Menaion

June 29

Great feastTHE HOLY PREEMINENT APOSTLES PETER AND PAUL. Simon, son of Jonah and brother of Andrew, was first among the disciples to confess that Jesus was the Christ, the son of the living God. It was by Jesus that he was called Peter. Paul, Apostle of the gentiles, preached Christ crucified to the Jews and the Greeks. Both announced the Gospel of Jesus Christ in faith and love in the city of Rome and died martyrs under the emperor Nero. The first, as the tradition goes, was nailed to a cross with his head downward and was buried in the Vatican next to the Triumphal Way. The other received his punishment from the sword and was interred at the Ostian Way. Their triumph, equal in honor and veneration, is celebrated by the whole world on this day.

At Vespers

music (samohlasen)

“Blessed is the man” is sung. There are eight stichera at "O Lord, I have cried":

Tone 2, special melody Kijmi pochval'nimy. What crowns of praise shall we weave for Peter and Paul?  * They were separated in the body but united in spirit, * and outstanding as the preachers of God. * The one Indeed led the apostles, * while the other labored more than all the rest. * Christ our God, showing great mercy,  * fittingly crowns them with immortal glory. (three times)

With what beautiful hymns shall we praise Peter and Paul? * They are wings of divine knowledge, * spreading out to the far ends of the earth * and soaring aloft to heaven. * They are two heads of the Gospel of grace, * two feet of the preaching of the truth, * two rivers of wisdom and two arms of the Cross, * through which the merciful Christ * casts down the pride of demons. (three times)

With what spiritual songs shall we praise Peter and Paul? * They slew the godless tongues of idolaters. * They are fearful swords of the Spirit and notable ornaments of Rome, * both nourishers of the whole world * and the God-inspired tablets of the New Covenant. * Christ, in his great mercy, * has proclaimed their honor in Zion. (twice)

Glory –  Tone 4.  Christ asked three times: * Peter, do you love me? * Thereby he satisfied the three-fold denial; * and Simon, understanding the mystery, cried to the Lord: * You know all things; you know that I love you. * After this, Christ said to him:  * Feed my sheep, feed my lambs;  * feed those sheep which I have fashioned [for salvation] with my own blood. * Therefore, O blessed apostle of God,  beseech him to grant us great mercy.

Now and ever – the dogmatikon of Saturday evening, in the same tone, or (on Friday night or Saturday night) in the Tone of the week.

Entrance with censer, and prokeimenon of the day.  Then three readings:

A reading from the First Letter of Saint Peter (1 Peter 1:3-9).

A reading from the First Letter of Saint Peter (1 Peter 1:13-19).

A reading from the First Letter of Saint Peter (1 Peter 2:11-24).

Stichera at the Litija:

Tone 2 Bolhar. Come today, O assemblies of the faithful, * O choirs full of praise, O beautiful gathering, * O chosen craftsmen of grace, * we are crowning Peter and Paul with worthy praise. * They sowed the Word in its fullness; * through them the grace of the Spirit was poured out abundantly. * And being the vine of the true Vineyard, * they divided up for us a ripe cluster, making our hearts joyful. * Let us sing to them with clear expression, * and with a clean conscience let us say: * Rejoice, O destroyers of the unwise * and the servants of the spiritual ones. * Rejoice, O intermediaries for the good who banish evil. * Let us beseech them to always pray to the Creator and Teacher * to grant an enduring peace to the world * and great mercy to our souls.

Let us praise as intercessors for the world, * the teachers and foundations of the Church of Christ, * its true pillars and walls, * trumpets of the divine teachings and sufferings of Christ, * the prime apostles Peter and Paul. * They traveled throughout the earth, * as though with a plow, sowing the faith, * and planted a knowledge of God in all, * revealing the Word of the Trinity. * O Peter, rock of foundation, and Paul, O chosen vessel, * you were harnessed together to the will of Christ. * You raised up all creation to a knowledge of God: * the nations, the cities, and the islands. * Indeed, you lifted up anew the Hebrews into the Church, * and now you pray that our souls be saved.

O Peter, the first of the glorious apostles and rock of faith!*  O wondrous Paul, orator and lampstand of the holy churches! * Standing before the divine throne, * pray to Christ for us.

O Paul, spokesman of the Lord and foundation of doctrine! * Once you were a persecutor of Jesus the Savior, * and then indeed you were among the first of the apostles, O blessed one. * You saw the ineffable One, O wise Apostle. * You were transported up to the third heaven, and you exclaimed: * Come with me and do not be deprived of the good things.

Tone 3 samohlasen. O citizens of the heavenly Jerusalem, *  behold, the rock of faith and the orator of the Church of Christ, * the two men of the Trinity and fishers of the world, * today are departing from the earth. * Suffering the passion, they ascend to God, * and they pray to him with confidence to save our souls.

