A Brief Catechism of the Orthodox Eastern Catholic Church
Compiled By Archimandrite ANTHONY (Repella)
God's Blessing and my Approval to this useful Book
Approved Printing Permitted V. Rev. Joseph Stephanko, Censor
Q. 1. What is a Catechism?
A. A Catechism is a short exposition of the doctrines of the Lord Jesus Christ in questions and answers.
Q. 2. Why is the teaching of the Lord Jesus Christ necessary for us?
A. The teaching of the Lord Jesus Christ is necessary for us because it leads us to God, to salvation, and to happiness.
Q. 3. How can we come near to God?
A. We can came near to God by thought, wish and deed.
Q. 4. Who comes to God by thought?
A. He who believes in God comes to Him by thought.
Q. 5. Who comes to God by wish?
A. He who prays to God comes to Him by wish.
Q. 6. Who comes near to God by deed?
A. He who fulfills the will and the Law of God comes near to Him by deed.
Q. 7. From where do we learn how to believe in God?
A. We may learn how to believe in God from the Creed.
Q. 8. From where do we learn how to pray?
A. We learn how to pray from the Lord's Prayer.
Q. 9. From where do we learn how to live according to the will and the Law of God?
A. We learn how to live according to the will and the Law of God from the TEN COMMANDMENTS.
Q. 10. Where is the teaching of the Lord Jesus Christ about happiness given?
A. The teaching of the Lord Jesus Christ about happiness is given in the BEATITUDES.
Q. 11. Why are you called a Christian?
A. I am called a Christian because I believe in Our Lord Jesus Christ.
Q. 12. Why are you called an Orthodox Christian?
A. I am called an Orthodox Christian because I believe according to the teaching of the Orthodox Church of Christ.
Q. 13. What does the word "Orthodox" (Pravoslavni) mean?
A. The word "Orthodox" (pravoslavni) means "rightly believing," the right way of glorifying God, the right doctrine, the right way of serving God; in other words, it is the true Faith, without admixture of error, as it has been handed down from God and our Lord Jesus Christ.
II. ON THE CREED
Q. 14. What is the Creed (Symbol of Faith)?
A. The Creed (Symbol of Faith) is a short expounding of the Orthodox Christian Faith, composed at the first two Ecumenical Councils (325 and 381, A.D. The Nicene Creed.)
Q. 15. What is an Ecurnenica1 Council?
A. An Ecumenical Council is an Assembly of Pastors (Bishops and Priests) of the Church from all parts of the world.
Q. 16. Into how many Articles or part (chlenov) is the Creed divided?
A. The Creed is divided into twelve Articles (chlenov).
THE FIRST ARTICLE
Q. 17. How does the first Article of the Creed read?
A. I believe in ONE God the Father, Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible.
Q. 18. Of whom does the first Article of the Creed speak?
A. The first Article of the Creed speaks of God, the Creator of the world.
Q. 19. What is meant by the words "I believe?"
A. By the words "I believe" is meant that all the teaching of the Faith in this Creed is the Truth.
With all my heart I receive the Christian Orthodox Faith and I am ready to confess it openly before all, and, should it become necessary, to suffer for it also.
Q. 20. Who is God?
A. God is a Spirit, eternal, all-good, omniscient, all-just, almighty, omnipresent, all-sufficing, unchangeable, and all-blessed.
GOD is the HIGHEST, INFINITE and SUPERPERFECT SPIRITUAL BEING, from WHOM everything originated and by WHOM everything is sustained.
Q. 21. What is revealed to us about the HOLY TRINITY?
A. It is revealed to us about the HOLY TRINITY that GOD is ONE, yet He is TRINE in PERSONS: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, -- a TRINITY Consubstantial and Undivided.
Q. 22. What difference is there between the Persons of the Holy Trinity?
A. - GOD THE FATHER is neither begotten, nor proceeds from another Person; THE SON OF GOD is from all eternity begotten of the Father; THE HOLY SPIRIT, from all eternity, proceeds from the Father.
Q. 23. Are the Three Persons of the Most HOLY TRINITY all of equal majesty?
A. The three Persons of the Most Holy TRINITY are all of absolutely equal Divine majesty. The Father is true God, the Son is equally true God; and the Holy Spirit is true God, but yet so, that in three Persons is only ONE GOD.
Q. 24. Why is God called Almighty?
A. God is called Almighty because He upholds all things in His power and His will.
Q. 25. Why is God called the Maker?
A. God is called the Maker because He created heaven and the earth, and all things visible and invisible.
Q. 26. What is meant in the Creed by the word "invisible"?
A. By the word "invisible" in the Creed is meant the INVISIBLE, or Spiritual World, to which the Angels belong.
Q. 27. What are the Angles?
A. The Angels are incorporal Spirits, having intelligence, will, and power.
Q. 23. What does the Word "Angel" mean?
A. The word "Angel" means Messenger, because God sends the Angels to announce His will to the people.
Q. 29. What is a Guardian Angel?
A. A Guardian Angel is an Angel that is given, to us from God it the time of our baptism to guard us from evil.
Q. 30. Are Angels good?
A. Not all Angels are good, there are also evi1 angels, otherwise called devils, which do not obey God, and teach evil to the people.
Q. 31. What is known to us of the visible world?
A. Holy Scripture reveals to us that in the beginning God created from nothing heaven, and the earth; and the earth was without form and void. Afterwards God created:
On the first day of the world, the light; on the second day, the firmament or visible heaven; on the third day, the gathering together of waters on the earth, the dry land, and whatever grows there upon; on the fourth day, the sun, moon, and stars; on the fifth day fish and birds; on the sixth day, four-footed creatures living on the earth, and finally MAN.
Q. 32. Were the visible creatures created such as we see them now?
A. The visible creatures were created not such as we see them now; at the creation everything was very good, that is pure, beautiful, and harmless.
"And God saw everything that He made, and, behold, it was very good." (Genesis 1:31.)
Q. 33. Are we not informed of something particular in the creation of man?
A. God in the Holy Trinity said: Let us make than in OUR image and after OUR likeness. (Genesis 1 :26.) And God made the body of the first man, ADAM, from the earth; breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; brought him into Paradise; gave for food, beside the other fruits of Paradise, the fruit of the Tree of Life; and lastly, having taken, a rib from ADAM while he slept, made from it the first woman, EVE. (Genesis 2 :22.)
Q. 34. What is the breath of Life?
A. The breath of Life is the SOUL, a spiritual and immortal substance.
Q. 35. Why did God create man?
A. God created man to show forth His goodness and to share with us His everlasting happiness in heaven.
Q. 36. What must we do to gain the happiness of heaven?
A To gain the happiness of heaven we must know, love, and serve God in this world.
Q. 37. Does God take care of the world?
A. God takes care of the world. He preserves and directs it.
Q. 38. What is Divine Providence?
A. Divine Providence is the constant energy of the Almighty power, wisdom, and goodness of God, by which He preserves the being and faculties of His creatures, directs them to good ends, and assists all that is good; but the evi1 that springs by departure from the good HE either cuts off, or corrects it and turns it to good results.
Q. 39. What does the first article of the Creed teach?
A. The first article of the Creed teaches us: 1., that God is a Spirit the highest and the most perfect; 2., that God is one in Substance, but trine in Persons, and that all the THREE PERSONS are of absolutely equal Divine majesty; 3., that all the world was created by God; and 4., that God holds the world in His power and governs everything.
THE SECOND ARTICLE
Q. 40. How does the second article read?
A. And in One Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Only begotten, begotten of the Father before all ages Light of Light, Very God of Very God, begotten, not made, Consubstantial with the Father, by Whom all things were made.
Q. 41. Of whom is it spoken in the second article of the Creed?
A. In the second article of the Creed it is spoken of the Second Person of the Holy Trinity -- of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
Q. 42. In what sense is the Second Person of the Most Holy Trinity called 'Lord?'
A. The Second Person of the Most Holy TRINITY is called "Lord" that He is as true God as God the Father.
Q. 43. What does the name "Jesus" mean?
A. The name "JESUS" means Savior.
Q. 44. What does the word `Christ' mean?
A. The word "Christ" means Anointed.
Q. 45. Why is our Lord Jesus Christ called the Son of God, the Only-begotten?
A. Our Lord Jesus Christ is called the Son of God, the Only-begotten because He is the only Son begotten of the substance of God the Father.
