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TROPARIA FOR PALM SUNDAY.
The following Stanzas are from the Triodion sung at Compline on Palm Sunday; which has the same name among the Greeks as among ourselves.
Ἰησοῦς ὑπὲρ τοῦ κόσμου
JESUS, hastening for the world to suffer,
With His Twelve He goeth forth to offer
They that follow Him with true affection
For the mockery, the reproach, the shame. Now in sorrow, sorrow finds its healing:
In the form wherein our father fell, CHRIST appears, those quick'ning Wounds revealing,
Which shall save from sin and death and
Now, Judæa, call thy Priesthood nigh thee! Now for Deicide prepare thy hands!
Lo thy Monarch, meek and gentle, by thee! Lo! the Lamb and Shepherd in thee stands !
To thy monarch, Salem, give glad greeting!
On the Cross for man to die!
THE GREAT CANON.
It would be unpardonable not to give a portion of that which the Greeks regard as the king of Canons-the Great Canon of the Mid-Lent week. It is a collection of Scriptural examples, turned to the purpose of penitential Confession. It is impossible to deny the beauty of many stanzas, and the ingenuity of some tropological applications. But the immense length of the Canon, for it exceeds three hundred stanzas, and its necessary tautology, must render it wearisome, unless devotionally used under the peculiar circumstances for which it is appointed. The following is a part of the earlier portion.
Πόθεν ἄρξομαι θρηνεῖν.
Whence shall my tears begin?
Of earnest sorrow for my sin?
Or how my woes declare?
Oh Thou! the Merciful and Gracious One!
Forgive the foul transgressions I have done.
With Adam I have vied,
Yea, pass'd him, in my fall;
And lust made bare of all;
Of Thee, O GOD, and that Celestial Band, And all the glory of the Promised Land.
No earthly Eve beguil'd
A spiritual temptress smiled,
Unbridled passion grasp'd the unhallow'd
Most bitter ever bitter-was the meat.
If Adam's righteous doom,
Because he dared transgress
Thy one decree, lost Eden's bloom
And Eden's loveliness:
What recompense, O LORD, must I expect,
Who all my life Thy quickening laws neglect?
By mine own act, like Cain,
A murderer was I made :
By mine own act my soul was slain,
When Thou wast disobeyed:
And lusts each day are quickened, warring still
Against the soul with many a deed of ill.
Thou formed'st me of clay,
In fleshly vesture didst array,
With life and breath endow.
Thou Who didst make, didst ransom, and
To Thy repentant creature pity show!
My guilt for vengeance cries;
But yet Thou pardonest all,
And whom Thou lov'st Thou dost chastise, And mourn'st for them that fall:
Thou, as a Father, mark'st our tears and
And welcomest the prodigal again.