Glory –  Tone 5 Bolhar. The wisdom of God and the Word who is co-eternal with the Father * has truly foretold in the Gospel, O all-praise-worthy Apostles, * that you are the two most fruitful vines; * for you bore in your branches the ripe and beautiful cluster * from which we believers are now nourished * and whose taste brings us both sweetness and delight. * Therefore, O Peter, rock of faith, and Paul, pride of the universe, * strengthen the flock that became yours through your teachings.

Now and ever –  Tone 5 Bolhar. We bless you, O Theotokos and Virgin;  and we faithful ones glorify you always.  You are the Ineffable city, the mighty wall,  the powerful mediatrix, and the haven of our souls. (In the Slavonic menaion, this is given by incipit only, implying that it is well known - check for variant translations)

The aposticha are for the feast:

Tone 1 samohlasen. O glorious apostle Paul, * who can describe your bondage and sorrow in the cities, * your tribulations and hardships, * your sufferings and vigils? * You have suffered hunger, thirst, and cold, * nakedness and scourging with rods, * the crossing of wilderness, shipwreck and stonings. * You have both angelic and human character, * bearing all with the help of Christ who strengthened you, * so that you might gain the world for Christ, your Lord. * We, who celebrate your memory in faith, * beseech you to intercede far the salvation of our souls.

Through all the earth their voice resounds; their message reaches to the ends of the world.

O glorious apostle Paul, * who can describe your bondage and sorrow in the cities? * Who can tell the hardships and struggles you went through in the preaching of Christ * that you might win all people and present the Church to Christ? * O apostle Paul, O teacher of the churches, * pray that the Church may be strengthened by your teachings * until the end of time.

The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament proclaims his handiwork.

Let us extol Peter and Paul, * the two great luminaries of the Church; * for they have shone forth with the firmness of faith, * transcending the sun in brilliance. * By the rays of their preaching * they led the Gentiles from ignorance to divine knowledge. * Therefore, one of them was nailed upon the cross, * thus making his way into heaven * where he received the Kingdom from Christ himself. * The other was beheaded with the sword and carried to the Savior, * where he received the blessing that he deserved. * Both declared that the unjust ones laid hands against the Lord. * Through their prayers [not: By their powers], therefore, O Christ our God, * take your anger away from us and make firm our faith, * for You are the Lover of us all.

Glory –  Tone 6.  Today a delightful feast has shone forth to the ends of the earth, * the all-solemn memorial of the most wise and first apostles, Peter and Paul. * Let Rome, therefore, receive the glad tidings, rejoicing; * and let us feast on this solemn day, crying out to them: * Rejoice, O Peter, apostle and special friend of the Teacher, Christ our God. * Rejoice, O truly beloved Paul, * preacher of the faith and teacher of the universe. * Because of your privilege, O holy ones, * beseech Christ our God to save our souls.

Now and ever – the aposticha theotokion of Saturday evening, in the same tone.

Troparion,  Tone 4.  Leaders of the apostles, teachers of the world, * intercede with the Lord of all * to grant peace to the world and abundant mercy to our souls. (twice)

Now and ever – Tone 4.  Rejoice, O VIrgin Theotokos! * Mary full of grace, the Lord is with you! * Blessed are you among women, * and blessed is the fruit of your womb. For you gave birth to Christ, * the Savior and Redeemer of our souls.

At the Divine Liturgy

music

Troparion,  Tone 4.  Leaders of the apostles, teachers of the world, * intercede with the Lord of all * to grant peace to the world and abundant mercy to our souls.

Glory, now and ever – Kontakion, Tone 2.   Lord, you have received your steadfast and inspired preachers, * the foremost of your apostles, * into the enjoyment of your good gifts and repose. * You preferred their sufferings and death above any sacrifice. * For you alone know the secrets of the heart.

Prokeimenon, Tone 8 (Ps. 18:5,2). Through all the earth their voice resounds; * their message reaches to the end of the world.
V. The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament proclaims his handiwork.

Epistle:  2 Corinthians 11:21 - 12:9

Alleluia, Tone 1 (Ps. 88:6,8). Alleuia! Alleluia! Alleluia!
V. The heavens declare your wonders, O Lord, and your truth in the assembly of the holy.
V. God is glorified in the council of the holy, great and awesome above all who surround him.

Gospel: Matthew 16:13-19

Magnification. Extol, O my soul, Peter, the solid rock, and Paul, the chosen vessel of Christ's Church.

Irmos, Tone 4. We extol you with hymns, O most glorious bride * and all-holy Theotokos, * for you have given birth * to the Creator of all things visible and invisible.

Communion Hymn (Ps. 18:5). Through all the earth their voice resounds; * their message reaches to the end of the world.