Q. 46. When was the Son of God begotten of God the Father?
A. The Son of God was begotten of God the Father before all ages.
Q. 47. What does this mean?
A. That the Son of God was begotten of God the Father before all ages means that there was no time, when He was not; the Son of God is as eternal as God, the Father.
Q. 48. What do the words: "Light of Light" signify?
A. The words: "Light of Light" signify that when the sun rises, light appears simultaneously, together with it: so God the Father and God the Son are of ONE indivisible Divine substance.
Q. 44. What do the words: "Very God of Very God" mean?
A. The words: "Very God of Very God" mean that just as the Father is true God, so is the Son also true God.
Q. 50. For what purpose is it said: "begotten, not made?"
A. "Begotten not made" is said to contradict the false doctrine of Arius who impiously taught that the Son of God was made.
Q. 51. What does: "consubstantial with the Father" mean?
A. "Consubstantial with the Father" means that Jesus Christ is of one and the same substance with God, the Father, and has the same Divine nature with Him.
Q. 52. What do the words mean: "by Whom all things were made?"
A. The words "by whom all things were made" mean that God the Father created all things by His Son.
Q. 53. What does the second article of the Creed teach?
A. The second article of the Creed teaches: 1., that our Lord Jesus Christ is the Only begotten Son of God and is the true God; 2., that He was begotten of God the Father before all ages; 3., that by Him the world was created.
THE THIRD ARTICLE
Q. 54. How does the third article of the Creed read?
A. Who for us men, and for our salvation, came down from heaven, and was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and of the Virgin Mary, and became man.
Q. 55. Of what is it spoken in the third article of the Creed?
A. In the third article of the Creed it is spoken of this, that the Son of God came from heaven to save the people from sin, the curse, and death.
Q. 56. What do the words: "He came down from heaven" mean?
A. The Lord has always been and is both in heaven and on earth, in the whole universe, but on earth He was invisible before and afterwards took up flesh as the God-man, became visible.
Q. 57. What do the words: "and was incarnate" mean?
A. The words: "and was incarnate" mean, that the Son of God took upon Himself human flesh, except sin, without ceasing to be God.
Q. 58. What do the words: "and was made man" mean?
A. The words: "and was made man" mean that the Son of God took upon Himself the flesh and the soul of man and became man.
Q. 59. From whom was the Son of God incarnated?
A. The Son of God was incarnated from the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary.
Q. 60. Who was the Virgin Mary?
A. The Blessed Virgin Mary was of the family of Abraham and David, to whom namely was given the promise of the Savior.
Q. 61. Why is she called the Ever-Virgin?
A. The Blessed Virgin Mary is called the Ever-Virgin because She always was and is a Virgin.
Q. 62. How does the Holy Orthodox Church teach of the dignity of the Virgin Mary?
A. The Holy Orthodox Church titles the Virgin Mary "The Mother of God" (Theotokos, Bohoroditza) and honors Her far above the cherubims and seraphims.
The title "The Mother of God" has the origin in the Holy Scripture, it is taken from the words of Prophet Isaiah: "Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name IMMANUEL which being interpreted, is, "GOD WITH US." (Is. 7:14; Mat. 1:23.)
So also the righteous Elizabeth calls the Most Holy Virgin Mary "The Mother of the Lord," which title is all one with that of Mother of God. "Whence is this to the, that the Mother of my Lord should come to me?" (Luk. 7:43.)
Q. 63. Why it is said: "for the sake of us men?"
A. By the words: "for the sake of us men" is expressed that the Lord Jesus Christ came down to save -- not one particular people, as the Jews thought, but all men to whatsoever nation any may belong.
Q. 64. What is sin?
A. Sin is a transgression of the law. (1 John 3:4.)
Q. 65. Whence is sin in men, seeing that they were created in the image of God, and God cannot sin ?
A. Sin in men is from the devil. He that committeth sin, is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. (1 John 3:8.)
Q. 66. How did sin pass from the devil to men?
A. The devil deceived Eve and Adam, and induced them to transgress God's commandment.
Q. 67. What commandment?
A. God commanded Adam in Paradise not to eat of the fruit of the Tree of the knowledge of good and evil, and withal told him, that as soon as he ate thereof he should surely die.
Q. 68. How could Adam and Eve listen to the devil against the will of God?
A. God of His goodness, at the creation of span, gave him a will naturally disposed to love God, but still free and man used this freedom for evil.
Q. 69. How did the devil deceive Adam and Eve?
A. Eve saw in Paradise a serpent, which assured her that if men ate of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, they would know good and evil, and would become as gods. Eve was deceived by this promise, and by the fairness of the fruit, and ate of it. Adam ate after her example.
Q. 70. What came of Adam's sin?
A. The curse and death.
Q. 71. What is a curse?
A. The curse is the condemnation of sin by God's just judgment, and the evil which from sin came upon the earth for the punishment of men. God said to Adam, Cursed is the ground for thy sake. (Genesis 3:17.)
Q. 72. What is death which came from The sin of Adam?
A. The death which came from the sin, of Adam is twofold: bodily, when the body loses the soul which quickened it, and spiritual, when the soul loses the grace of God, which quickened it with the higher and spiritual life.
Q. 73. Can the soul then die, as well as the body?
A. The soul can die, but not so as the body. The body, when it dies, loses sense, and is dissolved; the soul, when it dies by sin, loses spiritual light, joy, and happiness, but is not dissolved nor annihilated, but remains in a state of darkness, anguish, and suffering.
Q. 74. Why did not the first than only die, and not all as now?
A. Because all have came of Adam since his infection by sin, and all sin themselves. As from an infected source there naturally flows an infected stream, so from a father infected with sin, and consequently mortal, there naturally proceeds a posterity infected like him with sin, and like him mortal.
Q. 75. How is this spoken of in the Holy Scripture?
A. By one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin, and so, death passed upon all men for that all have sinned. (Romans 5:12 by St. Paul..)
Q. 76. What is this sin called in us?
A. This sin in which we are born is called original sin. Behold I was conceived in iniquities, and in sin did my mother bare me. (50 Psalm.)
Q. 77. Had men then any Hope left of salvation?
A. When our first parents, Adam and Eve, had confessed before God their sin, God, of His mercy, gave them a hope of salvation.
Q. 78. In what consisted this hope?
A. God promised, that the seed of the woman should bruise the serpent's head. (Gen, 3:15.)
Q. 79. What did that mean?
A. That meant, that Jesus Christ would overcome the devil who had deceived men, and deliver them from sin, the curse, and death.
Q. 80. Why is Jesus Christ, called the seed of the woman?
A. Jesus Christ is called the seed of the woman because He was born on earth without man, from the Most Holy Virgin Mary.
Q. 81. What benefit was there, in this promise?
A. There was benefit in this promise that from the time of the promise men could believe savingly in the Savior that was to come, even as we now believe in the Savior that has come.
Q. 82. How then did the Lord save us?
A. Our Lord Jesus Christ took upon Himself the sins of all mankind and suffered for us all the most painful and humiliating punishment, namely the death on the cross. Such self-immolation of the Sonof God Himself has in the eyes of God a priceless value, and thereby the Lord reconciled us with God's justice and opened for us the way into the heavenly Kingdom.
At the same time He taught us what we ought to believe and haw we should live in order to free ourselves from sins and to inherit the life eternal, and in His own life He gave us the example of all virtues.
Q. 83. When does Christ's life minister to our salvation?
A. Christ's life ministers to our salvation when we imitate it. He says: If any one serve Me, let him follow Me; and where I am, there shall also My servant be. (John 12:26.)
Q. 84. What does the third Article of the Creed teach?
A. The third Article of the Creed teaches: 1., that Jesus Christ the Son of God, was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and of the Virgin Mary and took up not only the body, but the soul of man, and became perfect man, without ceasing to be God; 2., that the All-holy Virgin Mary is rightly called the Mother of God, and is higher than all angels and men; 3., that the Son of God, Lord Jesus Christ, was incarnate for our sake that He might save us from sin, the curse and death; 4., that He did, and continues to save us by His suffering and death, by His teaching, by diving us in His own life the example of all the virtues.
