Bishop Demetri M. Khoury

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The bishop enters the church and takes the Kairon in the usual manner. When he has done so the clergy approach him in the sanctuary to receive his blessing and they all begin vesting, saying the proper vesting prayers..

When all have vested they exit the sanctuary, according to their rank, through the Holy Doors, to the bishop’s throne, and stand on both sides of the bishop’s throne beginning with the right side for the protos, the left side for the second priest, etc., while the choir sings:

Choir: Eis polla eti Dhespota.

When the proper time comes, the protos and the first deacon approach the bishop and they say:

Deacon: It is time for the Lord to act. Bless, master.

Bishop: Blessed is our God, always now and ever and unto ages of ages.

Deacon: Amen. Pray for us, master.

Bishop: The Lord direct thy steps unto every good work.

Deacon: Remember us, holy master.

Blessing them, the bishop says:

Bishop: The Lord God remember your priesthood and your diaconate in his kingdom, always, now and ever and unto ages of ages.

Deacon: Amen.

The protos and the first deacon make one metania, kiss the bishop’s hand, the protos enters the sanctuary through the holy doors, makes three metanias, reverences the gospel book and holy table and stands before the holy table. The protos and the first deacon, who stands on the solea before the icon of Christ, turn and bow to the bishop.(The priests and deacons bow to the bishop after every exclamation. The deacons also bow to the bishop before beginning a litany.) The protos then faces the east, and lifting his orarion with the three fingers of his right hand, says aloud:

Deacon: Bless, master.

The Enarxis

The protos kisses the gospel book, lifts it with both hands, and lowers it, making with it the sign of the cross over the antiminsion and intoning:

Priest: Blessed is the kingdom of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages.

The protos, replaces the gospel book on the antiminsion. He then moves to stand at his place at the holy table (on the south side). There he quietly says the seven prayers at the lighting of the lamps, while the bishop says:

Bishop: O come, let us worship and fall down before God our King. (metania)

O come, let us worship and fall down before Christ, our King and our God. (metania)

O come, let us worship and fall down before the Very Christ, our King and our God. (metania)

Psalm 103

Bless the Lord, O my soul. O Lord my God, thou art very great ; thou art very great; thou art clothed with honour and majesty. Who coverest thyself with light as with a garment: who stretchedst out the heavens like a curtain: who layeth the beams of his chambers in the waters: who maketh the clouds his chariot: who walketh upon the wings of the wind: Who maketh his angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire: Who laid the foundations of the earth, that it should not be removed forever. Thou coveredst it with the deep as with a garment: the Waters stood above the mountains. At thy rebuke they fled; at the voice of thy thunder they hasted away. They go up by the mountains; they go down valleys unto the place hwich thou hast founded for them. Thou hast set a bound that they may not pass over; that they turn not again to cover the earth. He sendeth the springs into the valleys, which run among the hills. They give drink to every beast of the field: the wild asses quench their thirst. By them shall the fowls of the heaven have their habitation, which sing among the branches. He watereth the hills from his chambers: the earth is satisfied with the fruit of thy works. He causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and herb for the service of man: that he may bring forth food out of the earth: And wine that maketh glad the heart of man, and oil to make his face to shine, and bread which strengtheneth man’s heart. The trees of the Lord are full of sap; the cedars of Lebanon, which he hath planted; Where the birds make their nests: as for the stork, the fir trees are her house. The high hills are a refuge for the wild goats; and the rocks for the conies. He appointed the moon for seasons: the sun knoweth his going down. Thou makest darkness, and it is night: wherein all the beasts of the forest do creep forth. The young lions roar after their prey, and seek their meat from God. The sun ariseth, they gather themselves together, and lay them down in their dens. Man goeth forth unto his work and to his labour until the evening. O Lord, how manifold are thy works! in wisdom hast thou made them all: the earth is full of thy riches. So is this great and wide sea, wherein are things creeping, innumerable, both small and great beasts. There go the ships: there is that leviathan, who thou hast made to play therein. These wait all upon thee; that thou mayest give them their meat in due season. That thou givest them they gather: thou openest thine hand, they are filled with good. Thou hidest thy face, they are troubled: thou takest away their breath, they die, and return to their dust. Thou sendest forth thy spirit, they are created: and thou renewest the face of the earth. The glory of the Lord shall endure forever: the Lord shall rejoice in his works. He looketh on the earth, and it trembleth: he toucheth the hills, and they smoke. I will sing unto the Lord as long as I live: I will sing praise to my God while I have my being. My meditation of him shall be sweet: I will be glad in the Lord. Let the sinners be consumed out of the earth, and let the wicked be no more. Bless thou the Lord, O my soul. Praise ye the Lord.

