AKATHIST Hymn to our venerable and God-bearing Father Saint Francis, Wonderworker of Assisi

Monday, December 19, 2011

Kontakion 1
O Holy Father Francis, we, your spiritual children gather to sing a hymn of praise in your honour, glorifying Christ Who first called you from His Cross to follow Him and renew His Church. Marveling at your unsurpassed virtues of humility and poverty as a living icon of Jesus Crucified, who received the hundred-fold reward in His Kingdom, we exclaim:
Rejoice, Holy Francis, Wonderworker of Assisi, bearing on your body the Marks of the Lord Jesus!
Ikos 1
You are an aromatic fragrance of the Myrrh from on High that has perfumed Christ's Church on earth, O Father Francis, filling it with the streams of Divine Grace that flow from the Wounded Side of our Saviour. What praise can we offer you that is worthy of the manifold greatness bestowed upon you by God? Although we are at a loss, nevertheless we sing:
Rejoice, Holy River overflowing with the Grace of God!
Rejoice, Harp of the Holy Spirit!
Rejoice, Renewer of the Church of God!

Rejoice, Protector of the poor and dispossessed!
Rejoice, Example of the charity of Christ!
Rejoice, Poor Man of Umbria!

Rejoice, Image of Christ Crucified!
Rejoice, Partaker to the fullest of His Sacrifice!
Rejoice, Planter of His Cross in our souls!

Rejoice, Lover of God the Creator of the world!
Rejoice, Friend and helper of all His creatures!
Rejoice, Carefree Bird of Paradise whose spirit soared through the heavens on the wings of prayer and fasting!

Rejoice, Holy Francis, Wonderworker of Assisi, bearing on your body the Marks of the Lord Jesus!

Kontakion 2
Early in your life you learned to disdain the sinful ways of the world, even though you were brought up in pompous wealth. Your mind was once clouded by a great fever, but your spirit clearly saw the folly of the pride of life. Turning to the Cross, you were enlightened by Divine Wisdom that turned your heart to God forever, crying: Alleluia!
Ikos 2
O Holy Father Francis, you were like the rich young man of the Gospel who came to Christ asking what he ought to do to inherit eternal life. But, unlike him, you did not turn away at His command to give up all fleeting material things to the poor in order to follow Him with your whole heart. Blessing you, we sing:
Rejoice, New Mary of Bethany, who chose the "better part!"
Rejoice, New Matthew, leaving the money table to follow Christ!
Rejoice, New Peter, leaving the nets of the world to become a fisher of men!

Rejoice, for you surpassed the wealthy young man of the Gospel in obedience!
Rejoice, for you tasted true freedom in poverty!
Rejoice, for you took up the cause of the needy!

Rejoice, for God is your All!
Rejoice, for you became rich in Christ beyond all measure!
Rejoice, for your heart sings continually and joyfully in the Spirit!

Rejoice, for you are clothed with the armor of God!
Rejoice, for you are girded with His Power!
Rejoice, for you have put on the helmet of salvation!

Rejoice, Holy Francis, Wonderworker of Assisi, bearing on your body the Marks of the Lord Jesus!

Kontakion 3
Your father beat you when he witnessed your great compassion for the poor and your generosity for the needy. Seeking to reject you as his heir, you declared yourself to be an heir to the Kingdom of the Heavenly Father alone. You gave yourself to the Lord in single-minded devotion. Casting off worldly fortune and impious ostentation, you cried: Alleluia!
Ikos 3
Heeding the command of our Saviour in the Gospel that "he who loves Me more than father or mother is unworthy of Me," you did claim God as your Father and the Church as your Mother. Naked did your parents bring you into the world, and naked are you now received by your new Guardians. Praising your love for Christ, we sing:
Rejoice, for Christ calls those who do the Will of the Father His brothers!
Rejoice, for the Lord deems you worthy of Him!
Rejoice, for it is well as He calls you to Himself!

Rejoice, for you are robed with His Grace and Mercy!
Rejoice, for the Mother of God covers you with her Mantle of Protection!
Rejoice, for the Angels keep you under the covert of their wings!

