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The 11th Day of the Month of September

Commemoration of Our Venerable Fathers Sergius and Herman, Wonderworkers of Valaam

At Little Vespers

At “Lord, I have cried…,” four stichera, in Tone I, Special Melody: “Joy of the ranks of heaven…”

Today in their earthly habitation hath dawned the day of the radiant celebration of our most splendid luminaries Sergius and Herman, who behold the ranks of heaven, illumined by the light of the threefold Sun in the mansions of paradise.

Rejoice with us, ye multitude of the faithful! Ye mountains and hills, thou sea and all that is therein join chorus with us on the radiant day of the commemoration of the wondrous ascetics who flourished like a palm tree on the mountains of Valaam!

Manfully trampling down the delights of the world and sinful passions, O God-bearing fathers, cleansing your souls in a close-ordered life, ye entered into the paradise of grace, and taste today of the fruits of immortality and the delights of everlasting life.

Like two luminous stars in the noetic firmament of their monastery, wondrous Sergius and Herman have shone forth with the virtues and the splendor of miracles. And the light of their glory abideth from generation even unto generation.

Glory…, in Tone III

With fasting let us celebrate the festival of the fasters; let us flee sinful passions: incontinence, vainglory and pride, wrath, hatred and malice; and with fasting, humility and brotherly love let us honor the precious memory of the fathers, that we may all be accounted worthy to partake of joy in this universal celebration.

Now and ever…, of the feast, or this Theotokion, in the same tone

O Mistress Theotokos, intercessor for Christians, who conceived without seed and gavest birth without pain unto God the Word: before thee we fall down, thee do we hymn and glorify, and to thee do we pray with tears: Look upon us with thy merciful gaze, deliver us from the yoke of the passions, and grant our souls dispassion.

At the Aposticha, these stichera, in Tone II, Special Melody: “O house of Ephratha…”

Having made of yourselves, O holy fathers, a house, holy and precious, for the Holy Spirit, with virtuous deeds and gifts of miracles ye have been enriched.

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

Flowers of paradise have ye brought to bloom for us, O venerable ones, by the streams of your ascetic labors, rendering all of us fragrant.

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

The Lord Who is wondrous in His saints hath given two wellsprings of wonders, Sergius and Herman, to their monastery, unto the delight of those who faithfully honor their holy memory.

Glory…, in Tone V

The universal celebration of the ranks of angels and the venerable hath shone forth upon us in the commemoration of our venerable fathers Sergius and Herman, who disdained things earthly that they might inherit things heavenly, who trampled down that which is carnal that they might receive that which is spiritual. To them hath the Lord given the reward of the faithful servants, and He hath glorified them on earth and in the heavens.

Now and ever…, Theotokion, in the same tone

O Virgin Theotokos, noetic jar who contained in thy womb Christ, the Bestower of manna: Him do thou earnestly entreat, that He deliver us from the bitter slavery of the passions and make us all partakers of spiritual manna in the wilderness of dispassion, that He may save us from all evils and enlighten our souls.

Troparion, in Tone IV

Ye have been shown to be truly obedient to the Gospel of Christ, O venerable ones, for the sake of the love of Christ despising the world and all that is therein as though it did not exist; and making your abode on an island of the sea, ye diligently struggled thereon against the wiles of invisible foes, wisely subjecting your flesh to your spirit through fasting, vigil and standing all night. Wherefore, from the right hand of the Almighty ye have received fitting crowns. And now, standing before the all-holy Trinity, O most blessed fathers Sergius and Herman, pray ye that the suffering Russian land be preserved and our souls be saved.

Another Troparion, in Tone I

Fleeing the tumult of the world, O ye lovers of serenity and piety, from the East did ye arrive at the calm haven of Valaam, and thereon evangelically following after Christ in the virtues, ye ascended to the summit of perfection. And now, delighting in the vision of God at thy universal festival, O most blessed Sergius and Herman, entreat God, Who lovest mankind, that He save us all who piously honor you.

At Great Vespers

“Blessed is the man…,” the First Antiphon.