The sun knoweth his going down. Thou makest darkness, and it is night. O Lord, how manifold are thy works! in wisdom hast thou made them all.

Glory to the Father and to the Son and to Holy Spirit, now and ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.

Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia. Glory to thee, O God. (twice)

Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia, Glory to thee, O God our Hope, O Lord, glory to thee. (once)

At the conclusion of Psalm 103, the first deacon bows to the bishop, goes to stand before the holy doors, and lifting his orarion with the thumb and two fingers of his right hand, intones the petitions of the litany of peace.

The Litany Of Peace

Deacon: In peace, let us pray to the Lord.

(The choir and/or chanters respond Lord, have mercy to each petition.)

For the peace from above and the salvation of our souls, let us pray to the Lord.

For the peace of the whole world, the good estate of the holy churches of God, and the union of all men, let us pray to the Lord.

For this holy house and those who with faith, reverence and fear of God enter therein, let us pray to the Lord.

For our Metropolitan N. (and our Bishop N.) the honorable presbytery, the diaconate in Christ, all the clergy and the people, let us pray to the Lord.

(The choir first responds Eis polla eti Dhespota and then Lord, have mercy.)

For our president, civil authorities and armed forces, let us pray to the Lord.

For this city and every city and countryside and the faithful who dwell therein, let us pray to the Lord.

For healthful seasons, abundance of the fruits of the earth and peaceful times, let us pray to the Lord.

For travelers by sea, by land and by air, the sick, the suffering, captives and their salvation, let us pray to the Lord.

For our deliverance from all tribulations, wrath, danger and necessity, let us pray to the Lord.

Help us; save us; have mercy on us; and keep us, O God, by thy grace.

Calling to remembrance our all-holy immaculate, most blessed and glorious Lady Theotokos and ever virgin Mary, with all the saints, let us commend ourselves and each other and all our life unto Christ our God.

Choir: To thee, O Lord.

Priest: For unto thee are due all glory, honor and worship to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and unto ages of ages.

Choir: Amen.

The priest and the deacon bow to the bishop. The second deacon receives a blessing from the bishop, bows to him, and enters the sanctuary through the south door while the bishop, clergy and choir chant, Lord, I have cried . . . The second deacon brings the censer to the bishop, bows his head and says:

Deacon: Bless, Master, the incense.

The bishop blesses the censer, saying:

Bishop: Blessed is our God, always, now and ever, and unto ages of ages. Incense we offer unto thee, O Christ our God, as a savor of spiritual sweetness, which do thou receive upon thy most heavenly altar and send down upon us in return the grace of thine all-holy Spirit.

Deacon: Amen

The deacon censes the bishop three times. When the choir begins to chant, Let my prayer arise, the deacon begins the great censing, starting from the solea.

Psalm 141 (140)

Bishop: Lord, I have cried unto thee, hear me. Hear me, O Lord. Lord, I have cried unto thee, hear me: give ear unto my voice, when I cry unto thee. Hear me, O Lord.

Choir: Let my prayer be set forth before thee, as incense; and the lifting up of my hands be as the evening sacrifice. Hear me, O Lord.

The bishop and the choir/or chanters now alternately sing the following verses:

Bishop: Set a watch, O Lord, before my mouth; keep the door of my lips.

Choir: Incline not my heart to any evil thing, to practice wicked works

With men that work iniquity: and let me not eat of their dainties.

Let the righteous smite me; it shall be a kindness: and let him reprove me; it shall be an excellent oil, which shall not break my head.

For yet my prayer also shall be in their calamities. When their judges are overthrown in stony places.

They shall hear my words, for they are sweet. Our bones are scattered at the grave’s mouth as when one cutteth and cleaveth wood upon the earth

But mine eyes are unto thee, O God the Lord: in thee is my trust; leave not my soul destitute.

Keep me from the snares which they have laid for me, and the gins of the workers of iniquity.

Let the wicked fall into their own nets, whilst that I withal escape.

Psalm 142 (141)

I cried unto the Lord with my voice; with my voice unto the Lord did I make my supplication.

I poured out my complaint before him; I shewed before him my trouble.

When my spirit was overwhelmed within me, then thou knewest my path.

In the way wherein I walked have they privily laid a snare for me.

I looked on my right hand, and beheld, but there was no man that would know me.

Refuge failed me; no man cared for my soul.

I have cried unto thee, O Lord: I said, thou art my refuge and my portion in the land of the living.

Attend unto my cry; for I am brought very low.

Deliver me from my persecutors; for they are stronger than I.

The chanters and/or those appointed by the bishop, now read the appropriate psalm verses and stichera:

Bring my soul out of prison, that I may confess thy name.

For the righteous shall await me until thou recompense me.

Out of the depths have I cried unto thee, O Lord; Lord, hear my voice.

Let thine ears be attentive to the voice of my supplication.

If thou, Lord, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand? For with thee there is propitiation.

Because of thy name have I waited for thee, O Lord; my soul hath waited upon thy word, my soul hath hoped in the Lord.

From the morning watch until night, from the morning watch let Israel trust in the Lord.

For with the Lord there is mercy and with Him is abundant redemption, and He will deliver Israel from all his iniquities.

Praise the Lord, all ye nations: praise him, all ye people.

For his mercy is great toward us, and the truth of the Lord endureth forever.

Doxastichon

Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit.

As the choir chants, Now and ever, the priest(s) kiss the gospel book and the holy table. The protos then gives the gospel book to the first deacon, laying the end of his orarion over it. The procession for the entrance is made to the bishop’s throne. The protos stands on the bishop’s right, the other priests stand in order on either side of the bishop (junior to senior).

Now and ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.

Theotokion

The chanters and/or those appointed by the bishop, now chant the appropriate Theotokion.

The first deacon says:

Deacon: Let us pray to the Lord. Lord, have mercy.

The bishop says the prayer of the entrance:

The Prayer Of The Entrance

Bishop: In the evening, and in the morning, and at noon-day, we praise thee, we bless thee, we give thanks unto thee, and we pray unto thee, we give thanks unto thee, and we pray unto thee, O Lord of all: Direct thou our prayer before thee as incense, and incline not our hearts unto words or thoughts of wickedness; but deliver us from all who seek after our souls. For unto thee, Lord, O Lord, lift we up our eyes, and in thee have we trusted. Put us not to shame, O our God. For unto thee are due all glory, honor, and worship: to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit; now and ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.

The deacon says:

Deacon: Bless, master, the holy entrance.

The bishop, blessing toward the east, says:

Bishop: Blessed is the entrance to thy holy place, always, now and ever, and unto ages of ages.

Deacon: Amen.

The deacon offers the gospel book for veneration by the bishop, himself kissing the bishop’s right hand. The second deacon then hands the trikirion and dikirion to the bishop, kissing the bishop’s hands as he does so.

Deacon: Wisdom. Stand upright.

Then all sing the hymn of thanksgiving at the lighting of the lamps, led by the bishop and the clergy. The first deacon now leads the rest of the clergy in the entrance into the sanctuary through the holy doors.

The Hymn Of Thanksgiving

O Gladsome Light

O gladsome Light of the holy glory of the immortal Father, heavenly, holy, blessed: Jesus Christ. Now that we have come to the setting of the sun and behold the light of evening, we praise God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. For meet it is at all times to worship thee with voices of praise, O Son of God and Giver of life; therefore all the world doth glorify thee.

