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The Lord
O, laud the Lord!
The Nativity of Christ
The Gladsome Light
When the soul is in mortal anguish
The Holy Trinity
Passion Week
He Came Incarnate
Christmas Carolers
The Star of Bethlehem
Holy Night
Only There
Teach me to love Thee, O Lord
Prayer (M. Yu. Lermontov)
I thank Thee, Lord
Lord have mercy
To Thee!
The Prophet The Great Lent (V.Utrenev)
Prayer (Yuri Bogatkevich)
The Nativity of Christ
The ninth wave
From the Apocalypse
God is in every place and thing
O, my Lord God
The silence of Christ
The Great Lent (Prince Vladimir Paley)
The Crucifixion
O Trinity, Our Lord!
To The One God
The redemption of mankind
Thy Bridal Chamber
Beneath the deep sea waves
Request for the New Year
Arise, o soul!
Christ and the samaritan woman



O, laud the Lord from heavens

And sing to Him unceasingly!

His miracles and glory

Embrace the world ineffably.

O, laud Him, bodiless powers

And hosts of shining angels!

Out of the darkness of the tombs

Shone forth a great and radiant light.

O, laud the Lord from heavens,

Ye hills, and crags, and mountains!

Hosanna! The fear of death is gone,

And our gazes grow brighter.

O, laud the Lord, ye sea's horizon,

And vast and boundless ocean!

May all inordinate sorrow be silenced,

And all our hopeless clamor.

O, laud the Lord from heavens

And glorify Him, ye mortals!

Christ is risen! Christ has risen

And trampled death forever!

 – K.R.

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Those were indeed miraculous times,

The words of prophet came to pass,

Angels descended from above,

The star moved forward from the East,

The world awaited its redemption –

And in the humble Bethlehem manger,

With Eden’s laudatory singing,

The wondrous Infant dazzled forth…

– L. Mey
– Translated by Natalia Sheniloff


Nativity of Christ

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Evening twilight, light of dawn

A heavenly quiet lies therein;

Its gentleness my soul enchants

And calls it upward to its realms.

Up thither from all corners of earth

Ascends a hymn to Gladsome Light.

There glows the silence of brocades,

And ships do glimmer in its gold.

There all our earthly anguished cries

Are hushed forever in that calm,

And cease within the Gladsome Light,

And every sound does fade away.

Within Eternal Glorys temple,

And by Eternal Glory lit,

Angelic choirs sing hosanna

To the Lords own celestial realms.

And thou, preparing for thy sleep,

Do listen to the crystal peal

Reverberate in silence deep,

And never cease or fade away.

Both day and night, and every moment,

Of the Unsetting Gladsome Light

The bells do ring; their peal resounds

Eternally in human hearts.

V. Utrenev

Translated by Natalia Sheniloff


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When the soul is in mortal anguish,

When sorrow constricts the heart,

Gaze up at the sky: how wondrous

Is the Milky Ways starry light.

The mercies of God are as countless

As the stars in this milky path.

May thou come to a realization,

That the twinkling of myriad stars

Is the light of His omniscient eyes,

Through which He sees human distress.

Let thy spirit fall not, but take heart,

Look up at the sky and pray hard!

Princess N.V. Ourusoff  

Translated by Natalia Sheniloff  

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Fragrant grasses, greening porches,
Incense wafts among the birches,
Departed shades have come alive
And wing towards the earthly shores.
Again the vision of heavenly tongues
Is flaming with unfading glory,
And fiery-chorded angelic choirs
Thunder from clear skies above.
Hosts of saints, together with us,
Sing Trisagion to the Lord;
Unearthly beings unearthly songs
Do sing and carry our souls beyond.
Come let us bow down to the ground
And glorify the Triune God,
Be hallowed by tri-shining fire,
Ascend the mountain of the Lord.
The Trinity now shows the world
Its fiery and sacred visage.
The earth does blossom forth with flowers;
Of God do all tongues verily speak.
Believe thou that our earthly prison
Is permeated to its depth
By the Thrice-holy and Tri-shining:
Eternal Father, and Spirit, and Son.