On “Lord, I have cried…”, 8 stichera, 3 of the feast, idiomela, in Tone VI

The composition of Sergius the Patriarch: Today God, Who resteth on the noetic thrones, hath prepared for Himself a holy throne on earth. He Who hath established the heavens by His wisdom hath in His loving-kindness created an animate heaven. For the God of wonders, the Hope of the hopeless, hath caused His Mother to spring forth as a Life-bearing plant from a barren root. Glory to Thee, O Lord! Once

This is the day of the Lord! Rejoice, O ye people! For, lo! the bridal-chamber of the Light and the book of the Word of life hath issued forth from the womb, and the portal which faceth toward the east, having been born, awaiteth the entry of the great High Priest. She alone leadeth the one Christ into the world, for the salvation of our souls. Once

Even though, by the will of God, famous barren women have produced offspring, yet in divine majesty Mary hath outshone all who have been born; for, having been all-gloriously born of a barren mother, she supernaturally gave birth in the flesh to the God of all, from a womb which knew not seed. She alone is the gate of the only-begotten Son of God; and He, passing through it, hath kept it closed, and, arranging all things wisely in accordance with His knowledge, hath wrought salvation for all men.

And 5 stichera of the venerable ones, in Tone VIII, Special Melody: “O most glorious wonder…”

O most glorious wonder! Sergius and Herman, dwellers in this world, aflame with love for Christ, with noble mind together conquer the world and the prince of the world, and mount to the perfection of the life of the Gospel by the ladder of the virtues. As great beacons hath Christ God bestowed them upon the wilderness of Valaam, illumining our souls with the light of their deeds. Twice

O wondrous valor! The holy ones spare not their much-suffering flesh, but rise up against it as though it were their foe, crucifying it with its passions and lusts, and subjecting it to the spirit. Wherefore, they receive imperishable gifts from Christ; they transcend earthly things and attain unto that which is heavenly, and are glorified by angels and men.

O Sergius and Herman, ye animate pillars, adorned with the virtues, how can we fittingly praise you in hymns? For, transcending the limits of nature, ye were shown to be angels in the flesh, who emulate the life of the incorporeal ones. Wherefore, as the adornment of fasters and inhabitants of heavenly Sion, mediators and intercessors before the Lord, ye are ever blessed.

Like fruitful olive trees they grew in the house of God; like palm trees have the venerable ones flourished for us in their virtues; and as vessels of the Holy Spirit they have been adorned, not with gold, but with divine gifts. Celebrating their memory, lovers of the feasts of the Church, let us emulate their life, that God may account us worthy to hear with them the voice of those who celebrate in the heavenly Sion.

Glory…, in Tone VI

We glorify Thee, O God in three Hypostases, Creator of heaven and earth, for Thou hast given us a model of how to be well-pleasing unto Thee in the fasters chosen by Thee, our most blessed fathers Sergius and Herman. Their love for Thee was undivided, the bond of their brotherly love was true, their prayer unceasing, meek and gentle was their demeanor, the streams of their tears were ever-flowing, their fasting, vigil and struggles transcending the bounds of nature. Wherefore, having cleansed mind and heart beforehand, they ascend from the earth to heaven, and now glorify Thee in everlasting glory with the angels. By their supplications, O Master, Who lovest mankind, grant victories over heresy to our Orthodox hierarchs; send down peace upon our world, and great mercy on our souls.

Now and ever…, of the feast, or the Dogmaticon, in Tone VI

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 becameth 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. Three readings:

Reading from the Wisdom of Solomon (3:1-9).

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 for ever. They that 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.

Reading from the Wisdom of Solomon

(5:15-6:3).

The righteous live for evermore; their reward also is with the Lord, and the care of them is with the most High. Therefore shall they receive a glorious kingdom, and a beautiful crown from the Lord’s hand: for with his right hand shall he cover them, and with his arm shall he protect them. He shall take to him his jealousy for complete armor, and make the creature his weapon for the revenge of his enemies. He shall put on righteousness as a breastplate, and true judgment instead of an helmet. He shall take holiness for an invincible shield. His severe wrath shall he sharpen for a sword, and the world shall fight with him against the unwise. Then shall the right aiming thunderbolts go abroad; and from the clouds, as from a well-drawn bow, shall they fly to the mark. And hailstones full of wrath shall be cast as out of a stone bow, and the water of the sea shall rage against them, and the floods shall cruelly drown them. Yea, a mighty wind shall stand up against them, and like a storm shall blow them away: thus iniquity shall lay waste the whole earth, and ill-dealing shall overthrow the thrones of the mighty. Hear therefore, O ye kings, and understand; learn, ye that be judges of the ends of the earth. Give ear, ye that rule the people, and glory in the multitude of nations. For power is given you of the Lord, and sovereignty from the Highest, who shall try your works, and search out your counsels.

