(c. 315-387)

The Jerusalem Catecheses

 St. Cyril, mod. Russian fresco, Jerusalem

ENGLISH: Five Mystagogical [Homilies] For The Neophytes., translation modified, based on that of E. H. Gifford, NPNF ser. 2, vol. 7.  GREEK: Mystagogiae 1-5, ed. A. Piédagnel, P. Paris. Cyrille de Jérusalem. Catéchèses mystagogiques (Cerf, Paris, 1966) pp. 82-174, Sources chrétiennes 126




(Lecture 19)





with a lesson from the First Letter of Peter, beginning at: Be sober, be vigilant... [to the end of the Letter].

Καὶ ἀνάγνωσις ἐκ τῆς̈ Πέτρου ἐπιστολῆς αʹ καθολικῆς, ἀπὸ τοῦ·̈ Νήψατε, γρηγορήσατε, ἕως τέλους τῆς ἐπιστολῆς·̈

 The Mystical Meaning of

Baptismal Vows

 1. I HAVE long been wishing, O true-born and dearly beloved children of the Church, to discourse to you concerning these spiritual and heavenly Mysteries [...] let us now teach you these things exactly, that you may know the effect wrought upon you on that evening of your baptism.

1.1Ἐπόθουν ὑμῖν καὶ πάλαι, ὦ γνήσια καὶ ἐπιπόθητα τῆςἘκκλησίας τέκνα, περὶ τῶν πνευματικῶν τούτων καὶ ἐπουρανίων διαλεχθῆναι μυστηρίων. [...] φέρε ταῦτα ὑμᾶς ἀκριβῶς παιδεύσωμεν, ἵνα εἰδῆτε τὴν ἔμφασιν τὴν πρὸς ὑμῶν κατ' ἐκείνην γενομένην τοῦ βαπτίσματος τὴν ἑσπέραν.



 2. FIRST YOU entered into the vestibule of the Baptistery, and there facing towards the West you listened to the command to stretch forth your hand, and as in the presence of Satan you renounced him. Now you must know that this figure is found in ancient history. For when Pharaoh, that most bitter and cruel tyrant, was oppressing the free and high-born people of the Hebrews, God sent Moses to bring them out of the evil bondage of the Egyptians. 

1.2  Εἰσῄειτε πρῶτον εἰς τὸν προαύλιον τοῦ βαπτίσματος οἶκον, καὶ πρὸς τὰς δυσμὰς ἑστῶτες ἠκούετε καὶ προσετάττεσθε ἐκτείνειν τὴν χεῖρα, καὶ ὡς παρόντι ἀπετάττεσθε τῷ Σατανᾷ.  Χρὴ δὲ τοῦτο ὑμᾶς εἰδέναι, ὅτι ἐν παλαιᾷ ἱστορίᾳ οὗτος κεῖται ὁ τύπος. Ὅτε γὰρ Φαραώ, ὁ πικρότατος καὶ ὠμότατος τύραννος, κατέθλιβε τῶν Ἑβραίων τὸν ἐλεύθερον καὶ εὐγενη λαόν, ὁ Θεὸς ἀπέστειλε τὸν Μωϋσῆν ἐξαγαγεῖν αὐτοὺς ἐκ τῆς πονηρᾶς τῶν Αἰγυπτίων δουλείας.  .
     Then the door posts were anointed with the blood of a lamb, that the destroyer might flee from the houses which had the sign of the blood; and the Hebrew people was marvellously delivered. Καὶ αἵματι μὲν ἀμνοῦ ἐχρίοντο αἱ φλιαί, ἵνα φύγῃ ὁ ὀλοθρεύων τοὺς τὸ σημεῖον ἔχοντας τοῦ αἵματος οἴκους, παραδόξως δὲ ἠλευθεροῦτο ὁ τῶν Ἑβραίων λαός.  
     The enemy, however, after their rescue, pursued after them, and saw the sea wondrously parted for them; nevertheless he went on, following close in their footsteps, and was all at once overwhelmed and engulfed in the Red Sea.  Επειδὴ δὲ καὶ ἐλευθερωθέντας κατεδίωξε καὶ παραδόξως εἶδε τὴν θάλασσαν αὐτοῖς τεμνομένην, ὅμως ἐχώρει, ἴχνεσιν ἴχνη συμβάλλων, καὶ παραχρῆμα ὑποβρύχιος ἐγίνετο, καταποντούμενος ἐν θαλάσσῃ ἐρυθρᾷ



 3. Now turn from the old to the new, from the figure [tupos-type] to the reality.

1.3  Μετάβηθί μοι λοιπὸν ἀπὸ τῶν παλαιῶν ἐπὶ τὰ νέα, ἀπὸ τοῦ τύπου ἐπὶ τὴν ἀλήθειαν.

