Service to our Venerable Mother Osyth, Abbess of Chich

Month of October


Commemoration of our Venerable Mother Osyth, Abbess of Chich

Composed by Reader Isaac Lambertson

At Vespers

At Lord, I have cried, 6 stichera: 3 of the martyrs Sergius and Bacchus (see in the Menaion), and 3 of the venerable martyr, in Tone IV: Spec. Mel.: As one valiant among the martyrs

Assembling today, O Christian people, let us praise the glorious Osyth, who was valiant among monastics; for, keeping the faith, she ran the course of ascetic endeavour, and having finished the race, she received the crown of victory from the hand of Christ, the Judge of the contest. Wherefore, let us all celebrate her honoured memory with solemnity.

O Osyth most blessed, embracing obedience and God-pleasing humility, thou didst forsake riches and a royal throne for the sake of the kingdom of heaven, attaining spiritual wealth through poverty, acquiring Christ, the great Pearl beyond all price; wherefore, He hath set thee like a jewel in His crown, for thou shinest brightly with the lustre of holiness.

The legions of the father of lies, benighted by malice toward our race, and hating the pure light of Christ, vexed the peace of thy soul, O saint; and, breathing threats against thee, assailed thee with divers temptations. But, full of holy zeal for thy salvation, thou didst steadfastly withstand their vile siege, protecting thyself with the sign of the holy Cross.

Glory, of the martyrs Sergius and Bacchus (see in the Menaion).

Now & ever: Theotokion, or stavrotheotokion (see in the Menaion).

Aposticha stichera from the Octoechos; and this sticheron of the venerable martyr: Idiomelon, in Tone II

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

Come, ye who love the saints of the Church, and with hymns of praise and spiritual songs, as with wreaths of flowers and fragrant blossoms, let us crown the venerable Osyth, the scion of royal lineage, the boast of the Saxon peoples, the adornment of Essex, the bulwark of Chich; and honouring her with fitting praise, let us earnestly beg her to make entreaty to the Lord, Who ever hearkeneth to those who celebrate her memory with faith.

Glory, of the martyrs Sergius and Bacchus (see in the Menaion).

Now & ever: Theotokion, or stavrotheotokion (see in the Menaion).

Troparion of the martyrs (see in the Menaion).
Glory: Troparion of the venerable martyr, in Tone VI

Clad in the splendid vesture of virginity, which thou didst embroider with thy manifold virtues, thou lookest down from the heights of heaven, regarding with pity the faithful who fervently have recourse to thee, O venerable mother Osyth, for Christ, the Bestower of crowns, hath granted thee the grace of healing and intercession.

Now & ever Theotokion, or stavrotheotokion.

At Matins

At God is the Lord, the troparion of the martyrs Sergius and Bacchus, twice; Glory, that of the venerable martyr; Now & ever: Theotokion, or stavrotheotokion.

One canon from the Octoechos, with 4 troparia, including the irmos, but excluding the martyria; canon of the martyrs Sergius and Bacchus, with 6 troparia (see in the Menaion); and that of the venerable martyr Osyth, with 4 troparia, in Tone VI

Ode I

Irmos: With an upraised arm Christ drowned the chariots of Pharaoh and his power, and saved Israel, who sent up the hymn: Let us sing unto our wondrous God!

The venerable martyr Osyth drowned Satan and all his hosts in the floodwaters of her prayers, which she willingly offered unto Christ, Who worketh all wonders.

Having the holy Osyth as a tireless intercessor for us before the throne of Christ, let us, the new Israel, sing unto Him: Let us sing unto our wondrous God!

Edburga, thy venerable kinswoman, O Osyth, reared thee in piety and holiness at the Convent of Aylesbury, teaching thee to sing unto our wondrous God.

Theotokion: God the Word, at the will of the Father and through the operation of the Spirit, dwelt within the Virgin’s womb. Let us praise Him Who worketh wonders!


