The 1st Day of the MONTH OF FEBRUARY

Forefeast of the Meeting of Our Lord, God & Savior Jesus Christ

Commemoration of the Holy Martyr Tryphon

(for this day we provide also the service in honor of St. Bridget of Ireland)

AT VESPERS

On “Lord, I have cried…”, 6 stichera: 3 for the forefeast, in Tone IV: Spec. Mel.: “As one valiant among the martyrs…”—

The honored temple maketh ready to receive within itself the Lord Who cometh as a Babe and noetically illumineth with grace His most faithful assembly beloved of God; wherefore it crieth out: “Thou art the glory, the boast and the adornment of my fullness, O Word Who for my sake becamest a Babe in the flesh!”

The most splendid bridal-chamber, the all-­precious tabernacle, the holy and spacious temple, bearing the Lord within the chambers of the temple, doth betroth herself beforehand to His honored Church and ever prayeth, that those who unceasingly glorify her as the true Theotokos be delivered from corruption and misfortunes.

Let us now offer unto Christ the praise of the forefeast, glorifying His condescension; for, carried in the Virgin’s arms as an infant, He cometh to lie in the arms of Symeon, crying out to all men, and to deify their nature, as Benefactor and Lord.

And 3 stichera of the martyr, in Tone I: Spec. Mel.: “O most lauded martyrs…”—

O most lauded Tryphon, in the heavens thou didst partake most splendidly of incorruptible delight, and didst contend, O glorious one, in valorous struggles. As thou wast a witness to the truth, entreat Christ, that He grant peace and great mercy to our souls.

O all-glorious Tryphon, thou wast wholly illumined by rays of everlasting light, casting down all the gloom of falsehood and bringing low the prince of darkness by grace divine. Wherefore, make entreaty, that peace and great mercy be granted to our souls.

O most blessed Tryphon, thou wast counted worthy of angelic joy and gladness, having spurned the beautiful things of life; and, considering them all as nought, with strength of soul thou didst complete thy martyrdom most steadfastly, and prayest for our souls.

Glory…, the composition of Cyprian, in Tone II—

Thou didst disdain that which is on the earth, O most blessed and honored martyr Tryphon, and didst manfully hasten to the tribunal; and, having cast down the prideful one with skill and the blood of thy contest, thou hast received a crown of victory. Cease thou never to entreat Christ our God, O athlete, that our souls be saved.

Now & ever…, the composition of Germanus, in the same tone—

Today Symeon taketh in his arms the Lord of glory, Whom Moses beheld before in the darkness when He gave him the tablets of the law on Mount Sinai. He is the Creator of the law Who speaketh through the prophets. He is the One Whom David proclaimed, of Whom all are in awe, Who hath great and rich mercy.

At the aposticha, these stichera, in Tone II: Spec. Mel.: “O house of Ephratha…”—

Receive, O Symeon, the Lord of glory as thou wast told by the Holy Spirit. For, lo! He is come!

Stichos: Now lettest Thou Thy servant depart in peace, O Master, according to Thy word.

Bearing the Creator and Master as a Babe in her arms, the pure and all-pure Virgin entereth the temple.

Stichos: A Light of revelation to the gentiles, and the glory of Thy people Israel.

Great and awesome and strange is the mystery of God’s dispensation: He Who embraceth all things and createth infants is borne in arms as a Babe.

Glory…, Now & ever…: Idiomelon, in the same tone—

The sacred Virgin brought the Sacred One to the high priest in the temple, and Symeon, stretching forth his hands, received Him, rejoicing, and cried out: “Now lettest Thou Thy servant depart in peace, O Lord, according to Thy word!”

Troparion, in Tone IV—

In his suffering, O Lord, Thy martyr Tryphon received an imperishable crown from Thee, our God; for, possessed of Thy might, he cast down the tormenters and destroyed the feeble audacity of the demons. By his supplications save Thou our souls.

Glory…, Now & ever…: Troparion of the forefeast, in Tone I: Spec. Mel.: “The choir of angels…”—

The celestial choir of the angels of heaven, coming to earth, behold the Firstborn of all creation Who is come, borne into the temple as a Babe in the arms of the Mother who knew not man. Wherefore, with us they chant hymns of the forefeast, rejoicing.