[1] THERE we have Moses sent from God to Egypt;
HERE, Christ, sent forth from His Father into the world:

κεῖ Μωϋσῆς ἀπὸ τοῦ Θεοῦ εἰς Αἴγυπτον πεμπόμενος,

 ἐνταῦθα Χριστὸς ἐκ τοῦ Πατρὸς εἰς τὸν κόσμον ἀποστελλόμενος·

[2] THERE, that Moses might lead forth an afflicted people out of Egypt;
HERE, that Christ might rescue those who are oppressed in the world under sin:

ἐκεῖ, ἵνα ἐξαγάγῃ λαὸν ἐξ Αἰγύπτου θλιβόμενον,

 ὧδε Χριστός, ἵνα ῥύσηται τοὺς ἐν τῷ κόσμῳ ὑπὸ τῆς ἁμαρτίας καταπονουμένους·

[3] THERE, the blood of a lamb was the spell against the destroyer;
HERE, the blood of the Lamb without blemish Jesus Christ is made the charm to scare evil spirits:

ἐκεῖ αἷμα ἀμνοῦ ὀλοθρευτοῦ ἦν ἀποτρόπαιον,

 ἐνταῦθα τοῦ Ἀμνοῦ τοῦ ἀμώμου Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ τὸ αἷμα δαιμόνων καθέστηκε φυγαδευτήριον.

[4] THERE, the tyrant was pursuing that ancient people even to the sea;
and HERE the daring and shameless spirit, the author of evil, was following you even to the very streams of salvation.

Εκεῖνος τύραννος κατεδίωκεν ἕως θαλάσσης τὸν παλαιὸν ἐκεῖνον λαόν,

καὶ σοὶ ὁ ἰταμός, ὁ ἀναίσχυντος καὶ ἀρχέκακος οὗτος δαίμων ἕως αὐτῶν ἠκολούθει τῶν σωτηρίων ναμάτων.¨

[5] THERE, [the tyrant was] drowned in the sea;
and HERE [the tyrant] disappears in the waters of salvation..

Εκεῖνος ὑποβρύχιος ἐν θαλάσσῃ γίνεται,

 καὶ οὗτος ἐν τῷ σωτηρίῳ ὕδατι ἀφανίζεται.  



 4. But nevertheless you are bidden to say, with arm outstretched towards him as though he were present, “I renounce you, Satan.” I wish also to explain why you stand facing to the West; for it is necessary.  1.4 Ἀλλ' ὅμως ἀκούεις τεταμένῃ τῇ χειρὶ ὡς πρὸς παρόντα εἰπεῖν· "Ἀποτάσσομαί σοι, Σατανᾶ." Βούλομαι καὶ τίνος ἕνεκεν ἵστασθε πρὸς δυσμὰς εἰπεῖν· ἀναγκαῖον γάρ.  
Since the West is the region of sensible darkness, and he being darkness has his dominion also in darkness, therefore, looking with a symbolical meaning towards the West, you renounce that dark and gloomy ruler.  Επειδὴ τοῦ φαινομένου σκότους τόπος αἱ δυσμαί, ἐκεῖνος δὲ σκότος τυγχάνων ἐν σκότῳ ἔχει καὶ τὸ κράτος· τούτου χάριν συμβολικῶς πρὸς δυσμὰς ἀποβλέποντες, ἀποτάσσεσθε τῷ σκοτεινῷ ἐκείνῳ καὶ ζοφερῷ ἄρχοντι.

What then did each of you stand up and say? “I renounce you, Satan,”--thou wicked and most cruel tyrant! meaning, “I fear your might no longer; for that Christ hath overthrown, having partaken with me of flesh and blood, that through these he might by death destroy death, that I might not be made subject to bondage for ever.” [...]

 Τί οὖν ὑμῶν ἕκαστος ἑστὼς ἔλεγεν; Ἀποτάσσομαί σοι, Σατανᾶ, σοὶ τῷ πονηρῷ καὶ ὠμοτάτῳ τυράννῳ· οὐκέτι σου δέδοικα, λέγων, τὴν ἰσχύν. Κατέλυσε γὰρ ταύτην ὁ Χριστός, αἵματός μοι καὶ σαρκὸς κοινωνήσας, ἵνα διὰ τούτων τῶν παθημάτων καταργήσῃ θανάτῳ τὸν θάνατον, ὅπως μὴ διὰ παντὸς ἔνοχος γένωμαι δουλείας. [...]



 7. Moreover, the things which are hung up at idol festivals, either meat or bread, or other such things polluted by the invocation of the unclean spirits, are reckoned in the pomp of the devil.

δε 1.7 Ἀλλὰ καὶ τὰ ἐν εἰδωλίοις καὶ πανηγύρεσι κρεμνώμενα, ἔσθ' ὅτε κρέα, ἢ ἄρτοι, ἢ ἄλλα τοιαῦτα μιανθέντα τῇ τῶν παμμιάρων ἐπικλήσει δαιμόνων, ἐγκαταλεχθείη ἂν τῇ τοῦ διαβόλου πομπῇ.
For as the Bread and Wine of the Eucharist before the invocation of the Holy and Adorable Trinity were simple bread and wine, while after the invocation the Bread becomes the Body of Christ, and the Wine the Blood of Christ,   Ὥσπερ γὰρ ὁ ἄρτος καὶ ὁ οἶνος τῆς εὐχαριστίας, πρὸ τῆς ἁγίας ἐπικλήσεως τῆς προσκυνητῆς Τριάδος, ἄρτος ἦν καὶ οἶνος λιτός, ἐπικλήσεως δὲ γενομένης, ὁ μὲν ἄρτος γίνεται σῶμα Χριστοῦ, ὁ δὲ οἶνος αἷμα Χριστοῦ· τ
so in like manner such meats belonging to the pomp of Satan, though in their own nature simple, become profane by the invocation of the evil spirit. ὸν αὐτὸν δὴ τρόπον, τὰ τοιαῦτα βρώματα τῆς πομπῆς τοῦ Σατανᾶ, τῇ ἰδίᾳ φύσει λιτὰ ὄντα, τῇ ἐπικλήσει τῶν δαιμόνων βέβηλα γίνεται.



