Novena for the Feast of the Assumption August 6th – 14th

Novena for the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Mary, Help of Christians

 

The First Day
Mary’s Death was without Pain
Preparatory Prayer

O MARY, Virgin most blessed and Mother of Our Lord and Redeemer Jesus Christ, through thy mercy I beseech thee to come to my aid, and to inspire me with such confidence in thy power, that I may have recourse to thee, pray to thee, and implore thy aid in all needs of soul and body.
Meditation

Mary, the virgin Mother of God, was conceived without original sin. She never dimmed the luster of sanctifying grace which beautified her soul by actual sin. Nevertheless she had to pass through the dark portal of death before she was assumed, body and soul, into heaven. She had not been endowed with the privilege of immortality with which God had invested our first parents in paradise. It was meet that she should be like unto her divine Son in everything, even in death. But as she had drained the bitter cup of suffering during her whole life, and especially when standing beneath the cross, her death was to be free from pain and suffering. She quietly passed away yielding up her spirit in a yearning desire to be united forever with her divine Son in heaven.
Practice

If you have dispossessed your heart of all unruly attachment to the goods and enjoyments of this earth, you, too, may hope for a happy and tranquil transition from this land of exile to your home in heaven. Therefore, if you are still attached to the transitory things of this life, disengage your heart from them now. The voluntary renouncement of earthly goods alone is meritorious before God. The separation from them enforced by the strong hand of death is of no supernatural value.
Prayer of the Church

WE BESEECH Thee, O Lord, pardon the shortcomings of Thy servants; that we who, by our own works, are not able to please Thee, may be saved by the intercession of the Mother of Thy Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

Litany of Loreto
Prayer

O most benign Mother Mary! I rejoice that by thy happy and tranquil death the yearning of thy heart was appeased, and thy life, so rich in merit and sacrifice, received its crown. I rejoice that after passing from this life, thou, O most loving Mother, wast made the glorious and powerful queen of heaven and dost exercise thy influence as such for the benefit of thy frail, exiled children on earth. Obtain for me, I beseech thee, a happy death, that I may praise and glorify thy might and kindness forever in heaven.

Hail Mary, etc.
Ejaculation

Sweet heart of Mary be my salvation!

Indulgence. (1) 100 days, every time. (2) A plenary indulgence, once a month, on any day, to all who shall have said it every day for a month, under the usual conditions.

The Second Day
At Mary’s Tomb
Preparatory Prayer

O MARY, Virgin most blessed and Mother of Our Lord and Redeemer Jesus Christ, through thy mercy I beseech thee to come to my aid, and to inspire me with such confidence in thy power, that I may have recourse to thee, pray to thee, and implore thy aid in all needs of soul and body.
Meditation

An ancient legend relates that, led by Heaven, all the Apostles, except St. Thomas, assembled at the Blessed Virgin’s death-bed. After she had breathed forth her pure spirit, her sacred remains were prepared for the grave by wrapping the body in new white linen and decking it with flowers. Meanwhile the apostles, assembled in another room, sang psalms and hymns in praise of their departed Mother. The apostles, all the disciples, and the faithful dwelling in Jerusalem followed the blessed remains to the grave chanting psalms and hymns. Arrived in the valley of Josaphat, the body was gently placed in a sepulcher of stone not far from the Garden of Olives. After the entombment the apostles and crowds of the faithful lingered near the sacred spot in prayer, meditation, and chanting of psalms in which angels’ voices were heard to mingle.
Practice

Join in spirit with the apostles and faithful in their prayer and meditation at the grave of our blessed Mother. Contemplate and review her whole life. Could a course like hers have terminated more appropriately than with so beautiful, painless, and tranquil a passing away? Prepare yourself even now for your departure from this life. Do not postpone the settlement of your affairs, spiritual and temporal, until the last uncertain hours. Above all, remove now, or as soon as possible, all doubts, anxieties, and irregularities of conscience, because delay is dangerous and leads to impenitence, and because in the last hours the powers of hell usually assail the departing soul with all their might.
Prayer of the Church

WE BESEECH Thee, O Lord, pardon the shortcomings of Thy servants; that we who, by our own works, are not able to please Thee, may be saved by the intercession of the Mother of Thy Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

Litany of Loreto
Prayer

Glorious Virgin, who for thy consolation didst deserve to die comforted by the sight of thy dear Son Jesus, and in the company of the apostles and angels; pray for us, that at that awful moment we, too, may be comforted by receiving Jesus in the most holy Eucharist, and may feel thee nigh when we breathe forth our soul.