AT MATINS

At “God is the Lord…”, the troparion of the forefeast, twice; Glory…, that of the martyr; Now & ever…, that of the forefeast.

After the first chanting of the Psalter, this sessional hymn, in Tone III: Spec. Mel.: “Awed by the beauty of thy virginity…”—

Rejoicing, the sacred Symeon embraced Thee, Who wast incarnate of the Virgin, O Christ; and he cried out: “Now lettest Thou Thy servant depart, O Master!” And Anna, the blameless and glorious prophetess, now offereth thee confession and hymnody. And we cry out to Thee, O Bestower of life: Glory to Thee Who hast thus been well pleased!

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

After the second chanting of the Psalter, this sessional hymn, in Tone VIII: Spec. Mel.: “Of the shepherds’ pipes…”—

Thou wast born on earth, O Thou Who with the Father art equally without beginning, and wast carried into the temple, O Unapproachable One. And, rejoicing, the elder took Thee in his arms, crying: “Now lettest Thou Thy servant depart, whom Thou hast visited according to Thy word, O Thou Whose good pleasure it hath been, as God, to save the human race!”

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

Canon of the forefeast, with 8 troparia, including its irmos; and that of the martyr, with 4 troparia.

Ode I

Canon of the Forefeast, in Tone IV—

Irmos: Having traversed the depths of the Red Sea with dryshod feet, Israel of old vanquished the might of Amalek in the wilderness by Moses’ arms stretched out in the form of the Cross.

Having made ready our hearts as though they were arms, in purity let us all receive Christ Who is coming today, and let us spiritually delight in His divine gifts.

Opening its gates beforehand today, the temple of the law giveth splendid entry to the Giver and Creator of the law and prepareth divine praise for Him as precious gifts.

I hymn Thee, O Lord my God Who becamest a babe in the flesh, submitted to the law and hast saved man, for whose sake Thou becamest a man.

Theotokion: O all-pure Mistress, the old temple, understanding thee to be the pure dwelling-place of the Master and God of all, called forth a choir, magnifying thy glory.

Canon of the Martyr, the acrostic whereof is:

“O Tryphon, vouchsafe that I may partake of sweetness”, in Tone VIII—

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!

Truly delighting in divine sweetness in the heavens, as an invincible athlete deliver my soul from the vexation of the passions by thy supplications.

Having taught with divine words, O all-glorious one, thou didst perfect them with action, loving holiness and embracing chastity.

Truly thou wast a shepherd, tending the thoughts of thy soul in wisdom, and returning lost souls to God and leading them to Him, O glorious one.

Theotokion: With noetic radiance thou dost illumine me, O most immaculate one who gavest birth to the Effulgence of the Father’s glory. Dispel thou the darkness of sin.

If it be Sunday, the katavasia are the irmoi of the feast of the Meeting.

Ode III

Canon of the Forefeast

Irmos: Thy Church rejoiceth in Thee, O Christ, crying aloud: Thou art my strength, O Lord, my refuge and my consolation!

Those who went about in the house of God have leapt up noetically to receive Christ the King Who is coming in the flesh.

Making ready beforehand precious gifts acceptable to Christ, O ye faithful, let us greet Him with joy today.

Now hath the tabernacle passed on, and truth come forth as grace hath arrived! Take Christ up now, O Symeon.

Theotokion: The proclamation in shadows and descriptive images hath now ceased; for Truth, O pure one, hath been manifested through thee to the ends of the earth.

Canon of the Martyr

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.

Invested with power from on high, O glorious martyr of Christ, thou didst blunt the power of the prideful one.

Clad in the flesh, thou didst burn up the insolence of the incorporeal foe and didst preach God, the incarnate Word.

By thine arrival alone are evil spirits driven out, put to flight by the grace of the Holy Spirit.

Theotokion: Having thee as my help, I am not put to shame, O all-pure Mother of God; and having thee as the intercessor for my life, I am saved.

Kontakion of the martyr, in Tone VIII: Spec. Mel.: “As first-fruits…”—

With the steadfastness of the Trinity thou didst uproot polytheism from the ends of the earth, O most glorious one; and, honored in Christ, thou didst vanquish the tyrants in Christ the Savior and receive a crown for thy martyrdom and gifts of divine healings, in that thou art invincible.

