Return to Home Page

Month of February

Commemoration of Our Father among the Saints Sigfrid, Bishop of Växjö, Enlightener of Sweden & Norway, & the Holy Martyrs Unaman the Priest, Sunaman the Deacon & Vinaman the Subdeacon

Composed by Reader Isaac Lambertson

At Vespers

At Lord, I have cried, these stichera, in Tone I: Spec. Mel.: Joy of the ranks of heaven

Great was the love of the holy Sigfrid, who, departing from his native land, journeyed far to plant the Holy Church of Christ among the Norsemen; and labouring greatly for his Master, he uprooted the spiritual tares from their hearts.

Great was the love of the holy Sigfrid, who toiled zealously in the vineyard of the Lord, harvested the souls of the Swedes and Goths like succulent grapes; and with the tread of his beautiful feet pressed out the wine of spiritual gladness.

Great was the love of the martyrs of Christ, for proclaiming the teachings of their Master they were cut down by the swords of the pagans and surrendered their souls into the hands of the Lord. Wherefore, they now dwell in never-ending bliss.

Glory: Idiomelon, in Tone I

O ye Norse and Danes, Swedes and Goths, and all ye peoples of the Northern lands, clap your hands in gladness and uplift your voices together, singing to Christ God in sweet melody, as ye were taught by the wondrous bishop Sigfrid. In compunction repent of your offences and amend your sinful lives in penitence, entreating the holy one to intercede with boldness for you before the awesome tribunal of the impartial Judge at the dread hour when He will render His just verdict upon all men.

Now & ever: Theotokion, or this stavrotheotokion: Spec. Mel.: Joy of the ranks of heaven

Hurled down headlong by my vile character, I lie prostrate; but I hasten to thy tranquillity, O Virgin. Deliver me from the tempest of the adversary and from multifarious temptations, that I may unceasingly hymn thy grace, O Theotokos, ever-virgin Mother.

After the aposticha stichera, Glory: Idiomelon, in Tone VI

When Olaf of Norway harried the coasts of England, through God's dispensation he was borne to the Isles of Scilly by a contrary wind; and there the saintly Elid proclaimed to him Christ the Saviour of mankind, and baptized him in the name of the Holy Trinity, like as the Apostle Ananias had done with Saul. Then, the sight of his spiritual eyes restored, the Norseman took the glorious Sigfrid with him to his own country, to establish there the peerless Christian Faith, that his people, held in thrall to
Satan, the deceiver of men, might be freed from spiritual bondage and falsehood.

Now & ever: Theotokion, or this stavrotheotokion: Spec. Mel.: Having set all aside

The unblemished ewe-lamb, the immaculate Mistress, when of old she beheld her Lamb upon the tree of the Cross, exclaimed maternally and, marveling, cried aloud: O my Child most sweet! What is this new and all-glorious sight? How hath the thankless assembly betrayed Thee to the tribunal of Pilate? How doth he condemn Thee to death, Who art the life of all? Yet do I hymn Thine ineffable condescension, O Word!

Troparion, in Tone IV

For thy patience and zeal, O holy bishop Sigfrid, thou hast earned a great reward from Christ our God; for having laboured continually in the vineyard of His Church, thou hast been granted to dwell in the garden of paradise for all eternity. Wherefore, beseech Him without ceasing, that the land of the North behold His salvation, and that our souls be saved.

At Matins

Canon of the holy bishop, with 4 troparia, the acrostic whereof is Sweden glorifieth Sigfrid with hymns, in Tone V

Ode I

Irmos: Christ, Who hath delivered our race from the madness of idolatry, hath appeared on earth! To Him alone let us sing, for He hath been glorified.

Set afire by Christ's command, that Christians go and teach all nations, Sigfrid set forth boldly to deliver the Norse and the Swedes from the madness of idolatry.

When Olaf of Norway, aflame with zeal, returned to his native land to bring thither the Faith of Christ, Sigfrid went also, to preach the One God to the people.

England exulteth in the glorious works of Sigfrid its scion, for, undaunted by the pagans, he taught them to sing unto the one God, Who alone hath been glorified.

Theotokion: Deliver our race from the madness of the passions, O Mother of Christ our God, Who made Himself manifest on earth for our salvation, in that He is glorious.


Irmos: Make me steadfast by the power of Thy Cross, O only Compassionate One, for therein do I boast; for there is none holy save Thee, O Lord.

Ever arrayed in the armour of the Christian virtues, wielding the Cross of Christ like a sword of power, Sigfrid slew all the hordes of the demons.

Norway was benighted by ignorance, but when Sigfrid preached the Sun of righteousness the people sang: There is none holy save Thee, O Lord.

God, Who is wondrous in His saints, was glorified when the holy relics of the martyr Sunniva and her companions were given to Sigfrid His high priest..

Theotokion: Let us be made steadfast by the power of the Cross, wherein we boast, O Mother of Christ, our Compassionate Lord, for there is none holy beside Him.

