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The 9th Day of the Month OF September

Afterfeast of the Nativity of the Theotokos

Commemoration of the Holy & Righteous Ancestors of God, Joachim & Anna

Commemoration of the Holy Martyr Severian

At Vespers

On “Lord, I have cried…”, 6 stichera: 3 of the feast, in Tone I, Special Melody: “Joy of the ranks of heaven…”

Joachim and Anna hold festival, having given birth to the only Theotokos, the beginning of our salvation; and with them we also celebrate today, blessing the pure Virgin who sprang forth from the root of Jesse.

The Maiden who contained God, the pure Theotokos, the glory of the prophets, the daughter of David, is born today of Joachim and the chaste Anna; and the curse of Adam which lay upon us is annulled by her birthgiving.

She who before was as a barren land giveth birth to fertile ground, and, having given forth a holy fruit from her fruitless womb, she nurtureth her with milk. O awesome wonder! The nourisher of our Life, who received the Bread of heaven in her womb is nourished with milk at her mother’s breasts!

And 3 stichera of the righteous ones, in Tone IV, Special Melody: “Thou hast given a sign…”

Come, let us now join chorus with hymnody, O ye who love the feasts of the Church, and with faith let us hold festival, honoring the memory of Joachim and Anna, the honored couple; for they gave birth to the Mother of God for us, the pure Virgin. Wherefore, they have passed from transitory things over to that which is incorrupt, to the mansions of everlasting life, praying that we be saved.

Today all creation is adorned with gladness, O most hymned Theotokos, offering up, with oneness of mind, the annual commemoration of thy parents, celebrating together the wondrous Joachim and Anna; for they have become the mediators of joy, having past hope put thee forth, the nourisher of our Life, who hast caused the Light to shine forth.

Today Anna rejoiceth, leaping up in spirit, and she is filled with joyful gladness, having obtained her desire, the fertility which she had long desired; for she put forth the fruit of the promise and blessing, the most immaculate Mary who gave birth to our God, and shone forth the Sun upon those who sleep in darkness.

Glory…, Now and ever…: the composition of Ephraim of Karyes, in Tone V

O blessed twain, ye have surpassed all parents, in that ye gave rise to her who transcendeth all creatures. Truly blessed art thou, O Joachim, having become the father of such a maiden! And blessed is thy womb, O Anna, for thou hast put forth the Mother of our Life! Blessed are the breasts wherewith thou didst nourish with milk her who nurtured Him Who sustaineth every creation! Him do ye entreat, we beseech you, O most blessed one, that our souls find mercy!

But if this service is celebrated on Friday evening: Glory…, the foregoing doxasticon of the saints; Now and ever…: the dogmaticon of the current tone.

At the Aposticha, these stichera of the feast, in Tone II, Special Melody: “When from the Tree…”

Of a truth, the divinely wise Anna, when she beheld a nest of birds in a tree, she was reminded of her own barrenness, and cried aloud: “Woe is me, O Lord! I alone, a sinner, am left bereft of fruitfulness by Thee, O Lord!” Then God, Who loveth mankind, gave her the Virgin as fruit, the most precious of all creation.

Stichos: Hearken, O daughter, and see, and incline thine ear.

Of a truth, the divinely wise Anna, conscious of her barren state and childlessness, cried out to God in supplication: “Loose Thou the grievous bond of my barrenness, that I may give birth to a child who will give birth to Thee, the Word!” And Thou didst grant her this, O Master Christ, Bestower of life; for her offspring gave birth to Thee, the Savior of all men.

Stichos: The rich among the people will entreat thy countenance.

God the Master truly hearkened to thy supplication, as He did that of Sarah of old, when thou didst hear the voice of the angel announcing joyous tidings unto thee: “Thou shalt give birth to the Mother of God!” And thou didst cry out in gladness of soul: “The Master and Lord, my God and Creator, hath of a truth lifted my reproach, for I shall give birth to the Ever-virgin!”

Glory…, Now and ever…, in Tone VIII

Joachim and Anna, the holy couple and holy mates, who from a barren womb put forth the holy Theotokos as a staff, from whom Christ God shone forth salvation upon the world, having been translated to the mansions of heaven, with their all-pure Virgin daughter, join chorus with the angels, making supplication for the world. And we, assembling with them, say, piously chanting: O ye who were called the ancestors of Christ by the divine Maiden and all-pure Mary, pray for our souls.

