Thursday, April 12, 2007

More Paschal Hymns

Here are the Paschal Stichera from the Paschal Vespers (the service in the afternoon/evening on Easter Sunday itself):

Your Resurrection, O Christ our Savior,
has enlightened the whole universe,
calling back Your creation.//
Glory to You, O almighty Lord!

Let God arise, let His enemies be scattered; let those who hate Him flee from before His face!

Today, a sacred Pascha is revealed to us:
a new and holy Pascha,
a mystical Pascha,
a Pascha worthy of veneration,
a Pascha which is Christ the Redeemer,
a blameless Pascha,
a great Pascha,
a Pascha of the faithful,
a Pascha which has opened to us the gates of Paradise,
a Pascha which sanctifies all the faithful.

As smoke vanishes so let them vanish; as wax melts before the fire!

Come from that scene, O women bearers of glad tidings,
and say to Zion:
“Receive from us the glad tidings of joy,
of Christ’s Resurrection!
Exult and be glad,
and rejoice, O Jerusalem,
seeing Christ the King, Who comes forth from the tomb
like a bridegroom in procession!”

So the sinners will perish before the face of God. But let the righteous be glad!

The myrrh-bearing women,
at the break of dawn,
drew near to the tomb of the Life-giver.
There they found an Angel
sitting upon the stone.
He greeted them with these words:
“Why do you seek the Living among the dead?
Why do you mourn the Incorrupt amid corruption?
Go, proclaim the glad tidings to His disciples!”

This is the day which the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it!

Pascha of beauty,
the Pascha of the Lord,
a Pascha worthy of honor has dawned for us.
Let us embrace each other joyously!
Pascha, ransom from affliction!
For today, as from a bridal chamber,
Christ has shown forth from the tomb,
and filled the women with joy saying:
“Proclaim the glad tidings to the Apostles!”

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

This is the day of resurrection!
Let us be illumined by the feast!
Let us embrace each other!
Let us call “brothers” even those that hate us,
and forgive all by the resurrection,
and so let us cry:

“Christ is risen from the dead,
trampling down death by death,and upon those in the tombs bestowing life!”

If you're trying to imagine how this would sound during the service, the longer regular font parts are sung by the choir. The italic parts are actually chanted by the priest, a reader or a deacon. As many hymns in Orthodoxy, it's kind a liturgical call and response.

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