Hail Mary, etc.
Ejaculation

Sweet heart of Mary be my salvation!

Indulgence. (1) 100 days, every time. (2) A plenary indulgence, once a month, on any day, to all who shall have said it every day for a month, under the usual conditions.

The Third Day
The Empty Tomb
Preparatory Prayer

O MARY, Virgin most blessed and Mother of Our Lord and Redeemer Jesus Christ, through thy mercy I beseech thee to come to my aid, and to inspire me with such confidence in thy power, that I may have recourse to thee, pray to thee, and implore thy aid in all needs of soul and body.
Meditation

St. John Damascene writes: “St. Thomas was not with the other apostles when the Blessed Virgin died, but arrived in Jerusalem on the third day after that event. Ardently desiring to see once more and to venerate the sacred body which had given flesh and blood to his beloved Master, the grave was opened for this purpose. The body could nowhere be seen, and a delicious perfume filled the empty tomb. The apostles then became convinced that as God had preserved the body of Mary free from sin before, in, and after the birth of His Son, He was pleased likewise, after her death, to preserve that same body from corruption, and to glorify it in heaven.”

A council held in Jerusalem in the year 1672 declared: “It is beyond all doubt that the Blessed Virgin is not only a great and miraculous sign on earth, because she bore God in the flesh and yet remained a virgin, but she is also a great and miraculous sign in heaven, because she was taken up thither with soul and body. For although her sinless body was enclosed in the tomb, yet, like the body of Our Lord, it arose on the third day and was carried up to heaven.”

Although the doctrine of the bodily assumption of Mary into heaven was not defined by the Church as an article of faith in the strict sense, yet the learned Pope Benedict XIV remarks, “It would be presumptuous and blameworthy in any one to call into doubt or to question this beautiful and consoling belief of ages.”
Practice

Let us rejoice at the thought of the glorious resurrection of our dear Mother. Let us unite ourselves in spirit with the apostles in heaven and with Holy Church to congratulate her on this extraordinary privilege. But let us also rejoice at the thought of our own resurrection. True, it shall not take place immediately after death, but it is therefore not the less certain, and it depends on us to make it glorious and blessed.
Prayer of the Church

WE BESEECH Thee, O Lord, pardon the shortcomings of Thy servants; that we who, by our own works, are not able to please Thee, may be saved by the intercession of the Mother of Thy Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

Litany of Loreto
Prayer

O Glorious Virgin and Mother of God, Mary! As thy sacred body after death was preserved from corruption, and united with thy sinless soul was borne to heaven by the angels; obtain for me the grace that my life and death be holy, so that on the Day of Judgment I may arise to glory everlasting.

Hail Mary, etc.
Ejaculation

Sweet heart of Mary be my salvation!

Indulgence. (1) 100 days, every time. (2) A plenary indulgence, once a month, on any day, to all who shall have said it every day for a month, under the usual conditions.

The Fourth Day
Reasons for the Bodily Assumption of Mary into Heaven
Preparatory Prayer

O MARY, Virgin most blessed and Mother of Our Lord and Redeemer Jesus Christ, through thy mercy I beseech thee to come to my aid, and to inspire me with such confidence in thy power, that I may have recourse to thee, pray to thee, and implore thy aid in all needs of soul and body.
Meditation

1. THE wages of sin is death. Now, as the Blessed Virgin from the first moment of her existence was preserved from all sin, and even from original sin, it necessarily follows that death could have no permanent dominion over her, and that her body would not be permitted to see corruption.