Reading from the Wisdom of Solomon

(4:7-15).

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 loved 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 it 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 the Litya, the sticheron of the temple, and these stichera, idiomela, in Tone III

Loving Christ, Who loveth mankind, Who out of darkness created wondrous light, being Himself the unoriginate Light, and Who enlightened the hearts of the faithful with the light of the knowledge of Him, the divinely wise fathers walked well in the light of His commandments and, illumined by Him, have been shown to be beacons for us who do battle against the darkness of the passions. By their prayers, O Lord, Bestower of light, illumine also our minds and cleanse our hearts, in that Thou art compassionate.

Thy divinely wise fathers chose voluntary poverty as the gateway to perfection, and, poor in spirit, were enriched by grace, which by its light guided and directed them to the summit of the virtues of perfection. O Master Christ, through the supplications of the venerable ones account us worthy also to be partakers thereof, and save our souls, in that Thou lovest mankind.

O Sergius and Herman, the power of fasting and prayer made you, while in the flesh, like unto the bodiless ones. For the law of the flesh was unable to shake the steadfastness of your mind; but when the law hath dominion over the mind through God, the law in the members is vanquished. Therefore, O most blessed ones, beseech Christ God, that He grant us the gift of chastity and save our souls.

Glory…, in Tone II

The light of the grace of the Godhead in three Hypostases, having driven the gloom of earthly attachment from your souls, O Sergius and Herman, directed you to the arduous path of fasting, guided you across the raging sea of the passions, led you up to the mountain of dispassion, inscribed the law on the tablets of your hearts, made you partakers of spiritual manna, and brought you into the promised land, the heavenly Sion, where, joining chorus with the angels, entreat ye the all-good Creator, that He save our souls.

Now and ever…, Theotokion, in the same tone

O new wonder greater than all the wonders of the past! For who hath ever known a mother to give birth without having known a man, and to bear on her arm Him Who sustaineth all creation? Yet it was the will of God to be born. O all-pure one, who bore Him in thine arms as an infant and hast maternal boldness before Him: cease not to pray in behalf of those who honor thee, that He have compassion and save our souls.

Or that of the feast, the composition of Sergius the Patriarch, in Tone VIII

On the right excellent day of our feast let us strike the spiritual harp; for the Mother of Life is born today of the seed of David, dispelling the darkness: the renewal of Adam, the restoration of Eve, the Well-spring of incorruption, our release from corruption. Because of her we have been deified and delivered from death. And we, the faithful, cry out to her with Gabriel: Rejoice, thou who art full of grace, the Lord is with thee, granting us great mercy for thy sake!

At the Aposticha, these stichera, in Tone V, Special Melody: “Rejoice…”

Rejoice, ye two who are the elect of God, Sergius and Herman, invincible warriors of Christ, glorious in victory over the noetic foe, confirmation of monastics, rampart of your monastery, by whom corrupting passions are uprooted within us, infirmities are healed, demons are put to flight, the pride of the enemy is cast down, and we are saved. Glory to God Who is wondrous in His saints, Who granteth great mercy to the faithful through their supplications.

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

Rejoice, O author of our joy, most blessed father Sergius, with the divinely wise Herman! For ye have entered into the joy of the righteous, and received the reward of your labors from Christ the Master. Having been obedient to Him for a time on earth, ye now reign forever with Him in the heavens. Illumined with His divine glory, celebrate with us the radiant day of your commemoration, earnestly entreating Him to send down upon the faithful great mercy.

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

Rejoice, holy monastery of Valaam! Rejoice, divine temple, wherein the Lord most good hath been well-pleased to rest the bodies of the saints, and to make their shrine a wellspring of miracles. Come ye, therefore, O ye faithful, draw forth and drink of the water of grace which floweth from that fountain of healings, and with us cry out, as with a psalm, to the authors of our joy: Rejoice, Sergius and Herman, for praise is meet for you! After God it is to you that we offer a sacrifice of praise!

