Wednesday, November 30, 2011

St Andrew Prayer in Anticipation of the Nativity

Hail and blessed be the hour and moment in which the Son of God was born of the most pure Virgin Mary, at midnight, in Bethlehem, in piercing cold. In that hour, vouchsafe, O my God! to hear my prayer and grant my desires, through the merits of Our Saviour Jesus Christ, and of His Blessed Mother. Amen.

a video link- scary food for thought

Monday, November 28, 2011

The Litany of Supplication & the Cherubimic Hymn

continuing the series on the Divine Liturgy of St John Chrysostom:

After the Sermon, the priest begins the litany:
PRIEST: Let us all say with our whole soul, and with our whole mind, let us say:
PEOPLE: Lord, have mercy.

PRIEST: Lord Almighty, God of our fathers, we pray You, hear us and have mercy.
PEOPLE: Lord, have mercy.

PRIEST: Have mercy on us, O God, according to Your great mercy; we pray You, hear us and have mercy.
PEOPLE: Lord, have mercy. (3 times).

PRIEST (silently): Accept, O Lord our God, this fervent prayer from Your servants and have mercy on us according to Your great mercy, and send down Your benefits upon us and upon all Your people, who expect from You abundant mercies

PRIEST: Again we pray for His Holiness, our universal Pontiff N . . . Pope of Rome, and for our most reverend Archbishop and Metropolitan N . . . , for our God-loving Bishop N . . ., for those who serve and have served in this holy church, for our spiritual fathers, and for all our brethren in Christ.
PEOPLE: Lord, have mercy. (3 times)

PRIEST: We also pray for our civil authorities and for all the armed forces.
PEOPLE: Lord, have mercy. (3 times)

Special intentions may be added here.

PRIEST: We also pray for the people here present who await Your great and abundant mercy, for those who showed us charity, and for all Christians of the true faith.

PEOPLE: Lord, have mercy. (3 times)

PRIEST: For You are a merciful and gracious God, and we render glory to you, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, now and ever, and forever.

PRIEST: All we faithful, again and again in peace let us pray to the Lord.
PEOPLE: Lord, have mercy.

Priest (silently): We thank You, O Lord God of Powers, for having deemed us worthy to stand, at this time, before Your holy Altar, and to prostrate ourselves before Your mercy, for our sins and for the people's misgivings. Accept our prayer, O God, and make us worthy to offer to You prayers and supplications, and unbloody sacrifices for all Your people, and enable us, whom You have placed in this Your ministry through the power of Your Holy Spirit, to call upon You at all times and in all places, without condemnation and offense, with a pure testimony of our conscience, that hearing us, You may be merciful to us according to the magnitude of Your goodness.

Priest (silently): Again, as so many times before, we fall down before You and entreat You, O gracious Lover of mankind, that You may regard our supplication, cleanse our souls and bodies from every defilement of flesh and spirit, and grant that we may stand blameless and without condemnation before Your Holy Altar. Grant also, O God, to those who are praying with us, betterment of life, faith, and spiritual understanding. Grant that they may serve You always with fear and love, that they may blamelessly and without condemnation partake of Your Holy Mysteries, and become worthy of Your heavenly kingdom.

PRIEST: That being ever protected by Your power, we may render glory to You, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, now and ever, and forever.

Priest (silently): No one who is bound by carnal desires and pleasures is worthy to come to You, to approach You, or to minister to You, the King of glory, for to minister to You is great and awesome, even to the heavenly powers themselves. Yet, because of Your ineffable and boundless love for mankind, though in nature unchanged and unchangeable, You became man and were made our high priest and, as Master of all, gave Into our keeping the holy office of this liturgical and unbloody sacrifice. For You alone, O Lord our God, rule over all things in heaven and on earth, and are borne on the cherubic throne, and are the Lord of the Seraphim and King of Israel, Who alone are holy and dwell in the saints. Therefore, I beseech You, Who alone are gracious and ready to hear me; look favorably upon me, Your sinful and unprofitable servant, and cleanse my heart and soul of an evil conscience, and by power of Your Holy Spirit, enable me, clothed with the grace of the priesthood, to stand before this Your holy altar, and offer the sacrifice of Your sacred and most pure body and precious blood. With bowed head, I approach You and implore You, turn not Your face away from me, nor exclude me from among Your children, but allow these gifts to be offered to You by me, Your sinful and unworthy servant; for it is You, O Christ, our God, Who offer and are offered, who receive and are received, and to You we render glory, with Your eternal Father, and Your all holy, gracious and life-creating Spirit, now and ever, and for ever. Amen.

