Answered Prayers from the Divine Mercy Novena, 2024

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If you had any prayers answered throughout the Divine Mercy Novena, you can share those with us all below.

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Happy Easter!

We hope you’re having a beautiful Easter Season!

One thing we love about Easter is that we celebrate it for so long… Lent lasts for 40 days, but the Easter season is 50 days long!

While we continue to celebrate Jesus’ resurrection and to thank Him for the hope and mercy He offers us, Annie and I wanted to send you our Easter card here.

It is an honor and a joy to pray with you. Thank you so much for praying with us and for those in our community here.

Just scroll down to see our card :)  

We’re praying for you every day!

God bless you!

John-Paul & Annie – PrayMoreNovenas.com


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Day 6 – Divine Mercy Novena | 2024

Here’s Day 6 of the Divine Mercy Novena!

We hope you will continue to enjoy this novena! Pray with Catholics around the world!

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Saints Who Experienced Spiritual Desolation

As much as our hearts desire a relationship with God built through prayer, it isn’t always easy. Many people experience seasons of dryness in prayer that can feel difficult to overcome.

Even the saints weren’t immune to these feelings, with many of them having experienced prolonged seasons of dryness and spiritual desolation in their lifetime.

Look to these saints for prayers and help in persevering in prayer during these times.

St. Mother Teresa of Calcutta

Mother Teresa of Calcutta, known for her profound charity for the poor and the sick, experienced desolation in prayer for 50 years. She wrote:

“Lord, my God, who am I that you should forsake me?  The child of your love — and now become as the most hated one. The one — you have thrown away as unwanted — unloved. I call, I cling, I want, and there is no one to answer . . . Where I try to raise my thoughts to heaven, there is such convicting emptiness that those very thoughts return like sharp knives and hurt my very soul.  Love — the word — it brings nothing.  I am told God lives in me — and yet the reality of darkness and coldness and emptiness is so great that nothing touches my soul.”

However, despite that, she radiated peace and joy to others because she never ceased choosing love and faith even when she didn’t feel like it. 

St. Mary Magdalene de Pazzi

St. Mary Magdalene de Pazzi was an Italian Carmelite and Mystic. Immediately after professing her vows, she experienced deep consolation during Holy Communion for 40 days, but then she suffered for the next five years with spiritual desolation, violent temptations, and physical suffering. 

Mary Magdalene de Pazzi came to understand that the distance she felt from God wasn’t truly a lack of closeness with him; it was just a feeling. The Lord blessed her with many amazing spiritual gifts and through her prayer and her sufferings, a deep union with Him.

Take these words of St. Mary Magdalene de Pazzi during times of difficulty and dryness: “Trials are nothing else but the forge that purifies the soul.”

St. Joseph of Cupertino 

St. Joseph of Cupertino was a Franiscan priest who suffered much in his life, particularly struggling in his studies to become a priest. He was also a mystic who loved God so much that he often levitated during prayer and Mass. 

But even St. Joseph experienced periods of intense desolation and feeling forsaken by God. These periods helped him maintain a spirit of humility in light of his many spiritual gifts. 

St. John of the Cross

Spanish Carmelite priest, St. John of the Cross is perhaps most known for his spiritual writings particularly The Dark Night of the Soul. “The Dark Night of the Soul refers to the period of desolation a soul goes through on its journey to union with God.

It is believed that John wrote this poem along with several other classic works of writing while isolated and imprisoned. Even during the most difficult times of his life,  John saw the ways God was drawing him closer.

He said: “Desolation is a file, and the endurance of darkness is preparation for great light.”

St Faustina

Before she received visions of Jesus, St. Faustina struggled in prayer for two and a half years. 

She later wrote: “A darkness began to invade my soul, growing thicker and thicker. My spirit became dark, the truths of the faith seemed absurd to me. When someone spoke to me of God, my heart was like a stone, incapable of the slightest act of love! I found no consolation in prayer … Often during the entire Mass, I did nothing but struggle with blasphemies that rushed to my lips.”

However, through her perseverance even when it seemed impossible, St. Faustina changed the world through receiving and sharing the message of Divine Mercy.

St. Theresé of Lisieux

St. Theresé has been called the “greatest saint of modern times” by Pope Pius X yet even the Little Flower experienced feelings of desolation. 