Troparion of the righteous ones, in Tone II

Celebrating the memory of Thy righteous ones, O Lord, through them we entreat Thee: Save Thou our souls!

Or this Troparion, in Tone I

Joachim and Anna, who were righteous in the law of grace, have for us given birth unto a God-given babe. Wherefore, the divine Church keepeth splendid festival today, celebrating their honored memory with gladness, glorifying God Who hath lifted up the horn of salvation for us in the house of David.

Glory…, Now and ever…: Troparion of the feast, in Tone IV

Thy nativity, O Virgin Theotokos, hath proclaimed joy to all the world; for from thee hath shone forth Christ our God, the Sun of righteousness, Who, having annulled the curse, hath given His blessing, and having abolished death, hath granted us life everlasting.

At Compline

Canon of the Martyr Severian, in Tone VIII

Ode I

Irmos: Having traversed the water as though it were dry land, and escaped the evil of Egypt, the Israelite cried aloud: Let us chant unto our Deliverer and God!

Thou didst spurn the command of the ungodly to sacrifice to inanimate and deaf idols; and Christ hath won a victory through thy mighty and valiant martyric opposition.

The tyrant freed from bonds those who rejected Christ, yet all whom he found worshipping Him as God he began to torture in every way; but when he came to thee, O divinely wise one, he was put to shame.

Valiantly hastening to the tribunal, O martyr, thou didst amaze the ungodly one; and with boldness thou didst denounce the weakness, corruption and impotence of the pagan gods.

Theotokion: Thou alone, O Maiden, didst contain in thy womb Him Whom the heavens cannot contain, Who as God made His abode within thee and through thee assumed human nature.

Ode III

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.

Pitilessly afflicted with wounds for Christ, O wise one, thou didst rejoice; for thou didst receive excellent reward for thy pangs.

Lacerated with cords while repeatedly flogged by the tormenters, O glorious one, thou didst not feel it, for it was as though thou wast in another’s body.

Thou didst find thy reward with Christ, O wise one, receiving the crown of righteousness and never-ending joy.

Theotokion: Foreseeing thee of old, Solomon cried out in hymns: “Thou hast become my dear one, wholly beautiful and immaculate!”

Ode IV

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

Hoping to soften thy might with kindness and vanquish thee, O martyr, the tyrant thought to shoot arrows at heaven.

“O foolish one, dost thou not sense the power of Christ which strengtheneth me against pain and labors?” thou didst cry to the tyrant, O all-glorious one.

“If power were not given me from on high,” Severian cried out to the tyrant, “how would I have been able to endure the severing of my members, since I am flesh?”

Theotokion: O all-holy Bride of God, grant me help by thine entreaties, that I may be delivered from the deceiver and may glorify thee, my hope.

Ode V

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

Thou wast uplifted upon a tree, O glorious one, thy body raked with iron claws, for Him Who hath dominion over all.

“O my God,” thou didst cry, “strengthen me for this struggle, that, lacerated, I may complete this martyrdom!”

As the tyrant beheld thee untiringly enduring tortures, O glorious one, the wretched one was filled with awe.

Theotokion: O Theotokos, my hope, intercession and protection, from the temptations of the serpent save me by thine entreaties.

Ode VI

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

The cruel one imprisoned thee in a dungeon and with starvation sought to compel thee to deny Christ Whom Thou hadst loved from thy youth, O blessed one.

Cast into prison, O wise one, thou didst exhort all who beheld thee not to fall away from Christ, teaching them with boldness.

The cruel and mindless tyrant commanded that thou be beheaded with the sword, O martyr, for not offering sacrifice to the idols; but thou didst pay him no heed.

Theotokion: On the day of judgment, O Mistress Bride of God, cause me to be clothed in a robe of light by thy supplications, for I hymn thee.

Sessional hymn, in Tone I, Special Melody: “The choir of the angels…”

Armed with valor of soul, O divinely wise one who art most rich, thou didst give thyself over to divers torments, afire with love for the Master. Wherefore, thou didst denounce the savagery of the tyrants and hast received from God an imperishable crown of victory.

Ode VII

Irmos: O Lord God of our fathers, Who in the beginning founded the earth and established the heavens by Thy word: blessed art Thou forever!