Priest raises up his hands and silently says the Cherubimic Hymn 3 times.


PEOPLE: Let us, who mystically represent the Cherubim, and sing the thrice-holy hymn to the life-creating Trinity, now set aside every earthly cares...

The Cherubimic Hymn is what prepares us for the portion of the Liturgy dedicated to the consecration of the bread and wine to the Body and Blood of Christ. We sing the hymn to remind ourselves to set aside all worldly cares because we are about to witness an act that is other-worldly. Like the 'Holy, Mighty and Immortal' hymn earlier in the Liturgy, this is also a time when most of the people will sing. But what does it mean?

We "represent the cherubim"?  Aren't we only human? Isn't it too much to say that we believers are acting the role of the Cherubim during the Liturgy? What are cherubim anyway? As angels, they were created to praise God; specifically, cherubim were the guardians. So, if we "represent the cherubim" we are to praise God during the Liturgy and always and also stand guard or stand witness. This can be a very tall order when the little ones are wiggling by this point, but this is the goal. 

Friday, November 25, 2011

Shopping with Jesus- replay

So my Black Friday rant didn't convince you to sleep in today. It's four in the morning, and you are prepping for the onslaught of shopping. I don't blame you; there are too many good deals to be had. And you go to Mass all the time, so this is not a shopping day of obligation for you like those that worship at the cathedral of stuff. Anyway, priest's wives shouldn't judge. In any case, here's some unsolicited advice for the Friday shopper.
  • Shop with Jesus. Say a prayer before you sip that early morning coffee. Let the other car get in front of you. Don't even try to get a good parking space. Just park as far out as possible and say a decade of the rosary while you walk into the store. Have a smile on your face for everybody because Jesus Christ is by your side, and you are preparing for His birthday.
  • Don't charge anything that can't be paid off before a month passes. Many people are in dire financial situations these past few years. Don't compound the problem (literally) by allowing a balance on your credit card. Be truthful with your family and simplify! Even though it is heart-breaking to see a child go without a toy they wanted, the stress avoided by not carrying a balance is a greater gift to the entire family.
  • Shop with intention. Try to go free trade or homemade as much as possible. For the adults in your life, buy things that don't add to the clutter. If you have no ideas but simply must buy a gift, get a nice candle.
  • Have a list and stick to it. This will lessen the feelings of panic. You have a plan.
  • Focus on the kids. While we don't want our kids to be materialistic, it is fun to get toys and other treasures on such a special day. My kids won't be getting an I-phone like some of their acquaintances. We don't try to keep up with the (credit card dependent) Joneses, but we do make sure the stockings are stuffed with little goodies and there are a few things under the tree- lots of practical things that I have held off buying and some just for fun. Last year, we focused mainly on books- a luxury because we usually either check out at the library or buy used.
  • Next year, turn off the television after August 1st. No more commercials to prep the kids for buying season! We borrow DVDs from the library or Netflix, so our children aren't exposed to commercials at all. Even so, every show is a means to get parents to buy stuff- even commercial-free PBS. If my child wants a toy because they really want it, I will consider getting it. I refuse to buy because an advertisement said that this is the thing to get if you really love your kids. I am stubborn that way.

"Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver."     -2 Corinthians 9:7

Lord, I thank You for Your blessings. Whether in plenty or with little, I want to be a cheerful giver. I desire to give from a full heart that serves, no reluctantly or with complaining. I long to see Your money used in ways that will bless others—through my tithing at church, giving to missions, or helping the needy. I choose to give —and I ask You to bless it.  ---from beliefnet

O God, give me the grace to shop wisely so I may purchase eternal happiness for myself and all others in need of love. ---from mamarock

Thursday, November 24, 2011

The Church of Stuff- replay

Tomorrow is a holy day of obligation for many consumers. They prepared for their worship of  stuff by checking the ads, reading and comparing the best prices. They have their cell phones charged for communicating with friends who they are shopping with and have prepared their driving schedules to get to all the right stores. Although an hour or two is too much on Sundays for church (too busy), many will wake up before the sun rises to get the best deals on goods most likely made in China or another country that has no employee or environmental protections.