Glory…, in Tone VIII

O choirs of monks who glorify God in Trinity, and all ye multitudes: assembling, let us bless the all-praised fathers, lovers of quietude, true fasters, renowned fulfillers of the law of God, beacons of grace, angels in the flesh; and let us cry out to them, saying: O fathers Sergius and Herman, elect of God, being citizens of heaven, entreat the Master of all to preserve all the cities and lands of Russia from famine and the sword, to grant peace to His Church, and to save our souls.

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.

Or that of the feast, the composition of Sergius the Patriarch, in Tone VIII

Come, all ye faithful, let us make haste to the Virgin! For, lo! she is born who was foreseen before the womb as the Mother of our God, the vessel of virginity, the rod of Aaron which sprang forth from the root of Jesse, the proclamation of the prophets, the offspring of the righteous Joachim and Anna! She is born, and with her the world is restored! She is born, and the Church adorneth herself in her majesty! She is the holy temple and receptacle of the Godhead, the vessel of virginity, the bridal-chamber of the King, wherein was wrought the all-glorious and perfect mystery of the ineffable union of the natures which have come together in Christ! And worshipping Him, we hymn the nativity of the most immaculate Virgin.

At the Blessing of the Loaves, the Troparion of the venerable ones, twice, and “Virgin Theotokos, ­rejoice…,” or that of the feast, once.

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 I

Aflame with divine desire, O venerable ones, ye cried out to Christ as in the psalm: “What have we in heaven save Thee, O God, Thou for Whom we most long, object of our desires? And apart from Thee what have we desired upon earth? We have disdained all earthly things, all corruptible things have we considered but dung, that we might acquire Thee alone, love Thee with all our soul, and serve only Thee!” By their prayers, O Lord, Who lovest mankind, fill our souls with Thy love and save us, in that Thou art compassionate. Twice

Glory…, Now and ever…, of the feast

Cry aloud, O David! What hath God sworn unto thee? “That which He hath sworn unto me,” saith he, “hath already been fulfilled! Of the fruit of my loins He hath given me the Virgin, from whom Christ the Creator hath been born: the new Adam, the King Who sitteth on my throne! And He Whose kingdom is invisible reigneth today! A barren woman giveth birth to the Theotokos, the nurturer of our Life!”

Or this Theotokion, in the same tone

As the most pure temple of the heavenly King wast thou, O all-pure one; and as thou hast maternal boldness before Him, beseech Him to make haste to cleanse our souls from the multitude of our transgressions, and to make of us honored temples to be a dwelling-place for Himself, in His love for mankind. For we are His creations. And though we sin, yet do we not lose hope that we shall be saved, having thee, O Mistress, as a fervent intercessor for us before Him.

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

Not the outside of the cup and platter were the venerable ones taught to clean by the words of Christ, but the inner man from sinful passions; for out of the heart do evil thoughts proceed. Wherefore, acquiring purity of heart in quietude, through the exercise of the virtues and by the action of grace, they were revealed as precious vessels of the Holy Spirit. And now, standing before Christ, they send down the inexhaustible grace of healings upon us from on high, and upon all who faithfully honor their radiant memory. Twice

Glory…, Now and ever…, of the feast

Today is Mary, the divine Maiden, born for us of the root of Jesse and the loins of David. All things rejoice with joy and are renewed. Rejoice together, O heaven and earth! Praise her, ye people of our native land! Joachim maketh merry, and Anna keepeth festival, crying aloud: A barren woman giveth birth to the Theotokos, the nourisher of our Life!

Or this Theotokion, in the same tone

O all-immaculate Virgin, noetic ray which shone forth Christ, the uncreated Sun, upon the world! Stretch forth thy maternal hands in supplication to Him, as thy Son, that He shine upon us sinners with the unwaning light of grace; that, having set aside the works of darkness, we may make our souls to shine with the oil of good works and may be worthy to enter into the bridal chamber with the wise virgins, magnifying thee, O Mistress, for all ages.

Polyeleos, and this magnification

We bless you, O venerable fathers Sergius and Herman, and we honor your holy memory, O instructors of monks and conversers with the angels.