Sessional hymn of the martyr, in Tone IV: Spec. Mel.: “Go thou quickly before…”—

Delighting in the pangs of thy flesh, O blessed one, thou didst receive divine and painless sustenance as is meet, invested by God with a crown of immortality. Wherefore, thou pourest forth rivers of healings upon those who lovingly have recourse to thy protection, O martyr.

Glory…, Now & ever…: Sessional hymn of the forefeast, in Tone I: Spec. Mel.: “When the stone had been sealed by the Jews…”—

O eternal repository of the Life of all, Who of old inscribed the law on tablets on Mount Sinai, and Who for my sake hast become a babe, that Thou mayest release all from bondage to the ancient law: Glory to Thy compassion, O Savior! Glory to Thy condescension! Glory to Thy dispensation, O Thou Who alone lovest mankind!

Ode IV

Canon of the Forefeast

Irmos: Beholding Thee lifted up upon the Cross, O Sun of righteousness, the Church stood rooted in place, crying out as is meet: Glory to Thy power, O Lord!

He Who is upborne on a radiant cloud, corporeally, as the Sun of righteousness, giveth forth His divine rays today and illumineth His temple beforehand.

Today the Church offereth festal laudation beforehand to Christ the Master, doth splendidly make ready to receive Him as its Bridegroom, and rejoiceth with Symeon. The ranks of angels are stricken with awe, beholding in the elder’s arms Him Who with the Father and the Spirit is praised as the Son and our God.

Theotokion: O all-glorious Theotokos, the tabernacle of the law, desiring to receive thee, the tabernacle bearing the Lord of the law in thine arms, was made radiant by thy grace.

Canon of the Martyr

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

With the steadfastness of thine endurance thou didst astonish those who looked on, O blessed one; for thou didst endure torments, suffering as though in the body of another, O wise Tryphon.

Afflicted with stripes, thou didst partake of pain, O blessed one, and now dost enjoy pure delight, partaking of everlasting glory.

By grace divine was the strength of thy soul fortified, O wondrous one, when thy body was lacerated with sharp implements of iron.

Theotokion: In thee do I place all my hope, O Mother of God. Preserve my soul, O thou who gavest birth to God my Savior!

Ode V

Canon of the Forefeast

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 Church, desiring to receive Thee in the flesh, O Lord, hath been gloriously enlightened by the divine and ineffable radiance of Thy divinity.

O Lord, vouchsafe that those who praise Thy dispensation may receive Thee with spiritual hands; and accept us who hymn Thee with faith, in that Thou lovest mankind.

O Lord, vouchsafe that we who receive with joyous soul Thee Who dost desire to come in the flesh for our sake, may give thanks to Thee with Symeon.

Theotokion: Delivered for thy sake from the worship of the temple, O pure one, we glorify thee with true understanding and steadfast faith, as is meet.

Canon of the Martyr

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 didst smash the idols of falsehood, O athlete; for thou didst love to bow down before the image of Christ alone.

Having come to know the all-radiant grace of our God, O glorious athlete, thou didst suffer for it.

Illumined by divine grace, O athlete, thou didst suffer zealously for the sake of Christ.

Theotokion: Ineffable was thy conception and indescribable thy birthgiving; for thou didst remain Ever-virgin, O pure one.

Ode VI

Canon of the Forefeast

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.

Weaving hymns like flowers today, let us with faith prepare a divine wreath of thanksgiving for the Master Who shall come noetically.

Let us prepare the arms of our soul for God, like Symeon the elder, and with gladness let us receive Him Who cometh to the temple of His divine glory.

Receiving the Creator of the ages as a babe, the elder understood Him to be the preëternal God, the Light of the nations, the Christ, the glory of Israel.

Theotokion: The prophets, writing of thee in godly manner with the pen of the Spirit, O Virgin, described thee as a temple, the tabernacle, the divine home of the Master of all; and in thee were they adorned.

Canon of the Martyr

Irmos: Cleanse me, O Savior, for many are my transgressions; and lead me up from the abyss of evils, I pray, for to Thee have I cried, and Thou hast hearkened to me, O God of my salvation.

Causing the abominable sacrifices, vile offerings and idolatrous savagery to dry up by thy blood, O glorious Tryphon, thou didst water all the noble plants of the Church.

The sores of the martyrs are as fragrant as perfume, the blood of those who suffer pour forth healings, and the remains of their bodies sanctify the souls of those who touch them with faith.