Rejoice, for the Sun has become your brother!
Rejoice, for the Moon is your Sister!
Rejoice, for all living creatures seek their Guardian in you!

Rejoice, for you have found the Truth that has made you free!
Rejoice, for through poverty you obtained great spiritual wealth!
Rejoice, for through bodily want your spirit ached in desire for God!

Rejoice, Holy Francis, Wonderworker of Assisi, bearing on your body the Marks of the Lord Jesus!

Kontakion 4
Praying before the miraculous Cross, you heard Christ's Voice calling you to rebuild His Church and repair what was tattered. You at first understood this command to mean you must rebuild the ruined stones of church buildings. Later you came to recognize that you must work to recreate the image of God in the souls of the tepid to form them into living stones for God's spiritual Temple, crying: Alleluia!

Ikos 4
Gazing upon the holy icon of the Cross of San Damiano, we listen with you for the Voice of Christ to us and for His command to build up His Body that is the Church. You teach us to study the Cross as the great book revealing the secrets of the Saviour's love for us and all people, as we sing:
Rejoice, for when Christ was uplifted on the Cross, He drew all to Himself!
Rejoice, for Christ showed you His pierced Hands and Feet!
Rejoice, for we bow to Christ in the pine, the cedar and the cypress!

Rejoice, for with you we worship at the Footstool of God!
Rejoice, for Christ willingly laid down His Life for us!
Rejoice, for we worship Jesus of Nazareth, the King of Glory!

Rejoice, for from His Wounded Side flows Water and Blood, Mercy and Forgiveness!
Rejoice, for Jesus on the Cross thirsts for our souls!
Rejoice, for He is truly the Son of God!

Rejoice, for the Tomb is empty!
Rejoice, for Christ is risen from the dead!
Rejoice, for He sits at the right hand of the Father!

Rejoice, Holy Francis, Wonderworker of Assisi, bearing on your body the Marks of the Lord Jesus!

Kontakion 5
You acquired the true Spirit of Peace, O Francis, and you spread the Peace of Christ throughout the Church and the world. You reconciled the Mayor of Assisi with his enemy, singing canticles unto the Lord. Although the people of Assisi at first mocked you as a fool, they came to see in you the grace of a true Fool for Christ's Sake, exclaiming: Alleluia!
Ikos 5
Holy Father Francis, we ask you for the great gift of peace in our times, peace in our families, in our communities, and most of all, in the Church herself. Inspire in us compassion, bearing one another's faults and forgiving each other for the sake of the Lord Jesus. Inspired by your life-long example, we sing:
Rejoice, for blessed are you, holy peacemaker!
Rejoice for you are an instrument of the Peace of Christ!
Rejoice, for where there was hatred, there you sowed love!

Rejoice, for where there was injury, there you gave pardon!
Rejoice, for where there was doubt, there you planted faith!
Rejoice, for where there was despair, there you inspired hope!

Rejoice, for where there was darkness, there you enkindled light!
Rejoice, for where there was sadness, there you brought joy!
Rejoice, for you consoled without seeking to be consoled yourself!

Rejoice, for you loved without seeking to be loved in return!
Rejoice, for in giving and pardoning, we receive the abundance of mercy and peace!
Rejoice, for in dying we are born to eternal life!

Rejoice, Holy Francis, Wonderworker of Assisi, bearing on your body the Marks of the Lord Jesus!

Kontakion 6
Standing in spirit on Mount Tabor before the transfigured Christ, you adored the Saviour Who transforms all creation through Theosis in His Divine Incarnation and redemption of the world. You were lost in wonder and awe before the great Wisdom of the Holy Trinity Who had so ordained it thus. And your spirit dances before the Ark of the New Covenant, like David the King and Prophet of old, crying: Alleluia!
Ikos 6
O vagabond troubadour of God's greatness in His created beings! You did ceaselessly praise the Lord for the wonders of nature. Inspire in us the same love for and responsibility toward the gifts that God has given us in His glorious world. May we be ever mindful of our close relation to nature and always honour God's Image that is to be found in it, singing:
Rejoice, for Brother Sun is beautiful and bears God's likeness!
Rejoice, for Sister Moon and the stars in the heavens are bright, precious and fair!
Rejoice, for Brothers Wind and Air show how much God cherishes what He has made!