2. This sinless body had been the medium by which the body of Our Lord Jesus Christ, who was the conqueror of death, had been formed. How, then, could such a highly privileged body, a pure and virginal body, be permitted to pass through corruption and decay?

3. As Mary had yielded up her sacred person to be a dwelling-place for the Lord of heaven, it seems fitting that this same Lord, in His turn, should give the kingdom of heaven to her as her resting-place. St. Bernard expresses this sentiment as follows: “When Our Lord came into this world, Mary furnished Him with the noblest dwelling on earth, the temple of her virginal womb. In return, the Lord on this day raises her up to the highest throne in heaven.”
Practice

If you desire to look forward to death without fear, and to expect your dissolution with confidence, follow the Apostle’s injunction, “Therefore, whilst we have time, let us work good” (Gal. vi. 10). Avoid sin, perform good works, be patient in affliction, and strive to expiate the punishment due to your sins by voluntary acts of penance, thus reducing your inclination to sin. Therefore offer up to God every morning, in a spirit of penitence, all your labors, trials, and sufferings.
Prayer of the Church

WE BESEECH Thee, O Lord, pardon the shortcomings of Thy servants; that we who, by our own works, are not able to please Thee, may be saved by the intercession of the Mother of Thy Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

Litany of Loreto
Prayer

O Glorious Virgin and Mother of God, Mary! I beseech thee through the ineffable glory thou didst make for thy departure from this world by a life of retirement, full of merits and virtue, dedicated to God alone; obtain for me the grace that, following thy example, I may detach my heart from this world, and patiently bear affliction and adversity, carefully avoid sin, and always strive to advance in the love of God.

Hail Mary, etc.
Ejaculation

Sweet heart of Mary be my salvation!

Indulgence. (1) 100 days, every time. (2) A plenary indulgence, once a month, on any day, to all who shall have said it every day for a month, under the usual conditions.

The Fifth Day
Mary’s Glorious Entrance into Heaven
Preparatory Prayer

O MARY, Virgin most blessed and Mother of Our Lord and Redeemer Jesus Christ, through thy mercy I beseech thee to come to my aid, and to inspire me with such confidence in thy power, that I may have recourse to thee, pray to thee, and implore thy aid in all needs of soul and body.
Meditation

A joy greater than human heart can conceive fills the heavenly spirits when a soul enters heaven to receive her reward. What jubilant transports, then, must those have been with which they hailed the entrance into heavenly bliss of the most pure and holy Virgin, the Mother of the Son of God, body and soul, transfigured in glory! And she is, and shall be, for all eternity, their mistress and queen! What an ineffable joy, too, for the Blessed Virgin, to behold the countless numbers of angels, to admire their beauty, their purity, their intense love of God! But as the feeble light of a candle disappears before the splendor of the sun’s rays, thus are these choirs of angels obscured by the ineffable glory of her divine Son coming to welcome His Mother. Who can describe this affecting meeting? What a superabundant reward for affliction and suffering! What an ocean of joy and bliss, when the Son of God presented His Mother before the throne of His heavenly Father, who greeted her as His beloved Daughter! What a joy to behold the Holy Ghost, whose pure Spouse she had been even on earth! These transports of bliss baffle all attempts at description.
Practice

Though we are unable to have an adequate perception of Mary’s glory in heaven, by which she is raised above all angels and saints, yet it is in our power to do one thing; we can rejoice at the glory of our blessed Mother, and join the heavenly spirits and the saints in paying homage to her. Let us resolve to do this, and never to forget that Mary attained to the largest share of her divine Son’s glory because she was foremost in sharing His sufferings. Let this encourage us to bear our cross, to bear it with our Saviour even to the height of Calvary, there to die with Him.
Prayer of the Church

WE BESEECH Thee, O Lord, pardon the shortcomings of Thy servants; that we who, by our own works, are not able to please Thee, may be saved by the intercession of the Mother of Thy Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

Litany of Loreto
Prayer

O Glorious Virgin and Mother of God, Mary! I beseech thee through the preparation with which thou wast glorified by God, by the Father as His most beloved Daughter, by the Son as His immaculate Mother, and by the Holy Ghost as His most pure Spouse in heaven; obtain for me the grace to share to some extent this thy glory, and therefore to live so that I may deserve it.

