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Russian Divine Liturgy

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Russian Divine Liturgy

Novospassky Choir;Igumen Mitrofan

Church music is a significant and extensive part of Russian nationalculture. The history of its appearance, its life and development, embraces manycenturies, beginning with the introduction of Christianity up to the presenttime. In particular there was a remarkable flourishing of Russian church musicat the end of the nineteenth century and in the first twenty years of the nextcentury. It was a period when many talented and widely known composers renewedand enriched church repertoire. The present recording offers the music from theRussian Divine Liturgy, celebrated by a Bishop.

1. Meeting and Vesting of the Bishop (L'vov)

When the Bishop enters the church, all the clergy, bearing crosses and acenser, meet him. They then vest the Bishop and he starts the Entrance Prayers,bowing to the holy icons of Our Saviour and of Theotokos, the Blessed Virgin.

The Bishop blesses the people and moves forward to his place in the centre ofthe church. Here the clergy remove the Bishop's outer vestment, leaving himdressed in a simple robe, to remind people of Our Saviour, who came to earth inhumble simplicity. Then they start vesting the Bishop in his liturgical robes.

From the Rising of the Sun

From the rising to the setting of the Sun, the name of Lord is to bepraised!

Blessed be the name of the Lord, henceforth, and for evermore!

The Hymn to the Theotokos

It is truly meet to bless you, O Theotokos,

ever-blessed and most pure, and the Mother of Our God.

More honorable than the Cherubim

And more glorious beyond compare than the Seraphim,

Without defilement you gave birth to God the Word.

True Theotokos, we magnify you.

Your Soul Shall Rejoice

Your Soul shall rejoice in the Lord,

For He has clothed you with the garment of salvation;

And with the robe of gladness has He encompassed you:

As a bridegroom He has set a crown on you;

And as a bride, He has adorned you with arrayment.

2. Eis polla eti, Despota (L'vov)

Eis polla eti, Despota (Many years to you, Master) is an Old-Greek prayer forthe Bishop. The choir sings the prayer when the Bishop blesses the people,turning to the four sides with the two special candlesticks, and the people bowto him.

3. Great Litany(Smolensky)

Litanies consist of aseries of invocations and supplications, chanted by the deacon, to which thechoir sings the refrain in response, Lord have mercy. This litany asksGod for peace from on high and for the salvation of our souls, for the peace ofthe whole world and for the welfare of the Holy Church where the Divine Liturgyis being celebrated, for our deliverance from all affliction, wrath, danger andnecessity. We also pray to God for our Patriarch, now Alexis II, Holy Patriarchof Moscow and of All Russia. We also ask Our Lady, the Mother of God andever-virgin Mary, to help us, protect us and pray for us before God.

4. The First Antiphon:Psalm CII (Znamenn?»y chant)

Bless the Lord, Omy soul is based on Psalm CII.

The choir sings it to the znamenn?»y chant. In this psalm the people of God aretaught to praise Him for His great benevolence, which is proclaimed by Christ'sbanishing of sin and by the glory of His Resurrection.

Bless the Lord, O my soul!

Blessed art thou, O Lord!

Bless the Lord, O my soul!

And all that is within me, bless His Holy Name!

Bless the Lord, O my soul!

And forget not all His benefits!

Who forgives all your iniquity,

who heals all your diseases!

The Lord is compassionate

and merciful, long-suffering and of great goodness!

Bless the Lord, O my soul!

Blessed art thou, O Lord!

5. The Only-begottenSon (Grechaninov)

The Greek EmperorJustinian wrote the text of The Only-begotten Son in the sixth century.

Although it is rather short, it nevertheless summarises the central dogma ofChristianity.

Only-begotten Son and immortal word of God,

who for our salvation

didst will to be incarnate of the Holy Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary,

who without change didst become man

and wast crucified,

who art one of the Holy Trinity,

glorified with the Father and the Holy Spirit.

O Christ Our God,

trampling down death by death, Save us!

6. Introit

Come, let usworship is the Entrance Hymnthat is heard during the Little Entrance, as the Holy Gospel is brought fromthe altar and the clergy come back into the sanctuary through the Royal Doors.

7. The Trisagion(L'vovsky)

The Trisagion callspeople to repent of their sins and ask God for mercy. It is also called theSong of Angels because invisible angels are singing it together with the peoplein the church.

Holy God! Holy mighty! Holy immortal! Have mercy on us! (Repeated three times)

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit,

now and for ever and from age to age, Amen.

Holy immortal, have mercy on us.

Holy God! Holy mighty! Holy immortal! Have mercy on us!

8. Prokeimenon(Kastal'sky)

The Prokeimenon isa verse taken from the Psalms. It is chanted before the reading of the Epistle.

9. Alleluia

After the Epistle thereader chants the two Alleluia verses. After each one the choir repeats theAlleluia and the deacon censes.

10. Cherubic Hymn(Turchaninov)

The choir sings the CherubicHymn also known as the Great Entrance Hymn, during the GreatEntrance. The Bishop carries the chalice and paten with the holy gifts of wineand bread. Preceded by the clergy he makes the Great Entrance, bringing ourgifts to the altar. During the Entrance he prays for all members of the Church.

Let us who mystically represent the Cherubim,

and who sing the thrice-holy hymn to the Life-Creating Trinity,

now lay aside all earthly cares.


That we may receive the King of All,

who comes invisibly upborne by the angelic hosts.


11. The Nicene Creed(Arkhangel'sky)

The Nicene Creed wasadopted at the Council of Nicea in A.D. 325 and expanded at the Council ofConstantinople in A.D. 381. It is used at baptisms, in the Divine Liturgy andin daily personal prayers.

I believe in one God, the Father Almighty,

maker of heaven and earth,

and of all things visible and invisible;

and in one Lord Jesus Christ

the Son of God, the Only-Begotten,

begotten of the Father before all worlds,

light of light, very God of very God,

begotten not made, of one essence

with the Father, by whom all things were made;

who for us men and for our

Item number 8554150
Barcode 636943415023
Release date 01/12/2000
Label Naxos Records
Media type CD
Number of units 1
Composers Alexey Fyodoroovich Lvov
Conductors Igumen Mitrofan
Orchestras Novospassky Monastery Choir
Disc: 1
Great Doxology
1 Meeting And Vesting Of Bishop
2 Eis polla eti, Despota
3 Great Litany
4 Bless The Lord, O My Soul
5 The Only Begotten Son
6 Come, Let Us Worship And Fall Down Before Christ
7 The Trisagion
8 Prokeimenon
9 Alleluia
10 Cherubic Hymn
11 The Nicene Creed
12 A Mercy Of Peace
13 The Hymn To The Theotokos
14 Praise The Lord From The Heavens!
15 Psalm CXX
16 Blessed By The Name Of The Lord, Henceforth And Fo
17 Great Doxology
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