Kontakion of the martyrs, in Tone I: Spec. Mel.: The choir of angels

Undaunted by the threats of the heathen, the three martyrs preached the Faith of Christ among the Swedes; and when they were slain and dismembered, God marked their precious relics with a pillar of light, and their sacred heads cried out at His command: How long, O Lord, dost Thou not avenge our blood?

Sessional hymn of the holy bishop, in Tone III: Spec. Mel.: Awed by the beauty of thy virginity

Thou didst teach the sound doctrine of the Christian Faith unto both Goths and Swedes, O Sigfrid, proclaiming God's transcendent love for the world and the joy of the angels in heaven over the repentance of one sinner; wherefore, rejoicing, thou hast joined the choirs of the fathers, the godly teachers. With them be thou ever mindful of us.

Glory: Sessional hymn of the martyrs, in Tone VIII: Spec. Mel.: Of the Wisdom

In a vision the Theologian beheld the souls of those slain for the Word of God, who cried aloud: How long, O Lord, dost Thou not judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth? And the holy Sigfrid likewise wondrously beheld the severed heads of his martyred kinsmen speak, assuring him that the vengeance of God would befall their slayers unto the third generation.

Now & ever: Theotokion, in the same tone & melody

Dragged down by evil thoughts, I have fallen into the deep of sin; and sighing I cry out to thee with all my heart, O all-pure one: Show forth upon me the wonder of thy rich mercy and the unfathomable abyss of thy lovingkindness, and the incalculable wealth of thy compassions; and grant me repentance and forgiveness of my transgression, that I may cry out to thee with love: Entreat Christ God, that He grant me remission of transgression, for I, thy servant, have thee as my hope!

Or this Stavrotheotokion

The ewe-lamb, beholding the Lamb, Shepherd and Deliverer upon the Cross, exclaimed, weeping, and cried out, bitterly lamenting: The world rejoiceth, receiving deliverance through Thee, but my womb doth burn, beholding the crucifixion which Thou dost endure for the sake of the lovingkindness of Thy mercy. O long-suffering Lord, Abyss and inexhaustible Wellspring of mercy: take pity, and grant remission of transgressions unto those who with faith hymn Thy divine sufferings.

Ode IV

Irmos: Purified by the Spirit of God which inspired him, the divine Prophet Habbakuk said in fear: When the years draw nigh, Thou shalt be acknowledged, O God, unto the salvation of men!

Olaf, King of Sweden, received thee, O Sigfrid, when, in the fullness of time, thou didst arrive in his realm to proclaim the salvation of men, teaching them to acknowledge the true God.

Reborn by Holy Baptism in the living water of St. Bridget's Spring at the hands of the holy Sigfrid, Olaf cried aloud: I acknowledge Thee, O God, the only true salvation of men!

In the blessed town of Växjö, the angel of the Lord appeared to the wondrous Sigfrid, bearing glad tidings, and revealing to him the place where he should build a church for the salvation of men.

Theotokion: Finding thee to be a pure and immaculate habitation, the Spirit of God descended upon thee, O all-holy Theotokos; wherefore, we all acknowledge thee to be the wellspring of men¹s salvation.

Ode V

Irmos: Learn righteousness, O ye who dwell upon the earth, and let us purify our mind, rising at dawn out of the night unto our compassionate God with heart uplifted.

Imbued with meekness and piety, and all the Christian virtues, Sigfrid dwelt upon the earth like an angel in the flesh, guiding men's souls out of the night of the passions.

Ever striving to pull the fallen out of the darkness of sin into the splendour of grace divine, the holy one brought a multitude of the saved unto God, the Compassionate One.

Twelve elders were chosen by the Goths to hearken to thy teaching, O Sigfrid; and learning righteousness from thee, they turned to our compassionate God with heart uplifted.

Theotokion: Help us, O holy Maiden, Bride of God, and with thy pure hand rescue us, the earthborn, who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death; and rescue us for Christ our Redeemer.

Ode VI

Irmos: In my grief I cried aloud: O my Saviour, I pray Thee, in that Thou art merciful deliver me from the afflictions and infirmities which assail me, being mindful of Thy mercy!

Salvation and redemption didst thou tirelessly preach to the heathen, O Sigfrid, repelling the assaults of the demons who ever seek to keep men in ignorance of God's mercy.

I pray Thee, O Master: deliver Thy creatures from the attacks of the adversary, and heal their infirmities of body and soul, that they may know Thee, the holy one cried.

Goodness and mercy filled thine innocent heart, O bishop of Christ, and peace and truth were ever on thy lips, when thou didst tell men of the loving-kindness of Jesus our Saviour.

Theotokion: Finding ourselves beset by a multitude of afflictions and infirmities, we flee to thy care, O Bride of God, begging healing and surcease of pain, ever mindful of thy mercies.

Kontakion of the holy bishop, in Tone III

Full of divine radiance, thou couldst not bear that others walked in pagan darkness; wherefore, O Sigfrid, thou didst leave thy homeland and didst journey to the distant lands of the North, to bring thither the light of salvation, that their people might render glory, praise and worship to God forever.