V. Utrenev
Translated By Natalia Sheniloff
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At midnight hark! the Bridegroom comes.
But where is now his blessed liege,
Whom He will find awake and fit,
Whose light the dark did not engulf,
And who will enter, lamp alit,
The bridal chamber after Him?
O, may my penitential prayer
As like the scented bluish haze
Of fragrant censers waft to Thee!
In tears and inconsolable sorrow
I watch with longing from afar
And cannot even raise mine eyes
To Thy so brightly-shining realm.
Where shall I find the needed dress?
O Lord, enlighten the attire
Of my distressed, tormented soul
And grant me hope of my salvation
In these, Thy Holy Passions days!
Do heed, O Lord, my deep entreaties
And in Thy sacred mystic supper
And in the washing of the feet
Receive me as participant!
To enemies Ill not betray
Thy mystery, and shall not give
Thee Judass betraying kiss,
But humbly standing on my knees
Before Thy Holy Life-giving Cross,
I shall call out with the wise thief:
O Thou, Creator of the world,
In Thine own realm remember me!

Translated by Natalia Sheniloff
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All bathed in starlight and aglow,
For earth a sacrament so odd,
Eternal puzzle for the mind,
The heavens endless joy thou art
Nativity of Christ on earth!
The Godhead shows Itself overt
And vests Itself in mortal flesh,
And indescribably, ineffably,
To mortal mind incomprehensibly,
Into the manger does descend.
O heavenly mystery so great!
The wild desert vividly blooms,
The withered staff has brightly flowered,
And there He comes Eternal, Vast,
The Orient, the hope of men.
In search of Truth incontrovertible,
The nobly upright magi traveled,
In awe the prophet did announce:
The Saviour of all men has come,
Incarnate God of all who sorrow,
And now Hes standing at the gate,
To wake all who in sleep are mired.

V. Utrenev
Translated by Natalia Sheniloff
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Underneath the starlit darkness
Sleeps the quiet Russian village.
Every road and every footpath
Has been buried under snow.
Here and there the lighted windows
Glow and wink like tiny starlets,
And toward them, through the snowdrifts,
Eagerly the children run.
Knocking at the lighted windows,
Christmas hymns they now intone.
Carol singers! Carol singers!
Can be heard all over town.
In the wavering childish voices,
So mysterious and pure
And so joyous are the tidings
That this day the Christ is born.
A. Korinfsky
Translated by Natalia Sheniloff

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Darkness has fallen And now the blue night
Spreads its mantle over the snows
And the skies have been lit from edge to edge,
And the skies are glowing with stars.
Diamonds not stars! Yet in this stardust
One star much brighter than all
Has lit up over the dark abyss
And shines with welcome and warmth.
In the darkness of ages, far to the East,
It first appeared in the sky,
And to kings and slaves, and prophets, and chiefs
It showed the path to love.
All is mortal and temporal in this vain world:
Even venerable wisdom shall perish,
And wealth will perish in its arrogant robe,
And the force of life will expire.
One thing alone will remain forever,
Only one thing will never die
The love that is eternal as its Creator,
The love known by old and young
It was born in a far-away Bethlehem cave
And shone like a golden star;
It strengthens the world in hope and faith
And glows undimmed in the sky.
Without this love life is dark all around,
And thus among us it shines,
And joy and happiness come with it
And shine over life like stars.

A. Korinfsky
Translated by Natalia Sheniloff

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The holy night descended on the earth,
Enveloped Bethlehem in its embrace.
Isaiahs prophecy has come to pass
Lost Paradise is once again restored.
A choir of angels sings the birth of Christ;
Their song is heard above the sinful earth.
The shepherds hasten to His veneration;
The magi bring their gifts and adoration.
The greatest King
And universal Master
Lies in the manger like a newborn Babe,
And leaning over Him with tender love,
His Mother looks upon Him with delight.
Translated by Natalia Sheniloff

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To Thee, my God almighty and eternal,
My innermost desires upward soar
Through endless darkness, infinite abysses,
Where million upon million stars do shine,
And where the worlds revolving in the depths
Proclaim Thy brilliant majesty and splendor.
Unto the meek a shield, restrainer of the proud,
Do scintillate as dawn within my heart,
And on the firm foundation of hope and faith
Thy dazzling glory Ill forever exalt.
- I.A. Krylov
Translated by Natalia Sheniloff

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Only there, beyond the heavens,
In the boundless azure heights
Peace and truth are brightly shining,
Joined in beautys single light.
Only there, beyond the moonlight,
There exist no tears or grief,
Nor the agony of searching
For embodiments of dreams.
How rebellious, dark, and dismal
Is our hopeless, dreadful age,
Where contemporary mankind
Struggles, caught up in deceit,
Where lifes meaning is forgotten,
Where the Lord is put aside,
Where malicious hate for others
Oerwhelms the human heart,
Where pursuit of wealth and riches
Leads along the worlds wide course,
While Christs persecuted adepts
Try to tread the narrow path.
Only there, beyond bright sunlight,
Shall we see the radiant Light,
And in seeking Truth eternal,
Only there reply well find.

