|May the faithful departed who put You on through baptism put on, in Eden, the robe of glory.||ܥܰܢܺܝ̈ܕܶܐ ܡܗܰܝ̈ܡܢܶܐ ܆ ܕܠܰܒܫܘܽܟ ܒܰܥܡܳܕܳܐ ܆ ܢܶܬܥܰܛܦܘܽܢ ܒܰܥܕܶܝܢ ܆ ܐܶܣܛܰܠ ܬܶܫܒܘܽܚܬܳܐ ܀|
|The mouths that professed You, ate You and drank Your blood, shout with the angels, “Glory be upon Your coming!”||ܦ̈ܘܽܡܶܐ ܕܰܐܘܕܺܝܘ ܒܳܟ ܆ ܘܰܐܟܠܘܽܟ ܘܐܶܫܬܺܝܘ ܕܡܳܟ ܆ ܥܰܡ ܥܺܝܪ̈ܶܐ ܢܶܩܥܘܽܢ ܆ ܫܘܽܒܚܳܐ ܒܡܶܐܬܺܝܬܳܟ ܀|
|The hands and feet that have ministered at the altar|
may they not, Lord, be burnt up in the fire of Gehenna.
|ܐܺܝ̈ܕܰܝܳܐ ܘܪ̈ܶܓܠܶܐ ܆ ܕܫ̈ܰܡܶܫܝ ܩܕܳܡ ܡܰܕܒܚܳܐ ܆ ܠܳܐ ܡܳܪܝ ܢܶܣ̈ܬܰܝܛܳܢ ܆ ܒܢܘܽܪܳܐ ܕܓܺܗܰܢܳܐ ܀|
|Glory be to the Voice, who calls the departed so that they may rise incorruptibly and sing glory.||ܫܘܽܒܚܳܐ ܠܗܰܘ ܩܳܠܳܐ ܆ ܕܩܳܪܶܐ ܠܥܰܢܺܝ̈ܕܷܐ ܆ ܘܩܳܝܡܺܝܢ ܕܠܳܐ ܚܒܳܠܳܐ ܆ ܘܙܳܡܪܺܝܢ ܬܶܫܒܘܽܚܬܳܐ ܀|
|Blessed are you, our father, when the King reveals himself and rewards justly every person according to their deeds.||ܛܘܽܒܰܝܟ ܐܳܘ ܐܰܒܘܽܢ ܆ ܡܳܐ ܕܡܶܬܓܠܶܐ ܡܰܠܟܳܐ ܆ ܘܦܳܪܰܥ ܒܟܺܐܢܘܽܬܳܐ ܆ ܠܟܽܠܢܳܫ ܐܰܝܟ ܥܰܡܠܶܗ ܀|
|Since you labored in His vineyard from morning till evening, behold, a wage awaits you, an entire denarius.||ܕܰܦܠܰܚܬ ܒܓܰܘ ܟܰܪܡܶܗ ܆ ܡܶܢ ܨܰܦܪܳܐ ܠܪܰܡܫܳܐ ܆ ܗܳܐ ܢܛܺܝܪ ܠܳܟ ܐܰܓܪܳܐ ܆ ܕܺܝܢܳܪܳܐ ܡܰܠܝܳܐ ܀|
|Pray, on our behalf, to your Lord, Who is pleased with you, so that, through your prayer, with you, we may rejoice in your gladness.||ܐܰܦܺܝܣ ܚܠܳܦ ܟܽܠܰܢ ܆ ܠܡܳܪܳܟ ܕܡܶܬܬܢܺܝܚ ܒܳܟ ܆ ܕܒܰܨܠܘܽܬܳܟ ܥܰܡܳܟ ܆ ܢܶܚܕܶܐ ܒܚܰܕܘܽܬܳܟ ܀|
|Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit Who chose you, our father. You then triumphed and were crowned.||ܫܘܽܒܚܳܐ ܠܶܗ ܠܰܐܒܳܐ ܆ ܘܠܰܒܪܳܐ ܘܪܘܽܚ ܩܘܽܕܫܳܐ ܆ ܕܰܓܒܳܟ ܐܳܘ ܐܰܒܘܽܢ ܆ ܘܰܢܨܰܚܬ ܘܐܶܬܟܰܠܰܠܬ ܀|
|To the contest went the holy martyrs and against false worship battled the glorious laborers.||ܠܰܐܓܘܽܢܳܐ ܢܚܶܬܘ ܗ̱ܘܰܘ ܆ ܣܳܗ̈ܕܶܐ ܩܰܕܺܝ̈ܫܶܐ ܆ ܘܥܰܡ ܛܘܽܥܝܰܝ ܐܰܩܪܶܒܘ ܆ ܦܳܠܚ̈ܶܐ ܢܰܨܺܝ̈ܚܶܐ ܀|
|We beseech the martyrs and entreat them earnestly|
to implore with us the Lord, who crowned them.