With a sharp stone the ungodly one smashed thy mouth, which preached Christ with boldness in the midst of the all-iniquitous; and having received His glory, thou hast now joined chorus in heaven.

Suspended aloft upon a wall, O athlete, and affixed to a hard rock by the great wrath of the tyrant, thou didst not deny Christ, the all-glorious God of our fathers.

O thy steadfast opposition, O blessed one! O thy fervent love for the Creator, for which He hath adorned thee with an imperishable crown, in that thou didst suffer well.

Theotokion: Thou art my light, O Virgin Theotokos, thou art my joy, my protection and refuge, O blessed one; and I glorify thee who gavest birth unto the God of our fathers.

Ode VIII

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

Thou didst endure wounding to the end, O all-blessed warrior of Christ, and didst pass over, rejoicing, to the kingdom on high.

Because of Christ thou wast not put to shame, O thou of valiant mind, enduring divers torments; wherefore, thou hast been glorified for all ages.

As one crowned, truly dancing with the athletes around the King, remember those who celebrate thy memory with faith.

Theotokion: O Theotokos, intercessor for Christians: rescue us from all want, that we may hymn thee for all ages.

Ode IX

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

Thy mangled body was buried as something holy by the hands of those who loved thee, O blessed one, and it poureth forth streams of healing, unto the glory of God.

O the wonder! How is it that a dead youth arose and greeted thy body on the way as it was borne to burial, O most wondrous martyr?

Having received the eternal kingdom, O blessed one, standing in honor before the Master, pray thou fervently in behalf of those who hymn thee.

Theotokion: The ranks of the angels were amazed, beholding thee, the Ever-virgin, bearing the incarnate Creator of the ages.

Stichera of the martyr, in Tone IV, Special Melody: “Thou hast given a sign…”

Scourged with cords for Christ’s sake, O glorious one, suspended upon a tree, thy flesh pitilessly lacerated with sharp blades, when thou wast commanded to offer sacrifice to the idols thou didst not deny the Lord of all, O wise one; but with thy pangs thou didst denounce the weakness and evil of idolatry, and becamest a companion of the angels.

Rejoicing, thou didst set thyself apart for the contest as a lawful athlete, O right wondrous one, with valiant mind paying no heed to the tortures, O martyr; and thou didst strive to emulate Christ by thy death, O wondrous one. Wherefore, Jesus, Who loveth mankind, the Savior of our souls, hath adorned thee with the crown of His kingdom.

Glory…, in the same tone & melody

Led forth as a prisoner, adorned with wounds, thou didst admonish those who looked on to emulate thy character, O blessed one, looking toward the rewards of heaven which impart great gladness and beauty, in that they are incorrupt and last forever, making those who abide therein heirs in the Spirit.

Now and ever…, of the feast, in the same tone & melody

Today the divine wealth of the grace of the Master hath been poured forth upon all the ends of the world by the wellspring of the barren one which truly poureth forth gifts and proclaimeth its origin unto those who honor her nativity with love and cry aloud: O almighty Jesus, Thou art the Savior of our souls!

At Matins

At “God is the Lord…”, the Troparion of the feast, twice; Glory…, that of the saints; Now and ever…, that of the feast, once.

After the first chanting of the Psalter, this Sessional hymn, in Tone III, Special Melody: “Today the Virgin…”

Today the Virgin, Mary the Theotokos, the indestructible bridal-chamber of the heavenly Bridegroom, is born of Anna, the barren woman, in accordance with God’s will, being prepared as the chariot of the Word of God; for the Maiden was commanded from of old to become the Mother of Life.

Glory…, Now and ever…: The foregoing is repeated.

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

O David, He Who anointed thee of old promised thee that the fruit of thy loins would occupy thy throne, hath given us Mary. For thou beholdest her sprung forth from Anna of the tribe of Judah, and thou dost rejoice, for Christ, the Savior of all, became incarnate of her, saving our race in His boundless goodness.

Glory…, Now and ever…: The foregoing is repeated.

Canon of the feast, with 6 Troparia, including the irmos; and that of the saints, also with 6 Troparia.

Ode I

Canon of the feast, with 6 Troparia, including the irmos, the composition of John, 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.

Come, ye faithful, and, rejoicing with divine spirit, let us honor with hymns the Ever-virgin Maiden who today hath issued forth from a barren woman for the salvation of men.

