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Great Litany

After the open­ing procla­ma­tion, the Great Litany is chant­ed. This litany begins every litur­gi­cal ser­vice of the Ortho­dox Church, as well as vir­tu­al­ly all sacra­ments and spe­cial ser­vices. It is the all-embrac­ing prayer of the Church for every­one and every­thing. It con­sists of peti­tions to which the peo­ple respond: Lord have mer­cy.

The Great Litany begins with prayers “in peace” and “for peace.” The peo­ple then pro­ceed in the litany to pray for their eter­nal sal­va­tion; for the wel­fare of God’s church­es and for the union of all; for the faith­ful and God-fear­ing of the par­tic­u­lar com­mu­ni­ty; for the bish­ops, priests, dea­cons and all the peo­ple of the Church; for the nation and its insti­tu­tions for which all are respon­si­ble: the pres­i­dent, civ­il author­i­ties and armed forces; for the giv­en city and coun­try and for all cities and coun­tries; for good weath­er and abun­dant crops; for trav­el­ers, for the sick, the suf­fer­ing and those in captivity.

Final­ly, after ask­ing God for the deliv­er­ance from every­thing harm­ful and neg­a­tive and for his divine help, sal­va­tion, mer­cy and pro­tec­tion, the peo­ple remem­ber the Theotokos and all the saints and com­mend them­selves and each oth­er and all their life to Christ their God.

The Great Litany then ends with a dox­ol­o­gy prop­er to the Holy Trin­i­ty to whom are due all glo­ry, hon­or and wor­ship for­ev­er. Once more the prayer is com­plet­ed by the Amen of the people.