Return to Home Page

Month of June


Commemoration of the Venerable Martyr Wite, Anchoress of Charmouth, Wonder-worker of Dorset

Composed by Reader Isaac Lambertson

At Vespers

At Lord, I have cried, these stichera, in Tone VIII: Spec. Mel.: O all-glorious wonder

O all-glorious wonder! The valiant martyr Wite, subjected to cruel ravage and slaughter at the hands of the barbarian Danes, when felled by their keen weapons surrendered her pure soul to her Bridegroom. Wherefore, she dwelleth now in paradise, where she abideth in never-waning light, and prayeth without ceasing for our salvation.

O all-glorious wonder! The bones of the venerable martyr Wite thrive like the grass, as saith the prophet, and the almighty hand of the Lord maketh them known unto those who fear Him. Wherefore, beholding this, our hearts rejoice in our God, Whose good pleasure it hath been to preserve her sacred relics for us.

O all-glorious wonder! Like an ever-flowing fountain the shrine of the holy Wite poureth forth grace in abundance, giving drink to those who thirst for the inexhaustible mercy of God; for He hath preserved it untouched by those who hate His saints, unto the blessing and heartening of those who honour her.

Glory: Idiomelon, in Tone V

When thou didst wholly purify thyself of iniquity and cleanse thyself thoroughly of sin, O venerable martyr Wite, God created in thee a clean heart, making thee whiter than snow; wherefore, having dyed thy raiment in the blood of thy martyrdom, as one who overcame thou art now clothed in robes of white, and thy name is recorded in the Book of Life and confessed by the Saviour before His Father and all His angels.

Now & ever: Theotokion, or this stavrotheotokion, in the same tone: Spec. Mel.: Rejoice...

When she beheld the unplanted Cluster, which she had put forth as a Shoot, hanging upon the Tree, His divine side pierced by a spear, she said: 'What is this, O my Son and God? How is it that Thou acceptest suffering, Who hast healed all infirmities and passions, being in Thy divinity dispassionate by nature? What have these ungrateful people rendered unto Thee, their Benefactor, for all the good Thou hast done them?' cried the All-Pure one. But pray thou unceasingly that He deliver me from my passions
by His sufferings, that I may glorify thee.

Aposticha stichera; and, Glory: Idiomelon, in Tone VI

Having lived a life of angelic purity, O venerable Wite, on the chariot of thy blood thou didst soar aloft to the mansions of heaven, where with the heavenly hosts thou livest now amid divine effulgence; and since with them thou now singest sublime hymnody to the Trinity on high, hearken to the urgent supplications of us who find ourselves in dire straits, earnestly entreating Christ God on behalf of our souls.

Now & ever: Theotokion, or this stavrotheotokion, in the same tone: Spec. Mel.: On the third day...

Seeing Thee crucified, O Christ, she who gave Thee birth cried out to Thee: What strange mystery is this that I see, O my Son? How is it that Thou diest, suspended upon the Tree in the flesh, O Bestower of life?

Troparion, in Tone II

Freely didst offer thou thy life unto Christ, O venerable martyr Wite; for, abandoning the world for His sake, thou didst withdraw to the wilds of Dorset, there to live the angelic life, quenching the fire of the passions with the dew of repentance. Wherefore, as thou didst suffer martyrdom for His sake, thy fame hath spread to all the ends of the earth, and thy holy relics pour forth healings in abundance upon those who ever honour thy memory with love.

At Matins

At God is the Lord, the troparion of the venerable martyr, twice; Glory, Now & ever: Theotokion.

Canon of the saint, with 4 troparia, the acrostic whereof is Wite's blood stained the soil of Dorset, in Tone I

Ode I

Irmos: Moses, Who beheld God, proclaimeth praise unto Israel, and Miriam leadeth the all-wise women. Let us all sing a hymn of victory unto God the Deliverer!

Whitchurch proclaimeth praise unto Christendom, the New Israel, for thence doth the all-wise Wite, like Miriam of old, teach us to sing a hymn to God our Deliverer.