Selected Psalm verses

A With patience I waited patiently for the Lord, and He was attentive unto me, and He hearkened unto my supplication. [Ps. 39: 2]

B He set my feet upon a rock, and He ordered my steps aright. [Ps. 39: 3]

A Lo, I have fled afar off and have dwelt in the wilderness. [Ps. 54: 8]

B I am become like a pelican of the wilderness. [Ps. 101: 7]

A I have watched, and am like a sparrow that sitteth alone upon the housetop. [Ps. 101: 8]

B My knees are grown weak through fasting. [Ps. 108: 24]

A And my flesh is changed for want of oil. [Ps. 108: 24]

B With tears will I water my couch. [Ps. 6: 4]

A For many dogs have encircled me, the congregation of evil doers hath surrounded me. [Ps. 21: 17]

B They have bent their bow, a bitter thing. [Ps. 63: 4]

A That they may shoot in secret at the blameless man. [Ps. 63: 4]

B I beheld the Lord ever before me, for He is at my right hand, that I may not be shaken. [Ps. 15: 8]

A All the nations compassed me round about, and by the name of the Lord I warded them off. [Ps. 117: 10]

B Blessed be the Lord Who hath not given us to be a prey to their teeth. [Ps. 123: 6]

A Let all Thy works, O Lord, give praise to Thee. [Ps. 144: 10]

B And let the righteous ones bless Thee. [Ps. 144: 10]

A Know also that the Lord hath made wondrous His righteous one. [Ps. 4: 4]

B He hath labored forever, and shall live to the end. [Ps. 48: 9-10]

A The Lord preserveth the souls of His saints. [Ps. 96: 10]

B The saints shall boast in glory and shall rejoice upon their beds. [Ps. 149: 5]

A Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints. [Ps. 115: 6]

B Chant unto the Lord, O ye saints of His, and give thanks at the remembrance of His holiness. [Ps. 29: 5]

Glory…, Now and ever…

Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia, Glory to Thee, O God! Thrice

After the Polyeleos, this Sessional hymn, in Tone IV

Praising the name of the Lord in His divine temple, let us also praise His faithful servants, our all-praised fathers Sergius and Herman, who praised God in their souls and bodies, and with the light of the virtues shone forth as newly revealed stars in the land of Karelia. Wherefore, God hath glorified them in the Kingdom of heaven and hath shown them forth as our helpers who ever pray for our souls. Twice

Glory…, Now and ever…, of the feast, or this ­Theotokion, in the same tone

The fulfillment of thy words is seen, O Mistress; for, lo! all generations call thee blessed, and we, thy servants, ever supremely exalt thy name after that of God, and cry out: Rejoice, joy of those who are born on earth! Rejoice, boast of virgins! Rejoice, calm haven for those who are bestormed by the passions! Rejoice, refuge and salvation for the despairing! Rejoice, helper and protection for the faithful! Rejoice, O Mary Theotokos, who alone art blessed among women, who hast given birth to the Life of all!

Hymns of Ascent, the First Antiphon of Tone IV.

Prokimenon, in Tone IV

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

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

“Let every breath praise the Lord”

Reading from the Gospel

according to Matthew (11:27-30).

The Lord said to His disciples: All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him. Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

After Psalm 50, this sticheron, in Tone VI

The radiant commemoration of the fathers, like a high-sounding trumpet, doth summon multitudes of the faithful from all nations, and the sound of noetic instruments doth rouse them to praise. Let us therefore praise and exalt in hymns the authors of our joy, our all-praised fathers Sergius and Herman, who now invisibly celebrate and rejoice in spirit with us, and ask of Christ gifts of grace, that He have compassion upon all that celebrate their most honored memory as is meet.

Canon of the feast (as printed in the previous service for this day), with six Troparia, including its irmos; and that of the venerable ones, with eight Troparia, in Tone IV

Ode I

Irmos: O Thou Who wast born of the Virgin, drown Thou, I pray Thee, the three parts of my soul in the depths of dispassion, as of old Thou didst drown the mounted captains of Pharaoh; that, in the mortality of my body, as on a timbrel, I may chant a hymn of victory.

O Christ, Thou Sun of righteousness, illumine me this day with the light of the knowledge of Thee, that with heart and mouth I may hymn our beacons, Sergius and Herman, unto Thy glory, O Master.

The holy ones said one to another: Let us shun the wide path, for it leadeth to destruction; let us flee sinful passions, for they lead down to hell; let us love the narrow way, that we may inherit everlasting life!

