Propers for the Feast
from the Orthodox Church of America

St. Nicholas the Wonderworker, Archbishop of Myra in Lycia

The texts of the propers sung at Vespers (stichera on “Lord I call,” Litya, Aposticha, Troparia and Kontakia that change daily according to either the day of the week or particular day of the month). Texts are “pointed” to be sung according to the tonal patterns of the Common Chant (L’vov-Bakhmetev Obikhod, 1869 edition).

"Lord I Call..." Tone 2

I call upon You, hear me.
me, O Lord.
I call upon You, hear me.
Receive the voice of my prayer,
I call upon You.
Hear me, O Lord.
my prayer arise
Your sight as incense,
let the lifting up of my hands
an eve-ning sacrifice.
me, O Lord.

v. (8) Out of the depths I cry to You, O Lord. Lord, hear my voice!

  Tone 2     (Joseph of Arimathea)

Nicholas, living in Myra,
you were anointed with spiritual myrrh,
and were revealed to be truly myrrh, O bishop of Christ.
You make fragrant with myrrh those who keep your memorial with faith
and love,
freeing them from misery, danger and affliction,//
by your intercessions to Christ, O holy Father.

v. (7) Let Your ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications!

Holy Nicholas, the servant of Christ,
as a true namesake of victory,
you were shown to the faithful people to be strong amid temptations and
Called from all places, you are swift to come to those who turn with love
to your protection.
Appearing by day and night to the faithful,//
you save them from dangers and temptations.

v. (6) If You, O Lord, should mark iniquities, Lord, who could stand? But there is forgiveness with You.

You appeared in a dream to the Emperor Constantine and his counselor
speaking to them, and putting them in fear:
“Set free at once those you hold unjustly bound in prison,
for they are not guilty of lawless murder!
And if you do not listen to my words, O King,//
I will beseech the Lord and intercede against you!”

v. (5) For Your name's sake I have waited for You, O Lord, my soul has waited for Your word; my soul has hoped on the Lord.

Glorious Nicholas, the holy preacher of Christ,
you are the great and fervent protector of those in danger,
those on land and sea, far off or near;
for you are a most compassionate and mighty intercessor.
Therefore, as we assemble, we cry aloud://
“Pray to the Lord that we may be delivered from all danger!”

v. (4) From the morning watch until night, from the morning watch let Israel hope on the Lord.

  Tone 2 (With what crowns)

What crowns of praise shall we weave the Bishop?
Although he lived in Myra,
he reaches out in spirit to all who sincerely love him.
He is the consolation of all in affliction, the refuge of all in danger,
the tower of godliness, the champion of the faithful,//
for whose sake the greatly merciful Christ has laid low the arrogance of
the Enemy.

v. (3) For with the Lord there is mercy and with Him is plenteous redemption, and He will deliver Israel from all his iniquities.

(Repeat “What crowns of praise”)

v. (2) Praise the Lord, all nations! Praise Him, all peoples!

What songs of praise shall we sing to the Bishop?
He wrestled against godlessness
and was the champion of godliness,
a great leader, shield and teacher of the Church,
who put all inglorious heresy to shame,
the destroyer and fierce opponent of Arius,
whose arrogance was overthrown by Christ,//
Who grants to the world great mercy.

v. (1) For His mercy is abundant towards us; and the truth of the Lord endures for ever.

With what songs of prophecy shall we praise the Bishop?
He foresaw things afar and clearly announced them in advance,
foretelling them as though they were taking place.
He looked around the whole world, making injustice cease;
he appeared in dreams to the emperor wise in God,
and delivered from an unjust execution those who had been in bonds,//
for he is rich in God's great mercy.

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

Tone 6         

You that love the feasts,
let us gather and sing the praises of the fair ornament of bishops,
the glory of the Fathers, the fount of wonders and the great protector of the
Let us say: “Rejoice, guardian of the people of Myra,
their chief and honored counselor and the pillar that cannot be moved!
Rejoice, light filled with brightness!
You make the ends of the world shine with wonders.
Rejoice, divine delight of the afflicted,
the fervent advocate of those who suffer from injustice!
And now, all-blessed Nicholas, never cease praying to Christ our God//
for those who honor the high feast of your memorial with faith and love!”

now and ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.