While dying from tuberculosis, she wrote that Jesus: “allowed pitch black darkness to sweep over my soul … I suffered it for months and am still waiting for it to end.” Yet she continued to choose faith, hope, and love over darkness and despair. 

These saints are proof that persevering through seasons of dry prayer and desolation will help you grow greatly in holiness.

The History of the Divine Mercy Novena

The Divine Mercy Novena begins on Good Friday and ends the Sunday after Easter now known as Divine Mercy Sunday. 

The prayers that make up this novena have a unique history and contain an important message for the world today.

The devotion to Divine Mercy began with St. Faustina Kowalska, a Polish nun in the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy. Jesus appeared to St. Faustina for the first time on February 22, 1931, presenting Himself to her as “King of Divine Mercy.”

She wrote in her diary:

“In the evening, when I was in my cell, I became aware of the Lord Jesus clothed in a white garment. One hand was raised in blessing, the other was touching the garment at the breast. From the opening of the garment at the breast there came forth two large rays, one red and the other pale. In silence I gazed intently at the Lord; my soul was overwhelmed with fear, but also with great joy. After a while Jesus said to me, ‘paint an image according to the pattern you see, with the inscription: Jesus, I trust in You.'”

Jesus appeared to St. Faustina several more times in the years that followed; his words to her were recorded in a Diary kept at the request of her spiritual director. Jesus told Faustina that He wanted her to spread His message of Mercy to all people.

Years after the initial visit, on September 13, 1935 Faustina received a troubling vision of an angel–“the executor of divine wrath” –about to strike the world; nothing would stop him until Faustina heard and prayed these words: 

Eternal Father, I offer You the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Your dearly beloved Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ for our sins and those of the whole world; for the sake of His sorrowful Passion, have mercy on us.

The next morning, on the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, Faustina heard Jesus’ voice giving her the formula for praying the Divine Mercy Novena.

The Divine Mercy Chaplet extends the offering of the Eucharist, as we once again offer the Son to the Father in atonement for our sins. 

You may pray it at any time, but our Lord specifically told St. Faustina to recite it during the nine days before the Feast of Mercy (the first Sunday after Easter). He then added: “By this Novena, I will grant every possible grace to souls.” (796)

Christ made several others promises to St. Faustina for those who pray this devotion, which were recorded in St. Faustina’s diary:

  • Whoever will recite it will receive great mercy at the hour of death (687). 
  • When they say this Chaplet in the presence of the dying, I will stand between My Father and the dying person, not as the just Judge but as the Merciful Savior (1541). 
  • Priests will recommend it to sinners as their last hope of salvation. Even if there were a sinner most hardened, if he were to recite this Chaplet only once, he would receive grace from My infinite mercy (687). 
  • I desire to grant unimaginable graces to those souls who trust in My mercy (687). 
  • Through the Chaplet you will obtain everything, if what you ask for is compatible with My will. (1731)

Prayed on ordinary rosary beads, The Chaplet of The Divine Mercy is an intercessory prayer that invokes the mercy of God on our sins and on the world. It invites us to offer our anxieties and shortcomings to Christ, and to trust more fully in His unfathomable mercy. 

Find the prayers for the Divine Mercy Chaplet here.

The Divine Mercy Novena, 2024

The next novena we will pray together is the Divine Mercy Novena!

God’s Mercy is central to our lives and we must continually depend on it and ask for it daily.

We will start praying on Good Friday, March 29th.

You can share your prayer intentions with us all below. We’re praying for you!

Answered Prayers from the St. Joseph Novena, 2024

Thank you for joining us in praying the St. Joseph Novena!

If you’ve had any of your prayers answered, you can share those with us all below.

We are continuing to pray for you and your intentions!

The Guardian of the Redeemer: The Next Novena

The next novena we’ll pray is to the Guardian of the Redeemer, at St. John Paul II called him. It’s St. Joseph!

We’ll start the St. Joseph Novena on March 10th. You can share your prayer intentions with us all below. We’re praying for you!

Pillars of Lent

The penitential season of Lent helps the faithful prepare for the Lord’s Resurrection at Easter.

The Church particularly recommends prayer, fasting, and almsgiving during these 40 days. These three “pillars” of Lent help bring about a conversion of heart preparing you to receive the grace and mercy offered through Christ’s Passion and Resurrection. 

Prayer

Prayer is an essential component of the spiritual life; how can you grow in friendship and love of God if you never speak or listen to Him? During Lent, we are particularly called to connect with God more intentionally and reflect on Jesus’ sacrifice. 