- Princess N.V. Ourousoff
Translated by Natalia Sheniloff

Teach me to love Thee, O Lord,
With all my mind, all comprehension,
To entrust my soul into Thy care
And my life with each heartbeats ascension.
Teach me to heed and fulfill
Only Thy merciful will,
Teach not to grumble or complain
Of my toilsome and sorrowful lot.
All whom Thou came to redeem
With Thy purest and holiest Blood,
With a deep and unselfish love
Teach me to love, O my God.

- K.R. (Grand-Duke Konstantin Romanov)
Translated by Natalia Sheniloff


In difficult moments of life,
When sorrow constricts the heart,
A wondrous prayer to God
I steadily do recite.
There is a blessed strength
In the accord of living words,
Within them a sacred charm
So indescribably breathes.
A burden is shed from the soul,
Doubt swiftly disappears,
Belief returns, and so do tears,
And all is light and clear.
- M. Yu. Lermontov
Translated by Natalia Sheniloff


Of all the prayers that I know,
All prayers sung or read aloud
One prayer breathes with brilliant strength,
The wondrous prayer Lord have mercy!
A single plea it does contain
I ask the All-compassionate God
To save me with His awesome might,
And so I call out: Lord have mercy!
I sail the turbulent sea of life,
I meet with joy and poignant sorrow.
What power saves me from the storms?
The wondrous prayer Lord have mercy!
When tears of deep despair I weep,
And dreams of passion overwhelm me
Then with especial strength of heart
I keep on crying: Lord have mercy!
And as you end your life on earth,
My soul, continue with this prayer
Beyond the grave, keep up your plea
Of hope eternal: Lord have mercy!

Translated by Natalia Sheniloff

To Thee the seas give sounding glory,
Before Thee the abyss stands mute,
The constellations burn and quiver,
The stars chorale hums like a lute.
To Thee the streams do sweetly sing
And redden in the flaming dawns,
The mountains to Thy heights ascend,
All shining with eternal snows.
Of wisdom do the forests murmur,
And flowers do their fragrance cense,
Of Thee do testify the dews,
The dark of nights, the light of days,
The midnight dawn of Arctic ice,
The cliffs, the crags, the misty fogs,
The fading and the bloom of things,
And caravans of springtime clouds.
And even reptiles fall before Thee,
When seeing Thy thrice-radiant light,
And all the oceans hymn hosannah
To the Creator of all worlds bright.
I am a lowly worm before Thee,
But from my heart, O Lord and God,
Does issue forth my sacred hymn,
So unlike any earthly ode.
- V. N. Utrenev
Translated by Natalia Sheniloff

All parched with spiritual thirst,
A gloomy desert I traversed,
And at a crossing of the roads
A six-winged seraphim appeared.
His fingers lightly as a dream
The pupils of mine eyes did touch
And, like a startled eagles eyes,
The orbs flew open at his touch.
He touched my ears and they were filled
With noise and clamor of the bells;
I heard the trembling of the skies,
The heavenly angels lofty flight,
The sea creatures underwater path,
The blooming of a distant vine.
And then he bent down to my lips
And from them tore my sinful tongue,
So full of malice, idle talk,
And in its stead within my lips
His bloody hand did then insert
A wise old serpents stinging tongue.
All corpse-like in the desert I lay,
Till summoned by the voice of God:
Arise, O prophet of the Lord,
Regard and heed the Word divine,
Comply with My celestial will,
And traveling the seas and lands,
With words burn thou the hearts of men!