Tone 6        
(Preparation for the Nativity of Christ)

O cave, make ready, for the Ewe Lamb comes, bearing Christ in her
O manger, receive Him Who by a word has released the dwellers of earth
from lawlessness!
Shepherds, abiding in the fields, bear witness to the fearful wonder!
You magi from Persia, offer to the King gold, myrrh and frankincense,
for the Lord has appeared from a Virgin Mother!
And she, bending over Him as a handmaiden,
worshipped Him as He lay in her arms, saying to Him:
“How were You sown as seed in me?
How have You grown within me,//
my Deliverer and my God?”

        Old Testament Readings (Paremia)
      Compostite 2
      Proverbs 10:31-11:12
      Wisdom of Solomon 4:7-15

(If the rector desires a Litya, these stichera are sung)

        Tone 1

Gazing steadfastly upon the height of knowledge,
you plumbed secretly the depth of wisdom.
You enriched the world by your teachings, O Father.//
Ever pray to Christ for us all, Bishop Nicholas!

Faithful servant and man of God;
minister of His mysteries and man filled with the desire of the Spirit;
living pillar and breathing icon://
the Church of Myra claims you as her treasure and the intercessor for
our souls.

        Tone 2

Christ our God has revealed you to your flock, O Bishop Nicholas,
as an example of faith and an image of meekness.
For you brought a sweet fragrance into Myra,
shining brightly by your divine acts of virtue,
as the advocate of orphans and widows.//
Therefore never cease to intercede that our souls may be saved!

O Father Nicholas,
the shrine of your fragrant relics graces Myra abundantly.
And as you appeared in a dream to the emperor,
setting free those unjustly condemned to prison, death and bonds,//
so now also you visibly intercede for our souls.

O Father Nicholas,
should the city of Myra be silent,
yet the whole world, enlightened by the fragrance of your myrrh and
many wonders,
joined by those condemned and saved by you, raises hymns of praise?
Together with the people of Myra we also cry aloud in songs://
“Intercede that our souls may be saved!”


Father Nicholas, you are the fragrant temple of the all-Holy Spirit,
a fountain flowing with the myrrh of gladness, the divine spices of
For you have gone out into all the earth
as an imitator of the Apostles,
through the telling of your wonders.
You have appeared in dreams to people far and near,
delivering those who were to die unjustly from the sword,
and saving from dangers those who call on you.
As we praise you unceasingly,//
set us free from approaching calamities by your intercessions!

Tone 6

Good and faithful servant,
worker of the vineyard of Christ,
you have both borne the burden of the day, and increased the talent given
to you.
You have not shown envy towards those coming after you,
therefore the gate of heaven has been opened to you.
Enter into the joy of your Lord and intercede for us, O saint Nicholas,
for in the course of this temporal life
you have run the race to the praise of the Lord,
Who has given you glory in the true and heavenly life!//
Since you have boldness before Him, pray that our souls may be saved!

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

        Tone 8

The fruit of your brave deeds, O holy Father,
has enlightened and brought joy to the hearts of the faithful.
Who cannot wonder at your measureless patience and humility,
at your graciousness towards the poor,
at your compassion for the afflicted?
Bishop Nicholas, you have divinely taught all things well,//
and now, wearing your unfading crown, you intercede for our souls!

now and ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.

  Tone 6 (Preparation for the Nativity of Christ)

Triumph, O Zion!
Rejoice, Jerusalem, city of Christ our God!
Receive the Creator contained within a cave and a manger!
Open the gates to me;
I will enter to see a Child wrapped in swaddling clothes,
Who upholds the creation in the palm of His hand,
Whose praises the Angels sing with unceasing voice://
the Lord and Giver of Life, Who saves the human race.


Tone 5        (Rejoice)

Rejoice, saintly bishop, pure abode of the virtues,
holy example of the divine priesthood,
great shepherd and bright luminary who bear the name of victory!
You are compassionate to those who call on you in prayer,
and you bear the supplications of the weak;
you are a deliverer and protector of those who honor your glorious
memory in faith.//
Pray that Christ may grant the world great mercy!

v. Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints
. (Ps 115/116:15)

Rejoice, most sacred mind,
pure dwelling of the Trinity,
pillar of the Church and support of the faithful,
help of the fallen, star ever dispersing temptations and afflictions
through the radiance of your prayers, well-pleasing to God!
You are a calm haven, Bishop Nicholas,
where those who flee are saved from the threatening wave of life.//
Pray that Christ may grant our souls great mercy!