The Sorrowful Mysteries of Rosary or the Stations of the Cross can help guide your meditations on Christ’s Passion and Death. You might also try praying with Scripture using Lectio Divina or Ignatian Meditation.

And of course, novenas are an accessible way to focus your prayer during this season. Pray More Novenas has several novenas for Lent including ones that center on significant events like the Transfiguration Novena, the Novena for Good Friday, and the Divine Mercy Novena, as well as major feast days like the Solemnity of St. Joseph.

Click the links to find more novenas to pray in February and March.

Fasting

After Jesus was baptized, he retreated to the desert for 40 days where he prayed and fasted. Fasting allows us to unite ourselves to Christ in the desert in a real way, and is an efficacious way to pray for a particular intention.

Denying yourself something through fasting allows you to strengthen your resolve in your pursuit of virtue, and grow in detachment of the world thereby increasing your awareness (and hunger) for God.

The Church requires you to fast from food on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday, and abstain from meat on every Friday during Lent. However, you may also choose to give up something like chocolate, coffee, or social media for the whole season. 

Almsgiving

Throughout the Gospels, Jesus frequently reminds us of the Christian call to charity and Lent provides an opportunity to renew our efforts in responding to this call. 

This giving of alms can look like donating money or items to people in need or performing other acts of kindness. God wants us to use our time, talent, and treasure to build up the kingdom of God. 

Take some time to think about what gifts God has given you and how you can use those gifts to glorify Him and love others. Consider the Corporal Works of Mercy–which ones can you do this Lent? 

Pray to saints known for their works of charity and almsgiving–like St. Mother Teresa, St. Katherine Drexel, or St. Felix–for the grace to follow their example.

You can’t be too generous with the Lord. 

What are your plans for this Lent? What intentions are you lifting up in prayer these 40 days? Leave a comment below and let us know. 

Praying with Scripture

While Catholics hear the readings at Mass, we don’t always know how to approach the Word of God in our personal prayer. But we need to. 

St. Ambrose, one of the Doctors of the Church, said: “We have been given Sacred Scripture so that God and man may talk together; for we speak to Him when we pray; we hear Him when we read the divine saying.”

Scripture isn’t a collection of stories and wise sayings–it’s the Word of God Himself. He speaks to us through it, and He has a lot to say, if only we will listen. 

What the Saints said about Praying with Scriptures

Ignorance of the Scriptures is ignorance of Christ.

St. Jerome

“He will find there in much greater abundance things that are to be found nowhere else, but can be learnt only in the wonderful sublimity and wonderful simplicity of the Scriptures”

St. Augustine

“Learn the heart of God from the word of God”

Pope St. Gregory The Great 

“The person who thirsts for God eagerly studies and meditates on the inspired Word, knowing that there he is certain to find the One for whom he thirsts”

St. Bernard of Clairvaux

How to Pray with Scriptures

There are many ways to incorporate the Scriptures into your prayer. 

You can pray a Scriptural Rosary, meditating on the words of Scripture for each mystery. You can pray with the Psalms with the Liturgy of the Hours. Or you can meditate on a passage from the Bible using Lectio Divina.

Lectio Divina (Latin for “Divine Reading”) is an ancient practice most commonly found in Western Monastic communities, but don’t let that intimidate you. It’s accessible for everyone, just follow these simple steps:

  1. Lectio
    Begin with prayer, particularly to the Holy Spirit inviting Him to be your guide, and then read a passage of Scripture slowly and deliberately; you may even want to read it twice. If you aren’t sure where to start, pick a story from the Gospels.
  2. Meditatio
    As you read, pay attention to the word or phrase that stands out to you. Consider the meaning of this passage.
  3. Oratio
    Next, turn a listening ear to God. Ask the Lord what He wants you to learn from the passage. 
  4. Contemplatio:
    Finally, take some time for silent contemplation; simply dwell in the presence of God. Allow what had been stirred up during this time of prayer to take root in your soul.

The Scriptures facilitate an encounter with Christ–the Word Made Flesh. He reveals Himself through the words of the Bible so praying with Scriptures is essential to the Christian life. 

Catholic Author, Speaker, and Spiritual Director Karen May delved deeper into how you can pray with the Scriptures and how you can hear the voice of God for the Pray More Novenas Lenten Retreat. You can listen to the full talk below: