The Witness (December 23rd – January 2nd)

SERVICES AND EVENTS
Friday, December 24, 8am 
Royal Hours 6:30pm Nativity Vespers followed by Carols 
Saturday, December 25, 8am Nativity Matins 9am Nativity Liturgy
Sunday, December 26, 9am Matins 10am Divine Liturgy 6:30pm Vespers for Feast of St. Stephen followed by Game Night
Monday, December 27, 10am Divine Liturgy for Feast of St. Stephen
Saturday, January 1, 6:30pm Vespers
Sunday, January 2, 9am Matins 10am Divine Liturgy

ANNOUNCEMENT
Game Night 
after Vespers for Feast of St. Stephen, Sunday December 26.
No Church School for Littles/Middles for the remainder of December. Church School will resume after the first of the year.
Confession Sign Up is online at this link https://tinyurl.com/38pwa783 or on bulletin board.
House Blessing Sign Up is now online here: https://tinyurl.com/3ejcnwvm
and on bulletin board.
Birthdays: Bailey Combs 12/24 Samuel Oprisko 1/2
Names Days: Liam Guise (1/1 St. Basil the Great)

Tone 2 Troparion (Resurrection) When You descended to death, O Life Immortal, You slew hell with the splendor of Your Godhead. And when from the depths You raised the dead, all the powers of heaven cried out://
“O Giver of life, Christ our God, glory to You!”

Tone 4 Troparion (Feast)
Your Nativity, O Christ our God,
has shone to the world the light of wisdom! For by it, those who worshipped the stars, were taught by a star to adore You,
the Sun of Righteousness,
and to know You, the Orient from on high.// O Lord, glory to You!

Tone 2 Troparion (Righteous Ones) Proclaim the wonder, O Joseph,
to David, the ancestor of God;
you have seen a Virgin great with child;
and you gave glory with the shepherds;

you worshipped with the Magi,
and received the news from the Angel.// Pray to Christ God to save our souls!

Tone 3 Kontakion (Righteous Ones)
Today godly David is filled with joy;
Joseph and James offer praise.
The glorious crown of their kinship with Christ fills them with great joy. They sing praises to the One ineffably born on earth,//

and they cry out: “O Compassionate One, save those who honor You!”

Tone 3 Kontakion (Feast)
Today the Virgin gives birth to the Transcendent One,
and the earth offers a cave to the Unapproachable One! Angels with shepherds glorify Him!
The wise men journey with the star,//
since for our sake the eternal God was born as a little Child!

Tone 2 Prokeimenon (Resurrection)
The Lord is my strength and my song; / He has become my salvation. (Ps. 117:14)

V. The Lord has chastened me sorely, but He has not given me over to death. (Ps. 117:18)

Tone 4 Prokeimenon (Righteous Ones)
God is wonderful in His saints, / the God of Israel. (Ps. 67:35a)

Galatians 1:11-19 (Epistle, Sunday After)

But I make known to you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached by me is not according to man. For I neither received it from man, nor was I taught it, but it came through the revelation of Jesus Christ. For you have heard of my former conduct in Judaism, how I persecuted the church of God beyond measure and tried to destroy it. And I advanced in Judaism beyond many of my contemporaries in my own nation, being more exceedingly zealous for the traditions of my fathers. But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb and called me through His grace, to reveal His Son in me, that I might preach Him among the Gentiles, I did not immediately confer with flesh and blood, nor did I go up to Jerusalem to those who were apostles before me; but I went to Arabia, and returned again to Damascus. Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to see Peter, and remained with him fifteen days. But I saw none of the other apostles except James, the Lord’s brother.

Tone 2

Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!

V. May the Lord hear you in the day of trouble! May the name of the God of Jacob protect you! (Ps. 19:1)
V. Save the King, O Lord, and hear us on the day we call! (Ps. 19:9)
Tone 4 V. Remember, O Lord, David and all his meekness! (Ps. 131:1)

Matthew 2:13-23 (Gospel, Sunday After)

Now when they had departed, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream, saying, “Arise, take the young Child and His mother, flee to Egypt, and stay there until I bring you word; for Herod will seek the young Child to destroy Him.” When he arose, he took the young Child and His mother by night and departed for Egypt, and was there until the death of Herod, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Lord through the prophet, saying, “Out of Egypt I called My Son.” Then Herod, when he saw that he was deceived by the wise men, was exceedingly angry; and he sent forth and put to death all the male children who were in Bethlehem and in all its districts, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had determined from the wise men. Then was fulfilled what was spoken by Jeremiah the prophet, saying: “A voice was heard in Ramah, lamentation, weeping, and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, refusing to be comforted, because they are no more.” Now when Herod was dead, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, saying, “Arise, take the young Child and His mother, and go to the land of Israel, for those who sought the young Child’s life are dead.” Then he arose, took the young Child and His mother, and came into the land of Israel. But when he heard that Archelaus was reigning over Judea instead of his father Herod, he was afraid to go there. And being warned by God in a dream, he turned aside into the region of Galilee. And he came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, “He shall be called a Nazarene.”

(Instead of “It is truly meet…,” we sing:)

Magnify, O my soul, the most pure Virgin Theotokos,
more honorable and more glorious than the heavenly hosts.

I behold a strange, most glorious mystery: heaven—the cave;
the cherubic throne—the Virgin;
the manger—the place where Christ lay:
the uncontainable God, Whom we magnify in song.

Out of fear, we should choose to love silence,
for that is a safer course;
so difficult it is lovingly to compose intricately woven songs to you, O Virgin.
But grant us strength, O Mother,
equal to our natural calling.

Communion Hymn

Praise the Lord from the heavens, praise Him in the highest! (Ps. 148:1) Rejoice in the Lord, O you righteous; praise befits the just! (Ps. 32:1) Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!