|ܡܶܢ ܣܳܗ̈ܕܶܐ ܢܶܒܥܶܐ ܆ ܘܰܠܗܘܽܢ ܢܶܬܟܰܫܰܦ ܆ ܕܰܢܦܺܝܣܘܽܢ ܥܰܡܰܢ ܆ ܠܡܳܪܝܳܐ ܡܟܰܠܠܳܢܗܘܽܢ ܀|
|They entered the contest that is full of sufferings|
and trampled every torment by the Messiah’s love.
|ܥܰܠܘ ܗ̱ܘܰܘ ܠܰܐܓܘܽܢܳܐ ܆ ܕܡܳܠܶܐ ܐܘܽܠܨ̈ܳܢܶܐ ܆ ܘܕܳܫܘ ܥܰܠ ܟܽܠ ܫܶܢ̈ܕܻܝܢ ܆ ܒܚܘܽܒܶܗ ܕܰܡܫܺܝܚܳܐ ܀|
|Glory be to Him who exalted the commemoration of His holy ones in heaven, on earth and in the four corners of the world.||ܫܘܽܒܚܳܐ ܠܗܰܘ ܕܰܐܘܪܶܒ ܆ ܕܘܽܟܪܳܢ ܩܰܕܺܝ̈ܫܰܘܗ̱ܝ ܆ ܒܰܫܡܰܝܳܐ ܘܒܰܐܪܥܳܐ ܆ ܘܒܰܐܪ̈ܒܰܥ ܦܶܢ̈ܝܳܬܳܐ ܀|
|The disciples of the Son, the holy apostles, armed themselves and went out to the four corners of world.||ܬܰܠܡܺܝ̈ܕܰܘܗ̱ܝ ܕܰܒܪܳܐ ܆ ܫܠܺܝ̈ܚܶܐ ܩܰܕܺܝ̈ܫܶܐ ܆ ܐܶܙܕܰܝܰܢܘ ܘܰܢܦܰܩܘ ܆ ܠܰܐܪܒܰܥ ܦܶܢ̈ܝܳܬܳܐ ܀|
|The holy apostles laid hold of the cross, an unequally matched weapon, and battled with the evil one.||ܫܠܺܝ̈ܚܶܐ ܩܰܕܺܝ̈ܫܶܐ ܆ ܠܰܨܠܺܝܒܳܐ ܐܶܚܰܕܘ ܆ ܘܙܰܝܢܳܐ ܕܠܐܳ ܚܳܐܶܒ ܆ ܘܰܐܩܪܶܒܘ ܥܰܡ ܒܺܝܫܳܐ ܀|
|Blessed is the One Who chose them and exalted their commemoration in heaven, on earth and in the four corners of the world.||ܒܪܺܝܟ ܕܰܓܒܳܐ ܐܶܢܘܽܢ ܆ ܘܰܐܘܪܶܒ ܕܘܽܟܪܳܢܗܘܽܢ ܆ ܒܰܫܡܰܝܳܐ ܘܒܰܐܪܥܳܐ ܆ ܘܒܰܐܪ̈ܒܰܥ ܦܶܢ̈ܝܳܬܳܐ ܀|
|Remembrance to the just ones, hope to the righteous ones, and, to the Trinity, worship and exaltation.||ܕܘܽܟܪܳܢܳܐ ܠܟܺܐܢ̈ܶܐ ܆ ܘܣܰܒܪܳܐ ܠܙܰܕܺܝ̈ܩܶܐ ܆ ܘܠܰܬܠܺܝܬܳܝܘܽܬܳܐ ܆ ܣܶܓܕܬܳܐ ܘܪܘܽܡܪܳܡܳܐ ܀|
|Who is able to stop speaking your praises, for you bore and carried the Hope of every creature?||ܡܰܢܘܽ ܓܶܝܪ ܡܰܘܦܶܐ ܆ ܕܢܺܐܡܰܪ ܩ̈ܘܽܠܳܣܰܝܟܝ ܆ ܕܙܰܝܶܚܬܝ ܘܰܛܥܰܢܬܺܝܘܗ̱ܝ ܆ ܠܣܰܒܪܳܐ ܕܟܽܠ ܒ̈ܶܪܝܳܢ ܀|
|Who could tell the story of your slaughters, brave athletes, God’s laborers?||ܡܰܢܘܽ ܡܨܶܐ ܕܢܶܬܢܶܐ ܆ ܫܰܪܒܳܐ ܕܩܰܛܠܰܝ̈ܟܘܽܢ ܆ ܐܰܬܠܺܝ̈ܛܶܐ ܙܪ̈ܺܝܙܶܐ ܆ ܦܳܠܚ̈ܶܐ ܕܰܐܠܳܗܳܐ ܀|
|Heavenly King, by Your loving-kindness, make the faithful departed worthy to enter paradise.||ܡܰܠܟܳܐ ܫܡܰܝܳܢܳܐ ܆ ܐܰܫܘܳܐ ܒܛܰܝܒܘܽܬܳܟ ܆ ܠܥܰܢܺܝ̈ܕܶܐ ܡܗܰܝ̈ܡܢܶܐ ܆ ܕܢܶܥܠܘܽܢ ܠܦܰܪܕܰܝܣܳܐ ܀|
|Glory be to You, our Lord, on [the day of] the commemoration of Your mother. Thanksgiving be to Your Cross, that strengthened Your athletes and to Your life-giving Spirit, who raises the departed.||ܫܘܽܒܚܳܐ ܠܳܟ ܡܳܪܰܢ ܆ ܒܕܘܽܟܪܳܢ ܝܳܠܶܕܬܳܟ ܆ ܘܬܰܘܕܺܝ ܠܰܨܠܺܝܒܳܟ ܆ ܕܚܰܝܶܠ ܠܰܐܬܠܺܝ̈ܛܰܝܟ ܆ ܘܰܠܪܘܽܚܳܟ ܚܰܝܳܐ ܆ ܡܢܰܚܶܡ ܠܥܰܢܺܝ̈ܕܶܐ ܀|