Hail Mary, etc.
Ejaculation

Sweet heart of Mary be my salvation!

Indulgence. (1) 100 days, every time. (2) A plenary indulgence, once a month, on any day, to all who shall have said it every day for a month, under the usual conditions.

The Sixth Day
Mary Crowned in Heaven
Preparatory Prayer

O MARY, Virgin most blessed and Mother of Our Lord and Redeemer Jesus Christ, through thy mercy I beseech thee to come to my aid, and to inspire me with such confidence in thy power, that I may have recourse to thee, pray to thee, and implore thy aid in all needs of soul and body.
Meditation

Mary’s glory received its culmination by her coronation as queen of heaven and earth. It was meet that in her should be fulfilled the words of Holy Scripture: “Come from Libanus, my Spouse, come, thou shalt be crowned” (Cant. iv. 8), and that her own prophetic words, “He hath put down the mighty from their seat, and hath exalted the humble” (Luke i. 52), should be exemplified in her. For it was reasonable and becoming that she, who once with Jesus wore the crown of shame and contempt, should now share with Him the crown of immortal glory. It was but fair and just that the immaculate being who was chosen, above all inhabitants of heaven and earth, to be the true and worthy Mother of God, should now be solemnly installed over all creatures in heaven and on earth as the queen of angels and men, and that to her should be offered homage, praise, and honor by the blessed spirits and by the souls of the saints. But the crown which she received is not one made of gold and precious stones; it is composed of the virtues with which Mary, in faithful co-operation with divine grace, embellished herself; it consists, too, of all the homage and glory which she receives as queen of heaven. The most precious gem in this crown is the filial love and gratitude Jesus shows toward His Mother in heaven.
Practice

Indeed, “eye hath not seen, ear hath not heard, neither has it entered into the heart of man,” what the heavenly Father has prepared in the mansions of eternal bliss for His beloved Daughter, the Son for His Blessed Mother, and the Holy Ghost for His chosen Spouse. She is now queen of heaven and earth; of heaven, for she is the queen of all angels and saints; of earth, for as Mother of God she is the Mother of all mankind, the mediatrix between the Redeemer and the redeemed.

You, too, may contribute a gem toward the crown of your heavenly Mother by paying her filial homage, imitating her virtues, and preserving, for the love of her, your innocence and purity of heart.
Prayer of the Church

WE BESEECH Thee, O Lord, pardon the shortcomings of Thy servants; that we who, by our own works, are not able to please Thee, may be saved by the intercession of the Mother of Thy Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

Litany of Loreto
Prayer

O Glorious Virgin and Mother of God, Mary! I beseech thee through the everlasting crown of glory with which God has crowned thee queen of heaven and earth; obtain for me through thy mighty intercession the grace to persevere in virtue to the end, so that finally I may attain the crown of bliss prepared by God for those that love Him.

Hail Mary, etc.
Ejaculation

Sweet heart of Mary be my salvation!

Indulgence. (1) 100 days, every time. (2) A plenary indulgence, once a month, on any day, to all who shall have said it every day for a month, under the usual conditions.

The Seventh Day
Mary’s Bliss in Heaven
Preparatory Prayer

O MARY, Virgin most blessed and Mother of Our Lord and Redeemer Jesus Christ, through thy mercy I beseech thee to come to my aid, and to inspire me with such confidence in thy power, that I may have recourse to thee, pray to thee, and implore thy aid in all needs of soul and body.
Meditation

