In anticipation of the Solemnity of All Saints, I am beginning today a simple novena to all of the saints in heaven, and invite you to join me.
In CCC n. 956, the Church teaches us:
….”Being more closely united to Christ, those who dwell in heaven fix the whole Church more firmly in holiness…. They do not cease to intercede with the Father for us, as they proffer the merits which they acquired on earth through the one mediator between God and men, Christ Jesus…. So by their fraternal concern is our weakness greatly helped.”
My novena will consist of daily praying the Litany of the Saints, followed by this prayer:
Novena Prayer to All Saints
My heavenly brothers and sisters, from those most renowned to those of greatest obscurity, I come before you now in all humility and commend myself, and all who are dear to me, to your intercession.
Pray for us always, that we may awake each day with a burning desire for the Lord whose Face you behold, that we will maintain an intimate personal relationship with Jesus, our Savior and Head, and that we will not hesitate to proclaim God’s greatness to others, and love them as the Lord loves us.
As you offer your continual praise before the throne of God, I raise my heart to you now to implore your powerful intercession for these special needs: (………).
I am confident that your prayers on our behalf will be graciously heard by our loving and merciful Lord. By his grace, may we someday join you in the glory of the Father’s house.
For those unfamiliar with making a novena:
The word “novena” has its origins in the Latin word “novem” referring to “nine each” (per Webster Online).
The post-Ascension novena (leading to Pentecost) made by the Apostles in the Upper Room is the normal model: pray the novena prayers on each of the nine days prior to the feast — in this case, All Saints. Then express gratitude on the feast day.
Sometimes you’ll find that people start the novena eight days before the feast, and include the feast as the ninth day. That’s OK too. Just a matter of personal preference, I think.