Rejoice, O pure one, Mother and handmaid of Christ God, mediatress of our primal blessedness! All of us, the human race, glorify thee with hymns, as is meet.

Today is the bridge of life born, through which men have attained restoration after their fall into hades, glorifying Christ, the Bestower of life, with hymns.

Canon of the Righteous Ones, the acrostic whereof is: “In chastity I hymn thy parents, O most pure one”, in Tone II

Irmos: Overwhelming power once laid low the whole army of Pharaoh in the deep, and the incarnate Word hath destroyed pernicious sin. All-glorious is the Lord, for gloriously hath He been glorified.

Shining with the splendors of the virtues, O divinely wise Anna and ever-blessed Joachim, ye were vouchsafed to give birth to the lamp which emitted the noetic Sun Who shone forth from her in the flesh.

Praying tirelessly and looking to God in every way, the God-pleasing Joachim and the divine Anna truly gave birth to the all-pure Theotokos, who is far greater than all creation in holiness.

Possessed of a most exalted life and splendor of life, together ye surpassed all the parents of earth, giving birth to the incorrupt Virgin, and truly becoming ancestor of God because of her.

Theotokion: The most blessed Joachim and glorious Anna, the authors of all creation, gave birth to the pure, immaculate and all-pure Theotokos, receiving her as the reward for their piety.

Ode III

Canon of the Feast

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.

Having lived blamelessly for God, ye gave birth unto the salvation of all, O divinely wise parents of her who gave birth to our Creator and God.

From a barren woman did the Lord, Who poureth forth life upon all, cause the Virgin to come forth, in whom He was pleased to make His abode, preserving her incorrupt even after giving birth.

Let us hymn Mary today as the Theotokos, the fruit of Anna, the intercessor and helper of all, who gave birth to the life-bearing Cluster.

Canon of the Righteous Ones

Irmos: Establishing me upon the rock of faith, Thou hast enlarged my mouth against mine enemies, for my spirit doth exult when I chant: There is none holy as our God, and none righteous save Thee, O Lord!

O God-pleasing Anna, who wast barren and bereft of children, and who besought the Creator with tears, thou wast vouchsafed to give birth to the only blessed one, crying aloud: There is none as holy as Thee, O Lord!

The godly and divinely eloquent Joachim, having enriched his spouse with divine grace, was vouchsafed to beget the mediatress of men’s salvation, to whom we cry aloud: There is none more immaculate than thee, O Mistress!

We hymn the most honored couple from whom the Virgin hath shone forth upon us, who is more exalted than all creatures, in that she gave birth to God, to Whom we cry aloud: There is none more holy than Thee, O Lord!

Theotokion: Escaping the reproach of barrenness, Anna gave birth to the Theotokos who hath all-gloriously abolished the reproach of Eve; and to her do we cry: There is none more immaculate than thee, O Mistress!

Kontakion of the feast, in Tone IV

In thy holy nativity, O all-pure one, Joachim and Anna are freed from the reproach of childlessness, and Adam and Eve from mortal corruption. And, delivered from the affliction of sin, thy people celebrate it, crying out to thee: A barren woman giveth birth to the Theotokos, the nourisher of our Life!

Ikos: The supplication of Joachim over his childlessness, together with the sighing of Anna over her barrenness, were right acceptable to God: they entered the ears of the Lord and brought forth life-bearing fruit for the world. For the one made supplication on the mountain, and the other bore her reproach in the garden; and with joy the barren woman giveth birth to the Theotokos, the nourisher of our Life!

Sessional hymn of the feast, in Tone V, Special Melody: “The Word Who is equally unoriginate…”

Joachim and Anna rejoice, for they found grace with God as is meet and gave birth to a God-pleasing fruit, the temple, the pure Virgin Mother of God, who alone is blessed, and prayeth unceasingly that our souls be saved.

Ode IV

Canon of the Feast

Irmos: I have heard report of Thy dispensation, O Lord, and have glorified Thee Who alone lovest mankind.

We hymn Thee, O Lord, Who hast given unto all, as a haven of salvation, her who gave birth to Thee.

Christ hath revealed thee, O Bride of God, to all who with faith hymn thy mystery as their boast and might.

Delivered from transgressions by thy supplications, O Mistress who knewest not wedlock, we all bless thee with a good understanding.