I don't shop on the day after Thanksgiving- or the day after Christmas for that matter. There are many days where I can find 'great deals' on random stuff. It is just too depressing to see all the consumerism in preparation of a holy day where we will  remember a tiny baby- who is God- born in a cave to parents who had almost nothing. On the years where I have ventured out to shop a bit on 'Black Friday,' I see people (not assuming- I know these people) who don't believe in Christ and actually are hostile towards His Church. Why are they charging stuff on a credit card to commemorate a holy day that they despise and scoff at?

Culturally, we love to give gifts for Christmas. We love the excitement of kids running down the stairs to check their stockings. I love that, too. I have great memories as a child of opening gifts. I love to give gifts. But the endless supply of STUFF that we Westerners get from poorer nations at cheap prices is not a way to celebrate Christ's birth.

I am trying to be more intentional in my gift giving. I encourage you to do so as well- Read this post to see where I am coming from on certain aspects of Christmas consumerism-  Let us all avoid being parishioners at the Church of Stuff. I promise to stop writing about this- but it is on my heart right now. But for today- 

I wish you all a very happy Thanksgiving day!

A psalm for Thanksgiving
Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands.
Serve the Lord with gladness; come before his presence with singing.
Know ye that the Lord he is God; it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.
Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise; be thankful unto him, and bless his name.
For the Lord is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations. (Psalm 100:1-5).

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Easterners in a Western World

Nutcracker Craziness(tm) makes for a crazy schedule. The studio we work with makes sure that Saturday evening rehearsals end before 6 PM and Sunday rehearsals don't begin before 1 pm. So, any normal person would be able to get to a church service with no problem. We are not normal people. So, for two weeks, we (not Father) miss Saturday vigil at the little mission and Sunday Divine Liturgy at the big mission. We attend Mass at the closest parish to fulfill our obligation and feel bad that we aren't completely together as a family. It isn't often, though- so we go with it.

This year, 4 year old boy and 2 year old girl were especially squirrely. Do you remember Steve Martin when he was a "wild and crazy guy" on SNL? Boy used exactly that intonation when he said, "This church is craaaaaazy!" while we were seated listening to the Epistle. I don't know what was so crazy about it. He might have been reacting to the fact that it was a woman lector reading the Epistle instead of a male cantor singing it, but my boy couldn't clarify over my shushing him. He has been to Roman-rite Masses before (but usually in a hospital setting), so I don't know what was bothering him. Sometimes small children have a real problem with change. 

Not receiving the Eucharist is the next hurdle. I prepped the four-year old by simply saying that they don't give the Body of Christ to little children at this parish. He was disappointed, but his age is perfect for accepting 'the rules.' The two-year old is another story all together. Going up the aisle to get a blessing from the priest, I had a pit in my stomach. I knew that she would throw a fit when she realized she would not receive Jesus, just a blessing. There was a little gap between the person in front of us and my family, so much so I guess that the priest decided that the line was done and went to the other side to help the Eucharistic ministers. So there was not even a blessing and a girl who was starting to throw a fit. So I communicated to my big girls to go hunt down the Eucharist if they desired to receive and to stay in church while I wrangled the two little ones outside. 

We waited outside for Mass to finish. There was a table selling religious goods, and a woman handed me some information about the Fatima Mary statue that would be visiting the parish in a few weeks. Baby girl was still crying a bit and the kind woman asked, "Why is she crying?" I decided to throw caution to the wind and told her, "Well, we are Byzantine Catholics so she usually receives the Eucharist and she is upset that she couldn't receive here." The three women at the table were shocked when I continued, stating that we receive baptism, confirmation and First Communion as infants. They asked "Why?" I tried to keep it very simple- that the historic order of sacraments for all rites was confirmation before Eucharist no matter the age of reception, and that the Eastern way emphasizes our need for grace above book knowledge, and isn't it wonderful that the Universal Church in union with Rome has so many diverse rites? The kind woman gave me a weak smile and waved her hand in the direction of the RCIA booth- she said "Perhaps you would like to look into RCIA classes?" It was nice to be invited, but since I am already Catholic, I declined her offer.