Imitating the desert-dwellers of old, the venerable Wite withdrew from the world to purify her soul in solitude, seeking divine wisdom from God our Deliverer.

The swords of the Danes freed Wite's soul from the body had she exhausted with ascetic feats; wherefore, having achieved victory, she singeth hymnody to God our Deliverer.

Theotokion: Eternally dost thou reign, O Lady and Mistress, and thou standest, crowned and robed as Queen, at the right hand of the preëternal Word, Jesus our Deliverer.


Irmos: Before the conception of the honorable Samuel, Hannah, the sacred mother, made an unwavering promise unto God; and now, rejoicing, she singeth with us: My soul is made firm in the Lord!

Seeing thee unwavering in thy faith in Christ God and rejoicing in His grace, the bestial heathen slew thee without pity, O venerable Wite, while thou didst sing: My soul is made firm in the Lord!

Before thy martyr's witness, O blessed Wite, thou didst serve Christ thy Bridegroom with humility, purifying soul and body by ascetic feats; wherefore at the end thou stoodest firm in the Lord.

Leaving behind all the allurements of the world, O Wite, taking up thy cross and following after Christ thy Master without wavering, thou didst blissfully sing: My soul is made firm in the Lord!

Theotokion: Over us sinners dost thou mercifully spread thy protecting veil, O Theotokos who didst ineffably conceive God in the flesh, shielding us from the terrifying sight of the hosts which Satan arrayeth against us.

Sessional hymn, in Tone IV: Spec. Mel.: The Word, Who with the Father and the Spirit is equally without beginning

Shining forth in thy virginity, O all-glorious Wite, thou didst receive the crown of martyrdom; for, subjected to the hatred of the barbarians as it were the fire of a furnace, and enduring their cruelties like the blows of a hammer, thou wast thereby forged into a goodly sword for the hand of thy
Master to wield.


O all-immaculate one, quickly heal the exceedingly painful sufferings of my soul and the afflictions of my flesh, and set the wanderings of my mind and my thoughts at peace. Vouchsafe, O Theotokos, that I may offer pure supplications to the King of all, and ask remission of transgressions.


Beholding Thee hanging of Thine own will upon the Cross between the thieves, O Christ, Thy Mother said, her womb rent with pain: O my sinless Son, how is it that Thou hast been unjustly crucified on the Cross as a malefactor, desiring to bring life to the human race, in that Thou art

Ode IV

Irmos: Foreseeing in the Spirit the incarnation of the Word, O Prophet Habbakuk, thou didst announce, crying out: When the years draw nigh, Thou shalt be acknowledged; when the season cometh, Thou shalt be shown forth!
Glory to Thy power, O Lord!

Over all who honor thee dost thou extend thy mighty protection, O venerable martyr, defending them from all their enemies, that they may cry out unto Christ: When the years draw nigh, Thou shalt be acknowledged! Glory to Thy power, O Lord!

Diamonds and precious stones are as worthless pebbles when compared to thy precious bones, O Wite; for, full of grace and healing, thy holy relics are of value far beyond price for all those who sing unto God with boldness: Glory to Thy power, O Lord!

Stone-wrought, the shrine of thy bodily remains is like a spiritual bastion, O Wite most rich, shielding the faithful against the onslaught of trials and temptations and all the storms of life, that in thanksgiving they may cry out: Glory to Thy power, O Lord!

Theotokion: To thee, O Virgin Mary, was the Archangel of the Lord sent as a herald from on high to declare to thee, Rejoice! For from among all generations thou wast chosen to give birth in the flesh unto Him Who sitteth in glory upon the shoulders of the cherubim.

Ode V

Irmos: Rising at dawn, we hymn Thee, O compassionate Savior, finding peace through Thy Cross, whereby Thou hast restored the human race, leading us to the never-waning Light.

Armed with thy sacred bones as with a quiver of arrows, the Holy Church felleth the spiritual foe, guarding the Christian people as they journey toward the never-waning Light.