The first deacon, places the gospel book upon the antiminsion, and then takes up the censer and stands at the southwest corner of the holy table. The second deacon censes the bishop as he comes toward the holy doors, then as they sing Now that we come to the setting of the sun the bishop facing the congregation blesses them with the trikirion and dikirion while the choir slowly sings:

Choir: Eis polla eti, Dhespota.

The choir and/or chanters now immediately sing the appropriate apolytikia as the bishop censes as usual.

The bishop and the clergy chant the appropriate kondakion.

Following the chanting of the kondakion, the deacon, standing at his place at the holy table, says to the bishop:

Deacon: Bless, master, the time of the thrice-holy.

The deacon stands in the holy doors, facing the people, lifts his orarion and says:

Deacon: Let us pray to the Lord.

Choir: Lord, have mercy.

The deacon returns to his place at the holy table and the bishop says:

Bishop: For holy art thou, O our God, and unto thee we ascribe the thrice Holy praise to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, now

Facing the congregation through the holy doors, the deacon lifts his orarion and says:

Deacon: And unto ages of ages.

Choir: Amen.

The bishop says the prayer of the thrice-holy hymn while the choir and/or chanters begin the chanting of the Thrice-Holy Hymn.

The Prayer Of The Thrice-Holy Hymn

Bishop: O holy God, who restest in thy holy place, who art hymned by the seraphim with thrice-holy cry and glorified by the cherubim and worshipped by every heavenly power, who out of nothingness hast brought all things into being, who hast created man according to thine image and likeness and hast adorned him with thine every gift; who givest to him that askest wisdom and understanding, who despisest not the sinner but hast appointed repentance unto salvation, who hast vouchsafed unto us, thy humble and unworthy servants, even in this hour, to stand before the glory of thy holy altar and to offer the worship and praise which are due unto thee: Thyself, O Master, receive even from the mouth of us sinners the thrice-holy hymn and visit us in thy goodness. Pardon us every transgression both voluntary and involuntary; sanctify our souls and bodies; and grant us to serve thee in holiness all the days of our life, through the intercessions of the holy Theotokos and of all the saints, who from the beginning of the world have been well-pleasing unto thee.

As this is a hierarchical liturgy, the thrice-holy hymn is sung as follows:

At the Thrice-Holy hymn

Choir: Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal: have mercy on us.

The bishop blesses the gospel book with the dikirion as he and the clergy sing:

Clergy: Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal: have mercy on us.

Bishop: Holy God, the Father, Who is without beginning. Holy Mighty, the Son Coeternal. Holy Immortal, the Spirit and Comforter Who proceeds from the Father and rests in the Son, O Holy Trinity, Glory to Thee.

The third by the choir:

Choir: Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal: have mercy on us.

The bishop blesses the gospel book with the trikirion as he and the clergy sing:

Clergy: Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal: have mercy on us.

Bishop: In the Jordan was the Holy Trinity made manifest; for the most Divine Person of the Father proclaimed: He that is baptized is my beloved Son, and the Spirit was present with his Coëqual for which cause the people bless and elevate throughout the ages.

Choir: Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, both now and ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.

Holy immortal: have mercy on us.

Then the two deacons exit the sanctuary through the holy doors and stand on the solea, before the holy doors, facing east, as the choir and/or chanters chant the following:

Choir: Holy God.

Standing in the holy doors facing west and holding the trikirion and dikirion, the bishop says:

Bishop: O Lord, O Lord: Look down from heaven and behold, and visit this vineyard which thy right hand hast planted and established it.

As the bishop blesses with trikirion and dikirion, the choir chants:

Choir: Eis polla eti despota.

Holy Mighty.

Facing south and holding the trikirion and dikirion, the bishop says:

Bishop: Grant speedy and steadfast consolation unto they servants, O Jesus, when our spirit is cast down within us. Depart not from our souls in affliction; be not far from our thoughts in time of trouble; but always defend us.