Rejoice, for Sister Water is humble, precious and pure!
Rejoice, for Brother Fire is a playful light in the night!
Rejoice, for our Sister, Mother Earth, sustains us with fruits, coloured flowers and herbs!

Rejoice, for the rabbit you saved from the snare remained with you as friend!
Rejoice, for the ravenous wolf obeyed you as his most compassionate guardian!
Rejoice, for the birds of the air studiously listen to your preaching!

Rejoice, for they even now make their nests in your image at Assisi!
Rejoice, for the rosebush gave up its thorns rather than suffer you to be pierced by them!
Rejoice, for, as in the Second Coming of Christ, the lamb and the lion lie down beside you!

Rejoice, Holy Francis, Wonderworker of Assisi, bearing on your body the Marks of the Lord Jesus!

Kontakion 7
O Seraphic Father Francis! You led the Angelic life while still on earth and did rebuild the Portiuncula of Our Lady of the Angels. You continually praised the Mother of Christ through whom our Lord came into the world to redeem and transfigure it, thanking the Lord for His great gift to us from the Cross, crying: Alleluia!
Ikos 7
May we learn from you to seek evermore the riches of the mystery of the Incarnation of our Lord, God and Saviour Jesus Christ in the Most Holy Theotokos, our Protection and our great Intercessor before the Heavenly Throne of Her Son. Inspired by your filial love for the Mother of God, we sing:
Rejoice, great subject of the Holy Queen!
Rejoice, servant of the Mother of God, Ever-Virgin!
Rejoice, giving constant praise to Her who was chosen by the Holy Trinity!

Rejoice, Preacher of the Palace of God!
Rejoice, for you prayed day and night at His Tabernacle!
Rejoice, for you were covered by God's Robe!

Rejoice, for you were assisted by His Handmaid!
Rejoice, for Christ on the Cross bestows on us the gift of His Mother!
Rejoice, for the Theotokos makes us faithful servants of God!

Rejoice, for she is the Daughter of God the Father!
Rejoice, for she is the Mother of God the Son!
Rejoice, for she is the Spouse of the Holy Spirit!

Rejoice, Holy Francis, Wonderworker of Assisi, bearing on your body the Marks of the Lord Jesus!

Kontakion 8
Our Lord favoured you, O Holy Father Francis, with the imprint of His own Wounds suffered during His Passion and death for our salvation. Appearing to you in the form of a fiery Seraphim, as you prayed and fasted at the feast of the Exaltation of His Precious and Life-Giving Cross, our Lord transformed you into a living icon of His Crucifixion. As we silently honour God's unfathomable gift to you, honouring your stigmata, we cry: Alleluia!
Ikos 8
With Saint Paul, you can truly say that you bear on your body the Marks of the Lord Jesus. Help us to keep the Cross of Christ forever in our hearts and minds, reflecting on our Lord's great Sacrifice to free us from the power of sin and the evil one. As we praise God's great lovingkindness toward all people, we sing:
Rejoice, Icon of Christ Crucified!
Rejoice, pierced with the Love of God!
Rejoice, for in Christ thou didst become a "wounded healer!"

Rejoice, partaker to the full in the mysteries of our redemption!
Rejoice, for Christ on the Cross embraces thee!
Rejoice, on fire with love for the Passion of Christ!

Rejoice, who bore Christ's Wounded Side!
Rejoice, great Athlete of God, adorned with the Trophies of the Risen Christ!
Rejoice, mystic martyr for the love of the Lord Jesus!

Rejoice, for you joined the sorrowful company on Calvary!
Rejoice, for Christ invites you to drink from His Cup!
Rejoice, for Christ assures you that you will be with Him in Paradise!