 9. When therefore you renounce Satan, utterly breaking all your covenant with him, that ancient league with hell, there is opened to you the paradise of God, which he planted towards the East, whence for his transgression our first father was banished; and a symbol of this was your turning from West to East, the place of lights.  

1.9 Ὅτε οὖν τῷ Σατανᾷ ἀποτάττῃ, πᾶσαν τὴν πρὸς αὐτὸν πατῶν διαθήκην, λύεις τὰς παλαιὰς πρὸς τὸν ᾅδην συνθήκας, ἀνοίγεταί σοι ὁ παράδεισος τοῦ Θεοῦ, ὃν ἐφύτευσε κατὰ ἀνατολάς, ὅθεν διὰ τὴν παράβασιν ἐξόριστος γέγονεν ὁ ἡμέτερος προπάτωρ. Καὶ τούτου σύμβολον τὸ στραφῆναί σε ἀπὸ δυσμῶν πρὸς ἀνατολάς, τοῦ φωτὸς τὸ χωρίον.
     Then you were told to say, “I believe in the Father, and in the Son, and in the Holy Ghost, and in one Baptism of repentance.” Of which things we spoke to you at length in the former Lectures, as God’s grace allowed us. Τότε σοι ἐλέγετο εἰπεῖν· "Πιστεύω εἰς τὸν Πατέρα καὶ εἰς τὸν  Υἱὸν καὶ εἰς τὸ ἅγιον Πνεῦμα καὶ εἰς ἓν βάπτισμα μετανοίας."  Περὶ ὧν ἐν ταῖς προτέραις κατηχήσεσιν, ὡς ἡ τοῦ Θεοῦ χάρις ἔδωκεν, ἐν πλάτει σοι εἴρηται.



LECTURE 20 (Mystagogical Catechesis 2.)




ROMANS 6. 3-14. Know you not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ, were baptized into His death? [ ....] for you are not under the Law, but under grace. 

Ῥωμαίους ἐπιστολῆς· Καὶ ἀνάγνωσις ἐκ τῆς πρὸς"Ἢ ἀγνοεῖτε ὅτι ὅσοι ἐβαπτίσθημεν εἰς Χριστὸν Ἰησοῦν εἰς τὸν θάνατον αὐτοῦ ἐβαπτίσθημεν;" ἕως τοῦ· "οὐ γάρ ἐστε ὑπὸ νόμον, ἀλλ' ὑπὸ χάριν".

 Mystical Nakedness and


 1. THESE daily introductions into the Mysteries, and new instructions, which are the announcements of new truths, are profitable to us; and most of all to you, who have been renewed from an old state to a new. Therefore, I shall necessarily lay before you the sequel of yesterday’s Lecture, that you may learn of what those things, which were done by you in the inner chamber, were symbolic. 

2.1  Χρήσιμαι ὑμῖν αἱ καθ' ἡμέραν μυσταγωγίαι, καὶ διδασκαλίαι καινότεραι, καινοτέρων οὖσαι πραγμάτων ἀπαγγελτικαί, καὶ μάλιστα ὑμῖν, τοῖς ἀνακαινισθεῖσιν ἀπὸ παλαιότητος εἰς καινότητα. Διὰ τοῦτο ἀναγκαίως ὑμῖν παραθήσομαι τὰ ἑξῆς τῆς χθεσινῆς μυσταγωγίας, ἵνα μάθητε τίνων ἦν σύμβολα τὰ ὑφ' ὑμῶν ἐν τῷ ἐσωτέρῳ γενόμενα οἴκῳ.



 2. As soon, then, as you entered, you put off your tunic; and this was an image of putting off the old man with his deeds. Having stripped yourselves, you were naked; in this also imitating Christ, who was stripped naked on the Cross, and by His nakedness put off from Himself the principalities and powers, and openly triumphed over them on the tree.

