Sunday of Orthodoxy
The Sunday of the Triumph of Orthodoxy is celebrated on the first Sunday of Great Lent. It is the celebration of the victory of the iconodules over the iconoclasts by the decision of the Seventh Ecumenical Council. Therefore, the service is to commemorate the restoration of icons for use in services and private devotional life of Christians.
Services often include the clergy or the faithful triumphantly processing around the church, holding icons of their patron or parish saints. In areas where multiple jurisdictions exist (such as the United States), Pan-Orthodox Vespers are also usually celebrated in the evening.
The theme of the day is victory of the True Faith. "This is the victory that overcomes the world, our faith" (1 John 5:4). Also, the icons of the saints bear witness that man, "created in the image and likeness of God" (Gen 1:26), becomes holy and godlike through the purification of himself as God's living image.
The first Sunday of Great Lent originally commemorated the Prophets such as Moses, Aaron, and Samuel. The Liturgy's alleluia verses and scripture readings appointed for the Sunday of Orthodoxy reflect this older usage.
Troparion (Tone 2)
- We venerate Your most pure image, O Good One,
- and ask forgiveness of our transgressions, O Christ God.
- Of Your own will You were pleased to ascend the Cross in the flesh
- to deliver Your creatures from bondage to the enemy.
- Therefore with thanksgiving we cry aloud to You:
- You have filled all with joy, O our Savior,
- by coming to save the world.
Kontakion (Tone 8)
- No one could describe the Word of the Father;
- but when He took flesh from you, O Theotokos, He accepted to be described,
- and restored the fallen image to its former beauty.
- We confess and proclaim our salvation in word and images.