|On Mt. Sinai, Moses symbolized you, O Virgin, Daughter of David, as a bush, full of all graces.||ܡܘܽܫܶܐ ܒܛܘܽܪ ܣܺܝܢܰܝ ܆ ܒܣܰܢܝܳܐ ܡܰܬܠܶܟܝ ܗ̱ܘܳܐ ܆ ܒܬܘܽܠܬܳܐ ܒܰܪܬ ܕܰܘܺܝܕ ܆ ܡܳܠܶܝܢ ܟܽܠ ܫܘܽܦܪ̈ܺܝܢ ܀|
|The prophet Isaiah foretold, “Behold! A virgin conceives and bears a Wonder.”||ܐܶܫܰܥܝܳܐ ܢܒܺܝܳܐ ܆ ܩܰܕܶܡ ܐܰܟܪܶܙ ܗ̱ܘܳܐ ܆ ܕܗܳܐ ܒܬܘܽܠܬܳܐ ܒܳܛܢܳܐ ܆ ܘܝܳܠܕܳܐ ܕܘܽܡܳܪܳܐ ܀|
|The prophet Ezekiel called you a gate, O Virgin, Daughter of David, full of grace.||ܢܒܺܝܳܐ ܚܰܙܩܺܝܐܝܶܠ ܆ ܬܰܪܥܳܐ ܫܰܡܗܶܟܝ ܗ̱ܘܳܐ ܆ ܒܬܘܽܠܬܳܐ ܒܰܪܬ ܕܰܘܺܝܕ ܆ ܡܰܠܝܰܬ ܛܰܝܒܘܽܬܳܐ ܀|
|Glory be to the One Who came, appeared from Mary and exalted her commemoration in the Holy Church.||ܫܘܽܒܚܳܐ ܠܗܰܘ ܕܶܐܬܳܐ ܆ ܘܰܕܢܰܚ ܡܶܢ ܡܰܪܝܰܡ ܆ ܘܰܐܘܪܶܒ ܕܘܽܟܳܪܳܢܳܗ̇ ܆ ܒܥܺܕܬܳܐ ܩܰܕܺܝܫܬܳܐ ܀|
|Mary, Daughter of David, who would not extol you, for all creatures marvel at your Child?||ܡܰܪܝܰܡ ܒܰܪܬ ܕܰܘܺܝܕ ܆ ܡܰܢܘܽ ܕܠܳܐ ܢܩܰܠܣܶܟܝ ܆ ܕܟܽܠܗܘܽܢ ܒܶܪ̈ܝܳܬܳܐ ܆ ܒܝܰܠܕܷܟܝ ܬܰܗܺܝܪ̈ܺܝܢ ܀|
|Virgin, who bore the milk of mothers and suckled the Preserver Who nourishes all,||ܒܬܘܽܠܬܳܐ ܕܰܛܥܺܝܢܳܐ ܆ ܚܰܠܒܳܐ ܕܶܐܡ̈ܗܳܬܳܐ ܆ ܘܡܰܝܢܩܳܐ ܠܙܳܝܘܽܢܳܐ ܆ ܕܗܘܽܝܘܽ ܡܬܰܪܣܶܐ ܟܽܠ ܀|
|the Church rejoices on the day of your commemoration. Through your prayer, may mercies by upon the world.||ܥܺܕܬܳܐ ܕܶܝܢ ܚܳܕܝܳܐ ܆ ܒܝܰܘܡܳܐ ܕܕܘܽܟܪܳܢܶܟܝ ܆ ܒܰܨܠܘܽܬܶܟܝ ܢܶܗܘܘܽܢ ܆ ܪ̈ܰܚܡܶܐ ܥܰܠ ܥܳܠܡܳܐ ܀|
|Glory be to you, our Lord, on [the day of] Your mother’s commemoration, in heaven, on earth and in the four corners of the world.||ܫܘܽܒܚܳܐ ܠܳܟ ܡܳܪܰܢ ܆ ܒܕܘܽܟܪܳܢ ܝܳܠܶܕܬܳܟ ܆ ܒܰܫܡܰܝܳܐ ܘܒܰܐܪܥܳܐ ܆ ܘܒܰܐܪ̈ܒܰܥ ܦܶܢ̈ܝܳܬܳܐ ܀|
|Leap for joy and rejoice, Church, and sing praise|
to the power of the cross, for it is carrying your foundation so that the evil one could not conceal your truth.
|ܕܘܽܨ ܘܰܚܕܺܝ ܥܺܕܬܳܐ ܆ ܘܰܙܡܰܪܝ ܬܶܫܒܘܽܚܬܳܐ ܆ ܠܚܰܝܠܶܗ ܕܰܨܠܺܝܒܳܐ ܆ ܕܗܘܽ ܛܥܺܝܢ ܫܶܬܶܣܰܝܟ̈ܝ ܆ ܕܠܳܐ ܡܶܬܡܨܶܐ ܒܺܝܫܳܐ ܆ ܢܚܰܦܶܐ ܠܰܫܪܳܪܶܟܝ ܀|
|In Your Cross, I take refuge, our Savior.|
By its wings, protect me from the evil one and his power. May Your Cross, our Savior, be for us a bulwark night and day, and at all times.