In sickness and in sorrow, amid distress and grief, we hasten to the shrine of the venerable martyr Wite, ever begging her intercession before Christ, the never-waning Light.

Neither the assaults of the demons, the oppression of the passions, nor the tortures inflicted on Wite by the pagans were able to separate her from Christ, the never-waning Light.

Theotokion: Evening and noontide, at midnight and dawn, we lift up our voices in praise of thee, O all-holy Theotokos; for through thee hath Christ shone forth upon us‹thy Son, the never-waning Light.

Ode VI

Irmos: Thou didst cast me into the depths of the heart of the sea, and didst save me from the slavery of death, O Savior, and Thou hast loosed me from the bonds of mine iniquities.

Down into the abyss have I fallen headlong, crushed beneath the burden of my sins; but do thou, O martyr Wite, extend to me thy helping hand, and save me from death, I pray thee.

The threats of the pagan hordes did not daunt thee, O saint of God, nor did the torments and pangs they inflicted upon thee without mercy, for the love of Christ consumed thee utterly.

How have we become thralls to death and sin? Where shall we turn for release from the bonds of our iniquities? Let us therefore entreat the most merciful Wite, that she come unto our aid.

Theotokion: Evils fetter me like chains of iron, and my transgressions, like demons, cast me into the sea of ungodliness, to drown in mine iniquities; but do thou rescue me, O Theotokos, and save me.

Kontakion, in Tone I

Through the virtues and thy love for Christ, O Wite, thou didst transform thy womanhood into manliness, becoming a dwelling-place of God through ascetic struggles; and as a martyr thou art revealed as a fervent intercessor, illumining all with rays of the Spirit, O all-praised one. Wherefore, entreat Christ God, that He grant us the steadfast resolve to fend off all the assaults of the demons.

Ikos: At the intercessions of the venerable martyr Wite, the King of kings let fall His grace upon Egbert of Wessex and the Saxon armies, filling them with fulsome courage and the skill to repel the barbarian hordes, that when they had routed the Danes, the Christians of the English lands might again worship the Lord without fear or hindrance. Wherefore, let us entreat her in prayer, that she beseech the Lord, that He grant us the steadfast resolve to fend off all the assaults of the demons.


Irmos: Captivated by the love of the King of all, the youths despised the godless threats of the tyrant raging uncontrollably; and when the great fire submitted to them, they said to the Master: Blessed art Thou forever!

Savagely plundering the English coasts, the godless Danes raged uncontrollably, everywhere slaying the clergy, monastics and faithful, who like Wite cried out to the Master: Blessed art Thou forever!

Over Chardown's slope do the waters of thy sacred well-spring flow, O Wite, which quench the fire of the passions that parcheth the throats of all the pious, that they may sing unto God: Blessed art Thou forever!

In his great love for the Church of God and His saints, Alfred, the pious king, erected a church to house the shrine and relics of the venerable martyr Wite, crying out to his heavenly Master: Blessed art Thou forever!

Theotokion: Let us magnify the all-immaculate Virgin, who in her supernal love for God, the King of all, submitted in humility to His holy will; for which cause, as she rightly foretold, we ever cry to her: Blessed art thou forever!


Irmos: Once, when Daniel, who is great among the prophets, was cast into the lions' den, stretching forth his arms in the form of the Cross he was saved from being devoured by them, blessing Christ God forever.

O strange wonder! When the ungodly despoiled and ruined the hallows of the saints throughout England, by the providence of God the humble shrine of the venerable martyr Wite escaped their predations.

For our sins and offenses were the healing relics of England's saints hidden or destroyed by the iniquitous, who fell upon them like lions roaring after their prey; but Wite's shrine escaped their predations.

Daniel, great among the prophets, stretched forth his arms in the midst of the lions, and the Lord saved him; and on high Wite now stretcheth forth her arms before the same Lord, blessing Christ God forever.

Theotokion: Once only hath our transcendent God entered into the matter He had created, when the Word became incarnate of thine all-pure womb, O Bride of God; wherefore, we bless thee, the Mother of Christ God, forever.