Irmos: My mouth hath been enlarged over mind enemies, for my heart hath been made steadfast in the Lord.

Offspring of royal parents, from childhood the pious Osyth made her heart steadfast in the Most High God.

Daily did the holy princess fill her mouth with the praises of the Lord, driving away the foes of men’s salvation.

Lifting up her voice to exalt the Lord of lords, the God-bearing virgin was filled in abundance with grace divine.

Theotokion: Ye Christian people, clap your hands in gladness, and praise the Lord, that your hearts may be made steadfast in His love.

Kontakion of the venerable martyr, in Tone IV

The Saxon peoples were filled with awe, and the Angles marvelled exceedingly, when, despite the frailty of her nature, the venerable Osyth prevailed over the carnal passions and reviled the demons who tempted her; for when she had purified herself by prayer and fasting, the angels bore her pure soul to paradise, where with the choirs of all the saints she ever prayeth for the salvation of our souls.

Sessional hymn of the martyrs (see in the Menaion).

Glory: Sessional hymn of the venerable martyr, in the same tone & melody (Of the Wisdom)

From thy youth thou didst quench the burning of the passions with the dew of abstinence, and in thy manifest virtues didst drown the hordes of Satan in the torrents of thy supplications. As an athlete thou didst offer purity and chastity to thy chosen Bridegroom, bringing Him the pangs of thine ascetic feats as a dowry. Wherefore, O wondrous Osyth, arrayed in thy glory of thy piety as in bridal vesture, with the wise virgins thou hast gone in to His wedding banquet fittingly adorned, where thou dost delight forever in the vision of His radiant countenance.

Now & ever: Theotokion, or stavrotheotokion (see in the Menaion).

Ode IV

Irmos: Thy virtue hath covered the heavens, O Christ, and all things have been filled with Thy praise, O Lord.

O Christ, the power of all the virtues filled Thy handmaid Osyth, who ever lifted up her voice in praise of Thee.

Seeking to acquire heavenly treasure, the godly Osyth steadfastly maintained her chastity and virginal purity.

Young of body, yet filled with the wisdom of old age, the God-bearer yearned to embrace the life of ascetic toil.

Theotokion: Thy glory covereth all the heavens, O Mother of God, and all creation, material and immaterial, is filled with thy praise.

Ode V

Irmos: On Thee have I set my hope, O Lord, and unto Thee, the all-divine Beauty, do I rise early. Gladden thou my soul in the light of Thy divine knowledge, and save me.

Having set thy hope on the Lord, O glorious one, thou didst not avert thy sight from thy treasured chastity, even when thy parents gave thee away in marriage.

Sighere thy royal spouse, seeing thy love for Christ, permitted thee to become a nun, O Osyth, and gave thee lands in Chich, whereon to found a house of prayer.

Having submitted the hairs of thy head to the monastic tonsure, O venerable Osyth, thou didst truly find salvation in the angelic habit, betrothing thyself to Christ.

Theotokion: Every Christian soul is gladdened exceedingly, contemplating thy divine beauty, which surpasseth even the comeliness of the angels, O Queen of heaven.

Ode VI

Irmos: Slain by the monster of sin, I cry to Thee, O Christ: Free me from corruption, as Thou didst the prophet.

Dispelling the temptations of the monster of sin, thou didst set at nought the corruption of the passions, O holy one.

Having slain the demonic foe with the weaponry of prayer, O blessed one, thou didst exalt Christ in victory.

Ever entreating thy Master to have pity upon the world, pray that He free us all from corruption, O holy one.

Theotokion: Reigning on high over all the hosts of heaven, O Virgin Theotokos, be thou ever mindful of us, thy servants.

Kontakion & Ikos of the martyrs (see in the Menaion)


Irmos: Thy grace hath been revealed upon us, O Saviour, and the light of Thy Cross hath shone forth upon the world. Blessed art Thou, O Lord God of our fathers!