2.2  Εὐθύς γ'οὖν εἰσελθόντες, ἀπεδύεσθε τὸν χιτῶνα· καὶ τοῦτο ἦν εἰκὼν τοῦ τὸν παλαιὸν ἄνθρωπον ἀπεκδύσασθαι  σὺν ταῖς πράξεσιν. Ἀποδυθέντες γυμνοὶ ἦτε, μιμούμενοι καὶ ἐν τούτῳ τὸν ἐπὶ τοῦ σταυροῦ γυμνωθέντα Χριστόν, καὶ τῇ γυμνότητι ἀπεκδυσάμενον τὰς ἀρχὰς καὶ τὰς ἐξουσίας, καὶ μετὰ παρρησίας ἐν τῷ ξύλῳ θριαμβεύσαντα.
For since the adverse powers made their lair in your members, you may no longer wear that old garment; I do not at all mean this visible one, but the old man, who grows corrupt in the lusts of deceit. Ἐπειδὴ γὰρ τοῖς ἡμετέροις μέλεσιν ἐνεφώλευον αἱ ἀντικείμεναι δυνάμεις, οὐκ ἔτι φορεῖν ὑμῖν ἔξεστι τὸν παλαιὸν ἐκεῖνον χιτῶνα, οὐ τοῦτον πάντως λέγω τὸν αἰσθητόν, ἀλλὰ τὸν παλαιὸν ἄνθρωπον, τὸν φθειρόμενον ἐν ταῖς ἐπιθυμίαις τῆς ἀπάτης.
May the soul which has once put him off, never again put him on, but say with the Spouse of Christ in the Song of Songs, I have put off my garment, how shall I put it on? O wondrous thing! you were naked in the sight of all, and were not ashamed; for truly you bore the likeness of the first-formed Adam, who was naked in the garden, and was not ashamed. Ὃν μὴ εἴη πάλιν ἐνδύσασθαι τῇ ἅπαξ τοῦτον ἀποδυσαμένῃ ψυχῇ, ἀλλὰ λέγειν κατὰ τὴν ἐν τῷ Ἄισματι τῶν ᾀσμάτων τοῦ  Χριστοῦ νύμφην· "Ἐξεδυσάμην τὸν χιτῶνά μου, πῶς ἐνδύσομαι αὐτόν;" Ὢ θαυμασίου πράγματος· γυμνοὶ ἦτε ἐν ὄψεσι πάντων, καὶ οὐκ ᾐσχύνεσθε. Ἀληθῶς γὰρ μίμημα ἐφέρετε τοῦ πρωτοπλάστου Ἀδάμ, ὃς ἐν τῷ παραδείσῳ γυμνὸς ἦν καὶ οὐκ ᾐσχύνετο.



  4. After [being annointed with the exorcised oil], you were led to the holy pool of Divine Baptism, as Christ was carried from the Cross to the Sepulchre which is before our eyes And each of you was asked, whether he believed in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, and you made that saving confession, and descended three times into the water, and ascended again; here also hinting by a symbol at the three days burial of Christ.

2.4  Μετὰ ταῦτα ἐπὶ τὴν ἁγίαν τοῦ θείου βαπτίσματος ἐχειραγωγεῖσθε κολυμβήθραν, ὡς ὁ Χριστὸς ἀπὸ τοῦ σταυροῦ ἐπὶ τὸ προκείμενον μνῆμα. Καὶ ἠρωτᾶτο ἕκαστος εἰ πιστεύει εἰς τὸ ὄνομα τοῦ Πατρός, καὶ τοῦ Υἱοῦ, καὶ τοῦ ἁγίου Πνεύματος. Καὶ ὡμολογεῖτε τὴν σωτήριον ὁμολογίαν, καὶ κατεδύετε τρίτον εἰς τὸ ὕδωρ καὶ πάλιν ἀνεδύετε, καὶ ἐνταῦθα διὰ συμβόλου τὴν τριήμερον τοῦ Χριστοῦ αἰνιττόμενοι ταφήν. 
For as our Saviour passed three days and three nights in the heart of the earth, so you also in your first ascent out of the water, represented the first day of Christ in the earth, and by your descent, the night; for as he who is in the night, no longer sees, but he who is in the day, remains in the light, so in the descent, as in the night, you saw nothing, but in ascending again you were as in the day. And at the self-same moment you were both dying and being born; and that Water of salvation was at once your grave and your mother. Καθάπερ γὰρ ὁ Σωτὴρ ἡμῶν τρεῖς ἡμέρας καὶ τρεῖς νύκτας ἐν τῇ καρδίᾳ τῆς γῆς πεποίηκεν, οὕτω καὶ ὑμεῖς ἐν τῇ πρώτῃ ἀναδύσει τὴν πρώτην ἐμιμεῖσθε τοῦ Χριστοῦ ἐν τῇ γῇ ἡμέραν καὶ τῇ καταδύσει τὴν νύκτα· ὥσπερ γὰρ ὁ ἐν νυκτὶ οὐκέτι βλέπει, ὁ δὲ ἐν ἡμέρᾳ φωτὶ διάγει, οὕτως ἐν τῇ καταδύσει ὡς ἐν νυκτὶ οὐδὲν ἑωρᾶτε, ἐν δὲ τῇ ἀναδύσει πάλιν ὡς ἐν ἡμέρᾳ ἐτυγχάνετε ὄντες. Καὶ ἐν τῷ αὐτῷ ἀπεθνῄσκετε καὶ ἐγεννᾶσθε, καὶ τὸ σωτήριον ἐκεῖνο ὕδωρ καὶ τάφος ὑμῖν ἐγίνετο καὶ μήτηρ.
And what Solomon spoke of others will suit you also; for he said, in that case, There is a time to bear and a time to die; but to you, in the reverse order, there was a time to die and a time to be born; and one and the same time effected both of these, and your birth went hand in hand with your death.  Καὶ ὅπερ Σολομὼν ἐπὶ ἄλλων εἴρηκε, τοῦτο ἁρμόσαι ἂν ὑμῖν· ἐκεῖ μὲν γὰρ ἔλεγε· "Καιρὸς τοῦ τεκεῖν, καὶ καιρὸς τοῦ ἀποθανεῖν." Ἐφ' ὑμῖν δὲ τὸ ἀνάπαλιν· καιρὸς τοῦ ἀποθανεῖν, καὶ καιρὸς τοῦ γεννηθῆναι. Καὶ εἷς καιρὸς ἀμφοτέρων τούτων ποιητικός, καὶ σύνδρομος ἐγίνετο τῷ θανάτῳ ἡ γέννησις ἡ ὑμετέρα.



