What is a Novena?

"For me prayer is a surge of the heart, it is a simple look towards Heaven, it is a cry of recognition and of love, embracing both trial and joy." St. Therese of Lisieux

A novena is a prayer, or series of prayers, that is associated with a specific devotion or liturgical celebration. Novenas can be offered for a specific intention, like the healing of a sick person, for a special grace, or to give thanks to God.

The origins of novenas come from sacred scripture. After the Ascension, Jesus commanded His disciples to gather in the upper room and devote themselves to constant prayer (Acts 1:14). They prayed for nine days until the Holy Sprit came descended upon them on Pentecost. The word novena comes from the Latin word 'novem', meaning nine. Many novenas are prayed for nine days; either one day a week for nine weeks or every day for nine days. Other novenas are prayed throughout the year.

The Miraculous Medal Novena

“The Blessed Virgin was standing on a globe, and her face was beautiful beyond words. Her fingers were covered with precious jewels whose light dazzled me. And I heard: ‘Behold the symbol of the graces I shed upon those who ask for them!’ Then an oval frame formed around the Blessed Virgin and I read in letters of gold: ‘O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee.’ The vision reversed and I beheld the letter ‘M’ surmounted by a cross, at the foot of the cross, a bar, and below all, the Heart of Jesus crowned with thorns, and the Heart of Mary pierced with a sword. A voice said to me, ‘Have a medal struck after this model. Persons who wear it will receive great graces, especially if they wear it around the neck.'” St. Catherine Laboure

On July 18, 1830, the Blessed Mother appeared to St. Catherine Laboure, who was a Daughter of Charity. She said, "Come to the foot of the altar; there graces will be shed upon all, great and little, who ask for them. Graces will be especially shed upon those who ask for them."

The Blessed Mother appeared to St. Catherine again on November 27, 1830. In this apparition, Mary was standing on a globe, her hands outstretched with brilliant light radiating from her fingers. Around her was the inscription, “O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee.”

Mary then instructed St. Catherine, "Have a medal struck upon this model. Those who wear it will receive great graces, especially if they wear it around the neck."

From this vision, the Miraculous Medal was born. The Miraculous Medal Novena is a set of prayers which comes from the Central Association of the Miraculous Medal.

The Miraculous Medal Novena is prayed communally after the 7:30am Mass on Mondays.

St. Anthony Novena

"The life of the body is the soul; the life of the soul is God." -St Anthony

St. Anthony of Padua is one of the most loved and admired saints in the Catholic Church. Born into a wealthy family in Portugal, he joined the Franciscan Order in 1220. It was a lifelong dream of St. Anthony to become a martyr for his religious beliefs. He is best known for his work in Padua, Italy. St. Anthony proclaimed the Catholic faith with such beautiful simplicity, that even small children could comprehend his teachings. His uncomplicated interpretation of Catholic doctrine earned him the distinction of Doctor of the Church.

While St. Anthony is often invoked to help us find lost items, he is also known as the patron saint of the elderly, travelers, sailors, and the hungry.

St. Anthony's feast day celebrated on June 13.

The St. Anthony Novena is prayed communally after the 7:30am Mass on Tuesdays. We joyfully pray this novena out of love to honor our parish patron saint.

Novena of Our Lady of Perpetual Help

The icon of our Lady of Perpetual Help features the child Jesus fleeing into his Mother's protective arms as the Archangels Michael and Gabriel show Him the instruments of crucifixion. The Greek letters spell out the first letters of Mary and Jesus' names.

This beautiful icon illustrates the great love shared between mother and child. Mary, the first disciple of our Lord, stayed with Him all the way to the cross.

In this novena we thank her and petition her to pray for us in our need and suffering and the need and suffering of those we love. In a particular way, we ask her prayers that we too might be faithful to her son, all the way to the cross.

The novena to Our Lady of Perpetual Help is prayed after Mass on Saturday morning.

Novena of St. Joseph

As can be deduced from the gospel texts, Joseph's marriage to Mary is the juridical basis of his fatherhood. It was to assure fatherly protection for Jesus that God chose Joseph to be Mary's spouse. It follows that Joseph's fatherhood - a relationship that places him as close as possible to Christ, to whom every election and predestination is ordered (cf. Rom 8:28-29) - comes to pass through marriage to Mary, that is, through the family. While clearly affirming that Jesus was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit, and that virginity remained intact in the marriage (cf. Mt 1:18-25; Lk 1:26-38), the evangelists refer to Joseph as Mary's husband and to Mary as his wife (cf. Mt 1:16, 18-20, 24; Lk 1:27; 2:5). St. John Paul II in Redemptoris Custos

The Novena of St. Joseph is prayed after Mass every Wednesday morning.

The Prayer of St. Michael the Archangel

“Now war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon; and the dragon and his angels fought, but they were defeated and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the Devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world—he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him. And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, "Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God. And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death. Rejoice then, O heaven and you that dwell therein! But woe to you, O earth and sea, for the devil has come down to you in great wrath, because he knows that his time is short!" The Book of Revelation 12: 1-12

The prayer to St. Michael the Archangel which we say together is the shorter version of the prayer composed by Pope Leo XIII. After saying Mass one day in the Vatican chapel attended by some Cardinals and others on the Vatican staff, an dramatic incident happened in the life of Pope Leo XIII. He was in leaving the altar when he suddenly collapsed to the floor and awoke saying "Oh, what a horrible picture I was permitted to see." He had witnessed a struggle between Satan and the Church, in which Satan bragged he could destroy her. But Pope Leo was relieved to see that Satan would not triumph because St. Michael would be there to consign him to the abyss of hell. Not long after this experience he composed this prayer which used to be said after every low Mass through the Catholic world. We join the voices to faithful Catholics who have prayed their prayer for an end to the horrors in the world, especially those committed against the Church and our Christian brothers and sisters.

The prayer to St. Michael is prayed after Mass on Thursday and Friday.

The Rosary

“Give me an army saying the Rosary and I will conquer the world.” -Pope Blessed Pius IX

“The Rosary is the most beautiful and the most rich in graces of all prayers; it is the prayer that touches most the Heart of the Mother of God…and if you wish peace to reign in your homes, recite the family Rosary.” -Pope Saint Pius X

The word Rosary means "Crown of Roses". Our Lady has revealed to several people that each time they say a Hail Mary they are giving her a beautiful rose and that each complete Rosary makes her a crown of roses. The rose is the queen of flowers, and so the Rosary is the rose of all devotions and it is therefore the most important one. The Holy Rosary is considered a perfect prayer because within it lies the awesome story of our salvation. With the Rosary in fact we meditate the mysteries of joy, of sorrow and the glory of Jesus and Mary. It's a simple prayer, humble so much like Mary. It's a prayer we can all say together with Her, the Mother of God. With the Hail Mary we invite Her to pray for us. Our Lady always grants our request. She joins Her prayer to ours. Therefore it becomes ever more useful, because what Mary asks She always receives, Jesus can never say no to whatever His Mother asks for. In every apparition, the heavenly Mother has invited us to say the Rosary as a powerful weapon against evil, to bring us to true peace. With your prayer made together with Your heavenly Mother, you can obtain the great gift of bringing about a change of hearts and conversion. Each day, through prayer you can drive away from yourselves and from your homeland many dangers and many evils.

The Rosary is prayed every Friday after the morning Mass and also during our First Friday Holy Hour.



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