Thou didst manifest Thyself for our salvation; wherefore, acknowledging Thy Mother to be the Theotokos, we cry out in thanksgiving: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!


Canon I

Irmos: The birthgiving of the Theotokos saved the pious children in the furnacethen in figure, but now in deedand it moveth all the world to chant to Thee: Hymn ye the Lord and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Illumined with the divine splendors of the noetic Sun, O most lauded martyr Parasceva, thou didst pass through the night of ungodliness, chanting with single-mindedness of soul: Hymn the Lord, ye works, and exalt Him supremely forever!

Like a ewe-lamb, like an unblemished heifer, like a divine turtle-dove, as a voluntary immolation thou didst bring thyself to thy Creator, O martyr Parasceva, and didst offer thyself as a blameless sacrifice, chanting melodiously: Hymn the Lord, ye works, and exalt Him supremely forever!

By thy martyrdom thou didst put on the splendid robe dyed in thy blood, O valiant martyr Parasceva, truly shedding the corrupt man with his sins; and, rejoicing, thou didst chant: Hymn the Lord, ye works, and exalt Him supremely forever!

Theotokion: The women hastened after thee, O most pure Bride of God who alone knewest not wedlock, acknowledging the sweet-smelling Myrrh, Christ God, the only-begotten Son Who shone forth from thy womb; and they reign with thee, hymning Him forever.

Canon II

Irmos: The King of heaven, Whom the hosts of angels hymn, praise and exalt ye supremely for all ages!

Christ God the King did the virgin martyr Parasceva confess, chanting: Praise and supremely exalt Him forever!

For love of the divine Trinity thou didst quench the fire of ungodliness, crying: Exalt Christ supremely forever!

By thy struggles toward God thou didst cast down the prince of darkness, crying: Exalt Christ supremely forever!

Theotokion: Extinguish the sparks of the assault of those who oppose us, O Virgin, that we may hymn the Lord and exalt Him supremely forever.

Ode IX

Canon I

Irmos: Let every mortal leap for joy, enlightened by the Spirit; and let the nature of the incorporeal intelligences keep festival, honoring the sacred feast of the Mother of God, and let them cry aloud: Rejoice, O most blessed Theotokos, pure Ever-virgin!

Having made thine abode in the heavenly bridal-chamber, O most honored virgin Parasceva, consciously delighting in invisible beauties, and receiving ineffable effulgence, enlighten those who hymn and magnify thee.

Thou didst receive a crown for thy head, O valiant minded Parasceva, having finished the race and kept the Faith intact; and the ranks of the righteous have joyfully received thee. Wherefore, we now call thee blessed.

To those in need thou givest drops of healing as from a wellspring, O martyr Parasceva who art most rich, cutting off the torrents of infirmities, driving off the burning heat of the passions, and watering the hearts of the pious, that they might produce godly works.

Theotokion: In manner past even the most sublime understanding thou hast been shown to be a habitation of Wisdom, O most immaculate Maiden, and an animate throne and portal. Wherefore, the virgins, loving thee as their Queen, followed in thy train, O divine Maiden.

Canon II

Irmos: Saved by thee, O pure Virgin, we confess thee to be in truth the Theotokos, magnifying thee with the incorporeal choirs.

Thou wast truly worthy of thy name, O Parasceva, emulating the sufferings of Christ and joining chorus with the armies of heaven.

Thou didst reach the end of thy torment through thy manifold sufferings and pangs, glorifying Christ with the angels in the heavens, O most honored one.

As thou hast boldness before the Savior and Master, O glorious martyr Parasceva, pray for those who hymn thy memory.

Theotokion: With hymns we sing to thee, O thou who art full of the grace of God, and unceasingly we offer thee the cry “Rejoice!”, for thou hast poured forth gladness upon us all.

Exapostilarion, Special Melody: “Hearken, ye women…”

Like a most comely rose didst thou spring forth from a thorny root, O virgin Parasceva, empurpled with the blood of thy sacred suffering as with dew. From misfortunes save us now who celebrate thy divine memory with love.

Glory…, Now and ever…: Theotokion

O all-pure Theotokos Mary, the divinely wise virgins who surround thee as a Queen by birth have been brought before thy Son, the King of all, as becometh brides. Him do thou entreat in our behalf, O Virgin Maiden and Mother.

On the Praises, 6 stichera: 3 in Tone IV, Special Melody: “As one valiant among the martyrs…”

Virginity and most wondrous martyrdom didst thou offer unto Christ incorruptibly, O most honored virgin Parasceva. Thou didst cast down the arrogance of ungodly falsehood by the power of the Cross and with manly intelligence. Wherefore, the whole Church of Christ doth celebrate thy holy memory.