 5. O strange and inconceivable thing! we did not really die, we were not really buried, we were not really crucified and raised again; but our imitation was in a figure, and our salvation in reality. 2.5 Ὢ ξένου καὶ παραδόξου πράγματος· οὐκ ἀληθῶς ἀπεθάνομεν, οὐδ' ἀληθῶς ἐτάφημεν, οὐδ' ἀληθῶς σταυρωθέντες  ἀνέστημεν, ἀλλ' ἐν εἰκόνι ἡ μίμησις, ἐν ἀληθείᾳ δὲ ἡ σωτηρία. 

Christ was actually crucified, and actually buried, and truly rose again; and all these things he has freely bestowed upon us, that we, sharing His sufferings by imitation, might gain salvation in reality. O surpassing loving-kindness! Christ received nails in His undefiled hands and feet, and suffered anguish; while on me without pain or toil by the fellowship of His suffering he freely bestows salvation. 

Χριστὸς ὄντως ἐσταυρώθη καὶ ὄντως ἐτάφη καὶ ἀληθῶς ἀνέστη· καὶ πάντα ἡμῖν ταῦτα κεχάρισται, ἵνα μιμήσει τῶν παθῶν αὐτοῦ κοινωνήσαντες, ἀληθείᾳ τὴν σωτηρίαν κερδήσωμεν. Ὢ φιλανθρωπίας ὑπερβαλλούσης· Χριστὸς ἐδέξατο ἐπὶ τῶν ἀχράντων χειρῶν ἥλους καὶ ἤλγησε, κἀμοὶ ἀναλγητὶ καὶ ἀπονητὶ χαρίζεται διὰ τῆς κοινωνίας τὴν σωτηρίαν.



LECTURE 21  (Mystagogical Catechesis 3.)






But you have an anointing from the Holy One, [....] that, when he appears, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at His coming. 1 JOHN 2. 20:28.

Καὶ ἀνάγνωσις ἐκ τῆς Ἰωάννου αʹ ἐπιστολῆς, ἀπὸ τοῦ· "Καὶ ὑμεῖς χρῖσμα ἔχετε ἀπὸ τοῦ Θεοῦ, καὶ οἴδατε πάντα", ἕως τοῦ· "καὶ μὴ αἰσχυνθῶμεν ἀπ' αὐτοῦ ἐπὶ τῇ παρουσίᾳ αὐτοῦ"



 1. HAVING been baptized into Christ, and put on Christ, you have been made comformable to the Son of God; for God having foreordained us unto adoption as sons, made us to be conformed to the body of Christ’s glory.

3.1  Εἰς Χριστὸν βεβαπτισμένοι καὶ Χριστὸν ἐνδυσάμενοι σύμμορφοι γεγόνατε τοῦ Υἱοῦ τοῦ Θεοῦ. Προορίσας γὰρ ἡμᾶς ὁ Θεὸς εἰς υἱοθεσίαν, συμμόρφους ἐποίησε τοῦ σώματος τῆς δόξης τοῦ Χριστοῦ.
Having therefore become partakers of Christ, you are properly called Christs, and of you God said, Touch not My Christs, or anointed. Now you have been made Christs, by receiving the antitype of the Holy Ghost; and all things have been wrought in you by imitation, because you are images of Christ. [...]   Μέτοχοι οὖν τοῦ Χριστοῦ γενόμενοι, χριστοὶ εἰκότως καλεῖσθε, καὶ περὶ ὑμῶν ἔλεγεν ὁ  Θεός· "Μὴ ἄπτεσθε τῶν χριστῶν μου." Χριστοὶ δὲ γεγόνατε, τοῦ ἁγίου Πνεύματος τὸ ἀντίτυπον δεξάμενοι, καὶ πάντα εἰκονικῶς ἐφ' ὑμῶν γεγένηται, ἐπειδὴ εἰκόνες ἐστὲ Χριστοῦ. [..]



 3. But beware of supposing this to be plain ointment. For as the Bread of the Eucharist after the invocation of the Holy Ghost, is mere bread no longer, but the Body of Christ, so also this holy ointment is no more simple ointment, nor (so to say) common, after invocation, but it is Christ’s [gift of] grace, and, by the advent of the Holy Ghost, is made fit to impart His Divine Nature.

3.3 Ἀλλ' ὅρα μὴ ὑπονοήσῃς ἐκεῖνο τὸ μύρον ψιλὸν εἶναι. Ὥσπερ γὰρ ὁ ἄρτος τῆς εὐχαριστίας, μετὰ τὴν ἐπίκλησιν τοῦ ἁγίου Πνεύματος, οὐκ ἔτι ἄρτος λιτός, ἀλλὰ σῶμα Χριστοῦ, οὕτω καὶ τὸ ἅγιον τοῦτο μύρον οὐκ ἔτι ψιλόν, οὐδ' ὡς ἂν εἴποι τις κοινὸν μετ' ἐπικλήσεως, ἀλλὰ Χριστοῦ χάρισμα, καὶ Πνεύματος ἁγίου παρουσίας τῆς αὐτοῦ θεότητος ἐνεργητικὸν γινόμενον.
Which ointment is symbolically applied to your forehead and your other senses; and while your body is anointed with the visible ointment, your soul is sanctified by the Holy and life-giving Spirit.  Ὅπερ συμβολικῶς ἐπὶ μετώπου καὶ τῶν ἄλλων σου χρίεται αἰσθητηρίων. Καὶ τῷ μὲν φαινομένῳ μύρῳ τὸ σῶμα χρίεται, τῷ δὲ ἁγίῳ καὶ ζωοποιῷ Πνεύματι ἡ ψυχὴ ἁγιάζεται.