THE FOURTH ARTICLE
Q. 85. How sloes the fourth Article of the Creed read?
A. And was crucified for us under Pontius Pilate, and suffered, and was buried.
Q. 86. Of what is it spoken in the fourth Article of the Creed?
A. In the fourth Article of the Creed it is spoken of the suffering and death of Jesus Christ.
Q. 87. How could Jesus Christ suffer, He being God?
A. Jesus Christ suffered and died as God-man by His own good will, for our sins. He Himself said: I lay down My life, that I may take it up again. No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have the power to lay it down, and have the power to take it up again (John 10:17-18).
Q. 88. What do the words: "under Pontius Pilate" express?
A. The words: °"under Pontius Pilate" denote the time of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, Pontius Pilate was the Roman governor of Judea.
Q: 89. Why is it said: "suffered"?
A. It is said "suffered" to signify that the. Lord Jesus Christ not only seemed to suffer, as same heretics said, but truly and actually did suffer all the tortures of a death on the cross.
Q. 90. Why is it also added: "and was buried?"
A. "And was buried" it was also added to assure that Jesus Christ really died and was buried.
Q. 91. Did Jesus Christ suffer for us all?
A. Jesus Christ offered Himself as a sacrifice for all, and obtained for all grace and salvation; but this benefits only those of us, who, for their parts, of their own free-will, have "fellowship in His sufferings, being made conformable unto His death." (Philip. 3:10.)
Q. 92. How can we have fellowship in the suffering and death of Jesus Christ?
A. We have fellowship in the sufferings and death of Jesus Christ through a lively and hearty faith, through the Sacraments, in which is contained and sealed the virtue of His saving sufferings and death, and lastly, through the crucifixion of our flesh with its affections and lusts. 'They that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts." (Gal. 5:24.) "Know ye not, that as many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ, were baptized into His death?" (Rom. 6:3.)
Q. 93. How can we crucify the flesh with the affections and lusts?
A. We can crucify the flesh with the affections and lusts by bridling the affections and lusts and by doing what is contrary to them. For instance, when anger prompts us to revile an enemy and to do him harm, but we resist the wish, and, remembering how Jesus Christ on the cross prayed for His enemies, pray likewise for ours; we thus crucify the affection of anger.
Q 94. What then sloes the fourth Article of the Creed teach?
A. The fourth Article of the Creed teaches that our lord Jesus Christ, in order to deliver us from punishment for our sins, took upon HIMSELF this punishment for all mankind, was condemned by the Jews to be crucified, at the time when their country was administered by the Roman governor Pontius Pilate, that for the sake of our salvation He suffered on the cross the awful tortures, really and truly died thereon and was buried.
THE FIFTH ARTICLE
Q. 95. How does the fifth Article of the Creed read?
A. And rose again the third day according to the Scripture.
Q. 96. Of what is it spoken in the fifth Article of the Creed?
A. In the fifth Article of the Creed it is spoken of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, on the third day after His death.
Q. 97. By what power did the Lord Jesus Christ rise up?
A. The Lord Jesus Christ was risen from the dead by the power of His Divinity.
Q. 98. What effect has the resurrection of the Lord for us?
A. Our Lord Jesus Christ having risen from the dead, obtained victory over death and opened to all truly believing on Him the way to the blessed resurrection and life eternal.
Q. 99. Wherefore it is said: "according to the Scripture?"
A. "According to the Scripture" it is said in order to point out that the Lord Jesus Christ was born, lived on earth, suffered, died and rose up from the dead, just as, long before the events, all this had been foretold by the prophets.
Q. 100. Has not the risen Lord Himself appeared to some one?
A. The risen Lord Himself has appeared, during forty days, to the myrrh bearing women, to the apostles and other believers. During that time the Lord taught the apostles the mysteries of the Kingdom of God.
THE SIXTH ARTICLE
Q. 101. How does the sixth article of the Creed read?
A. And ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of the Father.
Q. 102. Of what is it spoken in the sixth Article of the Creed?
A. In the sixth Article of the Creed it is spoken of the ascension of Jesus Christ into heaven.
Q. 103. Was it in His Godhead or in His manhood that Jesus Christ ascended into heaven?
A. Jesus Christ ascended into heaven in His manhood. In His godhead He forever was and is in heaven, as in all the world.
Q. 104. What do the words: "sitteth on the right hand of the Father" mean?
A. The words: "sitteth on the right hand of the Father" signify that our Lord Jesus Christ has one and the same power, honor and glory with God the Father,
THE SEVENTH ARTICLE
Q. 105. How does the seventh Article of the Creed read?
A. And He shall come again with glory to judge the living and the dead; of Whose Kingdom shall have no end.
Q. 106. Of what is it spoken in the seventh Article of the Creed?
A. In the seventh Article of the Creed it is spoken that Jesus Christ will come again from heaven in glory to fudge all the people the living and those risen from the dead.
Q. 107. Of what kind will the second coming of the Lord be?
A. The second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ will be quite different from the first: the first time He came in humility, whilst the second time He will appear in glory and all the Angels with Him.
Q. 108. When will the second coming the Lord take place?
A. When the second coming of the Lord will take place it is not known, and therefore we ought to lead such a life as to be ever ready to meet the Lord.
Q. 109. Has not the Lord revealed to us some signs of His second coming?
A. The Lord has revealed to us some signs of His second coming. The signs are as: the preaching of the Gospel to all nations and the conversion of many of the Jews to Christ, the decrease or faith and love among men the increase of iniquities and calamities and the coming of the antichrist.
Q. 110. Who is the antichrist?
A. Antichrist is an adversary of the Lord Jesus Christ who, at the instigation of the devil and by his power, will strive by all means to overthrow Christianity, who will claim for himself the worship which is due to God, who will perform false signs and miracles and at last shall himself be smitten by the Lord.
Q. 111. Whom and for what shall the Lord judge?
A. The Lord shall judge all men without exception and not only for their bad deeds, but for evil words and thoughts, unless we efface them by repentance and amendments of our life.
Q. 112. What Kingdom is spoken of in the seventh article of the Creed?
A. In the seventh Article of the Creed it is spoken of the Lord's Kingdom with the righteous.
Q. 113. What does the seventh Article of the Creed teach?
A. The seventh Article of the Creed teaches us: 1., that our Lord Jesus Christ shall again come on earth; 2., that He shall judge all, both the living and dead; 3., that after this awful judgment shall ensue His everlasting Kingdom.
THE EIGHTH ARTICLE
Q. 114. How does the eighth Article of the Creed read?
A. And in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of Life, Who proceedeth from the Father, Who with the Father and the son together is worshipped and glorified, Who spake by the Prophets.
Q. 115. Of whom is it spoken in the eighth Article of the Creed?
A. In the eighth Article of the Creed it is spoken of the third Person of the Holy Trinity the Holy Spirit.
Q. 116. Why is the Holy Spirit called: "The Giver of Life?"
A. The Holy Spirit is called "The Giver of Life" because He, together with God the Father and the Son, gives life to all creatures, especially spiritual life to men.
Q. 117. How do we know that the Ho1y Spirit proceeds from the Father?
A. That the Holy Spirit proceedeth from the Father we know from the following words of Jesus Christ Himself: "But when the Comforter is come, Whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, He shall testify of Me." (Gospel acc. St. John 15.)
Q. 118. Does the doctrine of the procession of the Holy Spirit from the Father admit of any change or supplement?
A. The doctrine of the procession of the Holy Spirit from the Father does not admit of any change or supplement. First, because the Orthodox Church, in this doctrine, repeats the very words of Jesus Christ: and His words without doubt, are an exact expression of the truth. Secondly, because the second Ecumenical Council (381), whose chief object was to establish the true doctrine respecting the Holy spirit, has without doubt sufficiently set forth the same in the Creed; and the Orthodox Church has acknowledged this so decidedly, that the third Ecumenical Council (431) in its seventh canon forbade the composition of any new Creed.
Q. 119. Whence does it appear that the Holy Spirit is equal with the Father and the Son, and together with them, to be Worshipped and glorified?
A. That the Holy Spirit is equal with the Father and the Son; and together with them, to be worshipped and glorified it appears from this, that Jesus Christ commanded to "baptize in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit." (Matt 28:19.)
Q. 120. What meaning is conveyed by the words: "Who spake by the prophets"?
A. By the words: "Who spake by the prophets" is conveyed the meaning that the Holy Spirit, in the Old Testament, spoke by the prophets just as in the New Testament by the Apostles, and that the books of the prophets were written under the inspiration from the Holy Spirit, exactly in the same way as the writings of the Apostles.