  1. Your priests shall be clothed in righteousness, and Your saints shall
  2. rejoice. (Ps 131/132:9)

Rejoice, O Nicholas, for you are filled with divine zeal!
By fearful visions and warnings in dreams
you delivered those about to die unjustly from an evil sentence.
You are a fount pouring forth myrrh abundantly in Myra,
and refreshing souls while expelling the stench of passions.
You were a scythe cutting the weeds of error;
a fan winnowing the chaff of Arius's teachings.//
Entreat Christ to send our souls great mercy!//

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

        Tone 6

O man of God and faithful servant,
minister of the Lord and man of desires,
chosen vessel, pillar and foundation of the Church,
inheritor of the Kingdom,//
let your supplication for us to the Lord be unceasing!

now and ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.

        Tone 6 -
(Preparation for the Nativity of Christ)

Unwedded Virgin, from where have you come?
Who has given you birth?
Who is your mother?
How can you carry your Creator in your arms?
How is your womb free from corruption?
Most holy one, we see great and fearful mysteries upon earth fulfilled in
we adorn the cave as a house worthy of you;
we ask the heavens to send us a star,
for behold, the Magi proceed from the East to the West,
desiring to see the Salvation of mortal men//
shining in your arms as a Pillar of Flame.
(at Great Vespers)

Tone 4 Troparion

In truth you were revealed to your flock as a rule of faith,
an image of humility and a teacher of abstinence;
your humility exalted you;
your poverty enriched you.
Hierarch Father Nicholas,
entreat Christ our God//
that our souls may be saved!

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

Tone 4        Resurrectional Dismissal Theotokion
  1. mystery of all eternity,
unknown even by angels,
through you, Theotokos, is revealed to those on earth:
God incarnate by union without confusion.
He voluntarily accepted the Cross for us,
by which He resurrected the first-created man,//
saving our souls from death.
(at Vigil)        

Tone 4 Troparion

In truth you were revealed to your flock as a rule of faith,
an image of humility and a teacher of abstinence;
your humility exalted you;
your poverty enriched you.
Hierarch Father Nicholas,
entreat Christ our God//
that our souls may be saved! (Twice)

Tone 4 Troparion to the Theotokos

Rejoice, O Virgin Theotokos,
Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you!
Blessed are you among women
and blessed is the fruit of your womb,//
for you have borne the Savior of our souls.
( at the Divine Liturgy)

Tone 4 Troparion

In truth you were revealed to your flock as a rule of faith,
an image of humility and a teacher of abstinence;
your humility exalted you;
your poverty enriched you.
Hierarch Father Nicholas,
entreat Christ our God//
that our souls may be saved!

  Tone 3 Kontakion

You appeared as a priest in Myra, O Saint Nicholas,
fulfilling the Gospel of Christ, O venerable one;
you laid down your life for your people
and rescued the innocent from death.//
Therefore, you have been blest as a great initiate of the grace of God.

Tone 7        Prokeimenon

The righteous shall rejoice in the Lord, and shall hope in Him. (Ps 63/64:10)

v: Hear my voice, O God, in my complaint; preserve my life from dread of the Enemy!
(Ps 63/64:1)
        Hebrews 13:17-21 (St Nicholas)
  Tone 2
Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!

  1. Your priests shall be clothed in righteousness, and Your saints shall rejoice. (Ps 131/132:9)

v :The Lord has chosen Zion; He has desired it for His habitation.
(Ps 131/132:13)
  1. Gospel
        Luke 6:17-23 (St Nicholas)

Communion Hymn

The righteous shall be in everlasting remembrance! He shall not fear evil
(Ps 111/112:6)

Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!

Liturgical texts for this service represent modified versions of translations provided by Holy Myrrhbearers Monastery, Otego, New York and St. Tikhon's Monastery, South Canaan, Pa. The Department of Liturgical Music and Translations of the Orthodox Church in America expresses its gratitude to Holy Myrrhbearers Monastery and St. Tikhon's Monastery.


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