- A. S. Pushkin
Translated by Natalia Sheniloff

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I thank Thee, Lord, for every single thing!
After a day of sorrow and anxiety,
Thou grantest me the setting of the sun,
The spacious fields and gentle blue horizon.
At dusk I am alone again as always,
But as the sunset spreads its fiery flame,
The Evening Star begins to melt within it,
All sparkling like a richly precious gem.
And I am happy with my mournful fate,
And there is joy in sweet realization
That I alone stand mute in contemplation,
That I to all an alien speak withThee.
- I. A. Bunin
Translated by Natalia Sheniloff

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Slowly and softly the bells are ringing,
Slowly the faithful are coming to pray.
Inside the church we hear mournful singing
Tis the Great Canon of Andrew of Crete.
The prodigal sons lamentful entreaties,
The publicans heartfelt and pitiful sigh
All can be heard in the evenings chanting,
In the dark twilight of the altar on high.
The elderly priest standing humbly among us,
Holding the ancient book in his hands,
Ardently prays with sadness and sorrow,
Intercedes before God for all our sins.
Somewhere outside, just beneath the windows,
Droplets of thawing snow fall from the roof,
The true high voice of a young soprano
Rings in the choir like a beautiful flute.
Who is it there, who in weary prayer,
Weeps over sinfully wasted days?
Whose sighs are those and fervent entreaties
That are slowly extinguished in the suns setting
Have mercy upon us, O Lord, have mercy!
The sorrowful harmonies rise to the sky
The faithful are ceaselessly praying and praying
The flames of the candles are burning high
Translated by Natalia Sheniloff

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When comprehension dawns of your captivity
By days all filled with worldly vanity,
And of your heart entirely fettered
By melancholy and anxiety;
When fires of doubt and gross deception
Upset your souls inner tranquility,
Stand thus in solitude before the Lord
And ask Him then ever so quietly:
Grant me, O Lord,
The tears of purest prayer.

The humble Visage looks upon you,
And sorrowfully gaze the eyes
Of Him Who taught us that our prayer
Should be simplicity and awe;
Then sudden warmth will pierce your heart,
A quiver will constrict your voice,
And quietly your tears will flow,
Engendered by those moving words:
Grant me, O Lord,
The tears of purest prayer.
- Yuri Bogatkevich
Translated by Natalia Sheniloff
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Today Christ was born
An angel appeared,
He flew through the sky
And joyously sang:
O people, rejoice
And glory this day
For today Christ was born!

The shepherds were first
To come to the cave
In the manger on straw
The Saviour they found.
They stood and they wept,
And they glorified Christ,
And His Mother most Pure.

While the magi who saw
The bright shining star
Came to worship from far
The God and the King.
They stood and they wept,
And they gave Him their gifts:
Frankincense, myrrh and gold.

O Saviour, we all
Have sinned before Thee,
Among sinners all
Solely Thou art holy.
Our trespasses forgive
And redemption do grant,
For today Christ was born!

Translated by Natalia Sheniloff
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The ninth wave came, and angry was the sea.
The wrath of waves made feeble minds afraid.
The saving land was lost in distant mists.
The wail was awesome of the powers below.
The gale clawed at the sails. The breakers warred.
Whole precipices filled with fury heaved.
And He just stood, the Lord of sea and land,
The King of silence, Ruler of the waves.
Quite overwhelmed then, an apostle fell
Before His feet and fearfully exclaimed:
It is the end! O, Teacher, we are lost!
O, ye of little faith, said He, wherefore
Do you doubt and bow your heads so low?
Where theres no faith, there fear begins to rule.
Imperiously He stretched His right arm
And ordered the sea and wind to cease,
Put out the flame of lightning in the waves
And waved asunder the shroud of clouds.
Then a great silence fell upon the sea
And a great quiet ruled the vasty deep,
As though the Angel of Peace passed above
And through the vale of evil down below.
Who is He Who can tame the rage of seas,
Command obedience of the very winds?
Who in the distance weaves the crown of stars
And sees the Satan fall into the dark?
My Lord and God, when shipwreck threatens me,
Let Thy right hand direct and guide my bark,
So that it may avoid the evil spells,
So that the foe confounds me not upon
The endless sea of earthly woes.

- V. Utrenev.
Translated by Kosara Gavrilovic.
The Ninth Wave.
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Holy Trinity

To see the world — how great that is!

What never-ending joy!

To see the world and see the Lord,

The unfathomable Father.


To live by faith — how great that is!

Avoiding not the Cross,

To live by faith and glorify Christ —

The holy crucified Son.


To be in prayer — how great that is!

To welcome the heart’s new spring,

To be in prayer and hear the Lord,

The silence of His Spirit.