Q. 121. Is the Holy Spirit communicated to men even now?
A. The Holy Spirit is communicated to all true Christians through fervent prayer, and through the Sacraments. "Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?" (1 Cor. 3:16.) "If ye then, being evil, know hew to give good gifts, unto your children, how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him?" (Luke 11:13.)
THE NINTH ARTICLE
Q. 122. How does the ninth Article of the Creed read?
A. In One Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church.
Q. 123. Of what is it spoken in the ninth Article of the Creed?
A. In the ninth Article of the Creed it is spoken of the Church.
Q. 124. What is the Church?
A. The Church is the body of Christians, united by the Seven Sacraments, the Hierarchy, and Orthodox Christian Faith.
Q. 125. What is it 'to believe in the Church?'
A. "To believe in the Church" is to honor the true Church of Christ, and to obey Her doctrines and commandments, from a conviction that divine grace ever abides in Her, and works, teaches, and governs unto salvation, flowing from Her to One only everlasting Head, the Lord Jesus Christ.
Q. 126. Why is the Church One?
A. The Church is ONE because the Church has but One Head -- Christ, and but one Orthodox Doctrine. The St. Apostle Paul in his Epistle to the Ephesians (1:22-23; 1:15-16; 5:23) names Christ the Head of the Church, and the Church -- His Body: "God . . . gave Him to be the Head over . . . the Church, Which is His Body."
Q. 127. - Vow should we understand this, that the Church is the Body of Christ?
A. That the Church is the Body of Christ we should understand it in this way: Jesus Christ is for the Church what the soul is for the body.
Q. 128. Can. our body have two heads?
A. Our body can have only one head. In a like manner Christ is the ONE Head of the Church. It is but the Roman Church that believes that it has two heads -- Christ and the Pope.
Q. 129. When did the Roman Church appear?
A. Pope Leo IX separated from the Orthodox Church in 1054 A. D. and founded the Papist Roman Catholic Church. Therefore the Raman Church is an unorthodox (schismatic) Church.
Q. 130. What does the Pope of Rome name himself?
A. The Pope of Rome named himself "Infallible," the "Vicar of Christ."
Q. 131. Is it true that the Pope is infallible (nepohrishimi)?
A. It is not true that the Pope is infallible (nepohrishimi); God alone is without sin. All people are sinful. The St. Apostle John said: "If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us." (1 John 1:8.)
Q. 132. Why is the Church Holy?
A. The Church is Holy because it is sanctified by the doctrine and Passions of Jesus Christ.
Q. 133. Why is the Church Catholic (Universal, Soborna)?
A. The Church is Catholic (Universal) because it contains within it all the Orthodox believers of all the lands, of all times, and all peoples.
Q. 134. Why is the Church Apostolic?
A. The Church is Apostolic because it was spread about the world by the Apostles and by their successors, the bishops and the priests. (Matt. 28:19.)
Q. 135. When was the origination of the Hierarchy of the Orthodox Christian Church?
A. The Hierarchy (Bishops .and Priests) of the Orthodox Christian Church originates from Jesus Christ Himself; and from the descent of the Holy Spirit on the Apostles; from which time it is continued in unbroken succession (Apostolic succession), through the laying on of hands, in the Sacrament of Orders. "And He gave some, Apostles; and some Prophets, and some, Evangelists; and some Pastors and Teachers; for the perfecting of the Saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the Body of Christ." (Ephes. 4:11-12.)
Q. 136. What is the highest authority of the Church on the earth?
A. The highest authority of the Church on the earth is the authority of the Ecumenical Council.
Q. 137. To whom is the Russian Orthodox Church subordinate?
A. The Russian Orthodox Church is subordinate to the Most Holy Patriarch of Russia and to his Synod.
THE TENTH ARTICLE
Q. 138. How does the tenth Article of the Creed read?
A. I acknowledge one Baptism for the remission of sins.
Q. 139. Of what is it spoken in the tenth Article of the Creed?
A. In the tenth Article of the Creed it is spoken of the Sacrament of Baptism, under which are implied the other Sacraments also.
Q. 140. What is a Sacrament?
A. A Sacrament is a holy act, through which the Grace of the Holy Spirit is given. (In other words: A visible sign of invisible Divine Grace.)
Q. 141. How many Sacraments are there?
A. There are seven Sacraments: 1., Baptism; 2., Unction with Chrism (Confirmation); 3., Communion; 4., Penance; 5., Holy Orders (The Priesthood); 6., Matrimony; 7., Unction with oil (last rites).
Q. 142. In what does the Baptism consist?
A. The Baptism consists in this, that he who believes is trice immersed in water in the name of Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit and he is born into spiritual life.
Q. 143. - Why cannot Baptism be repeated?
A. Baptism is spiritual birth: a man is born but once; therefore he is also baptized but once.
Q. 144. In what does the Unction with Chrism (Confirmation) consist?
A. The Unction with Chrism consists in this, that the baptized one is anointed with holy Chrism (miro) (consecrated by the Bishop) with the Priest's words: "The Seal of the Gift of the Holy Spirit."
Q. 145. In what does the Sacrament of Communion consist?
A. The Sacrament of Communion consists in this, that, in the form of bread and wine, we partake of the very Body and Blood of Christ.
Q. 146. When did Jesus institute the Sacrament of Communion?
A. Jesus did institute the Sacrament of Communion on the Last Supper. He "took bread, and blessed it, and broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said: Take, eat; this is my Body, and He took the chalice and gave thanks and gave it to the disciples, saying, Drink ye all of it; for this is my blood." (Matt. 26; 26-27.)
Q. 147. How do the Orthodox Christians receive Holy Communion?
A. The Orthodox Christians receive the Holy Communion in the form of bread and wine, -- the Very Body and Blood of Christ.
Q. 148. How do the Roman Catholics receive Communion?
A. To the lay Roman Catholics are given unleavened bread disks (wafers) despite the will of the Lord Jesus Christ, Himself.
Q. 149. In what does Penitence consist?
A. Penitence consists in this, that the sinner contritely confesses his sins before a priest and God forgives him.
Q. 150. In what does the Sacrament of Holy Order consist?
A. The Sacrament of holy Orders consists in this, that by the laying on the hands of the Bishops, there is given unto the ordained the grace to minister the Sacraments, and feed the flock of Christ.
Q. 151. How many degrees of Priesthood are there?
A. There are three degrees of Priesthood: The Bishop, The Priest and the Deacon.
Q. 152. What is the difference among them?
A. The difference among them is this: The Deacon serves at the Sacraments; the Priest performs the Sacraments, excepting Ordination; and the Bishop performs all the Sacraments.
Q. 153. In what does Matrimony consist?
A. The Sacrament of Matrimony consists in this, that the union of man and woman is blessed in the image of the union of Christ with His Church.
Q. 154. In what does Unction with Oil consist?
A. The Unction with Oil consists in this, that the sick are anointed with blessed oil and receive the grace of becoming healed from God.
Q. 155. By whom were the sacraments instituted?
A. The Sacraments were instituted by the Lord Jesus Christ Himself.
THE ELEVENTH ARTICLE
Q. 156. How does the eleventh Article of the Creed read?
A. I look for the resurrection of the dead.
Q. 157. Of what is it spoken in the eleventh Article of the Creed?
A. In the eleventh Article of the Creed it is spoken of this; that all the dead will rise again at the end of the world and become immortal.
Q. 158. What shall become of the people living at the Second coming of the Lord?
A. The bodies of the people living at the Second Coming of the Lord shall be changed and they, also, shall be immortal.
Q. 159. What is to be remarked of such souls, as have departed with faith, but without having had time to bring forth fruits worthy of repentance?
A. Such souls as have departed (died) with faith, but without having had time to bring forth fruits of repentance, may be aided towards attainment of a blessed resurrection by prayers offered in their behalf, especially such as are offered in union with the oblation of the Bloodless Sacrifice of the Body and Blood of Christ (Divine Liturgy), and by works of mercy done in faith for their memory. St. Basil the Great in his prayers for Pentecost (Green Sunday), says, that the Lord vouchsaves to receive from us propitiatory prayers and sacrifices for those that are kept in Hades, and allows us the hope of obtaining for them peace, relief, and freedom.