Rejoice, Holy Francis, Wonderworker of Assisi, bearing on your body the Marks of the Lord Jesus!

Kontakion 9
You preached the Gospel to all nations, O Father Francis, and burned with a great desire to bring Christ to the Muslim world. Fearlessly, you went to see the leader of the Muslim armies to sow peace and to announce to him the Good News of salvation in Christ. Awed by the aura of your holiness and by your being imbued with the Spirit of Peace, we cry: Alleluia!
Ikos 9
The Muslim leader had to turn his face away at the brightness shining from your face, O Holy Father Francis. Agreeing to treat his Christian prisoners with greater mercy, he could not oppose the great grace he saw emanating from you, and your great conviction concerning the truth of the Gospel of Christ. We ask you to help us all become icons reflecting the light of Christ to all nations that do not yet know Him, and we sing:
Rejoice, Equal to the Apostles, bringing Christ to all!
Rejoice, ready to be martyred for the Gospel of Christ!
Rejoice, fearless preacher of Grace!

Rejoice, reflecting the Light of the Light-Giver!
Rejoice, who proclaimed Christ Crucified!
Rejoice, for you sowed the seeds of Truth!

Rejoice, witness to the Cross!
Rejoice, beacon of salvation!
Rejoice, leading all to the Saviour!

Rejoice, compassionate friend of all seeking enlightenment!
Rejoice, teaching the faith by word and example!
Rejoice, intrepid missionary and father of missionaries!

Rejoice, Holy Francis, Wonderworker of Assisi, bearing on your body the Marks of the Lord Jesus!

Kontakion 10
Many began to seek you out, Father Francis, to become your spiritual children and learn the ways of holiness and the life in Christ from you. Even many people living in the world sought you out to have you as their teacher and guide in their spiritual life. You did not turn any away, but did wisely and rightly order their lives according to the discipline of the Gospel and monastic life. Thanking God for these great gifts of His Grace in you, we cry: Alleluia!
Ikos 10
"If anyone seeks to follow Me, let him sell all he has, and take up his Cross," commands the Lord. The lesser brothers and sisters who are your spiritual children strive to grow in the life in Christ through closer imitation of you, Father Francis. Giving up everything to receive the hundred-fold reward in the next life, they sing:
Rejoice, for the Gospel is our Rule of Life!
Rejoice, for Christ's Yoke is light and sweet!
Rejoice, for anyone putting his hand to the plough and turning back is unworthy of the Lord!

Rejoice, for you are the joy of St Clare and St Agnes!
Rejoice, for they teach their followers to be lost in adoration of Christ!
Rejoice, for they serve Christ in the poor and rejected of the world!

Rejoice, for your followers living in the world have put on the Lord Jesus Christ!
Rejoice, for they witness to Christ in their daily lives to all!
Rejoice, for their good works lead others to glorify their Father Who is in Heaven!

Rejoice, Holy Hermit of Assisi and Umbria!
Rejoice, drawing continual grace and strength from heartfelt prayer!
Rejoice, leading us to the spiritual riches of the Wounded Side of Christ!

Rejoice, Holy Francis, Wonderworker of Assisi, bearing on your body the Marks of the Lord Jesus!

Kontakion 11
Everywhere you go, Father Francis, the people greet you exuberantly and proclaim the miracles of God's Grace in you. Like John the Baptist at the River Jordan, you taught all to "make straight the way of the Lord" in their lives. As with the Apostles after Pentecost, people throw themselves in your shadow, seeking to cut pieces of cloth from your raiment, and the sick try to touch the edge of your garments to receive abundant healing. Glorifying God Who is glorified in you, we exclaim: Alleluia!
Ikos 11
You are a light to the world, Father Francis, and do shine brightly with miracles. Bodily ailments leave the people, and souls are turned toward God. Asking your intercession for similar graces for us today, we sing:
Rejoice, Holy Wonderworker, exuding the spiritual Myrrh of healing!
Rejoice, pouring the unction of the Holy Spirit over our sinful souls!
Rejoice, bringing us to our complete conversion unto the Lord!