Monday, November 21, 2011

After Nutcracker 2011

When it stops being fun, they'll stop taking classes- but for now, they still have the love of dance
Yes, this photo is old- they were 'garland girls' in the Waltz as usual, and I didn't get backstage to take new photos of them in their Russian costumes. A day to relax, and then preparations for Christmas start full steam!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

The $350 Bowl of Soup

Since I haven't written about priest/wife/family in a while, I thought I would write a little post about a not-so-good day. These kinds of days of much more exciting than the run of the mill good day anyway. And this story has FIRE!

My husband had a hospital work-related all-day meeting in the big city an hour away on a work day. We decided to tag along and go to a children's museum. We would meet late and go have a bowl of homemade meatball soup at an older parishioner's apartment. 

It was my fault. I thought the kids would be really worn out by the museum, so I didn't bring anything for them to do in the apartment. I spent a good half hour wrangling the four year old and two year old with the help of the rest of us before the soup was served. The four year old was willing to sit nicely while he was eating. The two year old lived up to the stereotype of her age. She was just fascinated by the ceramic and crystal knick-knacks on the coffee and end tables. My husband was exhausted after eight hours of the palliative care conference. I was tired after a day of running after the kids at the museum as were my big girls. We thought we were watching the two-year old. I don't remember her going into the kitchen,  but I guess she did.

She was on my lap, eating soup when I saw a flicker reflecting in the living room window. There was fire in the kitchen. Our hostess (elderly and recovering from foot surgery) and my husband ran to the kitchen to try and put out the fire. We called the fire station for help. Smoke was just billowing through the apartment and the commercial grade fire alarm screeched in the apartment complex hallway. None of the neighbors thought to get the fire extinguisher that was right down the hall. My husband and the woman battled the flames until the firemen came and put it out. The fire wasn't that bad, but the smoke was- a plastic cutting board was on top of the stove when my daughter turned on the burners. 

All was well. No one got hurt. We packed ourselves up after cleaning as much as possible. Luckily, the cabinets and counters were fine, and my husband hadn't burnt himself that badly. I felt bad of the example I made with the kids, staying in an apartment and fighting a fire. But then, the entire place would have gone up in flames in the six minutes it took the fire department to get there if we hadn't stayed. Buying her a new stove wasn't possible because her old apartment was sized for a custom, narrow stove. So we had to pay her apartment manager for an electrician to make some repairs to the original stove. 

And even though the parishioner is fine and she gives me a hug after Divine Liturgy, I always feel shame that I didn't keep all eyes on that girl of mine. We are supposed to be the 'good ones,' and we failed because we gave ourselves over to our feelings of exhaustion for a while. Clergy and clergy  families are not allowed to be exhausted and 'drop the ball.' Who made the rules? We did! and That was the most expensive bowl of soup I ever had.

....I could also tell you about the $1200 door panel my husband had to pay for after bumping into a car in an empty parking lot after celebrating a hospital Mass on Mother's Day to get a $50 stipend....but I shouldn't complain...

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

And the Winners are...

Allie and MadCow!

Send a snail mail address to my email- to claim your 'Byzantine Pack'

Thanks to everyone for entering and for my big girls for randomly choosing the winners out of a hat.

I have three books ready to go for a Great Lent giveaway- so don't despair, you have another chance in a few months.

Before The Nativity of Our Lord

So St Philip's Fast is upon us! This season of sacrifice and preparation for Christmas is another example of the 'see-saw' nature of the Christian life. One needs to fast before the feast. 

Here are some places to go for more information on this season:

a blog post of mine from last year, a different way of fasting
meditation on the fast from
a great post from Catholic Mothers Online about fasting and feasting

The following is taken from the blog Monks and Mermaids : St. Paul also reminds us that “the Kingdom of God is not food and drink, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit” (Romans 14:17). Thus, our preparation during the Fast of St. Philip is more than just  abstinence. Make more time for prayer and acts of charity. Visit the sick, do acts of kindness towards your neighbors, help those who are in need of your assistance, make more time for your family. The possibilities are endless. 

As St. John Chrysostom said:
Let the hands fast, by being free from avarice.
Let the feet fast, by ceasing to run after sin.
Let the eyes fast, by disciplining them not to glare at that which is sinful.
Let the ears fast, by not listening to evil talk and gossip.
Let the mouth fast from foul words and unjust criticism.
For what good is it if we abstain from birds and fishes, but bite and devour our brothers?