Alexander Solodovnikov

Translated by Natalia Sheniloff


The Almighty Saviour. I knock and wait at the door of your inn,
Open the door and let Me in.
Im naked, weak, the lowest of low.
My road is hard. Far must I go.
Penniless beggar through the world I roam,
Knock and wait at many a home.
Wholl hear My voice? Wholl take My load,
And bid Me enter his abode?
To such a one Ill come and call him Mine,
Break bread with him and share the wine.
Youre weak, exhausted from labors and strain.
With Me your strength you will regain.
With My hand I shall dry your tears of pain
And you will never cry again.
I shall console you, your pain Ill feel,
And share with you your evening meal.
I knock and wait at the door of your inn.
Open the door and let me in.

- K. R.(Grand-Duke Constantine Romanov).
Poem translated by Kosara Gavrilovic.
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God is in every place and thing,
Not only in our lucky star,
Not only in the fragrant flower,
Not just in joys sweet dreamings bring,
But also in the dark of poverty,
The sightless terror of our vanity,
In hurtful things, where light is not,
In things to bear which is our lot
Gods in the tears of our pain,
The wordless sorrow of goodbyes,
The faithless seekings of our brain,
In suffering itself is God.
It is through life upon this sod
That we must reach the unknown land,
Where with the crimson trail of nails
Lord Christ will touch the wounds of man.
And that is why all flesh must die,
And why God is in all that is.

- Prince Vladimir Paley
Translated by Kosara Gavrilovic.

Prince Vladimir Paley, member of the Russian Imperial family and cousin to the Tsar-Martyr Nicholas II, spiritually inherited the divine gift of poetry from another royal poet the Grand Duke Konstantin Konstantinovich Romanov known under the initials K.R. On July 5/18, 1917, together with the latters sons Ioann, Igor and Konstantin Konstantinovichi, and the Grand Duchess Elizabeth and nun Barbara, Prince Vladimir Paley was thrown by the godless into the mine at Alapayevsk, thus earning for himself the crown of a New Martyr.

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The Cross of Christ.
Why cannot I take up Thy chains,
Lord God, and bear them as my own!
Why cannot I endure Thy pain,
Accept Thy Cross upon me lain,
And on my head Thy thorny crown!

If I but could in veneration
With my lips touch Thy holy robe,
Or dusty traces of Thy feet,
O, my Lord God, that art my hope,
My strength, my shield against defeat!

I would give all my meditations
To Thee, the blessing of my songs,
Thoughts of my days, my vigils long,
And every heartbeat I would render,
And my whole soul to Thee surrender

- Count Aleksey Tolstoy
Poem translated by Kosara Gavrilovic

Our Lord Jesus Christ. O Lord, Thou wishest me to grow,
As does in spring a tree,
And bear my cross, not drag it low,
Along my way to Thee;
That I should rise after I fall,
Prepared to wage Thy war,
Stay on the course and do it all
In prayer and in awe;
That every day in Thee I trust,
Concealing nought from Thee,
And that Thy Holy Spirit must
Be never lost to me.

- Anonymous Moscow bard.
Translated by Kosara Gavrilovic.

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Christ with Pontius Pilate
Christ with Pontius Pilate.
When the cunning Pharisee
Insidiously tested Christ,
And when the villain wished to stone
To death a maid who had transgressed -
Christ bowed down and His silence kept

When Pilate in his inquisition
Before Him stood in all his might,
And by one question let Him see
His wish to save Him from His plight -
Christ only watched and silence kept

When He beneath His thorny crown
Came out before the angry crowd,
With crimson blood upon His face,
And when He felt the sting of canes -
Christ, as before, His silence kept

When at long last His body maimed
Was crucified upon the cross,
And all the boundless wickedness
Was driven home with hammers blows -
Forgive them, Father! - He exclaimed.

- A. Korovay-Metelitskiy
Translated by Kosara Gavrilovic

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Thou art here,
And everywhere.
Thou givest love to us,
Forgiveness of our sins, and peace.
Thou hearest us, such wretched sinners,
Inviting us to Thine divine feast.

Feeble are we,
And naked,
And besmirched,
Full of forgetfulness,
Ingratitude and filth.
And yet with hope we pray to Thee:
Cleanse us, our Lord God, and redeem.

O, hear the prayers of Thy saints,
Who pray for us, lost deep in sin.
For the sake of their meek and saintly lives,
Wash clean with tears our blackened souls.