Ikos: When Sigfrid and his companions arrived in Sweden, Olaf the King sent his servant to observe the strangers. And that man, reporting to the king, recounted that he had seen unarmed men strangely clad, performing sublime rites; and as the chief among them elevated the holy Bread, it was transformed into a little Babe, Who, when the celebrant of those Mysteries had kissed Him, was again transmuted into Bread. O the tender mercy of Christ our God, Who is well-pleased that even the heathen should witness His wondrous condescension towards men¹s salvation! Glory, praise and worship be unto Him forever!


Irmos: The dew-bearing furnace and the rage of the tyrant did not frighten the pious children, who cried out with boldness: Blessed art Thou, O God of our fathers!

Recounting the glad tidings of the Gospel, O holy one, with boldness thou didst teach the children of the Swedes that Christ is the blessed God of our fathers.

In death thy martyred kinsmen preached the Lord, O holy bishop, for their heads proclaimed His majesty, crying: Blessed art Thou, O God of our fathers!

Declaring that the stars have no influence on the fate of men, O saint, boldly didst thou teach men to trust wholly in the loving-kindness of God for our race.

Theotokion: When the fire of the Godhead descended into thy womb, O all-holy Virgin, thou wast not consumed, but didst cry aloud: Blessed art Thou, O God of our fathers!


Irmos: To the Creator of all did the God-bearing children offer hymnody amid the furnace; and, chanting, they cried: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

In hymns and spiritual songs let us laud the glorious Sigfrid and his martyred kinsmen, and with them let us chant: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

Trusting in the one God, Sigfrid persuaded the heathen to destroy the idols of their false deities, and to chant instead: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

Triadicon: Holy art Thou, O indivisible Trinity, O unoriginate Father, only-begotten Son, and divine Spirit Who proceedest from the Father alone and supremely blessed.

Theotokion: Heated sevenfold, the Babylonian furnace did not burn the pious children; and likewise unburnt, Mary also sang: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

Ode IX

Irmos: We magnify Thy most immaculate and pure Mother, O Christ, for she gave birth to Thee in the flesh supernaturally, delivering us from all deception and corruption.

Ye faithful of Sweden and Norway, worship Christ God, the Lord, in spirit and truth, for through Sigfrid hath He delivered you from all deception and corruption.

Magnifying the great Sigfrid, O ye Christian people, let us be ever mindful of the wonders he wrought by grace divine, delivering us from deception and corruption.

Now let us lift our voices in exultation, praising Sigfrid and his fellow laborers, for by their great struggles were multitudes freed from all deception and corruption.

Theotokion: Saved by Thee from all deception and corruption, O Lord, in hymns do we delight to magnify the Theotokos, who gave birth to Thee in manner transcending nature.

Exapostilarion: Spec. Mel.: The heaven with stars

Like a constellation of brilliant stars the glorious Sigfrid and his martyred kinsmen shed the light of grace upon Sweden and the North, and guide the erring to the haven of salvation.


By thy mighty protection, O pure one, preserve all thy servants unharmed by the assaults of the enemy; for thee alone have we acquired as a refuge in time of need.

After the aposticha stichera, Glory: Idiomelon, in Tone III

When holy Olaf reigned as king in Norway, and strove mightily to establish the Christian Faith therein, the holy Sigfrid journeyed thither with all haste to assist him in his apostolic labours. And when their idols were cast down, the people cried with a loud voice: We have sustained great damage to our gods; but since they will not help us, we will believe in the God ye proclaim! And, baptized by Sigfrid, they everywhere erected churches to the eternal glory of the Trinity.

Now & ever: Theotokion, or this stavrotheotokion

The most immaculate one, beholding Thee uplifted upon the Tree, cried out, weeping maternally: O mine all-good Christ, my Son most beloved! How hath the iniquitous assembly lifted Thee up upon the Cross?

At Liturgy

Prokimenon of the holy bishop, in Tone I

My mouth shall speak wisdom, and the meditation of my heart shall be of understanding.

Stichos: Hear this, all ye nations; give ear, all ye that inhabit the world.

Epistle to the Hebrews, §318 (Heb. 7: 26-8: 2)

Brethren: Such a High Priest became us, Who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens; Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people's: for this He did once, when He offered up Himself.. For the law maketh men high priests who have infirmity; but the word of the oath, which was since the law, maketh the Son, Who is consecrated for evermore. Now of the things which we have spoken this is the sum: We have such a High Priest, Who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens; a Minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man.

Alleluia of the holy bishop, in Tone II

Stichos: The mouth of the righteous shall meditate wisdom, and his tongue shall speak of judgment.

Stichos: The law of God is in his heart, and his steps shall not be tripped.

Gospel according to John, § 36 (Jn. 10: 9-16)

The Lord said to the Jews who came to Him: I am the door: by Me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep. But he who is a hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep. The hireling fleeth, because he is a hireling, and careth not for the sheep. I am the good Shepherd, and know My sheep, and am known of Mine. As the Father knoweth Me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down My life for the sheep. And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear My voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.

Communion verse of the holy bishop

In everlasting remembrance shall the righteous be, he shall not be afraid of evil tidings.


to top of page