Monday, November 14, 2011

The Epistle and Gospel- series on the Divine Liturgy

some quick thoughts on the 'reading' portion of the Byzantine Divine Liturgy
  • The Old Testament is not read during the Divine Liturgy- that portion is used during vespers, matins, etc.
  • The readings are always sung- usually. They might be read during a non-Sunday or feast day Liturgy, but I experience this very rarely.
  • You will notice that the priest intones 'Be attentive!' before the epistle and Gospel are sung. This is another example of the Bible being an extremely important part of our faith- and that some people might need reminding of that truth.
  • In most U.S. Byzantine churches, the homily is given directly after the Gospel. Some do it at the end of the Divine Liturgy after people have received the Eucharist. I suppose one argument for hearing the homily after receiving the Eucharist would be that the people would be disposed to hearing truth after they have physically received truth in the Body and Blood of Christ. Unfortunately, this sometimes leads to people coming to Liturgy just at the end to hear the homily because they weren't going to receive the Eucharist. This is especially true for the Orthodox Church in the old country where people don't tend to receive the Eucharist frequently. 
  • Depending on the priest, he might invite the children to stand in front of the gold-covered Gospel book while he is singing the reading. They will then kiss the Gospel book before they sit down to listen to the homily
  • Depending on the priest, 'silent' prayers might not be very silent
PRIEST (silently): Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord. Blessed are You on the throne of the glory of Your kingdom, enthroned upon the Cherubim, always, now and ever, and forever.

PRIEST: Be attentive! Peace be to all. Wisdom, be attentive.

PEOPLE: (Say the Prokemen proper to the day.)

PRIEST: Wisdom!

READER: The reading of the Epistle of N . . .

PRIEST: Let us be attentive!

READER: Brethren . . .

When the Epistle is finished the priest intones:

PRIEST: Peace be with you. Wisdom! Be attentive

PEOPLE: Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

PRIEST (silently): 0 Gracious Master, pour forth into our hearts the spotless light of Your divine knowledge and open the eyes of our minds that we may understand the teachings of Your Gospel. Instill in us also the fear of Your blessed commandments, so that, having curbed all carnal desires, we may lead a spiritual life, both thinking and doing everything that pleases You. For You, O Christ, our God, are the enlightenment of our souls and bodies, and to You we render glory, together with Your eternal Father, and with Your all holy, good and life-creating Spirit, now and ever, and forever. Amen.

PRIEST: Wisdom, let us stand upright and listen to the Holy Gospel. Peace be with you.

PEOPLE: And with your spirit.

PRIEST: The reading of the Holy Gospel according to N. . .

PEOPLE: Glory be to You, O Lord, glory be to You.

PRIEST: Let us be attentive.

The Priest reads the Gospel

After the reading of the Gospel, the priest kisses the closed Gospel Book and places it in the middle of the Altar. The people say:

PEOPLE: Glory be to You, O Lord, glory be to You.

The Priest now gives a sermon.

last day for -- A little GIVEAWAY

One of the themes of this blog is the 'littleness' of the Eastern Catholic Churches- especially the Byzantine rite because that is the rite I know best. I wanted to celebrate this littleness with a little giveaway- in time for St Philip's Fast (beginning November 15th). St Philip's Fast is the Byzantine Advent season to prepare for the Nativity of the Lord.

EDIT- read this fabulous post on preparing for the Advent fast. Consider fasting a bit in preparation for the Christmas season that begins on Christmas day (the 'second day of Christmas' is the day after Christmas day, right?)

I will be giving away two little "Byzantine packs"- a book on meditations of the Divine Liturgy and a few other items- to two randomly selected commenters. To enter, simply write a comment below. If you prefer to remain anonymous in the combox, write a nickname so I can differentiate between different anonymous readers. If you win, please be willing to send me a mailing address to my gmail address ( 

I'll announce the 2 lucky winners on Nov 15th! 
Bon Chance!

Thursday, November 10, 2011


If you ever have a pile of money and some time and a passport, go to Gaming, Austria in the fall. The colors will stay in your mind forever. And then go back in the winter when the waterfall there will be frozen blue. In the spring, the meadows will be covered with wildflowers. You can probably tell that I am missing four real seasons. 

Happy, Funny
James Thurber is my favorite humorist nowadays- if you have never enjoyed his writing- start with James Thurber's Carnival.