THE TWELFTH ARTICLE
Q. 160. How does the twelfth Article of the Creed read?
A. And the life in the world to came. Amen.
Q. 161. Of what is it spoken in the twelfth Article of the Creed?
A. In the twelfth Article of the Creed it is spoken of this, that after the general resurrection, there shall be, to the just, an eternal life of blessedness, and, for the unrepented sinners, -- an everlasting life of suffering.
III. OF THE LORD'S PRAYER
Q. 162. How does the Lord's Prayer read?
A. Our Father, Who art in heaven hallowed be Thy name; Thy Kingdom come; Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven; give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our debts, as we also forgive our debtors; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Thine is the Kingdom, and the Power, and the Glory, of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit now, and ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.
Q. 163. Why is this prayer called the Lord's Prayer?
A. "Our Father" is called the Lord's Prayer because it was given by the Lord Jesus Christ to the Apostles and to all Christians. (Matt. VI: 9-13.)
Q. 164. How is it divided?
A. The Lord's Prayer is divided into Invocation, the Seven Petitions, and the Doxology.
Q. 165. How does the Invocation read?
A. The Invocation: "Our Father, Who art in heaven!"
Q. 166. Why do we call God Father?
A. We call God Father because we love God, as children love their father.
Q. 167. How dare we call trod Father?
A. We call God Father in virtue of the faith in Jesus Christ and of the grace of regeneration which is vouchsafed us in the Sacrament by Baptism.
Q. 168. How does the first petition read?
A. The first petition: "Hallowed be Thy name."
Q. 169. What do we ask of God by this petition?
A. By this petition: "Hallowed be Thy name" we ask that God help us keep His Name Holy in our minds and hearts, and that we may live according to His law and thus glorify Him among the people.
Q. 170. How does the second petition read?
A. The second petition: "Thy Kingdom come."
Q. 171. What do we here ask of God?
A. By the petition: "Thy Kingdom come" we ask God's help, that sin should not reign in us, but that the Spirit of God lead us to good and to happiness.
Q. 172. How does the third petition read?
A. The third petition: "Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven."
Q. 173. What do we ask of God by the third petition?
A. By the third petition, "Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven" we ask, that all things in our life should come by the Will of God.
Q. 174. How does the fourth petition read?
A. The fourth petition: "Give us this day our daily bread?"
Q. 175. What do we ask of God by the fourth petition?
A. By the petition: "Give us this day our daily bread" we ask God of His goodness to provide for all our daily needs, such as food., clothing, and shelter. And this we ask for today only without care for the future, because such care would be inconsistent with trust in God.
Q. 176. How does the fifth petition read?
A. By the petition: "And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors."
Q. 177. What do we ask by the fifth petition?
A. By the fifth petition: "And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors" we ask that God forgive us our sins, as we forgive those, who have done us evil.
Q. 178. But what will happen if we do not forgive others?
A. If we do not forgive others when they offend against us, we cannot expect from God forgiveness for ourselves. Therefore it is absolutely necessary to forgive everyone who injures us, and to strive to live in peace with all men.
Q. 179. How does the sixth petition read?
A. The sixth petition: "And lead us not into temptation."
Q. 180. What do we ask by this petition?
A. By the petition: "And lead us not into temptation" we ask God not to permit the devil to deceive us and bring us into sin.
Q. 181. How does the seventh petition read?
A. The seventh petition: "But deliver us from evil."
Q. 182. What do we ask by those words?
A. By the petition: "But deliver us from evil" we ask God that He keep us from all evil and misfortune.
Q. 183. How does the doxology read?
A. The doxology: "For Thine is the Kingdom, and the power, and the glory, of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, now, and ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.
Q. 184. Why is the Doxology added after the lord's Prayer?
A. The Doxology is added after the Lord's Prayer so that we may not only ask mercies for ourselves of Almighty God, the King of all, but that we may also offer Him the glory which is His.
Q. 185. What is the meaning of the word "Amen"?
A. The word "Amen" means "so be it."
IV. THE TEN COMMANDMENTS OF GOD
Q. 186. Who gave the Ten Commandments?
A. The Lord God Himself gave the Ten Commandments through Moses, the prophet, on Mount Sinai, on the 50th day of the Exodus of the Hebrews from Egypt.
Q. 187. Why must the Christians keep the Ten Commandments?
A. The Christians must keep the Ten Commandments because the Lord Jesus Christ bade to keep them, as is seen from the Gospel. (Mat. XIX: 17-19.)
Q. 188. What is the first Commandment of the Law of God?
A. The First Commandment of the Law of God: "I am the Lord thy God; thou shalt have no other gods beside Me."
Q. 189. What does the First Commandment bid us to do?
A. The First Commandment bids us to acknowledge one God in thought; to be believe in Him with our heart, and 1ove Aim; to glorify Him by words of our mouth, and to serve Him with our whole being.
Q. 190. What regard should we have for the Angels and for the Saints of God?
A. We should venerate Angels and the Saints of God as the servants of God, and, because, they pray for us to God, because of their love for us.
Q. 191. What is the Second Commandment of God?
A. The Second Commandment: "Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in the heaven, or that in. the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; thou shalt not bow down thyself to them nor serve them.
Q. 192. What does God forbid by the Second Commandment?
A. By the Second Commandment God forbids the worship of idols.
Q. 193. What is an idol?
A. An idol (handmade statue, or figure) is a representation of a false deity. Such, as the Hebrews, who fashioned the likeness of a calf in gold, and worshiped it, naming it their god. (Exod. 32:4.)
Q. 194. What is an Icon (hole picture)?
A. Icons, the Holy Pictures we use in Church, are representations of Jesus Christ and of His Saints. They are rightly used for the religious remembrance of the works of God and of His Saints, and it is right to pray before them to God and to His Saints. Nevertheless, this right and godly honor of Icons becomes the sin of idolatry when any one honors only the Holy Icons themselves, and puts his trust, and does not lift up his mind and heart to Christ and His Saints who are represented by them.
Q. 195. What is the Third Commandment?
A. The Third Commandment: "Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain."
Q. 196. In the Third Commandment of His Law, what does God forbid?
A. In the Third Commandment of His Law God forbids us to use His name wrongly.
Q. 197. When may we rightly use the Name of God?
A. It is right for us to use the Name of God in prayer and in religious instruction; and with mindful fear and reverence we may use the name of God when lawful authority requires us to be sworn.
Q. 198. But in common talk may we exclaim, as many do, or swear by the name of God?
A. To exclaim or swear by the Name of God in common talk or to use His Holy Name carelessly and disrespectfully at any time, is forbidden by God Himself in the Third Commandment of His Law.
Q. 199. What is the Fourth Commandment of God's Law?
A. The Fourth Commandment: "Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shall thou labor and do all thy work: but the seventh Day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God.''
Q. 200. In the Fourth Commandment of His Law, what does God require of us?
A. In the Fourth Commandment of His Law God commands us to work six days in the week and to all that belongs to our wordly callings; but the seventh day God commands us to keep holy to Him.
Q. 201. Why does God command us to keep the seventh day holy?
A. God commands us to keep the seventh day holy because He made the world in six days, and on seventh day He rested from all His works.
Q. 202. Which particular day of the seven ought we keep holy?
A. In olden times people kept Saturday as the seventh day; but since the Resurrection of Christ, the Orthodox Christian Church keeps Sunday as the seventh day, because on that day Christ rose from the dead.
Q. 203. In addition to the 7th day, set apart, to be kept holy by the Fourth Commandment of God, what other days are set apart to be kept holy by Commandment of the Orthodox Christian Church?
A. Our Holy Orthodox Christian Religion requires us to keep as holy days, first the Feasts of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ; secondly, the Feasts of the Most Holy Theotokos and Ever Virgin Mary; thirdly, the Feasts of the Saints; and, fourthly, the days of fasting, which are to be kept holy by observing such abstinence as is commanded by the Church.
Q. 204. What is the Fifth Commandment of God's Law?
A. Honor thy Father and thy Mother, that it may be well with thee, and that thy days may be long upon the earth.
Q. 205. In the Fifth Commandment of His Law, what does God require of us?
A. In the Fifth Commandment of His Law God commands us to honor and obey our parents.
Q. 206. Does the Fifth Commandment of God's Law require of us that we, honor and obey our parents only?
A. The Fifth Commandment of God's Law commands us to honor and obey not only our parents, but also those who in different ways stand to us in the place of parents: such as the Government of our Country, our spiritual fathers, Bishops and Priests, our teachers in school, God father and God mother.