LECTURE 22 (Mystagogical Catechesis 4.)






I received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, how that the Lord Jesus, in the night in which he was betrayed, took bread, [...] 1 Cor. 9: 23.

Καὶ ἀνάγνωσις ἐκ τῆς πρὸς Κορινθίους [ἐπιστολῆς]·"Ἐγὼ γὰρ παρέλαβον ἀπὸ τοῦ Κυρίου [ὃ] καὶ παρέδωκα ὑμῖν", καὶ τὰ ἑξῆς.

 The Eucharist = Partaking in the

Divine Nature

 1. [...] Since then he Himself declared and said of the Bread, This is My Body, who shall dare to doubt any longer? And since he has Himself affirmed and said, This is My Blood, who shall ever hesitate, saying, that it is not His blood

4.1  [...]  Αὐτοῦ οὖν ἀποφηναμένου καὶ εἰπόντος περὶ τοῦ ἄρτου· "Τοῦτό μού ἐστι τὸ σῶμα", τίς τολμήσει ἀμφιβάλλειν λοιπόν; Καὶ αὐτοῦ διαβεβαιωσαμένου καὶ εἰρηκότος· "Τοῦτό μού ἐστι τὸ αἷμα", τίς ἐνδοιάσει ποτὲ λέγων μὴ εἶναι αὐτοῦ αι



 2. He once in Cana of Galilee, turned the water into wine, akin to blood, and is it incredible that he should have turned wine into blood 4.2  Τὸ ὕδωρ ποτὲ εἰς οἶνον οἰκείῳνεύματι μεταβέβληκεν ἐν Κανᾶ τῆς Γαλιλαίας, καὶ οὐκ ἀξιόπιστός ἐστιν οἶνον εἰς αἷμα μεταβαλών;

When called to a CORPOREAL MARRIAGE, he miraculously wrought that wonderful work;

and on the CHILDREN of the BRIDAL CHAMBER, shall he not much rather be acknowledged to have bestowed the gift of His Body and Blood?

 Εἰς γάμον σωματικὸν κληθεὶς ταύτην ἐθαυματούργησε τὴν παραδοξοποΐαν,

καὶ τοῖς υἱοῖς τοῦ νυμφῶνος οὐ πολλῷ μᾶλλον τὴν ἀπόλαυσιν τοῦ σώματος αὐτοῦ καὶ τοῦ αἵματος δωρησάμενος ὁμολογηθήσεται;



 3. Wherefore with full assurance let us partake as of the Body and Blood of Christ: for in the form [typos] of Bread is given to you His Body, and in the form [typos] of Wine His Blood; that you by partaking of the Body and Blood of Christ, may be made of the same body and the same blood with Him.

4.3 Ὥστε μετὰ πάσης πληροφορίας ὡς σώματος καὶ αἵματος μεταλαμβάνομεν Χριστοῦ. Ἐν τύπῳ γὰρ ἄρτου δίδοταί σοι τὸ σῶμα, καὶ ἐν τύπῳ οἴνου δίδοταί σοι τὸ αἷμα, ἵνα γένῃ, μεταλαβὼν σώματος καὶ αἵματος Χριστοῦ, σύσσωμος καὶ σύναιμος Χριστοῦ.
For thus we come to bear Christ in us, because His Body and Blood are distributed through our members; thus it is that, according to the blessed Peter, we became partakers of the divine nature. [...] Οὕτω γὰρ καὶ χριστοφόροι γινόμεθα, τοῦ σώματος αὐτοῦ καὶ τοῦ αἵματος εἰς τὰ ἡμέτερα ἀναδιδομένου μέλη. Οὕτω κατὰ τὸν μακάριον Πέτρον θείας "κοινωνοὶ γινόμεθα φύσεως".



 6. Consider therefore the Bread and the Wine not as bare elements, for they are, according to the Lord’s declaration, the Body and Blood of Christ; for even though sense suggests this to you, yet let faith steady you. Do not judge the matter from the taste, but from faith be fully assured without misgiving, that you have been deemed worthy of the Body and Blood of Christ. 

4.6  Μὴ πρόσεχε οὖν ὡς ψιλοῖς τῷ ἄρτῳ καὶ τῷ οἴνῳ· σῶμα γὰρ καὶ αἷμα κατὰ τὴν δεσποτικὴν τυγχάνει ἀπόφασιν.  Εἰ γὰρ καὶ ἡ αἴσθησίς σοι τοῦτο ὑποβάλλει, ἀλλὰ ἡ πίστις σε βεβαιούτω. Μὴ ἀπὸ τῆς γεύσεως κρίνῃς τὸ πρᾶγμα, ἀλλ' ἀπὸ τῆς πίστεως πληροφοροῦ ἀνενδοιάστως, σώματος καὶ αἵματος Χριστοῦ καταξιωθείς.