Ray Bradbury is another fall favorite- but he couldn't be more different than Thurber. The movie Something Wicked This Way Comes is very good, but don't let the PG rating fool you. It has children as its stars, but the story and movie are really not for kids.
I guess I am in a melancholic mood, because Bradbury's short story All Summer in a Day is speaking to me. I found the old 70's film on Youtube. The story is better, but check it out.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

A November Daybook

Outside my window...the laundry is drying on a rack...hopefully it isn't too cold. What do those with a rainy climate and no dryer do? And how does one get rid of all the lint without a dryer? Being 'green' can be romantic- except my laundry is rough and linty. Any advice or tips- please leave a comment!

I am thinking... that it is too cold to be without heat. We had a low of about 40 degrees and I am not turning on the furnace because of possible asbestos. My toes are cold. 

I am thankful... that my cell phone finally can receive phone calls! It only took an hour on the phone with customer service and about 10 20-digit secret codes. Weird.

From the learning rooms... we really need to work on penmanship! Daughter #2- a really good student and 'advanced' in many areas- has penmanship that makes her look really young. I'm afraid she needs glasses.

In the kitchen...I need to throw a turkey in the oven. The prices during this season are too good to pass up, so I usually roast about six turkeys between now and New Year's.

I am wearing...nothing special. I really need to start getting inspired...

I am creating...a few Christmas surprises.

I am need to adjust to this time change. I really don't like it when the little ones wake up before I do! I am struggling to wake up with a SERVIAM on my lips.

I am wondering... how my discipline/department at my college is going to survive. It's really bad.

I am re-reading...Pride and Prejudice- such a great book.

I am hoping...that one of my sisters plus her lovely family will make it here for Christmas! Please Please Please

I am looking forward to... finishing Nutcracker. that is all.

I am hearing... four kids running around the house, pretending to be monsters/dogs/cats

Around the house... I'm to the point where we need to re-paint (and 'thin no more'- hahaha), but with a 2 year old, we probably should wait until she is out of the drawing on walls stage.

I am pondering... all the good that '40 days for Life' has done for families and babies.

Some favorite things... Irish breakfast tea, big girls that read to little kids, playing cars with my son, a husband that got his bullet proof vest for his police chaplain ride-alongs, the feast of Saint Nicholas coming up (Dec 6th- and yes- he's an Eastern saint!)

A few plans for the rest of the week: getting ready for St. Phillip's Fast (our Advent- starting November 15th)

A photo to share: He's now 4 and a half, but he's still my precious little pumpkin!

The Thrice-Holy Hymn- series on the Divine Liturgy

Following the Third Antiphon, the cantor and the people sing the tropars and kondaks proper to the day.)


PRIEST (silently): O holy God abiding in the saints, praised by the thrice-holy hymn of the Seraphim, glorified by the Cherubim and adored by all the heavenly powers, You brought all things out of nothingness into being, and created man to Your own image and likeness, and adorned him with Your every gift; You give wisdom and under standing to him who asks, and despising not the sinner, You ordain repentance for salvation. You have allowed us, Your humble and unworthy servants, to stand at this time before the glory of Your holy altar and to offer to You due adoration and praise. Accept, O Master, from the lips of us sinners the thrice holy hymn, and visit us in Your goodness. Forgive us every offense voluntary and involuntary, sanctify our souls and bodies and grant that we may serve You in holiness all the days of our life; through the prayers of the holy Mother of God and all the saints, who have pleased You throughout the ages.

PRIEST: For You, our God are Holy, and to You we give glory, to the Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit, now and ever and forever.

PEOPLE: Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us. (3 times)

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever and forever. Amen.

Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us.

Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us.

The Thrice-Holy Hymn is the portion of the Divine Liturgy where even the most reluctant will sing with full voice. Perhaps because it is simple or repetitive, but it is wonderful to hear everyone singing. Participation in the Mass means different things to different people. Showing up is the first step. Really praying is the next step. Joining in the physical postures of the Mass with fellow believers would be next- making the sign of the cross, standing, sitting, kneeling. Singing, no matter how well or badly, is an important part of our Divine Liturgy. For myself, it is an essential part. I don't sing as well as I did in the past because I suffered with vocal nodules and now one paralyzed vocal chord, but I still sing. This portion of the Divine Liturgy is a favorite because everyone tends to join in singing. It is simple enough for the children to sing as well. There is nothing cuter than a four year old singing this short hymn!