|ܒܰܨܠܺܝܒܳܟ ܐܶܚܕܶܬ ܆ ܓܰܘܣܳܐ ܦܳܪܘܽܩܰܢ ܆ ܒ̈ܟܶܢܦܰܘܗ̱ܝ ܣܰܬܰܪܰܝܢܝ ܆ ܡܶܢ ܒܺܝܫܳܐ ܘܚܰܝܠܶܗ ܆ ܨܠܺܝܒܳܟ ܦܳܪܘܽܩܰܢ ܆ ܫܘܽܪܳܐ ܢܶܗܘܶܐ ܠܰܢ ܆ ܒܠܺܠܝܳܐ ܘܒܺܐܝܡܳܡܳܐ ܆ ܘܰܒܟܽܠ ܥܶܕܳܢ̈ܺܝܢ ܀|
|May your Cross, Lord, become a bulwark and a house of refuge for the souls who are invoking Your Holy name. We are calling you, Messiah, our Savior. Have mercy on our lives and do not disregard us.||ܨܠܺܝܒܳܟ ܡܳܪܝ ܢܶܗܘܶܐ ܆ ܫܘܽܪܳܐ ܘܒܶܝܬܓܰܘܣܳܐ ܆ ܠܢܰܦ̈ܫܳܬܳܐ ܕܩܳܪ̈ܶܝܢ ܆ ܠܰܫܡܳܟ ܩܰܕܺܝܫܳܐ ܆ ܠܳܟ ܗ̱ܘܽ ܩܳܪܶܝܢܰܢ ܆ܡܫܺܝܚܳܐ ܦܳܪܘܽܩܰܢ ܆ ܪܰܚܶܡ ܥܰܠ ܚ̈ܰܝܰܝܢ ܆ ܘܠܳܐ ܬܶܗܡܶܐ ܡܶܢܰܢ ܀|
|Praise is due to Your justice, eternal Father. Adoration is due to Your Cross, merciful Child. Thanksgiving is due to Your mercy, compassionate Spirit.||ܫܘܽܒܚܳܐ ܠܟܺܐܢܘܽܬܳܟ ܆ ܐܰܒܳܐ ܡܬܘܽܡܳܝܳܐ ܆ ܘܣܶܓܕܬܳܐ ܠܰܨܠܺܝܒܳܟ ܆ ܝܰܠܕܳܐ ܡܪܰܚܡܳܢܳܐ ܆ ܬܰܘܕܺܝ ܠܰܚܢܳܢܳܟ ܆ ܪܘܽܚܳܐ ܡܪܰܚܦܳܢܳܐ ܀|
|Blessed are they who fast. When the King appears and finds them clad with the clothes of the kingdom, on account of their fast, He shall grant [them] everlasting blessings.||ܛܘܽܒܰܘܗ̱ܝ ܠܨܰܝܳܡܳܐ ܆ ܡܳܐ ܕܕܳܢܰܚ ܡܰܠܟܳܐ ܆ ܘܡܶܫܟܰܚ ܠܶܗ ܕܰܠܒܺܝܫ ܆ ܠܒ̈ܘܽܫܶܐ ܕܡܰܠܟܘܽܬܳܐ ܆ ܚܠܳܦ ܨܰܘܡܶܗ ܝܳܗܶܒ ܆ ܛܘ̈ܽܒܶܐ ܕܠܳܐ ܡܰܘܦܶܝܢ ܀|
|They who, with love, observe fasting shall be full of peace and love toward all people, for, by their fast and love, they shall be pleasing to God.||ܐܰܝܢܳܐ ܕܰܒܚܘܽܒܳܐ ܆ ܨܳܐܶܡ ܠܶܗ ܠܨܰܘܡܳܐ ܆ ܢܶܗܘܶܐ ܡܠܶܐ ܫܰܝܢܳܐ ܆ ܘܚܘܽܒܳܐ ܠܘܳܬ ܟܽܠܢܳܫ ܆ ܕܰܒܨܰܘܡܶܗ ܘܚܘܽܒܶܗ ܆ ܢܪܰܥܶܝܘܗ̱ܝ ܠܰܐܠܳܗܳܐ ܀|
|For this is the fast that bequeaths the kingdom to those who unite to them love and alms. Blessed are they who labor and toil in their labor.||ܗܳܢܰܘ ܓܶܝܪ ܨܰܘܡܳܐ ܆ ܕܡܰܘܪܶܬ ܡܰܠܟܘܽܬܳܐ ܆ ܐܰܝܢܳܐ ܕܰܚܠܺܝܛ ܒܶܗ ܆ ܚܘܽܒܳܐ ܘܙܶܕܩ̈ܳܬܳܐ ܆ ܛܘܽܒܰܘܗ̱ܝ ܠܡܰܢ ܕܰܦܠܰܚ ܆ ܘܰܕܥܶܬ ܒܦܘܽܠܚܳܢܶܗ ܀|
|Glory to the mercies who sent you for our salvation. Messiah, full of mercies, have pity on us, whose hope is in You, accept our worship, and may our fast be pleasing to you, Lord.||ܫܘܽܒܚܳܐ ܠܗܘܽܢ ܪ̈ܰܚܡܶܐ ܆ ܕܫܰܠܚܘܽܟ ܠܦܘܽܪܩܳܢܰܢ ܆ ܡܫܺܝܚܳܐ ܡܠܶܐ ܪ̈ܰܚܡܶܐ ܆ ܚܘܽܢ ܠܰܢ ܕܒܳܟ ܣܰܒܪܰܢ ܆ ܘܩܰܒܶܠ ܬܶܫܡܶܫܬܰܢ ܆ ܘܨܰܘܡܰܢ ܢܪܰܥܶܝܟ ܡܳܪܝ ܀|