Q. 207. What is the Sixth Commandment of God's Law?
A. Thou shalt not kill.
Q. 208. In the Sixth Commandment of His Law, what does God forbid?
A. In the Sixth Commandment of His Law God forbids us to take away any person's life by force or by guile, or in any way to disturb the peace of our neighbor. In this Commandment, therefore, God forbids all strife, wrath, hatred, envy and cruelty.
Q. 209. What is the Seventh Commandment of God's Law?
A. Thou shalt not commit adultery.
Q. 210. In the Seventh Commandment of His Law, what does God forbid?
A. In the Seventh Commandment of His Law God forbids adultery, and all unclean pleasures of the body. In this same Commandment He also forbids everything that may tend to excite unlawful desires; such as drunkenness, indecent and shameful words or gestures, the reading of immoral books, singing or listening to immoral songs, and looking upon immoral pictures or shows.
Q. 211. What is the Eighth Commandment of God's Law?
A. Thou shalt not steal.
Q. 212. In the Eighth Commandment of His Law, what does God forbid?
A. In the Eighth Commandment of His Law God forbids us to take by force or secretly anything that belongs to others.
Q. 213. What is the Ninth Commandment of God's Law?
A. Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.
Q. 214. In the Ninth Commandment of His Law, what does God forbid?
A. In the Ninth Commandment of His Law God forbids us to bear false witness against any person in court or out of court; or to slander anyone, or damage his reputation in any way; or to revile anyone, either to his face or behind his back; or under any circumstances to lie or deceive.
Q. 215. What is the Tenth Commandment of God's Law?
A. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife; thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's house, nor his land; nor his man-servant, nor his maid-servant; nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any of his cattle; nor anything that is thy neighbor's.
Q. 216. In the Tenth Commandment of His Law, what does God forbid?
A. In the Tenth Commandment of His Law God not only forbids us to do evil, but also forbids us even so much as to desire it, or to think of it, that we may not from evil thoughts and desires go on to evil deeds.
Q. 217. How are we to keep ourselves from evil desires; and evil thoughts?
A. We must never forget that Almighty God at every moment sees what we do. At the first thought of sin we should say, with Joseph the son of Jacob, "How shall I do this wickedness, and sin against God?"
V. THE BEATITUDES
1. Blessed are the poor in spirit; for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.
To be poor in spirit is to have a spiritual conviction that we have nothing of our own, nothing but what God bestows upon us, and that we can do nothing without God's help and grace, thus counting ourselves as nothing, and in all throwing ourselves upon the mercy of God; spiritual poverty is humility. (St. John Chr. Hom. Mat. XV.)
2. Blessed are they that mourn; for they shall be comforted.
By the word "mourn" is meant this precept: Sorrow and contrition of heart, with unfeigned tears, for that we so imperfectly and unworthily serve the Lord, or even rather deserve His anger by our sins. For godly sorrow worketh repentance unto salvation not to be repented of; but the sorrow of this world worketh death. (2 Cor. VII:10.)
3. Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
Meekness is quiet disposition of spirit, joined with care neither to offend any man, nor be offended at any think one's self. To never murmur against God, nor even against men, when anything falls out against our wishes, nor give way to anger, nor set ourselves up.
4. Blessed are they that hunger and thirst for righteousness; for they shall be filled.
The word "righteousness" may stand for every virtue, which the Christian ought to desire even as his meat and drink and the justification of guilty man through; race and faith in Jesus Christ.
5. Blessed are the merciful; for they shall obtain mercy.
The works of mercy are corporal and spiritual. To obtain mercy is understood to be delivered from everlasting, condemnation for sin at God's Judgment.
6. Blessed are the pure in heart; for they shall see God.
Purity of heart is attained by constant and strict watchfulness over oneself, driving away from the heart every unlawful wish and thought, and every affection for earthly things, and ever keeping in heart the remembrance of God and our Lord Jesus Christ with faith and charity.
7. Blessed are the peacemakers; for they will be called the sons of God.
We must not only keep peace but as well to make peace.
8. Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake; for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.
The eighth precept for blessedness requires love for righteousness, constancy and firmness in virtue, fortitude and patience, when one is subjected to calamity or danger for refusing to betray truth and virtue.
9. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you and persecute you, and shall say all matter of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad; for great is your reward in Heaven.
The ninth precept for blessedness requires that they who would be blessed must be ready to take with joy reproach, suffering, and death itself, for the true Orthodox Christian Faith. The course required by this precept is the course of Martyrdom, and a great Reward in Heaven is promised by the Lord for Martyrdom for the Faith.
APPLICATION OF THE DOCTRINE OF FAITH AND PIETY
Q. How must we apply the doctrine of faith and piety?
A. We must act according to our knowledge; and keep before our eyes the fearful judgment threatened for disobedience.
If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them. (John 13:17.) That servant which knew his Lord's will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to His will, shall be beaten with many stripes. (Luke 72:47.)
Q. What must a man do (a man or a woman, boy or a girl), when he is conscious of a sin?
A. Not only should he immediately repent, and firmly resolve to avoid the same sin for the future, but also strive , as far as possible, to repair the scandal or injury that he has wrought by contrary good deeds.
Thus it was that Zaccheus the Publican acted, when he said to the Lord: Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken any thing away from anyone by false accusation, I restore him fourfold. (Luke XIX:8.)
Q. What caution do we reed, when we seem to ourselves to have fulfilled any Commandment?
A. We must then dispose our heart according to the words of Jesus Christ: "When ye shall have done all those things which are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants; we have done that which was our duty to do." (Luke XVII:10.)
In the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. (3.)
O God, be merciful to me, a sinner. Glory to Thee, our God, glory to Thee.
O, heavenly King, the Comforter, the Spirit of Truth, Who art everywhere present and fillest all things, the Treasure of blessings and the Giver of life, come and abide in us and cleanse us from every impurity, and save, O Gracious One, our souls.
O Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal, 'have mercy on us. (3.)
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, both now, and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.
O All-Holy Trinity, have mercy on us. O Lord cleanse away our sins; O Master, forgive us our iniquities; O Holy One, visit and heal our infirmities, for Thy name's sake. Lord, have mercy. (3.) Glory to the Father..., both now, and ever.
Our Father, Who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy Kingdom come ; Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven; give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Thine is the Kingdom, aid the Power, and the Glory, of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, now, and ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.
Hail, O Mother of God and Virgin Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with Thee; blessed art Thou among women and blessed is the fruit of Thy womb, for Thou hast borne the Savior of our souls.
Meet it is, in truth, to bless Thee, the Birth-giver of God, Ever-blessed and All-undefiled, and the Mother of God. More honorable than the Cherubim, and beyond compare more glorious than the Seraphim, Thou Who without defilement barest God the Word, true Birth-giver of God, we magnify Thee.
O come, let us worship God our King. O come, let us worship and fall down before Christ, our King and God. O come, let us worship and fall down before the Very Christ, our King and our God.
PRAYER AS WE ENTER THE DOOR OF A CHURCH
"I will come into thy House in the multitude of thy mercy; I will bow down before thy Holy Temple in fear of thee."
A PRAYER OF CHILDREN FOR THEIR PARENTS
O Merciful Lord God, Thou halt commanded and enjoined me to honor my father and mother, and truly Thou also halt shown even until death humble obedience to Thy parents. From the depth of my soul I fervently beseech Thee, O Sweet Jesus, my God, hear my prayer and have mercy on my parents, who have and are bringing me up in Thy grace and love. Protect them from all evil, harm and sickness, grant them health, and mercifully pour forth Thy bountiful blessings upon them, Bless their efforts and deeds, have mercy on them according to Thy great mercy, that, faithfully serving Thee, through them I also may be worthy to praise and serve Thee. Amen.
FOR DEPARTED PARENTS
With the Saints give rest O Christ to the souls of Thy servants (my parents) where there is neither sickness nor sorrow nor sighing, but life everlasting.
THE SYMBOL OF THE HOLY ORTHODOX CHRISTIAN FAITH
I believe in one God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible.
And in One Lord: Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the only-begotten, begotten of the Father before all worlds. Light of Light, Very God of Very God, begotten, not made, consubstantial with the Father, and by Whom all things were made.
Who for us men, and for our salvation, came down from heaven and was incarnate of the Holy Spirit, and of the Virgin Mary, and was made man.