Canon of the Righteous Ones

Irmos: Thou didst come forth from the Virgin, neither a mediator nor an angel, but Thyself incarnate, O Lord, and hast saved me, the whole man; wherefore, I cry to thee: Glory to Thy power, O Lord!

Rejoicing, the divinely wise and God-pleasing Joachim receiveth from the barren one the virginal Virgin for whose sake the barrenness of the world hath been abolished through birthgiving.

Joachim most rich, the ancestor of God, now setteth before us a spiritual banquet, for he hath begotten the Mother of God, the all-incorrupt Maiden.

Grace setteth before us her who would become the Mother of God, who hath saved men from mortality and corruption and received the ineffably incarnate eternal Word.

A couple hath sprung forth from the root of Jesse, from whom hath sprung forth the staff bearing the Flower which perfumeth me, the whole man, with the myrrh of divinity.

Theotokion: Direct my life, O Theotokos, guiding me with the divine precepts of the Word Who became incarnate of thee; and lead me to the Light, O Virgin Mother, Mary Bride of God.

Ode V

Canon of the Feast

Irmos: Having destroyed the shadowy darkness of indistinct images and illumined the hearts of the faithful by the coming of the Truth through the divine Maiden, O Christ, guide us by Thy light.

O ye people, let us hymn the cause of the Cause of all, Who became like unto us. For the prophets, counted worthy to behold her image, rejoiced, bringing forth the fruit of manifest salvation through her.

The budding forth of the dry rod of the priest showed forth the destiny of Israel; and now the most glorious offspring of the barren woman most gloriously shineth forth the splendor of those who gave rise to her.

Canon of the Righteous Ones

Irmos: O Christ my Savior, enlightenment of those who lie in darkness and salvation of the despairing: rising early unto Thee, O King of the world, may I be enlightened by Thy radiance, for I know none other God than Thee.

Anna and the God-pleasing Joachim, the chaste couple, shining forth a ray of purity which hath adorned barren human nature with the divine radiance of virginity, have given birth unto her for us.

The most lauded Anna and Joachim, the two honored chaste ones, the divinely wise couple, have given birth to the divinely adorned throne of the Virgin, who hath been exalted above all by the hand of God.

The divine God-seers Joachim and Anna, who lived in a divinely wise manner, have been manifestly vouchsafed to give birth to the luminous portal who revealed the Orient from on high, for the guidance of the lost.

The Almighty hath with His hand now cut from the stone of the barren woman the divinely inscribed tablet of the new law, whereon the divine Word first formed the remission of the sins of the old law.

Theotokion: Give thou the command, O Virgin Mother of God, that my mind, which is darkened by sin, may be illumined with thy radiance, destroying the darkness of ignorance and transgressions; for I know none other protector than thee.

Ode VI

Canon of the Feast

Irmos: From the belly of the sea monster, Jonah cried out: Lead me up from the abyss of hell, I pray, that with a spirit of truth and in a voice of praise I may sacrifice to Thee, as to my Deliverer!

The divinely wise parents of the Mother of God cried out to the Lord in grief over their barrenness; and they gave birth to her, our common boast and salvation for generations of generations.

The divinely wise parents of the Mother of God received a gift worthy of heaven from God, for she is a chariot more highly exalted than the cherubim, the Mother of the Word and Creator.

Canon of the Righteous Ones

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!

Anna, the barren woman of old, having received fertile seed, was vouchsafed to give birth to a Maiden of divine radiance who hath dominion over all creatures.

The barren woman, hath now given birth by God’s will to the Virgin Who would with submission give birth untainted by carnal will, as God Himself manifestly desired.

Illumined by the Spirit, Isaiah beheld the offspring of Joachim and Anna as a new scroll, whereon the incarnate Word was written.

Theotokion: Mystery followeth mystery! For she who before was barren hath given birth to grace: the mediatress of salvation who hath been revealed to us by the birth of virginity.

Kontakion of the saints, in Tone II, Special Melody: “Seeking the highest…”

Anna now rejoiceth, having broken the bond of barrenness; and she nurtureth the all-pure one, calling upon all to hymn the One Who through her womb hath given unto men the only Mother who knew not man.

Ikos: Delivered by prayer from her former bonds of childlessness, Anna now calleth upon us to celebrate this wonder with her and to offer gifts to her who hath been born, making supplication before her with love, for once virgins ran quickly to her, ­dancing and crying aloud: Behold! the restoration of all hath arrived! Behold, Adam hath been set free! For Anna hath budded forth fruit: the only Mother who knew not man!