Ode IX

Irmos: The God of Israel hath wrought might with His arm; for He hath cast down the mighty from their thrones and exalted the lowly. Therein He, the Dayspring from on high, hath visited us and guided us to the path of peace.

Remember us at the dread tribunal of the Judge of all, O holy Wite, lest with His mighty arm He cast us down with the mighty because of our wickedness; do thou visit us in thy mercy, and guide us ever in the ways of peace.

Shedding her holy blood for Him Who on the Cross poured forth blood and water from His piercèd side for our salvation, Wite surrendered her pure soul into the hands of Christ, the God of Israel, the Prince of peace.

Entering into the heavenly bridal-chamber, her lamp burning with the oil of righteousness, the glorious Wite now reclineth with her Bridegroom at the wedding-banquet, where the sound of jubilation never ceaseth.

Theotokion: Thee do we entreat, O most blessed one, to visit us and guide us in the ways of thy Son, the Dayspring from on high, that, illumined by His effulgent splendors, we may enter His halls with rejoicing, hymning thee, our Mediatress.

Exapostilarion: Spec. Mel.: Hearken, ye women

O ye who love the saints of God, let us all marvel at the virtues of the pious Wite, who abandoned all to follow her heavenly Bridegroom, beautifully adorning herself for Him with the pangs of asceticism and the wounds of martyrdom.


Rejoice, O palace of God! Rejoice, O mountain densely wooded! Rejoice, O divine table! Rejoice, bush unburnt! Rejoice, throne of glory! Rejoice, golden jar! Rejoice, most radiant lamp! Rejoice, O Mary, Virgin Mother, thou light cloud!

Aposticha stichera from the Octoechos; and, Glory: Idiomelon, in Tone IV

O ye Christian people, let us praise the martyr Wite, the anchoress of Charmouth, the glory of Dorset and adornment of all England, the boast of Christians and bane of the heathen. For the holiness of asceticism and martyrdom wherewith she was imbued overfloweth even now with the streams of her spring, filling lake and river, pouring down into the waters of the sea, girding England's shores with outpourings of protecting grace.

Now & eve: Theotokion, or this stavrotheotokion, in the same tone: Spec. Mel.: As one valiant among the martyrs

As she beheld Thee, the Lamb and Shepherd, upon the Tree, the ewe-lamb who gave Thee birth lamented and exclaimed to Thee maternally: O my Son most desired, how is it that Thou art suspended upon the Tree of the Cross, O Long-suffering One? How is it that Thy hands and feet, O Word, have been pierced with nails by the iniquitous, and Thou hast shed Thy blood, O Master?

At the Liturgy

Prokimenon, in Tone IV

Wondrous is God in His saints, the God of Israel.

Stichos: In congregations bless ye God, the Lord from the well-springs of Israel.

Epistle to the Corinthians, §181 [II Cor. 6: 1-10]

Brethren: As workers together with Him, we beseech you also that ye receive not the grace of God in vain. (For He saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succored thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.) Giving no offense in any thing, that the ministry be not blamed: but in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses, in stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labors, in watchings, in fastings; by pureness, by knowledge, by long-suffering, by kindness, by the Holy Spirit, by love unfeigned, by the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armor of righteousness on the right hand and on the left, by honor and dishonor, by evil report and good report: as deceivers, and yet true; as unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and, behold, we live; as chastened, and not killed; as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.

Alleluia, in Tone I

Stichos: With patience I waited patiently for the Lord, and He was attentive unto me, and He hearkened unto my supplication.

Stichos: And He brought me out of the pit of misery, and from the mire of clay.

Gospel according to Matthew (25:1-13).

The Lord said this parable: The kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, who took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. Those who were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight there was a cry made: Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him. Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said unto the wise: Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out. But the wise answered, saying: Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to those who sell, and buy for yourselves And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and those who were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut. Afterward came also the other virgins, saying: Lord, Lord, open to us. But he answered and said: Verily I say unto you, I know you not. Watch therefore; for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.

Communion Verse

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


to top of page