O, let our contrite cry reach Thee!
Hear us and keep us in Thy sight!
We pray, we beg despairingly:
Hear us, our Lord God, and redeem.

Our deeds show up our words futility,
But the Prodigal Sons footsteps we trace,
To return to Thee in all humility,
And fall on our knees before Thy face.
- Deacon Andre Rudenko
Translated by Kosara Gavrilovic
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The Great Lent
Dark somber vestments soft gentle singing
Glowing reflection of red vigil lights
O God Almighty! Grant me endurance:
Heaven and hell battle deep in my heart

Whisper of prayers Sternness of faces
Sonorous censers and pale blue smoke
O God Almighty! Grant me Thy mercy:
Lightly as incense I rise unto Thee!

Out of the church yet again I shall forfeit
Those solemn promises given to Thee
Fortify me in this combat eternal,
Purify, Holy, my sin-laden soul!

Give me resolve to speak bravely and boldly
When I am caught in lifes prickly embrace.
Dark somber vestments Evening twilight
Yellow wax candles sorrowing flame
- Prince Vladimir Paley
Translated by Natalia Sheniloff
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A choir of angels glorified the greatest hour,
The heavens melted in an all-consuming fire.
To God the Father He said: Why didst Thou forsake Me?
And to the Holy Virgin said: O weep not, Mother

Mary the Magdalene shuddered and wept,
The beloved disciple was rigid as stone,
Yet no one did dare even throw a glance
At the Mother Who quietly stood alone.

- Anna Akhmatova
Translated by Natalia Sheniloff
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Holy Trinity

Most-pure, Invisible, Incomprehensible,

Untraceable, and quite Invincible,

And sole Immortal One,

Who dwells in light impenetrable,

Creation’s Saviour, eons’ Creator,

Most-honored, Ever-glorious

Unto all ages of the ages!

A Father from eternity,

Engendering a Son co-reigner,

The Holy Spirit in the Father

And in the Son is ever glorified,

A single Power, Single Being,

A sole and unified Divinity,

To Whom we all together pray:

O Lord and Father, with the Son

The all-Creator through the Holy Spirit!

O Mighty Saviour through Whom we knew God,

O Holy and Immortal Comforter Spirit,

Who issues from the Father’s bosom

And rests forever in the Son,

O Trinity, our Lord, glory to Thee!


V. Utrenev

Translated by Natalia Sheniloff

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The One Who was and is eternal

The Virgin for the world has borne.

And for the One beyond approach,

Incomprehensible by mind,

A shelter has been found on earth.

And angels in the heavens sing,

And shepherds hurry from the hills,

While darkness crowds before the Star,

Behind the Star the magi come.

And this night we have understood

How for our sake He could be born,

This Infant, our eternal God.


 – V. Shidlovskiy

Translated by Natalia Sheniloff

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The Lord

He meekly walked along a thorny path,

With joy He met ignominy and death;

The lips which uttered teachings of stern truth

Did not reproach the jeering, mocking crowd.

He meekly walked and, crucified on the Cross,

For our sinful world enveloped in vice,

For all humanity flowed His holy Blood.

O weakling children of this sceptic age!

Does not that mighty Image speak to you

Of man’s majestic destiny and calling,

And urge your dormant will to greater feats?

No! I cannot believe that venal gain

Has stifled in us all the voice of truth.

The day will come… and Christ’s word will instill

Both life and strength into our decayed world!


 – A. Pleshcheyev

– Translated by Natalia Sheniloff

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Nativity of Christ

Night is calm. On the celestial dome

The southern stars do softly tremble.

The Mother’s eyes peer with a smile

Into the quiet peaceful manger.

No excess ears, unnecessary glances,

Just now the roosters crowed the morn –

And with the angels in the heavens

The shepherds glorify the Lord.

The manger quietly glows in answer,

And Mary’s face is radiant with joy.

The starry chorale to another choir

Is listening with awe and wonder.

And over it so highly glitters

That star of faraway distant lands:

And with it come the kings of Orient,

Bearing gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.


– A. Fet

– Translated by Natalia Sheniloff

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The Crucifixion

Christ was crucified on the Cross –

And prayed for all His adversaries.

Around Him people jeered and mocked –

But He forgave their mortal blindness…

To Him barbarian or Greek were one.

It made no difference – slave or master.

In all He saw a human being,

The same law did He give to all.

