Sunday of Forgiveness
Divine Liturgy of our Father among the Saints John Chrysostom, celebrated by Father Yuriy at Saint Nicholas the Wonderworker Parish, Victoria. 10AM 14 February 2021.
Troparion, Tone 4
When the disciples of the Lord learned from the angel * the glorious news of the resurrection * and cast off the ancestral condemnation, * they proudly told the apostles: * ‘Death has been plundered! * Christ our God is risen, * granting to the world great mercy.’
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.
Now and forever and ever, Amen.
Kontakion, Tone 6
O Master, Guide to Wisdom *, Bestower of prudent counsel, * Instructor of the foolish and Defender of the poor ones; * make firm my heart and give it understanding. * Give me a word, O Word of the Father: * Behold, I shall not stop my lips from crying out to You: * In Your mercy, have mercy on me who am fallen.
Prokimenon, Tone 4
How great are Your works, O Lord * You have made all things in wisdom.
Verse: Bless the Lord, O my soul: O Lord my God, You are exceedingly great. (Psalm 103:24,1)
Epistle : Romans 13:11–14:4
A reading from the Epistle of the Holy Apostle Paul to the Romans:
Brothers and Sisters: you know what time it is, how it is now the moment for you to wake from sleep. For salvation is nearer to us now than when we became believers; the night is far gone, the day is near. Let us then lay aside the works of darkness and put on the armour of light; let us live honourably as in the day, not in revelling and drunkenness, not in debauchery and licentiousness, not in quarrelling and jealousy. Instead, put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires. Welcome those who are weak in faith, but not for the purpose of quarrelling over opinions. Some believe in eating anything, while the weak eat only vegetables. Those who eat must not despise those who abstain, and those who abstain must not pass judgment on those who eat; for God has welcomed them. Who are you to pass judgment on servants of another? It is before their own lord that they stand or fall. And they will be upheld, for the Lord is able to make them stand.
Alleluia, Tone 8
Verse: Poise yourself and advance in triumph and reign in the cause of truth, and meekness, and justice.
Verse: You have loved justice and hated iniquity. (Psalm 44:5,8)
Verse: Blessed is the man who fears the Lord; he shall delight exceedingly in His commandments.
Verse: His posterity shall be mighty upon the earth. (Psalm 111:1,2)
Gospel : Matthew 6:14–21
The Lord said to his disciples: ‘If you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you; but if you do not forgive others, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. And whenever you fast, do not look dismal, like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces so as to show others that they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward. But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, so that your fasting may be seen not by others but by your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you. Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal; but store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.’
Praise the Lord from the heavens; * praise Him in the highest. (Psalm 148:1) * The just man shall be in everlasting remembrance; * of evil hearsay he shall have no fear. (Psalm 111:6) * Alleluia, alleluia, * alleluia.
[A private prayer of spiritual communion:
My Jesus, I believe that You are present in these Holy Gifts!
I love You above all things and I desire to receive You into my soul.
Since I cannot receive You now,
I place before You my whole life and hope, O loving Master;
and I ask, pray, and entreat You: Make me worthy to partake in a mystical way
and with a pure conscience of Your awesome and heavenly Mysteries:
for forgiveness of sins, for the pardon of offences, for communion of the Holy Spirit,
for the inheritance of the kingdom of heaven, for confidence before You,
and not for judgment or condemnation.
I embrace You as You enter and abide in me, and I unite myself completely to You.
Permeate my soul and body, and never permit me to be separated from You.
Communal Rite of Mutual Forgiveness
When the disciples of the Lord asked him to teach them how to pray (Luke 11:1–13), He left us with what we refer to as the Lord’s Pray, the “Our Father”. In this prayer we pray as a community or family, we do not say “My Father who are in Heaven...” we pray: ‘Our Father...’
We ask God to forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. Before beginning our Great Fast (Lenten) Journey together, as a parish family community, it is important for us to express to each other our desire to forgive each other for anything that we may have done that may have hurt or offended someone over the past year, or indeed during our life time so that we can be free without these heavy burdens to walk together as a united family as true daughters and sons of God!
This Communal Rite of Mutual Forgiveness is not the Mystery/ Sacrament of Reconciliation (Confession) and does not replace that Mystery/Sacrament, but rather is a tangible sign to each other of our forgiveness and also the experience of being forgiven. Hence there is no need to name our offences, but rather with total sincerity in our hearts let us say to each other: ‘Forgive me sister/brother’ and answer with sincerity and love, ‘May God have mercy on you and I know that I forgive you.’
Благословіть, Брати і Сестри, і простіть мені грішному, чим згрішив я в цей день і по всі дні життя мого словом, ділом, думкою і всіма почуттями моїми (вклоняється).
Bless me, my Sisters and Brothers, and forgive me, a sinner, whatever offences I may have committed this day and all the days of my life by word, deed and thought as well as by all my senses (bows to all the faithful).
Faithful : May God forgive you, Reverend Father. Bless us also and forgive our offences voluntary and involuntary (also bow).
May the Lord God by His grace forgive you all your sins and have mercy on you. Let us pray for our Most Holy Universal Pontiff, Francis Pope of Rome, for His Beatitude Patriarch Sviatoslav, for our Most Reverend Metropolitan Lawrence, for our God-loving Bishop David.
Faithful : May God save and have mercy.
Priest : For the noble benefactors and founders of this holy church, for those who serve and who have served in it.
Faithful : May God save and have mercy.
Priest : For those who are absent and for those who are travelling.
Faithful : May God protect and have mercy.
Priest : For our benefactors and those who are kind to us.
Faithful : May God reward and have mercy.
Priest : For those who hate us and for those who love us.
Faithful : May God forgive and have mercy.
Priest : For the sick and suffering.
Faithful : May God heal and have mercy.
Priest : For our departed relatives and faithful of our parish and Eparchy.
Faithful : May God grant them remembrance and rest and everlasting be their memory.
Priest : Through the prayers of our holy fathers, Lord Jesus Christ our God, have mercy on us.
Faithful : Amen.