 We Reflect the Glory

We Receive

 9. Having learn these things, and been fully assured that the seeming bread is not bread, though sensible to taste, but the Body of Christ; and that the seeming wine is not wine, though the taste will have it so, but the Blood of Christ; and that of this David sang of old, saying, And bread strengthens man’s heart, to make his face shine with oil, “strengthen you your heart,” by partaking of it as spiritual, and “make the face of your soul to shine.”

4.9  Ταῦτα μαθὼν καὶ πληροφορηθείς, ὡς ὁ φαινόμενος ἄρτος οὐκ ἄρτος ἐστίν, εἰ καὶ τοιοῦτός ἐστι τῇ γεύσει, ἀλλὰ σῶμα Χριστοῦ, καὶ ὁ φαινόμενος οἶνος οὐκ οἶνός ἐστιν, εἰ καὶ ἡ γεῦσις τοῦτο βούλεται, ἀλλὰ αἷμα Χριστοῦ, καὶ ὅτι περὶ τούτου ἔλεγε ψάλλων πάλαι ὁ Δαβίδ· "Καὶ ἄρτος καρδίαν ἀνθρώπου στηρίζει, τοῦ ἱλαρῦναι πρόσωπον ἐν ἐλαίῳ·" στηρίζου τὴν καρδίαν, μεταλαμβάνων αὐτοῦ ὡς πνευματικοῦ, καὶ ἱλαρύνου τὸ τῆς ψυχῆς πρόσωπον.
And so having it unveiled with a pure conscience, may you reflect as a mirror the glory of the Lord, and proceed from glory to glory, in Christ Jesus our Lord: to whom be honour, and might, and glory, for ever and ever. Amen.  Ὃ γένοιτό σε ἀνακεκαλυμμένον ἔχοντα ἐν καθαρᾷ συνειδήσει, τὴν δόξαν Κυρίου κατοπτριζόμενον, ἔρχεσθαι ἀπὸ δόξης εἰς δόξαν, ἐν Χριστῷ Ἰησοῦ τῷ Κυρίῳ ἡμῶν, ᾧ ἡ δόξα εἰς τοὺς αἰῶνας τῶν αἰώνων. Ἀμήν.



LECTURE 23 (Mystagogical Catechesis 5.)


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[...] 7. Then having sanctified ourselves by these spiritual Hymns, we implore the merciful God to send forth His Holy Spirit upon the gifts lying before Him; that he may make the Bread the Body of Christ, and the Wine the Blood of Christ; for whatsoever the Holy Spirit has touched, is surely sanctified and changed

5.7  Εἶτα ἁγιάσαντες ἑαυτοὺς διὰ τῶν πνευματικῶν τούτων ὕμνων, παρακαλοῦμεν τὸν φιλάνθρωπον Θεὸν τὸ ἅγιον Πνεῦμα ἐξαποστεῖλαι ἐπὶ τὰ προκείμενα, ἵνα ποιήσῃ τὸν μὲν ἄρτον σῶμα Χριστοῦ, τὸν δὲ οἶνον αἷμα Χριστοῦ· παντὸς γὰρ οὗ ἂν ἐφάψηται τὸ ἅγιον Πνεῦμα, τοῦτο ἡγίασται καὶ μεταβέβληται.

 Our Priestly Worship is to

for The Living and The

Offer Sacrifice


 8. Then, after the spiritual sacrifice, the bloodless worship, is completed, over that sacrifice of propitiation we entreat God for the common peace of the Churches, for the welfare of the world; 5.8  Εἶτα μετὰ τὸ ἀπαρτισθῆναι τὴν πνευματικὴν θυσίαν, τὴν ἀναίμακτον λατρείαν, ἐπὶ τῆς θυσίας ἐκείνης τοῦ ἱλασμοῦ, παρακαλοῦμεν τὸν Θεὸν ὑπὲρ κοινῆς τῶν ἐκκλησιῶν εἰρήνης, ὑπὲρ τῆς τοῦ κόσμου εὐσταθείας,

for kings; for soldiers and allies; for the sick; for the afflicted; and, in a word, for all who stand in need of assistance we all pray and offer the sacrifice.

ὑπὲρ βασιλέων, ὑπὲρ στρατοπέδων καὶ συμμάχων, ὑπὲρ τῶν ἐν ἀσθενείαις, ὑπὲρ τῶν καταπονουμένων, καὶ ἁπαξαπλῶς ὑπὲρ πάντων τῶν βοηθείας δεομένων δεόμενοι δὲ πάντες ἡμεῖς ταύτην προσφέρομεν τὴν θυσίαν.



 9. Then we commemorate also those who have fallen asleep before us, first Patriarchs, Prophets, Apostles, Martyrs, that at their prayers and intercessions God would receive our petition. Then on behalf also of the Holy Fathers and Bishops who have fallen asleep before us, and in a word of all who in past years have fallen asleep among us, believing that it will be a very great benefit to the souls, for whom the supplication is put up, while that holy and most awe-inspiring sacrifice is set forth.