To all He held out His embrace,

For all He opened up the heavens,

And told us: “All of you are brethren,

For all I suffered unto death!”


 – A. Maykov

– Translated by Natalia Sheniloff

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I see Thy chamber, O my Saviour!

It glitters with majestic glory,

But I do not dare enter in it,

But I do not have proper attire

To stand before Thy awesome presence.

O Thou, our Light-giver, do enlighten

The rags of my impoverished soul.

I traveled life’s path as a beggar,

Do Thou with love and greatest mercy

Among Thy servants number me.


– Prince P.A. Vyazemsky

– Translated by Natalia Sheniloff

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Beneath the deep sea waves

The Damascene's exalted canon

Was sung at this day's evening vigil.

With tenderness my heart was filled,

The wondrous words did warm my soul.

“The Lord miraculously saved the people,

The deep sea waves He did dry out...”

O, I believe He'll come in our days as well

And other miracles perform.

O God! It's not the people, but a humblest man

Calls out Thee, so full of anguish...

In my heart, too, there are such turbulent waves

Of reminiscences and passions.

O, dry them out with Thy almighty hand!

Illumine as the sun the darkness of my thoughts...

O, do descend to Thy most worthless creature,

O, do Thou help my lack of faith!


 – A.N. Apukhtin

– Translated by Natalia Sheniloff

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Aflame with love for all around Him,

He taught the people to be humble,

And all Mosaic laws and justice

He made subordinate to love.

He did not tolerate revenge or anger,

He preached forgiveness above all,

And bade that evil be repaid with good.

There was an unearthly power in Him:

He gave back vision to the blind,

He granted utter strength and movement

To those who were both weak and lame.

He did not need their recognition,

To Him all inner thoughts were open,

And no one did as yet endure

His searching, penetrating gaze.

Healing all ills and soothing torment,

He was a Saviour all around,

To all His kind hand He extended,

And no one did He ever condemn.


A.K. Tolstoy

Translated by Natalia Sheniloff





Dear Master, for this coming year

Just one request I bring:

I do not pray for happiness,

Or any earthly thing.

I do not ask to understand

The way Thou leadest me,

But this I ask: teach me to do

The things that pleaseth Thee.

I want to know Thy guiding voice,

To walk with Thee each day.

Dear Master, make me swift to hear

And ready to obey.

And thus the year I now begin

A happy year will be,

If I am seeking just to do

The things that pleaseth Thee.


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My King and God! A word of power

In times of yore didst Thou pronounce,

The grave's captivity was shattered...

And Lazarus came back to life and rose.

I pray, may such a Word ring out,

May to my soul it say – “Arise!”

And then the dead one will rise up

And enter into Thy rays' light!

It will revive, and with majestic voice

Exuberant laudations will proclaim –

To Thee – the Father's glory's shine,

To Thee – Who died for us and rose!


– Aleksey Khomyakov

– Translated by Natalia Sheniloff

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Under the eave, on the ledge of a well,

Christ sat for a moment to rest.

The Samaritan woman, as such was her wont,

Came her pitcher with water to fill.

Christ asked her to share some water with Him,

But she said to Him in response:

“I am a Samaritan, and with our milieu

No communion can ever be had.”

Christ said to her: “Oh, if only thou knew

Who gives thee live water to drink,

Him wouldst thou seek, and Him wouldst thou ask,

Who is presently speaking with thee.”

“The well here is deep, and live water from it

How canst Thou obtain, how indeed?

Jacob, our father, plain water did give,

And art Thou greater than he?”

Christ said to her: “Summon thy husband to come.”

But she said in reply: “I have none.”

“Thou tellest the truth, five of them thou didst have,

And the current is no husband to thee.”

“I see Thou art prophet. So do Thou please tell,

Where is it best that we pray?

On Mount Garizim? Or should God be revered

By coming to Jerusalem?”

“Not here and not there, but around everywhere,

Where the heart is flaming with love.

So go, bring glad tidings to family and friends,

That Messiah was speaking with thee.”

The Samaritan woman ran off in a hurry,

Forgetting her pitcher at the well.

And all whom she met, she summoned with her:

“Come and see Christ, for He has appeared!”

And ever from that time, the Saramitan woman

The live water did drink and did share.

For that water she suffered, for it she was martyred,

And is numbered among all the saints.


 – Translated by Natalia Sheniloff


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