Ode VII

Canon of the Feast

Irmos: The fiery bush on the mount and the dew-bearing furnace of Chaldæa manifestly prefigured thee, O Bride of God; for in thy material womb thou didst receive the divine and immaterial Fire without being consumed. Wherefore, to Him Who was born of thee do we chant: Blessed art Thou, O God of our fathers!

Once, the transmitter of the law was prevented from understanding thy great mystery in material manifestations, O all-pure one, though instructed through images not to think earthly thoughts. Wherefore, marvelling at the wonder, he said: Blessed is the God of our fathers!

In godly manner the divine choir called thee beforehand the mountain and portal of heaven and the noetic ladder; for from thee was the Stone cut without the aid of man’s hands, and thou art the door through which passed the Lord of wonders, the God of our fathers.

Canon of the Righteous Ones

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.

O holy couple who put forth from the root of the divinely wise David a most sacred staff, unto the world ye have given birth to the pure Virgin, the flower most sacred to us, who put forth Christ without seed.

The godly Anna, bearing the most radiant lamp of the Theotokos like a lustrous lampstand, hath illumined the whole world with divine light and the radiant effulgence of virginity.

O glorious grandparents of Almighty God, Who in His ineffable mercy became incarnate of your divinely wise daughter, O ye who art most rich, ask remission of offenses for me who now flee unto you.

Theotokion: In that ye are greater than all parents, ye gave birth to her who hath dominion over all creatures, the all-pure Mary who gave birth to God, Who in His great compassion robed Himself in flesh and became like unto us.

Ode VIII

Canon of the Feast

Irmos: Thou didst once prefigure Thy Mother in the furnace of the children, O Lord; for her image drew from the fire those who entered it, without being consumed. We hymn and exalt her supremely for all ages, who through Thee hath been made manifest today to the ends of the earth.

Now the foreordained tabernacle of our reconciliation to God, who is to give birth to the Word Who hath manifested Himself to us in the coarseness of our flesh, beginneth her existence. Him do we, who have been brought into existence by Him out of nonexistence, hymn and exalt supremely for all ages.

The reversal of Anna’s barrenness hath loosed the world’s lack of good things, and hath plainly shown forth a miracle: Christ, Who hath come to mortal men. Him do we, who have been brought into existence by Him out of nonexistence, hymn and exalt supremely for all ages.

Canon of the Righteous Ones

Irmos: God, Who descended into the fiery furnace for the Hebrew children and transformed the flame into dew, hymn ye as Lord, O ye works, and exalt Him supremely for all ages!

The honored Joachim and the chaste Anna, overflowing with riches, gave birth to the Virgin Queen, who is adorned with divine glory, and whom all creation doth hymn as the Theotokos.

By you, the friends of God, hath a staff of power been sent to us: the most immaculate Bride, through whom we prevail over the godless foe, trampling upon their devices.

Through you, O most sacred twain, hath a weapon been given us by the will of God, whereby we, the faithful, are now ever splendidly adorned: the pure Virgin Mother Who gave birth to God.

With fertility the power of God opened a barren womb, and the portal of virginity cometh forth in splendor, through whom the Word hath come to mortals, Who became incarnate at the ineffable words of the archangel.

Theotokion: O all-immaculate Mistress, may thy two excellent and enlightened parents be for us the mediation of heavenly blessings through the splendors of Him Who for our sake became incarnate of thee.

Ode IX

Canon of the Feast

Irmos: Thee do we magnify, O blessed and most pure Theotokos, who through thy virginal womb ineffably didst make God incarnate, the Luminary Who shone forth before the sun and hath come to us in the flesh.

He Who poured forth water from the stone for the rebellious people, through the womb of a barren woman giveth to us, the right submissive nations, the fruit of gladness: thee, O all-pure Mother of God, whom we magnify as is meet.

Thee, O Theotokos, do we magnify, who hast removed the ancient and precipitous condemnation: the restoration of our first mother, the cause of the reconciliation of our race to God, the bridge to the Creator.

Canon of the Righteous Ones

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 honored parents of the all-pure Virgin, most sacred ones who through virtue are united in wisdom and in soul, pray ye, that those who ardently celebrate your all-praised and glorious memory may be saved.

