Today we began a novena to the Sacred Heart of Jesus initiating nine days of prayerful preparation before the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart on June 23rd. It is celebrated on the date asked of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque during the apparitions to her of the Sacred Heart.
The practice of novenas may originate from the Roman custom of honoring their dead for 9 days. Indeed, novenas of mourning are still one of the popular type of novena prayers - recall the novena published by the USCCB after the death of St. Pope John Paul II. But there are other types of novenas as well: preparation for a feast, prayers for specific intentions or to obtain indulgences.
We began praying the novena when St. Pope John Paul II designated the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart as a day of worldwide prayer for the Sanctification of Priests.
Join us in public prayer or private devotional prayer for the Catholic priesthood and our priests.