Rejoice, Fountain irrigating our passions with the coolness of Divine Grace!
Rejoice, Noetic Enlightener, helping our unbelief!
Rejoice, Fragrant Flower perfuming all in the Vineyard of Christ!

Rejoice, Holy Mystic, licking thy lips to gather the spiritual honey of the Name of Jesus!
Rejoice, Teacher of Divine precepts!
Rejoice, drawing the grace of God down through prayer and sacrifice!

Rejoice, for the prayer of the Righteous Man is powerful before God!
Rejoice, for you anoint us with the spiritual balsam of healing oil!
Rejoice, God is pleased in the prosperity of His servant!

Rejoice, Holy Francis, Wonderworker of Assisi, bearing on your body the Marks of the Lord Jesus!

Kontakion 12
Toward the end of your holy life, O Father Francis, you admonished your friends and followers to hold fast to the Way of Christ in the Gospel as they were taught by you. You reminded them of the fleeting nature of all material things and that we carry nothing with us after our repose. Blessing everyone, you received the visitation of Sister Death, crying to God: Alleluia!
Ikos 12
With what hymns of praise may we adequately praise your voluntary trials and tribulations, O Holy Father Francis? In the midst of your great sufferings and illness, a brother, in his ignorance, told you to ask the Lord that He might have greater compassion on you, His servant. Falling in your weakened state to the ground and kissing it, however, you thanked God for your suffering and submitted to His Will, saying you were ready to receive even more pain, if this be according to God's Providence. Help us to bear the trials and tribulations of life with like long-suffering resignation to God's Will, as we sing:
Rejoice, who did suffer spiritually with Christ in His Agony!
Rejoice, who was entirely conformed to the Will of God!
Rejoice, for nothing can separate you from the love of God in Christ!

Rejoice, for all suffering is to be accounted as nothing for the sake of the Lord Jesus!
Rejoice, for you pray before God for our infirmities and temptations!
Rejoice, for whose sorrow can compare to that of the Lord on the Cross?

Rejoice, for you bless us now and always!
Rejoice, for you pray for us in heaven!
Rejoice, for we run to you in all our needs and sufferings!

Rejoice, for by your intercession the Lord blesses us and keeps us!
Rejoice, for the Lord makes His Face to shine upon us and is gracious to us!
Rejoice, for the Lord lifts up His Countenance upon us and grants us His Peace!

Rejoice, Holy Francis, Wonderworker of Assisi, bearing on your body the Marks of the Lord Jesus!

Kontakion 13
O Holy Father Francis, Icon of Christ Crucified, whose heart was aflame with the love of God in all His creatures! Pray unto God for us that our hearts may be freed of the cares of this world and its material enticements so that we too may spiritually soar through the heavens toward God on the wings of faith and prayer in all sincerity of spirit. Guide us always with your intercession and may we keep your teachings by word and example before us always until we reach the Kingdom of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen. (Kontakion 13 is repeated three times)

(Then Ikos 1 and Kontakion 1 are repeated here).
Prayer to our Venerable and God-Bearing Father, St Francis of Assisi
O Father Francis, we ask you to accept this humble hymn in praise of your life in Christ lived in all simplicity, poverty and humility! Cover us with your holy mantle of protection and keep our hearts in the love of God in Christ that surpasses all understanding. Lead us in the ways of God, which are not the ways of this world. And after our struggles here, bring us to the eternal enjoyment of what eye has not seen, and what ear has not heard, for those who love God and do His Will, following Him wholeheartedly in simplicity and holiness. Amen.


One of the composed Akathist of Alexander Roman, a Ukrainian Greek Catholic Doctor of Theology from his Ukrainian Orthodoxy, this one are among the few dedicated Akathist to St Francis of Assisi and other Saints from the Latin Rite. For more, click here for the Hagiography of this Holy Founder of the Monastic Catholic Franciscan Order


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