Sunday, April 20, 2014

St. Gianna Novena {Day 1}
& What I Wore Easter Sunday

Happy Easter! I hope this finds you filled with the joy of our risen Lord.

As you may have read, for the next nine days {April 20-28}, we will be praying a novena to ask St. Gianna Beretta Molla, patron saint of mothers, unborn children, and physicians, to pray for us. We will finish the novena on St. Gianna's feast day, Monday, April 28th. {As I mentioned in Thursday's post: For any non-Catholic readers out there, as Catholics we believe in the Communion of Saints. We ask the saints to pray for us and with us, just as you might ask your mom or your brother to pray for you and with you. For a more in-depth understanding, you could read this great post.}

Tomorrow and each day this week I'll share a little about the life of St. Gianna Beretta Molla. But today I wanted to share a little about novenas. While I have prayed novenas before (though only in recent years), I realized that I didn't know the history of them until I looked it up for this post!

First of all, what is a novena? Here's a good answer I found:
Either as a public or personal observance, a novena involves nine days of hopeful anticipation of an answer for the petition or intention for which prayers are being offered. Often a sense of urgency and earnestness accompanies these times. They are also a wonderful witness to a belief in the power of prayer and the dynamic role of genuine faith.When we pray a Novena, we either pray the same prayer for all nine days or follow a list of prayers to be prayed for each day. Every novena is a bit different in the intention, formation of prayers and practice. {source}
And why nine days? This comes from the nine days Mary and the Apostles waited after the ascension before the descent of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost, in which God's promise to his people was fulfilled.
The heart of any Novena is the same as the first one, called by our Lord Himself. "He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father." (Acts 1:4)

[...] Whenever we undertake a novena of prayer, we are declaring that same supreme desire to wait for the promise, persevering with confidence until the end. 
Pretty cool!

I invite you to share any personal intentions you have for this novena in the comments. In addition to your intentions, today I'd like to pray for all the men, women & children who joined our Church last night at the Easter Vigil...that they - and all of us - would be inspired by the saints to live lives of great virtue.
Please pray with me:

God, our Father, You have granted to Your church the gift of Gianna Beretta Molla. In her youth she lovingly sought You and drew other young people to You, involving them, through apostolic witness and Catholic Action, in the care of the sick and aged, to help and comfort them.

We thank You for the gift of this young woman, so deeply committed to You. Through her example grant us the grace to consecrate our lives to Your service, for the joy of our brothers and sisters. 

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen. 

Jesus, Redeemer of mankind, You called Saint Gianna to exercise the medical profession as a mission for the comfort of bodies and souls. In her suffering fellow men and in the little ones, deprived of all support, she saw You. 

We thank You for having revealed Yourself to this servant as “one who serves” and who soothes the sufferings of men. Treasuring her example may we become generous Christians at the service of our brothers and sisters, especially those with whom You deign to share Your Cross.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen. 

God, Sanctifying Spirit, who love the Church as Your Bride, You poured into the heart of Saint Gianna a share of Your Love so that she could radiate it in her family, and thus cooperate with You in the wonderful plan of creation, and give life to new children who could know and love You.
We thank You for this model wife and, through her encouraging witness, we beg You to grant to our families the serene and Christian presence of mothers committed to transform their homes into cenacles of faith and love, rich with generous activity and sanctifying service.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen. 

O God, Creator and lover of mankind, You were close to Saint Gianna when, affected by illness, she was in the painful dilemma of choosing between her own life and the life of the child whom she was carrying in herself, a gift long-awaited. Trusting You alone, and aware of Your Commandment to respect human life, Gianna found the courage to do her duty as a mother and to say “yes” to the new life of her baby, generously sacrificing her own. Through the intercession of Mary, Mother of Jesus, and after the example of Gianna, inspire all mothers to welcome with love the sparkle of new life. Grant us the grace we are praying for {say your intentions} and the joy to find an inspiration in Saint Gianna who, as a model spouse and mother, after the example of Christ, gave up her life for the life of others. 

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed are thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

{novena source}
•     •     •
Thanks so much for joining me in prayer.

And! Linking up with the lovely ladies at Fine Linen & Purple for What I Wore Easter Sunday.
{the most full-length picture we had taken today}
{cardigan} loft 
{camisole} loft 
{skirt - not really pictured} sara benjamin's (a shop in my hometown)
{shoes - not pictured} the toms i wore on my wedding day
{earrings} pearls, a wedding gift from my parents
{necklace} purchased at the Vatican when studying abroad

{suit} men's wearhouse
{shirt} eddie bauer
{tie} banana republic outlet

The picture was taken after we enjoyed a beautiful morning Mass with my parents and some dear family friends who were in town. What a blessing it was to have them here this weekend! 

One more picture...our church this morning. I just love all the Easter flowers.

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  1. Happy Easter! Jesus Christ is Risen ~ Truly, He is Risen!

  2. I stumbled over here from another blog, this novena is exactly what I need to do right now! My husband and I are discerning whether I should be a stay at home mom, or pursue an MD-PhD degree, and eventually a medical profession. I didn't even realize until now how perfect St. Gianna is as a saint to ask to intercede for this intention!

  3. Excited to join you for this Novena - I was recently confirmed into the Roman Catholic church back in February, and I took St. Gianna as my confirmation saint. I am also expecting my 3rd baby in about a month! Thanks for sharing and getting this started!

  4. Thank you for posting the novena. We're entering our third month of trying for a baby after our 2 miscarriages this year.


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