Ye have destroyed the field of death, O glorious ones who radiantly gave birth to the Mother of Life who hath broken its assault and mediated the hope of immortal life for the sake of faith.

Entering into conjunction with Anna, like the sun with the luminous moon, Joachim gave rise to a ray of virginity, through whom the Ray of the divine Essence hath shone forth upon us, united to the flesh hypostatically.

Having lived in chastity and piety, O blessed ones, ye have now been counted worthy of ineffable sweetness, having received the divine revelation of Him Who through you appeared to the world. Him do ye entreat, that our souls be saved.

Exapostilarion, Special Melody: “Thou hast visited us…”

She who hath abolished the curse of Eve is now born of Anna and Joachim, barren and elderly. With the angels let us praise her in hymns as is meet, O ye faithful.

Glory…, Now and ever…: another exapostilarion

Like sun from sun and moon from moon, the most immaculate Maiden was born of Anna and Joachim, and in her radiance she hath illumined the ends of the world. Hymning her as is meet, we call her blessed, celebrating their honored memory.

At the Aposticha, these stichera of the feast, in Tone VI, Special Melody: “On the third day…”

Leap up now, O Prophet David, for, lo! from thy loins hath the Virgin been all-gloriously born, the divine Maiden Mary, for whose sake mortals have divinely found restoration from their fall.

Stichos: Hearken, O daughter, and see, and incline thine ear.

Through grace hath the mire of mortality been removed, and Adam and Eve, our first parents, have been granted life; for the Theotokos, truly born of a barren woman, hath loosed the barrenness of the world.

Stichos: The rich among the people shall entreat thy countenance.

With the angels do we radiantly celebrate thy most honored nativity, O pure Virgin Mother. O Theotokos, cease thou never to defend the ­Christians who hymn thee!

Glory…, Now and ever…, in Tone II

Today the most immaculate and pure one hath issued forth from the barren woman! Today all things rejoice in her nativity! The bonds of Adam have been broken, and Eve hath been freed from the curse! All those in heaven are glad, and peace is given to men! And we, glorifying her, cry aloud: Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will among men!

At Divine Liturgy

On the Beatitudes, 8 Troparia: 4 from Ode I of the canon of the feast, and 4 from Ode VI of the canon of the righteous ones.

Prokimenon of the feast, from henceforth until the leave-taking; and that of the saints, 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 Galatians, §210,

from the midpoint [Gal. 4: 22-31]

Brethren: Abraham had two sons, the one by a bondmaid, the other by a free woman. But he who was of the bondwoman was born after the flesh; but he of the free woman was by promise. Which things are an allegory: for these are the two covenants; the one from the mount Sinai, which gendereth to bondage, which is Hagar. For this Hagar is mount Sinai in Arabia, and answereth to Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children. But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all. For it is written, Rejoice, thou barren that bearest not; break forth and cry, thou that travailest not: for the desolate hath many more children than she which hath a husband. Now we, brethren, as Isaac was, are the children of promise. But as then he that was born after the flesh persecuted him who was born after the Spirit, even so it is now. Nevertheless what saith the Scripture? Cast out the bondwoman and her son: for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir with the son of the free woman. So then, brethren, we are not children of the bondwoman, but of the free.

Alleluia, in Tone I

Stichos: The salvation of the righteous is from the Lord, and He is their defender in time of ­affliction.

Stichos: The Lord shall help them and shall deliver them, and He will rescue them from sinners and will save them because they have hoped in Him.

Gospel according to Luke, §36 [Lk. 8: 16-21]

The Lord said: No man, when he hath lighted a candle, covereth it with a vessel, or putteth it under a bed; but setteth it on a candlestick, that they which enter in may see the light. For nothing is secret, that shall not be made manifest; neither any thing hid, that shall not be known and come abroad. Take heed therefore how ye hear: for whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken even that which he seemeth to have. Then came to him His mother and His brethren, and could not come at Him for the press. And it was told Him by certain which said, Thy mother and Thy brethren stand without, desiring to see Thee. And He answered and said unto them, My mother and My brethren are these which hear the word of God, and do it.

Communion Verse of the feast; and that of the saints

Rejoice in the Lord, O ye righteous; praise is meet for the upright.

An akathist hymn in honor of the Righteous Joachim and Anna is available as item# 494

The Menaion of the Orthodox Church © Isaac E. Lambertsen