5.9  Εἶτα μνημονεύομεν καὶ τῶν κεκοιμημένων, πρῶτον πατριαρχῶν, προφητῶν, ἀποστόλων, μαρτύρων, ὅπως ὁ Θεὸς εὐχαῖς αὐτῶν καὶ πρεσβείαις προσδέξηται ἡμῶν τὴν δέησιν.  Εἶτα καὶ ὑπὲρ τῶν κεκοιμημένων ἁγίων πατέρων καὶ ἐπισκόπων, καὶ πάντων ἁπλῶς τῶν ἡμῖν προκεκοιμημένων, μεγίστην ὄνησιν πιστεύοντες ἔσεσθαι ταῖς ψυχαῖς, ὑπὲρ ὧν ἡ δέησις ἀναφέρεται, τῆς ἁγίας καὶ φρικωδεστάτης προκειμένης θυσίας.



 10. And I wish to persuade you by an illustration. For I know that many say, what is a soul profited, which departs from this world either with sins, or without sins, if it be commemorated in the prayer? For if a king were to banish certain who had given him of-fence, and then those who belong to them [p.155] should weave a crown and offer it to him on behalf of those under punishment, would he not grant a remission of their penalties? In the same way we, when we offer to him our supplications for those who have fallen asleep, though they be sinners, weave no crown, but offer up Christ sacrificed for our sins, propitiating our merciful God for them as well as for ourselves.

5.10  Καὶ βούλομαι ὑμᾶς ἀπὸ ὑποδείγματος πεῖσαι. Οἶδα γὰρ πολλοὺς τοῦτο λέγοντας ὅτι· Τί ὠφελεῖται ψυχή, μετὰ ἁμαρτημάτων ἀπαλλασσομένη τοῦδε τοῦ κόσμου, ἢ οὐ μεθ' ἁμαρτημάτων, ἐὰν ἐπὶ τῆς προσφορᾶς μνημονεύηται; Ἆρα γάρ, εἴ τις βασιλεὺς προσκεκρουκότας αὐτῷ ἐξορίστους ποιήσειεν, εἶτα οἱ τούτοις διαφέροντες, στέφανον πλέξαντες, ὑπὲρ τῶν ἐν τιμωρίαις αὐτῷ τοῦτον προσενέγκοιεν, οὐκ ἂν αὐτοῖς ἄνεσιν δῴη τῶν κολάσεων; Τὸν αὐτὸν τρόπον καὶ ἡμεῖς, ὑπὲρ τῶν κεκοιμημένων αὐτῷ τὰς δεήσεις προσφέροντες, κἂν  ἁμαρτωλοὶ ὦσιν, οὐ στέφανον πλέκομεν, ἀλλὰ Χριστὸν ἐσφαγιασμένον ὑπὲρ τῶν ἡμετέρων ἁμαρτημάτων προσφέρομεν, ἐξιλεούμενοι ὑπὲρ αὐτῶν τε καὶ ἡμῶν τὸν φιλάνθρωπον Θεόν



 19. After [the Lord's Prayer] the Priest says, “Holy things to the holy.” Holy are the gifts presented, having received the visitation of the Holy Ghost; holy are you also, having been deemed worthy of the Holy Spirit; the holy things therefore correspond to the holy persons.

5.19  Μετὰ ταῦτα λέγει ὁ ἱερεύς· "Τὰ ἅγια τοῖς ἁγίοις". Ἅγια τὰ προκείμενα, ἐπιφοίτησιν δεξάμενα ἁγίου Πνεύματος· ἅγιοι καὶ ὑμεῖς, Πνεύματος ἁγίου καταξιωθέντες. Τὰ ἅγια οὖν τοῖς ἁγίοις κατάλληλα.
Then you say, “One is Holy, One is the Lord, Jesus Christ.” For One is truly holy, by nature holy; we too are holy, but not by nature, only by participation, and [ascetical] discipline, and prayer. Εἶτα ὑμεῖς λέγετε· "Εἷς ἅγιος, εἷς Κύριος, Ἰησοῦς Χριστός". Ἀληθῶς γὰρ εἷς ἅγιος, φύσει ἅγιος· ἡμεῖς γάρ, εἰ καὶ ἅγιοι, ἀλλ' οὐ φύσει, ἀλλὰ μετοχῇ καὶ ἀσκήσει καὶ εὐχῇ.



 20. After this you hear the cantor inviting you with a sacred melody to the communion of the Holy Mysteries, and saying, “O taste and see that the Lord is good”. Trust not the judgment to your bodily palate: no, but to faith unfaltering; for they who taste are invited to taste, not bread and wine, but the architypal [lit. antitypal] Body and Blood of Christ. 

5.20  Μετὰ ταῦτα ἀκούετε τοῦ ψάλλοντος μετὰ μέλους θείου προτρεπρομένου ὑμᾶς εἰς τὴν κοινωνίαν τῶν ἁγίων μυστηρίων  καὶ λέγοντος· "Γεύσασθε καὶ ἴδετε, ὅτι χρηστὸς ὁ Κύριος."  Μὴ τῷ λάρυγγι τῷ σωματικῷ ἐπιτρέπητε τὸ κριτικόν, ἀλλὰ τῇ ἀνενδοιάστῳ πίστει· γευόμενοι γὰρ οὐκ ἄρτου καὶ οἴνου γεύεσθε, ἀλλὰ ἀντιτύπου σώματος καὶ αἵματος Χριστοῦ.


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