Watering the ground of your hearts with tears as with rain, and warming it with the fervor of your prayer as with the sun, ye brought forth fruits of virtue for the Husbandman of the vineyard, O Sergius and Herman.

Theotokion: I hymn and glorify the virtues of the saints, yet cease not to do evil myself. Woe is me! Yet through the supplications of Thy Mother, O Master Christ, awaken me from the sleep of sloth, wretch that I am, unto the exercise of the virtues.

Ode III

Irmos: Neither in wisdom, nor in power, nor yet in riches do we boast, but in Thee, O Christ, the hypostatic Wisdom of the Father; for none is holy save Thee, O Thou Who lovest mankind.

Disobeying the commandment, our forefather was deprived of the sweetness of paradise, but the holy ones, inheriting everlasting life through obedience, delight in the vision of God.

The heavenly Father, perceiving your mystic activity, O lovers of quietude, had compassion upon you, as His sons, enriched you with grace, and hath glorified you in the heavens.

With a pure heart let us honor the lovers of purity, earthly angels, chosen vessels of the Holy Spirit, pure reflection of chastity, Sergius and Herman.

Theotokion: A slave to the stomach, how can I subject flesh to spirit and acquire angelic purity? Yet, O most pure one, boast of virgins, deliver me from this irrational captivity.

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, in Tone III

Departing far from the crash of the waves of life, from the lands of the East, ye came to an island of Lake Ladoga, where neither the deep of the passions nor the tempest of adverse spirits could shake your firmness of mind, O Sergius and Herman. And exercising yourselves in quietude in goodly struggle, ye were shown to be well pleasing unto Christ. Standing now before His throne, make supplication, that He ever regard the site of your habitation with a merciful eye, saving our souls in peace.

Glory…, Now and ever…, of the feast, in Tone IV, Special Melody: “Joseph marvelled…”

Like a cloud of light hath the Virgin Mary, the Theotokos, truly shone forth upon us today, and she cometh forth from the righteous ones for our glory. No longer is Adam condemned, and Eve is freed from her bonds. Wherefore, we exclaim, crying aloud with boldness to her who alone is pure: Thy nativity announceth joy to the whole world!

Ode IV

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!

As vines of the vineyard of Christ which put forth the grapes of the virtues, fill our hearts with the wine of divine gladness.

In that ye are in the joy of the righteous, O all-blessed ones, we beseech you to drive away all grief and bitterness from our souls, that, rejoicing, we may glorify you.

The dark tempest of the passions hath risen up against me, and the light of grace is hid from mine eyes. Yet, O noetic witnesses, haste ye to aid my benightedness.

Theotokion: The choirs of angels and the righteous and we sinners beseech Thee, O compassionate Lord: through the intercession of Thy Mother, have pity and save us!

Ode V

Irmos: The ungodly perceive not Thy glory, O Christ; but, waking at dawn out of the night, we hymn Thee, O Only-begotten One Who lovest mankind, Thou effulgence of the glory of the Father’s divinity.

Having cleansed their souls through utmost serenity, prayer, fasting and vigilance, the lovers of the wilderness were made receptacles of the light of the threefold Sun.

Not as reeds shaken with the wind, but as steadfast pillars founded by faith on Christ, the Cornerstone, Sergius and Herman shone forth with the virtues.

Emulating the life of John in the wilderness of the Jordan and the quietude of Elijah on the mountain, freed from the yoke of the passions by their spiritual activity, the venerable ones were illumined by the vision of God.

Theotokion: Thou art my protection from the temptations of the enemy, O Mistress. Be thou ever the light of my heart which hath been darkened by the griefs of life, and save me, O Theotokos.

Ode VI

Irmos: I have come unto the depths of the sea, and the tempest of my many sins hath engulfed me; but, as God, lead up my life from the abyss, O greatly Merciful One.

As an unblemished sacrifice and a fatted holocaust did the holy ones offer themselves to God, and they were shown to be more pleasing to Him than any wholeburnt offering and oblation.

Beholding the Lord before you with the eyes of your mind, O divinely-blessed ones, blamelessly did ye follow in the steps of His commandments, having feet made steadfast by the grace of the Holy Spirit.