Theotokion: As an animate ark thou didst receive the Word Who is without beginning; as a holy sanctuary thou didst contain the Creator; as a fiery throne thou bearest the Master of all creation, O Mother of God.

Kontakion of the forefeast, in Tone VI—

The Word Who is invisibly with the Father is now seen in the flesh, ineffably born of the Virgin; and He is given to the high priest on the arm of the elder. Let us worship Him as our true God!

Ikos: A sacred banquet is set forth! Today the assembly of those who love the feasts of the Church, bearing tokens of the forefeast, sing to our true God the praises of the forefeast, hymning the awesome nativity from the Virgin of the forty-day old Lord, the embrace of the honorable elder and the memory of the honored martyr.

Ode VII

Canon of the Forefeast

Irmos: The children of Abraham in the Persian furnace, afire with love of piety more than with the flame, cried out: Blessed art Thou in the temple of Thy glory, O Lord!

The Church, adorned with noetic radiance and the love of the Master and Creator of all, maketh ready to receive Him and weaveth for Him joyous ascents.

In obedience to the law, the Mother beareth in her arms her only-begotten Son in the flesh, Who is the Word Who abideth in the Father’s bosom, and she carrieth Him as a babe.

God Who made His abode in the womb of the Virgin today doth sit in the arms of Symeon as on a throne of fire.

Theotokion: All the nations have seen thy glory, O only pure one; wherefore, they piously bless thee as the Queen of all creation and unceasingly glorify thee as the Mother of God in manner transcending nature.

Canon of the Martyr

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 crowned martyr joineth the choir of martyrs, rejoicing; for, having vanquished falsehood by the word of truth, he chanteth in gladness: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

With His own sufferings the Master of all crowneth the martyr and causeth him to dwell in the mansions of heaven, crying out and saying: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Theotokion: O most immaculate one, who bearest the little Babe Who was God before time began, yet became incarnate of thee: cease thou never in thy supplications, that thou mayest save those who chant: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Ode VIII

Canon of the Forefeast

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!

Stretching forth his hands, and cleansing his soul with divine activity, Symeon received the Lord Who in His goodness had become an infant; and he cried out to Him with gladness: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

The light of the grace of Christ hath shone upon us, desiring to be brought into His temple; and as restorer He transformeth all the shadowy images for those who cry out in truth: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

O all ye works of the Lord, bless ye the Lord, the preëternal God Whose good pleasure it hath been to become a babe for our sake and to be received by the arms of the elder Symeon!

Theotokion: Christ, Who is all-pure and all-immaculate, and Who in His surpassing goodness became a man through thee, O all-pure one, for our sake offereth to the Father today acceptable purification, preserving thee, the most pure one, alone as all-holy.

Canon of the Martyr

Irmos: Madly did the Chaldæan tyrant heat the furnace sevenfold for the pious ones; but, beholding them saved by a higher Power, he cried out to the Creator and Deliverer: Ye children, bless; ye priests, hymn; ye people, exalt Him supremely for all ages!

Unto beheading and immolation, unto the shedding of thy blood, and even unto death didst thou suffer, opposing sin, O martyr of Christ; and now, receiving the life hidden in Christ, thou criest out: Ye priests, bless; ye people, exalt God supremely for all ages!

Thou didst struggle upon the earth, doing battle with the ungodly, against deceitful and God-opposing falsehood, against bitter oppressors; and thou delightest in the heavens, O Tryphon, wearing thy crown, and joinest chorus with the angels, chanting: Ye children, bless; ye priests, hymn; ye people, exalt God supremely forever!

Thou didst denounce the ungodliness of the tyrants, O most wise one, and with the streams of thy blood didst extinguish the demons’ opposition to God; and, meetly and in purity proclaiming the one God in Trinity, thou didst cry out: Ye children, bless; ye priests, hymn; ye people, exalt God supremely forever!

Theotokion: Following thy words, O all-pure one, we bless thee, the blessed one who truly gavest birth in the flesh to the Blessed One, the living and never-waning Light, the Master, the Luminary and Bestower of light, Whom the children bless, and the priests hymn and exalt supremely for all ages.

Ode IX

Canon of the Forefeast

Irmos: Christ, the Chief Cornerstone uncut by human hands, Who united the two disparate natures, was cut from thee, the unquarried mountain, O Virgin. Wherefore, in gladness we magnify thee, O Theotokos.