And was crucified for us under Pontius Pilate, and suffered and was buried.
And rose again the third day according to the Scripture.
And ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of the Father.
And He shall come again with glory to judge the living and the dead, Whose kingdom shall have no end.
And in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the Giver of life, Who proceedeth from the Father, Who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified, Who spake by the Prophets.
In One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.
I acknowledge one baptism for the remission of sins.
I look for the resurrection of the dead.
And the life in the world to come. Amen.
COMMANDMENTS OF GOD
The first and greatest Commandment:
Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with thy whole heart, and with thy whole soul, and with thy whole mind.
The second is like unto it:
Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. (Mat. 22-37-39.)
THE TEN COMMANDMENTS OF GOD
1. I am the Lord thy God: thou shalt have no other gods beside Me.
2. Thou shalt not make unto thyself any graven image, nor the likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: thou shalt not bow down to them, nor serve them.
3. Thou shalt not take the Name of the Lord thy God in vain.
4. Remember the Sabbath day, to keep holy: six days shalt thou labor, and do all thy work; but the seventh day is the Sabbath to the Lord thy God.
5. Honor thy father and thy mother, that it may be well with thee, and that thy days may be long upon the earth.
6. Thou shalt not kill.
7. Thou shalt not commit adultery.
8. Thou shalt not steal.
9. Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.
10. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife, thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's house, nor his land, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any of his cattle, nor any thing that is thy neighbor's.
THE THREE CARDINAL VIRTUES
Faith -- Hope -- Charity
THE SEVEN HOLY SACRAMENTS
2. Unction with Chrism (Confirmation).
3. Holy Eucharist (Holy Communion).
5. Holy Orders (Priesthood).
7. Unction with oil (Extreme Unction).
THE SEVEN GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
7. Fear of God.
THE FRUITS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
1. Blessed are the poor in spirit; for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.
2. Blessed are they That mourn; for they shall be comforted.
3. Blessed are the meek; for they shall inherit the earth.
4. Blessed are they that hunger and thirst for righteousness; for they shall be filled.
5. Blessed are the merciful; for they shall obtain mercy.
6. Blessed are the pure in heart; for they shall see God.
7. Blessed are the peacemakers; for they shall be called the sons of God.
8. Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake; for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.
9. Blessed are ye, when men revile you and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad; for great is your reward in Heaven. (Mat. 5:3 12.)
THE SEVEN CORPORAL WORKS
1. To feed the hungry.
2. To give drink to the thirsty.
3. To clothe the naked.
4. To show hospitality to strangers.
5. To visit the sick.
6. To visit the imprisoned.
7. To bury the dead.
THE SEVEN SPIRITUAL WORKS OF MERCY
1. To admonish sinners.
2. To instruct the ignorant.
3. To counsel the doubtful.
4. To pray to the Lord for the salvation of thy neighbor.
5. To comfort the sorrowful.
6. To bear wrongs patiently.
7. To forgive all injuries.
THE SEVEN MORTAL SINS
4. Envy (Jealousy).
5. Gluttony (Overfeeding).
7. Indolence (Laziness).
THE FOUR LAST THINGS TO BE REMEMBERED
THE COMMANDMENTS OF THE CHURCH
1. To attend Divine Services on Sundays and Holy days.
2. To keep fasts appointed by the Church.
3. To have confession of sins and receive the Holy Communion once or more every year.
4. To contribute to the support of the Church.
5. To say morning and evening prayers to God.
THE CONFESSION BEFORE THE SPIRITUAL FATHER
I, a sinner, confess to the Lord God Almighty, One in the Holy Trinity, to the All-pure Virgin Mary, Mother of God, to my holy Guardian Angel, to all Saints, and to you, my spiritual Father, all my sins.
PRAYER AFTER CONFESSION OF SINS
For these and all other known and unknown sins I am heartfully sorry, that I have offended and angered the Good God against me; I repent sincerely and I promise, with help of God, to better my life. Wherefore, I humbly ask you, my Spiritual Father, to give me salutary penance and absolution.
THE PRAYER BEFORE HOLY COMMUNION
I believe, O Lord, and confess, that Thou art, in very truth, the Christ, the Son of the Living God, Who didst come into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief. And I believe that this is, of a truth, Thine all-pure Body, and that this is Thine own precious Blood. Wherefore, I beseech Thee, have mercy upon me, and forgive my transgressions, whether voluntary or involuntary; whether of word or of deed; whether committed with knowledge or in ignorance. And vouchsafe that I may partake without condemnation of Thine all-pure Mysteries unto the remission of my sins and unto life eternal. Amen.
Of Thy Mystical Supper, O Son of God, accept me to-day as a communicant; for I will not speak of Thy Mystery to Thine enemies, neither, like Judas, will I give Thee a kiss; but like the thief will I confess Thee: Remember me, O Lord, in Thy Kingdom.
And let not this participation in Thy Holy Mysteries be unto judgment upon me, or unto condemnation, O Lord, but unto the healing of soul and body. Amen.
EXAMINATION OF CONSCIENCE
(The questions that you may ask yourself before confessing)
Have you had doubts in matter of Faith?
Have you murmured against God in adversity, or despaired of His mercies?
Do you know the Ten Commandments?
Have you sinned against any of these Commandments?
Do you attend Church regularly?
Have you attended dances, theatres or other entertainments during Lent?
Have you believed or consulted fortune tellers?
Have you neglected your morning and evening prayers?
Have you spoken with levity of Religious or Sacred objects?
Have you taken the Name of God in vain?
Have you sworn falsely?
Have you cursed yourself, or others or any creatures?
Have you angered others?
Have you kept Holy the day of the Lord?
Have you done any servile work not of necessity on Sunday or Holydays?
Have you honored your parents, superiors, teachers, also your Spiritual Fathers?
Have you shown due respect to aged persons?
Have you desired, or hastened the death of any one?
Have you oppressed any one?
Have you borne hatred, or desired revenge?
Have you refused to speak to others?
Have you injured other people in any manner?
Have you caused enmity between others?
Have you been in bad company?
Did you read indecent books?
Have you been guilty of unclean songs, words or actions?
Have you willfully entertained impure thoughts, or desires?
Have you taken anything that did not belong to you?
Have you deceived anyone in time of buying or selling anything?
Have you borne false witness against any one?
Have you passed a rash judgment upon any person?
Have you coveted anything that belongs to another?
Have you gone to confession and Holy Communion at least once a year?
Have you kept fasts of the Church?
Do you mention your living or dead parents and relatives in your prayers?
Do you contribute for the support of your Church?
Wo imya Otza i Sina i Svyataho Dukha. Amin.
Slays Tebe Bozhe nash, slava Tebe.
Tzaryu Nebesnyi,. Uteshitelu, Dushe istiny, izhe vezde syi, i vsa ispolnyayai, sokrovische blahih, i zhizni podatelu, priidi i vselisya v ni i ochisti ni ot vsakya skverni i spasi Blazhe dushy nasha.
Svyati Bozhe, Svyatyi krepkyi, svyatyi bezsmertnyi, pomilui nas.
Slays Otzu i Sinu, i Svyatomy Dukhu, i nini i prisno i vo veki vekov. Amin.
Presvyataya Troitze, pomilui nas; Hospodi, ochisti hrechi nasha: Vladiko prosti bezzakoniya nasha: Svyatyi, poseti i istzeli nemoschi nasha imene Tvoyeho radi. Hospodi pomilui. Slava Otzu i synu, . . .
Otche nash izhe yesi na nebeseh, da svyatitsa imya Tvoye, da priidet tzarstvie Tvoye, da budet vola Tvoya yako na nebesi i na zemli. Hleb nash nasushchnyi dazd' nam dnes': I ostavi nam dolhi pasha, yakozhe i my ostavla yem dolznikom nashim: i ne vvedi pas vo iskusheniye, no izbavi nas ot lukavaho. Yako Tvoye yest' tzarstvo, i sila, i slava, Otza, i Sina, i Svyataho Dukha, nini i prisno, i vo veki vekov. Amin'.
Priidite poklonimsa Tzarevi nashemu Bohu. Priidite poklonimsa i pripadem Hristu, Tzarevi nashemu Bohu. Priidite, poklonimsa i pripadem samomu Hristu, Tzarevi Bohu nashemu.