|Your loving-kindness shall be sad upon seeing my stains, yet may it petition Your justice lest I be cast out altogether.||ܬܶܟܪܶܐ ܠܛܰܝܒܘܽܬܳܟ ܆ ܡܳܐ ܕܚܳܙܝܳܐ ܠܟ̈ܘܽܬܡܳܬܝ ܆ ܘܬܰܦܺܝܣ ܠܟܺܐܢܘܽܬܳܟ ܆ ܕܠܳܐ ܐܶܫܬܕܶܐ ܠܰܓܡܳܪ ܀|
|Although there are no deeds, save me because of my faith. Save me because of one thing alone, because of Your loving-kindness.||ܘܐܳܦܶܢ ܥ̈ܒܳܕܶܐ ܠܰܝܬ ܆ ܐܰܚܳܢܝ ܒܗܰܝܡܳܢܘܽܬܳܝ ܆ ܒܰܚܕܳܐ ܚܕܳܐ ܒܰܠܚܘܽܕ ܆ ܐܰܚܳܢܝ ܒܛܰܝܒܘܽܬܳܟ ܀|
|Lift me up, the lowest of all, and make the weakest of all to understand. Let your compassion, Lord, gush forth toward me because of Your loving-kindness.||ܘܥܰܠܳܢܝ ܒܨܺܝܪ ܡܶܢ ܟܽܠ ܆ ܘܣܰܟܶܠ ܡܚܺܝܠ ܡܶܢ ܟܽܠ ܆ ܢܶܫܦܰܥ ܚܢܳܢܳܟ ܡܳܪܝ ܆ ܨܶܐܕܰܝ ܒܛܰܝܒܘܽܬܳܟ ܀|
|Glory be to You, Christ, the hope, for Whom all sinners have waited and to Whom they pray.||ܠܳܟ ܫܘܽܒܚܳܐ ܡܫܺܝܚܳܐ ܆ ܣܰܒܪܳܐ ܕܠܶܗ ܣܰܟܺܝܘ ܆ ܟܽܠܗܘܽܢ ܚ̈ܰܛܳܝܶܐ ܆ ܕܠܶܗ ܗܘܽ ܡܶܬܟܰܫܦܺܝܢ ܀|
The Book of Accompaniment is the oldest extant Maronite document which preserves the funeral rites celebrated by the Maronite Church.1,2 Then Msgr. Hector Y. Doueihi, now Emeritus Bishop of the Maronite Eparchy of St. Maron of Brooklyn, explains in the introduction,
“[The title and the concept it contains] indicate that the dead, who have ended their journey in this life, are starting another journey in the life beyond. According to the ancient spiritual vision of the early Syriac Churches, the passage to eternal life is hampered by obstacles and dangers. The departed need special support and guidance on their journey. Thus, the funeral rites are a complex of psalms, hymns, Scripture readings and prayers that ‘accompany’ them on this ‘other’ journey. The texts implore the ‘company’ of the Lord and his mysteries for them, and pray for protection and safety on their journey. The funeral rites, are, therefore, rites of ‘accompaniment’ which are celebrated on the road as one begins the journey to new life.”3
