The texts, music and commentary on this website were prepared by the Metropolitan Cantor Institute of the Byzantine Catholic Archeparchy of Pittsburgh. They are approved for provisional use in the Archeparchy, but are otherwise unofficial and should be considered superseded by any materials promulgated by the Council of Hierarchs.

Upcoming Events

January 8 - Next MCI Online classes begin: Introduction to Church Singing and Services of Great Lent and Holy Week.

Liturgical Calendar

December 24 is the Sunday before Nativity, the Sunday of the Ancestors.
Vespers (samohlasen) - Divine Liturgy

December 25 is the feast of the NATIVITY of our Lord, God, and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Vespers with Divine Liturgy (A - B) OR Vespers - Great Compline - Matins - Divine Liturgy

December 26 is the Synaxis of the Theotokos.
Divine Liturgy

December 27 is the feast of holy apostle and first martyr Stephen.
Vespers (samohlasen) - Divine Liturgy

December 31 is the Sunday after the Nativity, and also the leave-taking of the feast.
Vespers (samohlasen) - Divine Liturgy

January 1, 2018 is the feast of the Circumcision of the Lord, and also the feast of Saint Basil the Great.
Vespers (samohlasen) - Divine Liturgy

January 5 is the vigil of Theophany (a fast day).
Royal Hours (adapted)

January 6 is the feast of the THEOPHANY of our Lord, God, and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Vespers with Divine Liturgy (A - B) - Great Compline - Matins - Divine Liturgy - Blessing of Water - Blessing of Homes

January 7 is the Sunday after Theophany, and the Synaxis of the Forerunner.
Vespers (samohlasen) - Divine Liturgy

January 14 is the Sunday of Zacchaeus, and the Leave-taking of Theophany.
Vespers - Divine Liturgy

January 17 is the feast of our venerable father Anthony the Great.
Vespers (samohlasen) - Divine Liturgy

January 20 is the feast of our venerable father Euthymius the Great.
Vespers (samohlasen) - Divine Liturgy

January 21 is the Sunday of the Publican and the Pharisee.
Vespers - Matins - Divine Liturgy

January 28 is the Sunday of the Prodigal Son.
Vespers - Matins - Divine Liturgy

January 30 is the feast of the Three Holy Bishops (Basil the Great, Gregory the Theologian, and John Chrysostom).
Vespers (samohlasen) - Divine Liturgy

complete liturgical calendar

2018 lturgical calendar

Vigil Divine Liturgy propers

January 1 - Circumcision; Basil the Great

January 30 - Three Holy Bishops

Moleben to Saint Stephen the First Martyr

Several parishes have asked for molebens (prayer services) for their patron saints. A Moleben to Saint Stephen the Protomartyr ("first martyr") is now available; the service was prepared by Father David Petras for the 50th anniversary of Saint Stephen's Cathedral in Phoenix, and has been adapted slightly (to remove material for the anniversary), with music added.

For a complete list of molebens, see the Publications page. These services can be celebrated on any day, and can also be used in home or as reader services.

New Mailing List for Cantors!

We are migrating the old MCI mailing lists to single list, This new list should be more reliable than the one we have been using, and does NOT require the creation of a Yahoo ID. It also has more options for collaboration, including a wiki and post tagging.

This list will be used for both announcements, and general (moderated) discussion. If you wish to receive email ONLY for announcements, you can set your subscription options to "Special Notices Only."

To subscribe to the list, just go to

The Feasts of Christmas and Theophany

Some background on this portion of the feast and its services:

Classes for 2018 Announced!

Beginning in January 2018:

This means that all the entire MCI cantor education program can be completed in as little as two years, and students can plan well in advance which courses they would like to take, and when. For more information, see the Cantor Education Roadmap and the current registration form.

2018 Typikon is now available

This annual liturgical guide for clergy and cantors, compiled and edited by Archpriest David M. Petras, from the Ruthenian Byzantine Eparchy of Parma, comes in two sections. The first part “The Common Typikon” ($16) is normally purchased once since the formats and general notes stay the same each year. The second part, the Annual Typikon (also $16) changes each year so that part most of us purchase annually.

Fr. David has just updated the Common Typikon for the first time in many years. It features expanded notes and formats. It would be a good idea to purchase BOTH parts this year. They may be ordered from:
Byzantine Seminary Press
3643 Perrysville Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15214

I recommend that all serving cantors have AT LEAST a copy of the annual typikon, and learn to use it.  Cantors in parishes that celebrate Vespers and (especially) Matins will need the Common Typikon,  which also has special summaries of the hymns sung at the Divine Liturgy under various circumstances.

New smartphone app has daily readings, hymns

The Byzantine Catholic Eparchy of Parma (Ohio) recently released a smartphone app for Apple iOS and Android that includes:

Quite a few cantors have asked for such a resource, and having tried it out, I highly recommend it.  To get the app:

For Android:

For Apple:

Online musicianship for cantors

In preparation for our online classes, which begin in February, the Metropolitan Cantor Institute has acquired a site license for Theta Music Trainer, a website with computer- and smartphone-based games that teach pitch matching, recognition and singing of scales and intervals, and other important skills.

Complete access to this website is available to all cantors in the Byzantine Catholic Church, as well as students in the MCI Online program. For more information, see the Theta Music Trainer page.

There is also a new section in the left-hand navigation bar, Musicianship, to which articles will be added over the next two months.

Documenting the history of our church music - how you can help

The Metropolitan Cantor Institute is working with the Byzantine Catholic Seminary Library to put together material to document the history of the liturgical music of the Byzantine Catholic Church, both plain chant and choral music. Please consider contributing to these two efforts:

In early 2018, we will also be distributing images of particular pieces of music or other memorabilia we would like to find or identify.

What is the Metropolitan Cantor Institute?

The Metropolitan Cantor Institute exists to support and foster liturgical singing in the Byzantine Catholic Metropolitan Church of Pittsburgh. At the direction of our bishops, and in cooperation with our clergy and experienced cantors, the Institute trains and certifies cantors for the service of the church, prepares music and educational materials, and provides workshops and seminars in church singing.

The mission of the Metropolitan Cantor Institute:

To ensure that each parish in the Byzantine Catholic Church has a cantor who can lead the liturgical singing of the parish well, to the glory of God and in support of the prayer of the faithful.

For more information, click on Cantor Institute in the left-hand navigation bar on this page.