So what is a novena anyway? A novena is a prayer that is said over 9 days, which imitates the apostles after the Ascension of Jesus. We know from Acts 1 and Acts 2 that they prayed and fasted for 9 days, between the Ascension and the coming of the Holy Ghost at Pentecost. The results of this were life changing, as the Holy Spirit came on the 9th day and empowered the apostles and Mary to boldly proclaim the Gospel, with no fear of either the Jews or the Romans. Some novenas have one set prayer said over 9 consecutive days, while other novenas have a different prayer for each on of the 9 days, like the novena to the Holy Ghost. Saying a novena for a petition of yours, from the heart, tells God that you are serious about wanting Him to take care of you. The sincere Catholic who wants his or her prayer answered will be well advised to say novenas!
Perseverance in prayer is recommended in Luke 18:1-8:
"And he told them a parable, to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart. He said, "In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor regarded man; and there was a widow in that city who kept coming to him and saying, `Vindicate me against my adversary.' For a while he refused; but afterward he said to himself, `Though I neither fear God nor regard man, yet because this widow bothers me, I will vindicate her, or she will wear me out by her continual coming.'" And the Lord said, "Hear what the unrighteous judge says. And will not God vindicate his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them? I tell you, he will vindicate them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of man comes, will he find faith on earth?"
Below are some novenas for your consideration. Some are to Jesus, one is to the Holy Spirit, our continual advocate in prayer, some are to the Mother of God, Mary, and some are to our family members, the saints, who have gone before us, and who now want to pray for us day and night, rain or shine, if we will only ask them. Probably the most powerful novena is the 54 day rosary novena, which combines the power of the novena with the power of the rosary. It consists of 3 novenas of petition through the rosary, and 3 novenas of thanksgiving through the rosary.
The saints all have patronages, some of which are listed, so if you are an engineer, maybe you could say a novena to St. Patrick. If you are pregnant, then a novena to St. Gerard Majella is in order. If you've lost something, a novena to St. Anthony would be a great idea.
Another powerful novena is for the Holy Souls in Purgatory. Your prayers, masses, and sacrifices shorten their time in the purifying fire there, and some of them may be your loved ones. Once they get out and go to heaven, then they start praying for us!
It is recommended that you continually say novenas until you die, varying the one you say every 9 days. On your deathbed, you will have many heavenly advocates speaking on your behalf as satan is accusing you of all of your sins before God......And that is a very comforting thought!
LIST OF NOVENAS
If only one prayer is listed, then say it for 9 consecutive days. If prayers for each day are listed, then say the prayer for that day.
The Queen of the Holy Rosary said "Whoever desires to obtain favors from me should make three novenas (9 days x 3 = 27 days) of the prayers of the Rosary, and then three more novenas in thanksgiving."
Pray the Rosary (5 decades) once a day for 27 days in the spirit of petition for all of your good intentions.
Then pray the Rosary (5 decades) once a day for 27 days in thanksgiving for your intentions being answered.
O White lily of purity, sublime example of poverty, true mirror of humility, resplendent star of sanctity. O glorious St Anthony, who didst enjoy the sweet privilege of receiving into thy arms the Infant Jesus, I beseech thee to take me under they powerful protection. Thou in whom the power of working miracles shines forth among the other gifts of God, have pity upon me and come to my aid in this my great need.
(your intentions here).
Cleanse my heart from every disorderly affection, obtain for me a true contrition for my sins and a great love of God and of my neighbour that serving God faithfully in this life, I may come to praise, enjoy and bless Him eternally with thee in Paradise. Amen
Recite one Our Father, one Hail Mary, and one Glory Be.
Prayer to Jesus for the Holy Souls in Purgatory