Not only do the departed need special support and guidance on their journey, but the living, who mourn the death of their loved ones and are traveling on the same road of faith, seek a message of hope and consolation as well.4 Jacob of Sarug (ca. 451 – 521), a prolific Syriac Church Father and known as the Flute of the Holy Spirit, provides his readers with such a message. He teaches that it is none other than Jesus Christ who accompanies the deceased and the living on this road traveled by all grudgingly and with fear. The objective of this brief column5 is to share with the reader this powerful insight which Jacob draws from his main source of pastoral, theological, spiritual and poetical insight, i.e., the Bible. Furthermore, this column’s other goal is to encourage the interpretation of the three stations of the Maronite funeral rites, or better yet the three stations of the accompaniment rites, in light of Jacob’s explanation.
In a dogmatic letter written to the Monks of Beth-Gaugal,1 Philoxenus of Mabbug (485 A.D. – 519 A.D)2 urged the “hearers” not to be troubled by the statement “God was crucified for us.”3 This assertion was the catalyst that incited the Trisagion controversy.4 The Trisagion, Greek for “thrice holy”, is a liturgical hymn5 that affirms the holiness of the Omnipotent Immortal God in whom Christians believe. At the crux of the controversy lies the Chalcedonian affirmation (451 A.D.) that Jesus’ weaknesses are attributed to his human nature and his supernatural deeds are assigned to his divine nature.6 Philoxenus of Mabbug was among those who rejected this “blasphemy”7 and worked tirelessly to promote the belief in the passion and death of the consubstantial Son, thus bringing to the fore8 and vigorously9 promoting the “theopaschite”10 formula of the Miaphysite Trisagion: “Thou art Holy, God; Thou art Holy, Strong One; Thou art Holy, Immortal One; (Thou) Who wast crucified for us, have mercy on us.”11
The objective of this paper is to explain the theological underpinning for Philoxenus’ Miaphysite Trisagion as elucidated in his dogmatic letter to the monks.