Bishop: O Lord, O Lord: Look down from heaven and behold, and visit this vineyard which thy right hand hast planted and established it.

Choir: Eis polla eti despota.

Holy Immortal.

Facing north and holding the trikirion and dikirion, the bishop says:

Bishop: Draw near unto us, draw near unto us, thou who art omnipresent! As thou art ever with thine Apostles, so also, O Bountiful One, unite thyself unto those who long for thee; that with one accord we may sing praises unto thee, and laud thy most holy Spirit.

Bishop: O Lord, O Lord: Look down from heaven and behold, and visit this vineyard which thy right hand hast planted and established it.

Choir: Eis polla eti despota.

Have mercy on us.

The bishop and deacons return to the holy table. The bishop gives the trikirion and dikirion to the deacons, and the first deacon stands in the holy doors, facing west, and stands in the holy doors and says:

Deacon: With strength.

The deacon returns to his place at the holy table as the choir concludes the thrice-holy hymn:

Choir: Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal: have mercy on us.

The first deacon, standing in the holy doors, facing west, says:

Deacon: O Lord, save the faithful.

The first deacon returns to his place at the holy table while the clergy chant:

Choir: O Lord, save the faithful.

The second deacon, standing in the holy doors, facing west, says:

Deacon: O Lord, save the faithful.

The second deacon returns to his place at the holy table while the choir chants:

Choir: O Lord, save the faithful.

Again standing in the holy doors and facing west, the first deacon says:

Deacon: O Lord, save those of true worship.

The first deacon returns to his place at the holy table while the choir chants:

Choir: O Lord, save those of true worship.

Again standing in the holy doors facing west, the second deacon says:

Deacon: And hear us.

The second deacon returns to his place at the holy table while the clergy chant:

Choir: And hear us.

The bishop and deacons then proceed to the high place, while the bishop says the following, or they may remain at their places at the holy table, in which case the bishop may face the prothesis with outspread hands while saying the following:

Deacon: Command, Master.

Bishop: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.

Whether they have remained at the holy table or gone to the high place, the deacon points to the throne at the high place with his orarion and says the following to the bishop:

Deacon: Bless, Master, the throne on high.

The bishop faces the throne at the high place and with outspread hands, says:

Bishop: Blessed art thou on the throne of thy glory of thy kingdom, who art enthroned upon the cherubim, always, now and ever, and unto ages of ages.

Deacon: Amen.

The Liturgy of the Word

The reader, carrying the epistle book, stands in the center of the solea, facing east. The first deacon says:

Deacon: Let us attend.

The mitre and omophorion are removed from the bishop’s head and shoulder.

Reader: (the Reader recites the Prokeimenon of the epistle)

Deacon: Wisdom.

Reader: (The Reader announces the title of the epistle)

Deacon: Let us attend.

The reader faces west and chants the appointed section of the epistle, while the deacon takes up the censer and says to the bishop:

Deacon: Bless, master, the incense.

Blessing the censer, the bishop says:

Bishop: Blessed is our God, always, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Incense we offer unto thee, O Christ our God, as a savor of spiritual sweetness, which do thou receive upon thy most heavenly altar, and send down upon us in return the grace of thine all-holy Spirit.

Deacon: Amen.

After censing the bishop three times, the deacon quietly censes around the holy table, the entire sanctuary and the clergy who stand there. During the censing and chanting of the epistle, the bishop sits on the throne at the high place, or holding his staff, stands in the middle of the holy doors listening attentively to the reading. At the conclusion of the chanting of the epistle, the reader faces east as the bishop comes to the middle of the holy doors, blesses the reader with his right hand, and says:

Bishop: Peace be to thee that readest.

The reader kisses the right hand of the bishop

Choir: Alleluia. Alleluia. Alleluia.

Deacon: Let us pray to the Lord. Lord, have mercy.

And the bishop says the prayer before the gospel:

Bishop: Illumine our hearts, O Master who lovest mankind with the pure light of thy divine knowledge, and open the eyes of our mind to