O wise virgin, blessed Parasceva, the choirs of the angels were manifestly amazed at thy suffering, thine opposition, and thine invincibility, how with manly combat thou didst break the invisible foe, and didst richly receive from the hand of the Bestower of life a crown of victory.

Burning with fire, thou didst quench the material flame with fiery wisdom, and, keeping the lamp of thy soul alight, thou didst enter with Christ, thy Bridegroom, into the heavenly bridal-chamber; and, having slain the passions with the sparks of miracles, thou hast vanquished the demonic hordes as a martyr.

And 3 in Tone I, Special Melody: “Joy of the ranks of heaven…”

Thou hast made thine abode in the courts of heaven, O martyr Parasceva, and hast been admitted to its choirs both because of the blood of thy sufferings and thy visions, O most lauded one.

Thou didst put the tyrant to shame, paying no heed to his tortures; and wast not frightened by the roaring of wild beasts, for thou didst have Christ as thy helper, O most lauded one.

Rejoicing, thou didst run, hastening to receive the end of thy martyrdom, O all-praised Parasceva, most lauded virgin; and as thou hast wedded thyself to Christ, be thou mindful of those who ever honor thee.

Glory…, in Tone VI

Let the martyr of Christ be honored with hymns, for all laudation becometh her. For, weaving her own wreath of praises, as one unbowed and steadfast she set at nought the great evil of the tyrants. Wherefore, suffering pain, she cried aloud: “Be Thou mine aid, O Lord, and forsake me not!”

Now and ever…: Theotokion, in the same tone

We have come to know God Who was incarnate of Thee, O Virgin Theotokos. Him do thou entreat for the salvation of our souls.

Great Doxology. Litanies. Dismissal. First Hour.

At Divine Liturgy

On the Beatitudes, 8 Troparia: 4 from Ode III of Canon I and 4 from Ode VI of Canon II of the martyr.

Prokimenon, in Tone IV

Wondrous is God in His saints, the God of Israel.

Stichos: In congregations bless ye God, the Lord from the wellsprings of Israel.

Epistle to the Corinthians §181 [II Cor 6:1-10]

Brethren: As workers together with Christ, beseech you also that ye receive not the grace of God in vain. (For He saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succored thee: Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.) Giving no offense in any thing, that the ministry be not blamed: but in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses, in stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labors, in watchings, in fastings; by pureness, by knowledge, by long-suffering, by kindness, by the Holy Spirit, by love unfeigned, by the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armor of righteousness on the right hand and on the left, by honor and dishonor, by evil report and good report: as ­deceivers, and yet true; as unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and behold, we live; as chastened, and not killed; as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.

Alleluia, in Tone I

Stichos: With patience I waited patiently for the Lord, and He was attentive unto me, and He hearkened unto my supplication.

Stichos: And He brought me up out of the pit of misery, and from the mire of clay.

Gospel according to Luke, §33 [Lk. 7: 36-50]

At that time, one of the Pharisees desired Jesus that He would eat with him. And He went down into the Pharisee’s house, and sat down to meat. And behold, a woman in the city, who was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster box of ointment, and stood at His feet behind Him weeping, and began to wash His feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed His feet, and anointed them with the ointment. Now when the Pharisee who had bidden Him saw it, he spake within himself, saying: “This man, if he were a prophet, would have known who and what manner of woman this is that toucheth Him; for she is a sinner.” And Jesus answering said unto him: “Simon, I have somewhat to say unto thee.” And he saith: “Master, say on.” “There was a certain creditor who had two debtors: the one owed five hundred pence, and the other fifty. And when they had nothing to pay, he frankly forgave them both. Tell me, therefore, which of them will love him most?” Simon answered and said: “I suppose that he, to whom he forgave most.” And He said unto him: “Thou hast rightly judged.” And he turned to the woman, and said unto Simon: “Seest thou this woman? I entered into thy house, thou gavest Me no water for My feet: but she hath washed My feet with tears, and wiped them with the hair of her head. Thou gavest Me no kiss: but this woman, since the time I came in, hath not ceased to kiss My feet. My head with oil thou didst not anoint: but this woman hath anointed My feet with ointment. Wherefore I say unto thee: Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little.” And He said unto her: “Thy sins are forgiven.” And they who sat at meat with Him began to say within themselves: “Who is this who forgiveth sins also?” And He said to the woman: “Thy faith hath saved thee; go in peace.”

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