Your God-loving spirit had no rest until ye found a place of tranquility, O Sergius and Herman, for, united to God through faith and love, ye have inherited everlasting repose.

Theotokion: Swallowed up, not by a whale as was Jonah, but by sin, I cry out: O Master Christ, through the supplications of Thine all-pure Mother and of the venerable fathers, deliver me from corruption, as Thou art compassionate.

Kontakion, in Tone IV

Departing from the life of the world, ye followed Christ in rejecting the world, and reached the great Lake Ladoga; abiding on the Island of Valaam therein, ye led a life equal to that of the angels: whence, in gladness, ye passed over to the mansions of heaven. And now, standing with the angels before the throne of the Master, remember us, thy children, whom ye have gathered together, O divinely wise ones, that we may joyously cry out from the depths of our souls: Rejoice, O Sergius and Herman, most blessed fathers!

Ikos: Ignorant, how shall I hymn the all-praised fasters? For the utterance of wisdom and the discourse of understanding have not been given unto me, who am stuck fast in foolishness. O Jesus, Bestower of understanding, eternal Wisdom and hypostatic Word of God, through the supplications of Thy saints do Thou Thyself enlighten my mind and grant me speech, that with the voice of the angel I my hymn them, saying: Rejoice, noetic stars which have shone forth upon us from the East! Rejoice, true lovers of quietude! Rejoice, ye who blamelessly fulfilled the commandments of Christ! Rejoice, golden vessels filled with the Holy Spirit! Rejoice, animate pillars which make steadfast the house of fasting! Rejoice, ye lilies, white as snow in the purity of your hearts! Rejoice, olive trees, which through Christ produce as fruit for us the oil of loving-kindness! Rejoice, champions of the faithful who pierce the adversary with the spear of prayer! Rejoice, healers of bodily infirmities and spiritual passions! Rejoice, ye who hasten to the aid of the tempest-tossed who pray to you! Rejoice, great and most radiant beacons of Valaam! Rejoice, O Sergius and Herman, most blessed fathers!

Ode VII

Irmos: The three youths in Babylon, having put to mockery the tyrant’s command, cried out amid the flames: Blessed art Thou, O Lord God of our fathers!

The fire of divine love being within you, O Sergius and Herman, the flame of lust and the fire of wrath were transformed into dew. Wherefore, rejoicing, ye chanted in quietude: Blessed art Thou, O Lord God of our fathers!

As the youths did not serve the golden idol, so the venerable ones did not serve their flesh, but, crucifying it with its passions and lusts, as did the Apostle Paul, they subjected it to their spirit and, being made honored temples of the Holy Spirit, cried out: Blessed art Thou, O Lord God of our fathers!

As preservers of purity, the lovers of wisdom made themselves an abode for the most pure Godhead, and while in the flesh, through the mystic action of the Comforter, they were caught up to see things which transcend the world, chanting: Blessed art Thou, O Lord God of our fathers!

Theotokion: As Mother of God the unoriginate Word, O Mistress, I beg thee in compunction to deliver me from irrational passions, as the youths were delivered from the Chaldæan furnace, that, rejoicing with them, I may chant: Blessed art Thou, O Lord God of our fathers!

Ode VIII

Irmos: O Almighty Deliverer of all, descending into the midst of the flame Thou didst bedew the pious youths and didst teach them to chant: Bless and hymn the Lord, all ye works!

With vigilant watchfulness and fervent supplication to Christ, the venerable ones put to shame the devil, who is like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour, putting an end to his assaults. Wherefore, with the youths they sang: All ye works, bless and hymn ye the Lord!

Sergius and Herman, taking up the whole armor of God on the mountains of Valaam, like Moses and Aaron weakened the power of the adversary by the raising aloft of their mind and hands, contending in company with the faithful, and chanting the hymn: Bless and hymn the Lord, all ye works!

Trinitarian: O unoriginate, almighty, consubstantial and holy Trinity, through the supplications of Thy saints deliver our souls from the assault of the three noetic foes; have mercy and save all that piously confess Thee.

Theotokion: Cause me to follow in good works those who lived a God-pleasing life, O all-immaculate one, fending off from my soul the attacks of the evil demons, and ever lead my mind up to see the commandments of thy Son and my Creator.

