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The Festal Menaion
 

The Festal Menaion

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The Festal Menaion
Translated from the original Greek by Mother Mary and Archimandrite Kallistos Ware with an introduction by Archpriest Georges Florovsky

Volume I of The Service Books of the Orthodox Church


“There is little necessity to underline the profound significance, both devotionally and theologically, of the feasts included in this volume. It contains the texts for Christmas, Epiphany, the Annunciation, and the Presentation of Our Lord in the Temple (the ‘Meeting’), which express the true Orthodox faith concerning the Incarnation of the Saviour. It contains the office of the Transfiguration, which is essential for any proper understanding of the Orthodox doctrine of ‘Divine Light’ and mystical prayer. It contains the office for the Exaltation of the Cross, which deserves to be studied with care by all who imagine that Orthodoxy concentrates solely upon the risen Christ, to the neglect of Christ crucified. It contains the services for the Nativity of the Holy Virgin, for her Entry into the Temple and her Dormition: without a knowledge of these three offices, it is impossible to appreciate the true character of Orthodox devotion to the Mother of God.”
—“Preface”


CONTENTS

Preface
THE WORSHIPPING CHURCH
by Archpriest Georges Florovsky
THE ORTHODOX SERVICES AND THEIR STRUCTURE
i. The Five Cycles
ii. The Great Feasts
iii. The Background and Meaning of the Feasts
iv. Plans of the Services
THE COMMON OF THE VIGIL
I. THE BIRTH OF OUR MOST HOLY LADY THE THEOTOKOS (8 September)
II. THE UNIVERSAL EXALTATION OF THE PRECIOUS AND LIFE-GIVING CROSS (14 September)
III. THE ENTRY OF THE MOST HOLY THEOTOKOS INTO THE TEMPLE (21 November)
IV. The Forefeast of the Nativity of Christ (24 December)
Christmas Eve (24 December)
THE NATIVITY ACCORDING TO THE FLESH OF OUR LORD AND GOD AND SAVIOUR JESUS CHRIST (25 December)
The Synaxis of the Most Holy Theotokos (26 December)
V. The Forefeast of the Theophany (5 January)
The Eve of the Theophany (5 January)
THE HOLY THEOPHANY OF OUR LORD AND GOD AND SAVIOUR JESUS CHRIST (6 January)
The Synaxis of the Honored and Glorious Prophet, Forerunner, and Baptist John (7 January)
VI. THE MEETING OF OUR LORD AND GOD AND SAVIOUR JESUS CHRIST (2 February)
VII. THE ANNUNCIATION OF THE MOST HOLY THEOTOKOS AND EVER-VIRGIN MARY (25 March)
VIII. THE TRANSFIGURATION OF OUR LORD AND GOD AND SAVIOUR JESUS CHRIST (6 August)
IX. THE DORMITION OF OUR MOST HOLY LADY AND THEOTOKOS AND EVER-VIRGIN MARY (15 August)
APPENDIX I. The Psalter
II. The Service Books of the Orthodox Church
III. Glossary
IV. The Calendar
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