O Benefactor, vouchsafe that, like Symeon of old, I may receive Thee in the hands of my soul and delight in Thy grace; for Thou alone art the desire and sweetness for which I most yearn.

Having noetically lighted all the lamps of the virtues, with love let us lamp-bearers go forth with Symeon and Anna to meet Christ Who will come to sanctify those who hymn Him.

In the temple the elder Symeon received Christ our God in his arms and cried aloud, saying: “Now lettest Thou Thy servant depart, O Master!”

Theotokion: The Word of the Most High, Who transcendeth all that existeth, received flesh of thee; and in that He is pure He offereth purification to the unoriginate Father and cleanseth those who magnify thee, the Mother of God, with love.

Canon of the Martyr

Irmos: With unceasing glorification we magnify thee, the Mother of the Most High, who knewest not wedlock, who didst truly give birth unto God the Word in manner past understanding, and art more highly exalted than the all-pure hosts.

The expectation of the martyrs is beyond visible things and is full of the enjoyment of immortality; their hope is seen to be full of sweet fragrance, joy and ineffable radiance. Wherefore, they are called blessed, as it meet.

Having drawn nigh to the primal Light, O wise Tryphon, thou becamest a secondary luminary, illumined and transformed by His effulgence, and shining with the splendors He imparteth. Wherefore, we all call thee blessed.

Thou wast shown to be undaunted in thy struggles, O athlete, and wast truly manifest as the namesake of divine and holy sustenance; and receiving it now and manifestly delighting therein, entreat salvation for us who honor thee.

Theotokion: O Theotokos, mortify my carnal-mindedness and revive the deadness of my soul by the activity of the true Life Who was born of thee in the flesh, in His ineffable compassion, for the salvation of those who hymn thee.

Exapostilarion: Spec. Mel.: “By the Spirit in the holy place…”—

Delighting in all-glorious and divine sustenance, O blessed one, thou hast made thine abode with the angels. Herding geese in the meadows, O great-martyr Tryphon, thou didst receive from God the grace to heal the weakness and infirmities of men.

Glory…, Now & ever…: Exapostilarion of the forefeast—

When the most immaculate Maiden bore her Babe into the sanctuary to fulfil the law, the righteous Symeon received Him in his arms and said to the Virgin: “This Child is set for the fall and rising again of many, and for a sign in the world!”

At the aposticha, the stichera of the forefeast, in Tone II: Spec. Mel.: “O house of Ephratha…”—

Christ, the Son Who was begotten of the Father incorruptibly before the morning-star, is born of the Virgin without defilement, delivering Adam.

Stichos: Now lettest Thou Thy servant depart in peace, O Master, according to Thy word.

Open wide, ye gates of heaven, for, in the temple, Christ is offered as a babe to God the Father by the Virgin Mother.

Stichos: A Light to enlighten the gentiles, and the glory of Thy people Israel.

O Symeon, receive thee the Lord of glory, as thou wast told by the Holy spirit; for, behold, He is come!

Glory…, Now & ever…: Idiomelon, in the same tone—

The Creator of heaven and earth hath been borne by the holy Symeon in his arms today. For by the Holy Spirit he said: Now have I been released, for I have seen my Savior!

AT LITURGY

On the Beatitudes, 8 troparia: 4 from Ode III of the canon of the forefeast, and 4 from Ode VI of the canon of the martyr.

Prokimenon, in Tone VII—

The righteous man shall be glad in the Lord, and shall hope in Him.

Stichos: Hearken, O God, unto my prayer, when I make supplication unto Thee.

Epistle to the Romans, §99 [8: 28-39]

Brethren: We know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him Who loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Alleluia, in Tone IV—

Stichos: The righteous man shall flourish like a palm tree, and like a cedar in Lebanon shall he be multiplied.

Stichos: They that are planted in the house of the Lord, in the courts of our God they shall blossom forth.

Gospel according to Luke, §51

from the midpoint [10: 19-21]

The Lord said to His disciples: “Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy; and nothing shall by any means hurt you. Notwithstanding, in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven.” In that hour Jesus rejoiced in spirit, and said: “I thank Thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that Thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes; even so, Father; for so it seemed good in Thy sight.”

Communion Verse—

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