Veruyu vo yedinaho Boha Otza, Vsederzhi tela, Tvortza nebu i zemli, vidimim zhe vsem i nevidimim.
I vo edinaho Hospoda Iisusa Hrista, Sina Bozhiya, Yedinorodnaho, izhe of Otza rozdennaho prezhde vseh vek. Sveta of Sveta, Boha istina ot Boha istina, rozhdenna, nesotvorena, yedinosushchna Otzu, Imzhe vsa bisha..
Nas radi chelovek i nasheho radi spaseniya, sshedshaho s nebes i voplotivshahosia of Dukha Svyata i Marii Devi i vochelovechshasia..
Raspitaho zhe za ni pri Pontistem Pilate, stradaysha i pohrebanna..
I voskresshaho v tretyi den' po pisaniem..
I vosshedshaho na nebesa, i sediashcha odesnuyu Otza..
I paki hryadushchaho so slavoyu suditi zhivim i mertvym, Yehozhe tzarstviyu ne budet kontza..
I v Dukha Sviataho, Hospoda zhivotvoryashchaho, Izhe ot Otza ischodiashchaho, Izhe so Otzem i Sinom spoklaniamyema i sslavima, hlaholayshaho proroki..
Vo Yedinu Sviatuyu, Sobornyu i Apostol' skuyu Tzerkov'..
Ispomeduyu yedino Kreshcheniye vo ostavleniye grehov..
Chayu voskreseniya mertvih: I zhizni budushchaho veka. Amin..
Bohoroditze Devo, raduisa, Blahodatnaya Marie, Hospod' s Toboyu; blahoslovenna Ti v zhenach, i blahosloven plod chreva Tvoyeho, yako Spasa rodila yesi dash nashih..
Dostoino yest yako voistinu blazhiti Tia Bohoroditzu, prisnoblazhennuyu i preneporochnuyu, i Mater' Boha nasheho; Chestneishuyu Heruvim i slavneishuyu bez sravneniya serafim, bez istleniya Boha Slova rozhdshuyu suschuyu Bohoroditzu Tia velichaem..
Pod Tvoyu milost' pribehayem Bohoroditze Devo, molenyi nashich ne prezri v skorbech, no ot bed izbavi nas yedina chistaya i blahoslovennaya..
Preslavnaye Prisnodevo, Mati Hrista Boha, prinesi nashu molitvu Sinu Tvoyemu i Bohu nashemu, da spaset Toboyu dushi nasha..
Spasi Hospodi Judi Tvoya, i blahoslovi dostoyanie Tvoe, pobedi praeoslavnim hristianom na soprotivnija daruya, i Tvoye sohraniaya Krestorn Tvoim Zhitel'stvo..
THE FEASTS (Holy Days) AND FASTS (Posti) OF THE ORTHODOX CATHOLIC EASTERN CHURCH
1) Palm Sunday; 2) Easter Sunday; 3) Ascension of Jesus Christ; 4) Pentecost (Trinity Sunday and the day of Holy Spirit); 5) The Nativity of Jesus Christ (Christmas, Dec. 25, January 7); 6) The Epiphany (Jordan), January 6 (19); 7) The Meeting of our Lord Jesus Christ (February 2 (15); 8) The Transfiguration of our Lord Jesus Christ, Aug. 6, (l9); 9) The Exaltation of the Holy and the Life-giving Cross, Sept. 14 (27); 10) The Nativity of Holy Virgin Mary, Sept. 8 (21); 11) The Presentation in the Temple of Holy virgin Mary Dec. 4 (Nov. 21); 12) The Annunciation of the Birth-giver of God, March 25 (April 7); 13) The Assumption of Holy Virgin Mary, August 15 (28)..
1) The Circumcision of Jesus Christ, New Year, Jan. 1 (14); 2) Three Saints, Jan. 20, Feb. 12); 3) The Nativity of St. John the Baptist, June 24 (July 7); 4) The Feast of St. Peter and Paul, June 29 (July 12); 5) Be heading of St. John the Baptist, August 29 (Sept. 11); 6) The Protection of Holy Virgin Mary, October 1 (14); 7) The Feast of St. Michael the Archangel; November 8 (21); 8) The Feast of St. Nicholas, Dec. 6 (19)..
The Fasts of the Church:
The Great Fast (Lent) lasts 48 days before Easter. The Fast of St. Peter and Paul begins on Monday after Sunday of all Saints and lasts till July 12. The Fast which precedes the Feast of the Falling Asleep of Holy Virgin Mary, or Assumption of Holy Virgin Mary, lasts 14 days (August 14 till Aug. 28). The fast preparatory to Christmas from November 15 (28) -- Christmas. All Wednesdays and Fridays except after Christmas, Sunday of Publican and Pharisee, Easter Sunday and Pentecost. The Eve of Epiphany (Shchedri Vecher), the Feast of Exaltation of the Cross, and the Feast of Beheading of St. John the Baptist..
The Seasons in which the Church does not allow public dances:
In all four Fasts, and from the beginning of the Fast before Christmas till the Feast of Epiphany (Jordan), Nov. 28 (Jan. 20). The Great Lent till the First Sunday after Easter or the Sunday of Thomas, on the Feast of Exaltation of the Cross, and the Feast of Beheading of St. John the Baptist..
THE MEANING. OF THE SIGN OF THE CROSS.
The position of our fingers as we make the Sign of the Cross has a definite meaning. We join together the thumb, index finger, and middle finger of our right hand. This means that God is three in Person; Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; yet ONE in Essence..
With-the other two fingers of our right hand we touch the palm. This means that Christ is both God and Man..
By touching first our forehead, then our breast, then our right shoulder, lastly our left shoulder, we pray that our mind, body, and heart be made pleasing to God..
By the Sign of the Cross we also express our faith in all the things which Christ the Savior taught us and did for us: by joining the three fingers we express our faith in the Most Holy Trinity, consubstantial and undivided; by the two fingers bent to the palm of the hand we express our belief in the descent to earth of the Son of God, and in His having assumed humanity without divesting Himself of His divinity, thus uniting both natures in Himself, the divine and the human. By touching our brow, breast and shoulders, we express our belief that the Triune God hath sanctified our thoughts, feelings, desires and acts; lastly, by making on our person the sign of the cross, we express our belief that Christ hath sanctified our soul and saved us by His sufferings on the cross..
THE RUSSIAN FORM OF THE CROSS OR BIBLICAL CROSS
Father John of Cronstadt explains the Russian form of the Cross:.
"In our service of the Ninth Hour the hour of the death of our Savior, under the title of "Glory to Thee." we read the following Troparion: "Between two thieves the rightful measure (the correct balance) is to be found, Thy cross; the one led down into hell, through the weight of words of blasphemy; the other relieved from the burdens of his sign, into the knowledge of Divinity O Christ, our God, glory to Thee." The meaning of the verse is as follows: the cross of Christ stood for the rightful retribution (the rightful balance, the scales) between the two thieves, who hung on their crosses at the same time with Christ; because one of them sank into hell dragged down by his blasphemous words, and the other, the wise thief, ascended into heaven as if soaring on light wings, because of his repentance, and his profession, "Remember me, O Lord, in Thy Kingdom." This makes it clear why the lower crosswise bar is placed at a sharp angle..
The upper bar of the cross represents nothing else than the inscription, which was nailed to the top of the Christ's cross: "And they crucified Him..." and a superscription of His accusation was written over, "The king of the Jews" (Matt. 27-32; Mark 15; 26.).
The middle crossbar was where the hands of our Lord Jesus Christ were nailed to, the lowest crossbar -- where the feet of Jesus rested, and to that bar is ascribed the symbolism of the two thieves..
The properly shaped eight pointed Russian Orthodox Cross more fully symbolizes the Crucifixion than the simple Cross of Western Christians, four pointed Cross..
The foot board is acknowledged to be a necessary attribute of the cross worthy of veneration and prophetically spoken of in the words, "let us bow before the place where His feet stand.".
Another question: Why is the foot board of the cross of Christ pointed the right side up, and the left down and the head of Christ also inclined to the right? Answer: Christ makes His right foot light and lifts it ]above the footboard in order to lighten the sins of the ones who believe in Him, so than, on His second coming, they should soar up to meet Him. And His left foot He lowers on the footboard in order that those who do not believe in Him should be weighed down and descend into hell. His head is inclined to the right, that He might incline all the heathens to believe and worship Him.