Brigands harried the coasts of Essex and dealt violently with thy convent, O handmaid of God; but thou didst defy them, crying: Blessed is the God of our fathers!

Let the ungodly make their vile demands! We will ever be true to Christ, the Light of the world, Who, suspended upon the Cross, saved us sinners! cried Osyth.

O the mindlessness of the barbarians, who, in their hatred of the Christian Faith, would have us to adjure the God of our fathers!, the venerable one exclaimed.

Theotokion: Our weak minds are unable to comprehend the magnitude of thy glory, O Virgin Bride of God; wherefore, moved by thee, we cry: Blessed art Thou, O God of our fathers!


Irmos: To Christ, the King of the ages, let us utter the hymn of the youths, O ye faithful: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

Desiring Christ, the King of the ages, O venerable mother, thou didst continually cry out: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

Into heaven was Osyth brought by her Lord, to whom she giveth utterance in hymns: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

No earthly care nor carnal passion was able to stop Osyth from singing earnestly: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!

Theotokion: Pure beyond compare was thy womb, which contained thine own Creator, O Virgin; wherefore, the faithful bless Him for all ages.

Ode IX

Irmos: Hearken, O daughter, and incline thine ear; and the King shall desire thy beauty. For all thy glory is made manifest, in that thou didst conceive thy Creator, O Virgin. Wherefore, we, the rich among the people, offering thee entreaty, do magnify thee.

In the glory of thy steadfast faith in Christ, O Osyth, thou didst receive from His right hand the wreath of victory, which thou hadst earned by thine ascetic endeavors; and for this cause we unceasingly magnify thee with goodly hymnody of praise, as is meet.

Ever filled with the radiance of glory divine, O venerable one, thou standest now with the saints and the heavenly hosts before the throne of the King of high; for as thou didst hearken and continually incline thine ear unto His precepts, He greatly desired thy beauty.

To the Convent at Aylesbury, where thou hadst been reared, O saint, were thy sacred relics borne, when in latter times thy resting place was beset by the heathen; but to Chich were they restored when the divine will was made known in a wondrous revelation..

Theotokion: Ye who have been enriched with the treasure of God’s grace, let us make earnest entreaty to the Virgin Mary, who contained within her womb the infinite Creator of all things, and is now the most precious receptable of His glory; and let us magnify her above all.

Exapostilarion of the martyrs (see in the Menaion).

Glory: Exapostilarion of the venerable martyr: Spec. Mel.: Hearken, ye women

Let us lift our voices in gladness, hymning the venerable Osyth, who contended mightily against all falsehood and superstition, and thus escaped the corruption of this world; for entering the Church of the firstborn in paradise, she standeth among their ranks, making entreaty on our behalf.


Through thy birthgiving, O all-pure one, the light of grace shone forth upon the whole world, destroying the demonic ranks; wherefore, we call thee the boast of the angels and salvation of all men, and we magnify thee without ceasing.

At the Praises, the stichera of the martyrs (see in the Menaion).

Aposticha stichera from the Octoechos; and this sticheron of the venerable martyr: Idiomelon, in Tone III

Stichos: Many are the tribulations of the righteous, but the Lord shall deliver them out of them all.

Purified in the crucible of ascetic toil, O venerable Osyth, thou wast wrought by the Holy Spirit as a precious and sacred vessel, which He filled to overflowing with abundant grace. Wherefore, when, as God permitted, trials and tribulations beset thee, thou didst not waver in thy faith, and thus hast been laid up in the treasuries of heaven, from whence thou dost enrich with thine intercession all who honour thy holy memory as is meet.

Glory, of the martyrs (see in the Menaion).

Now & ever: Theotokion, or stavrotheotokion (see in the Menaion).

At the Liturgy

Beatitude troparia, Prokimenon, Epistle, Alleluia, Gospel and Communion verse as set forth in the service of the martyrs Sergius and Bacchus (see in the Menaion).