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May Liturgical Texts Available for Download

His Eminence, Metropolitan Joseph reads the “Kneeling Prayers” of Pentecost at Holy Virgin Mary Antiochian Orthodox Christian Church, Yonkers, NY in 2010.His Eminence, Metropolitan Joseph reads the “Kneeling Prayers” of Pentecost at Holy Virgin Mary Antiochian Orthodox Christian Church, Yonkers, NY in 2010.The Liturgical Texts for May, blessed by His Eminence Metropolitan Joseph, are now ready for clergy and laity to download from the Online Liturgical Guide.

Starting Sunday, May 3, 2015, Sayidna Joseph has authorized a correction at the singing of "God is the Lord" in every Orthros service. The refrain will now properly read "God is the Lord and hath appeared unto us. Blessed is He that cometh in the Name of the Lord." This matches the refrain as sung in Arabic, Greek and all other languages. The Department of Sacred Music has begun to provide compositions to reflect this correction. Parishes are to download them and print them for their books. (Visit Sacred Music's page weekly to collect all eight tones.) This change will also be reflected in all future Archdiocesan service books and publications.

The Liturgical Texts now utilize prosomia ("model hymns") as set by Holy Transfiguration Monastery of Brookline, Mass. Chanters can take the verses marked with asterisks and set them to the music syllable by syllable. Click the links either for books with lyrics or without lyrics.

In May, the Orthodox Church continues the celebration of "Bright Season" of Great and All-Holy Pascha. Parishes are still brightly-decorated and the clergy and faithful continue to sing "Christ is Risen." In the Church of Antioch, there is a dispensation from all fasting, even on Wednesdays and Fridays, as we still celebrate our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ in our midst.

This all continues until the leave-taking of the Feast of Feasts, which this year falls on Wednesday, May 20. On Thursday, May 21, the Orthodox Church celebrates the Great Feast of the Ascension of our Lord into Heaven. This year, the Ascension coincides with the commemoration of Saints Constantine and Helen, and so, the Typikon prescribes that we celebrate them together. The Liturgical Texts reflect this combination.

On Sunday, May 31 we celebrate another of the Twelve Great Feasts, Pentecost, on which the Holy Spirit descended upon the Apostles, giving them new languages so that they could proclaim the resurrected Christ to the entire world. Immediately following Divine Liturgy, or later that evening, parishes must celebrate Vespers with the "Kneeling Prayers" in which we invoke the Holy Spirit to descend upon us as well.

The Online Liturgical Guide, produced by the Department of Liturgics and Translations, provides the official, uniform word-for-word texts to be used for the divine services in all parishes across the Archdiocese. Should you have any questions, please email Subdeacon Peter Samore at service_texts@antiochianladiocese.org.