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Melkite Greek Catholic Church Information Center

Feast of Feasts Holy and Glorious Pascha - Fesakh - Hajmeh - Celebration First Day - Vespers

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Pascha
Cycle
Triodion Prophon-
isimon
Sundays
Great
Lent
Palm
Sun.
Sha-
neen-
eh
Great
and
Holy
Week
Great
and
Holy
Mon
Great
and
Holy
Tues
Great
and
Holy
Wed
Great
and
Holy
Thurs
Great
and
Holy
Fri
Great
and
Holy
Sat
Holy
and
Glor-
ious
Pascha

 

All services in Great Week are moved ahead 12 hours.

The reason is probably to make the services more convenient for the people to attend.

Great and Holy Week or Pascha Cycle
Liturgical
Service
of what
Liturgical
Day
Held on
what
Calendar
Day
Time
held
Vespers
Blessing the new light,
Procession of Triumph,
The first proclamation
of the Resurrection,
Divine Liturgy
of Our Father among the Saints Basil
of Holy
and
Glorious
Pascha
on Great
and Holy
Saturday
morning
Matins
Hajmeh;
Paschal Orthros;
Divine Liturgy
of St. John
Chrysostom,
Blessing
of Holy Artos
(Pascha eggs
and bread)
of Holy
and
Glorious
Pascha
on Great
and Holy
Saturday
evening
/
night
  on Holy
and Glorious
Pascha
morning
Vespers
Agape
of
Bright
Monday
on Holy
and Glorious
Pascha
afternoon

Vespers is the Lighting of the New Fire, Blessing the New Light, The first proclamation of the Resurrection, Procession of the New Light, and Procession of Triumph, which is celebrated on Great and Holy Saturday morning.

  • Lighting of the New Fire
  • Blessing the New Light
  • First proclamation of the Resurrection
  • Procession of the New Light
  • Procession of Triumph
Lighting of the New Fire, Blessing the New Light, and First proclamation of the Resurrection

The services begin with the church in darkness. The reason is that the because the Light of the World lies dead in the tomb. The darkness symbolizes the despair and defeat experienced before the dawn of Our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ's victory over the enemy of our salvation.

The priest goes behind the Holy Table, chants the Prayer of the New Light, and lights the new fire (a single candle), from which all the candles in the church will be lit. He steps forward into the Holy Doors and proclaims: "The light of Christ enlightens all people. Blessed be God, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, who enlightens and sanctifies our souls and bodies at all times, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen."
The new fire (a single candle) represents the victory of Our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ over death. The victory of Our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ, who is the Light of the world, over (the defeat) of the Prince of Darkness. Lighting the new fire signifies the rebirth of the Light of the World (Our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ).

Procession with the New Light

In the darkened church, the priest comes out from the Holy Doors holding his lighted Paschal candle and solemnly sings, "Come and take light from the Light that never fades; come and glorify Christ who is risen from the dead!" All the people come forward and light their candles from the priest's candle.
The priest and the people form a procession with the new light. As the light is passed to more people, the light gradually pushes back the darkness of the church and eventually defeats it completely. The Resurrection is proclaimed in song and triumphant procession.
The church blazes in light and joy -- Our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ is risen from the dead!

Apostolos

Romans 6:3-12 - Our belief, that we who are united to Our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ in baptism will be raised to new life through His resurrection, is proclaimed in the reading.

Procession of Triumph

After the reading of the Epistle, the Procession of Triumph happens. As the choir sings the Hymn of Triumph "Shine, shine, O new Jerusalem" with the verse "Arise O God, and judge the earth, for You shall inherit all nations," while the priest goes around the inside of the church strewing laurel leaves, the historic symbols of victory, and rose petals as symbols of Our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ's victory over death.

Gospel

St Matthew 28:1-20 After the Procession of Triumph, the priest reads the Gospel.

Images

Images of Pascha: Glorious and Holy Easter Sunday Melkite Greek Catholic Church, Eparchy of Newton, (Our Lady of the Annunciation (Al Bisharah) in Roslindale, Massachusetts, United States)
Images of the Pascha Liturgy Continued Melkite Greek Catholic Church, Eparchy of Newton, (Our Lady of the Annunciation (Al Bisharah) in Roslindale, Massachusetts, United States)
Images of Holy Week Melkite Greek Catholic Church, Eparchy of Newton, (Our Lady of the Annunciation (Al Bisharah) in Roslindale, Massachusetts, United States)

Liturgical Cycle

From Holy and Glorious Pascha to Great Feast of Pentecost, Sunday is the first day of the Liturical week. In the remainder of the year, Sunday is the last day of the Liturgical week.

Pascha Cycle

Pascha is the center and height of the Pascha Cycle. Pascha is between Great and Holy Saturday and Bright Monday or New Monday


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Melkite Greek Catholic Church Information Center
Martha Liles
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Melkite Greek Catholic Church Information Center is dedicated to my cousins: Bucky (Richard C. Liles) and Shirley (Shirley Jean Liles Buck). Bucky fell asleep in the Lord on Dec. 12, 2000 and Shirley fell asleep in the Lord on Nov. 8, 2001.
O God of all spirits and of all flesh, who have destroyed death, overcome the devil, and given life to the world: grant, O Lord, to the souls of your servants Bucky and Shirley, who has departed from this life, that it may rest in a place of light, in a place of happiness, in a place of peace, where there is no pain, no grief, no sighing. And since You are a gracious God and the Lover of Mankind, forgive him/her every sin he/she has committed by thought, or word, or deed, for there is not a man who lives and does not sin : You alone are without sin, your righteousness is everlasting, and your word is true. You are the Resurrection and the Life, and the repose of your departed servants Bucky and Shirley. O Christ our God, and we send up glory to You, together with your eternal Father and your all-holy, good and life-givng Spirit, now and always and for ages upon ages. Amen.

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Last Updated: Saturday, August 08, 2009, 22:29:34, CDT
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