On Thursday 27 May we celebrate the feast of Saint Melangell a saint much loved and revered by our community.
We will be celebrating the feast with Matins at 8.00am followed by Divine Liturgy at 9.00am at the Church of the Holy Fathers, Shrewsbury. We will then make pilgrimage to her shrine and relics at Penant Melangell.
The Akolouthia (services of Vespers and Matins) for Saint Melangell have been composed in Greek by Father David Somalis (of the Community of Saint Haralampos, Luton) and recently translated for our community by Father John Raffan currently serving the monastery of Chrysopigi, Crete (Sister Theovouli’s home).
Doxastikon of the Aposticha
When the king in Babylon saw Daniel unharmed in the lion’s den he cried aloud: Great is the Lord the God of Daniel and there is none other beside You. And when the king Brochwel saw the hunting dogs at peace before your holiness, O Melangell, marvelling at your courage, he sought to have you as his bride, promising you both riches and glory. But you cried to him: I am not in want of suitors, but because I do not desire a mortal bridegroom, I forgot my people and the house of my father, and I came to Wales and dwell now in this cave. No longer is it I who live, but Christ it is who lives in me. Intercede with him, O wonder-flowing Mother, for those who honour you with fervour.
Apolytikion. Tone 1
For all Ireland its glory, and for Wales its great pride and joy, a sure rock for hares to take refuge, Melangela most angel-like, when wounded by your fervent love for Christ, you dwelt then in the desert amid rocks; there you led your life of hardships, and there became a model for the life of nuns. Glory to him who gave you strength; glory to him who set a crown on you; glory to him who works through you, healings ineffable.
Kontakion. Tone 4.
You lived the ascetic life in the wilderness, O Melangela, and became an abbess for many nuns, shining brightly with miracles: make now entreaty for those who honour you.
Just as once the hare came to your cave as a fugitive to escape the cruelty of the hunters’ dogs, so now, holy Mother, as we are being pursued by the devil who like a ravenous lion seeks to devour us, we run to the shelter of your intercessions, crying: Help us, most kind Melangela, slay the enemy by the sword of your God-pleasing prayers and guard us from his snares, guiding us to work out our salvation with fear and trembling and entreating unceasingly your Bridegroom Christ for those who honour you