Monday, March 24, 2008

Blessed Feast

Back home from Amarillo; the services -- or lack thereof, as my granddaddy wanted it -- were good in the sense that his nieces and nephews (dad's cousins) came in from all over, and it was good to meet some of them for the first time. I was honored to deliver a prayer -- loosely based on our prayer for the departed (which, not surprisingly, includes a petition for those still in this life) and stated in "down home" language. Barely got through it, but it was good to commend both his soul and our lives into God's hands.

The hymns for today--the Forefeast of the Annunciation--and tomorrow's feast:

Forefeast of the Annunciation

Troparian - Tone 4
Today is the prelude of joy for the universe!
Let us anticipate the feast and celebrate with exultation:
Gabriel is on his way to announce the glad tidings to the Virgin;
He is ready to cry out in fear and wonder:
Rejoice, O Full of Grace, the Lord is with You!

Kontakion - Tone 8
You are the beginning of salvation for all of us on earth, Virgin Mother of God.
For the great Archangel Gabriel, God's minister, was sent from heaven to stand before you to bring you joy:
Therefore, we all cry to you: Rejoice, O unwedded Bride.

The Annunciation of our Most Holy Lady, the Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary

Troparion - Tone 4
Today is the beginning of our salvation,
The revelation of the eternal mystery!
The Son of God becomes the Son of the Virgin
As Gabriel announces the coming of Grace.
Together with him let us cry to the Theotokos:
Rejoice, O Full of Grace, The Lord is with You!

Kontakion - Tone 8
O Victorious Leader of Triumphant Hosts!
We, your servants, delivered from evil, sing our grateful thanks to you, O Theotokos!
As you possess invincible might, set us free from every calamity
So that we may sing: Rejoice, O unwedded Bride!

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