Ode IX

Irmos: Eve, through weakness, abode under the curse of disobedience; but thou, O Virgin Theotokos, hast put forth blessing for the world through the Offspring of thy child-bearing. Wherefore, we all magnify thee.

Established by grace upon the steadfast rock of faith, struggling in quietude, having completed the course of fasting and received your reward from Christ, pray ye now, O all-blessed ones, that He establish His faithful in faith and virtue.

As vanquishers of noetic foes, standing now before the throne of the King of the hosts of heaven, O Sergius and Herman, entreat His goodness, that He grant victory and triumph unto all Orthodox Christians over their adversaries.

In the mansions of heaven, O venerable ones, entreat the Master of all to preserve in peace your monastery and all cities and lands where Christians dwell, and to save all of us who piously honor you.

Theotokion: Christ the Cornerstone is a foundation for the faithful and a stumbling-block and rock of offense for the unbelieving. On that Rock establish thou my thought, O Mistress, and save me, for thou hast maternal boldness before Him.

Exapostilarion

Today the Theotokos doth issue forth like a flower from barren Anna, instilling all the ends of the world with divine fragrance, filling all creation with joy. Hymning her, we praise her as is meet, as the one who is more exalted than all mortals. Twice

Glory…, Now and ever…:

Be thou renewed, O Adam! Be thou magnified, O Eve! Join ye chorus with the apostles and the righteous! For Mary the Theotokos, the common joy of angels and men, hath shone forth today from the righteous Joachim and Anna.

At the Praises, four stichera, in Tone IV, Special Melody: “Thou didst give a sign…”

A model of how to please Thee, O Lord, didst Thou give to us: Thy faithful servants Sergius and Herman, who by vigilant watchfulness of mind put to shame the warring demons, nobly repelling their assaults of passion; and being not slaves to sin, they were manifest as well-pleasing unto Thee, O Jesus almighty, Thou Savior of our souls!

Having acquired the fervor of divine love in the performance of the Lord’s commandments and the activity of unceasing prayer, and having tasted of the sweetness thereof through spiritual sensibility, the holy fathers cried out to Christ: None other delight shall separate us from Thy love, O Jesus most sweet, Thou Savior of our souls!

As an inexhaustible wellspring and an ever-flowing stream of spiritual gifts hath the shrine of the venerable fathers in this divine temple been given unto us by Thee, O Jesus, Who lovest mankind, Savior of all the world, compassionate Benefactor, Healer of our bodies and souls.

Rejoice, O wilderness, which before wast barren and uninhabited, but dost now flourish like a lily and art filled with a multitude of monks! Exult, ye mountains of Valaam and all ye groves of trees, praising with us Sergius and Herman, the most laudable fathers, on this the day of their joyous festivity.

Glory…, in Tone VI

With thankful hearts and lips we praise thee, O almighty Lord, Who art wondrous in Thy saints and through them dost work great and glorious things, for Thou hast shown Thyself forth as wondrous in our venerable fathers, through whom Thou assistest the faithful in need, grantest health to the infirm through their intercession, freest the demonized from evil spirits, and savest the perishing from drowning. Wherefore, celebrating now their memory, we worship Thy dominion, and, rendering glorification, we cry out: O unoriginate Father, equally without beginning Son and Holy Spirit, equal in honor: O Holy Trinity, glory be to Thee!

Now and ever…, of the feast, idiomelon, in Tone VI

This is the day of the Lord! Rejoice, O ye people! For, lo! the bridal-chamber of the Light and the book of the Word of life hath issued forth from the womb, and the portal which faceth toward the east, having been born, awaiteth the entry of the great High Priest. She alone leadeth the one Christ into the world, for the salvation of our souls.

Or the Theotokion “O Theotokos, thou art the true vine…”

At Divine Liturgy

On the Beatitudes, eight Troparia: four from the appropriate ode of the canon of the feast, and four from Ode VI of the canon of the venerable ones

Prokimenon, in Tone VII

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

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

Reading from the Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Galatians (5:22-6:2).

Brethren: The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. Let us not be desirous of vainglory, provoking one another, envying one another. Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such a one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted. Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.

Alleluia, in Tone VI

Stichos: Blessed is the man that feareth the Lord; in His commandments shall he greatly delight.

Stichos: His seed shall be mighty upon the earth.

Reading from the Gospel

according to Luke (6:17-23).

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

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