O Lord Thou shalt open my lips and my mouth shall declare Thy praise.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Wisdom from On High and Ornament of Bishops

Today we celebrate the feast of St. Gregory the Theologian, surnamed Nazianzen, one of the great eastern fathers, together with St. John Chrysostom, St. Basil the Great (the three of which are known as the Three Holy Hierarchs), and St. Athanasius of Alexandria. St. Gregory is arguably the most eloquent theologian the Church has had, hence the surname "Theologian", which he shares with only the Holy Apostle and Evangelist John the Theologian.

St. Gregory convened the First Council of Constantinople, which condemned Macedonianism and Apollinarianism, both off-shoots of the Arian heresy, and added the sections on the Holy Ghost and the Church to the Symbol of Nicea, giving us the modern day (well "modern" as in since 381AD) Symbol of Nicea-Constantinople, said at every Byzantine Divine Liturgy and in the Latin Rite on Sundays and Feasts of Our Lord, the Mother of God, and the Apostles.

Troparion - Tone 1
The sweet-sounding shepherd's pipe of your theology overpowered the trumpeting of the orators; for having searched the depths of the Spirit eloquence was also bestowed upon you. Pray to Christ God, Father Gregory, that our souls may be saved.

Kontakion - Tone 3
By words of theology you unraveled the complex webs of the orators, glorious Gregory, and adorned the Church with the robe of Orthodoxy woven from on high. Wearing it, she cries out with us, her children: "Rejoice, O Father, supreme mind of theology."