According to Holy Scripture and the doctrine of the Church, there are in heaven various grades of glory and bliss, according to the rank and merit of the saints. They probably attain this higher grade of glory and bliss by the increase of their ability to enjoy the happiness of heaven. Their intellect is enabled to contemplate more profoundly the incomprehensible essence of God; their power of perception is augmented so that they may more readily recognize and admire the splendor of the angels, saints, and heavenly mansions; their will is enabled to be united, in a higher degree, with God. From this we may conclude that Mary’s bliss in heaven transcends all human conception. Her heavenly glory and reward consists in the perfect adaptation of her whole being to the enjoyment of God and of eternal bliss.
Practice

Look up, Christian soul, to this great and brilliant queen of heaven. She is your gentle Mother and assures you of her help, and the diadem she wears upon her brow is a proof that she has the power to help you. Do not, therefore, refuse the hand of this mighty friend in heaven, for she will lift you from the depths of your misery, from the rocky shoals of temptation, and lead you strong and victorious into the presence of her divine Son. Thus you will enter into a new and supernatural life in Christ, to share in the grace-laden mysteries of His life, passion, and triumph.
Prayer of the Church

WE BESEECH Thee, O Lord, pardon the shortcomings of Thy servants; that we who, by our own works, are not able to please Thee, may be saved by the intercession of the Mother of Thy Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

Litany of Loreto
Prayer

O great and glorious queen of heaven, Mary! I beseech thee by that exalted throne upon which God has raised thee above all angels and saints; let me one day appear amongst them to join them in their praise of thee. Obtain for me the grace that I may never cease to honor thee as thou dost deserve to be honored, and thereby to become worthy of thy mighty protection in life and death.

Hail Mary, etc.
Ejaculation

Sweet heart of Mary be my salvation!

Indulgence. (1) 100 days, every time. (2) A plenary indulgence, once a month, on any day, to all who shall have said it every day for a month, under the usual conditions.

The Eighth Day
Mary, the Queen of Mercy
Preparatory Prayer

O MARY, Virgin most blessed and Mother of Our Lord and Redeemer Jesus Christ, through thy mercy I beseech thee to come to my aid, and to inspire me with such confidence in thy power, that I may have recourse to thee, pray to thee, and implore thy aid in all needs of soul and body.
Meditation

Mary is, then, a queen, but “what a consolation to know it!” a queen always mild and gentle, always willing to confer benefits upon us. Hence the Church teaches us to call her the Mother of mercy. The pious and learned author Gerson says: “God’s dominion comprises justice and mercy. He divided it, retaining the administration of justice for Himself, and relinquishing, in a certain sense, the dispensation of mercy to Mary, by conferring through her hands all graces He grants to mankind.” How consoling, then, the assurance that our merciful Mother is so mighty and so loving a queen!
Practice

So great is the tenderness of Mary’s maternal heart “that never was it heard that any one who fled to her protection, implored her help, and sought her intercession was left unaided.” How many prayers, petitions, and thanksgivings ascend daily to the throne of this our exalted and merciful protectress! There is not a cry of an afflicted, struggling, and suffering soul that she does not graciously hear. Join, therefore, confidently in the prayer of Holy Church, “Hail, holy queen, Mother of mercy!” Approach her with filial trust. Neglect not to honor her yourself, and do all in your power to lead others to do her honor.
Prayer of the Church

WE BESEECH Thee, O Lord, pardon the shortcomings of Thy servants; that we who, by our own works, are not able to please Thee, may be saved by the intercession of the Mother of Thy Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

Litany of Loreto
Prayer

O Glorious Virgin and Mother of God, Mary! Holy Church teaches me that despite the glory to which thou wast exalted, thou didst not forget thy miserable clients, and that in heaven thy mercy is still greater than it was during thy life on earth. Therefore I come to thee and trustingly lay at thy feet all my needs, miseries, and petitions. My queen, my Mother, turn not thy gracious eyes from me. Remember me with thy divine Son; cease not to pray for me and take me under thy protection, so that I may finally have the happiness to see and praise thee in thy glory for ever and ever.

Hail Mary, etc.
Ejaculation

Sweet heart of Mary be my salvation!

Indulgence. (1) 100 days, every time. (2) A plenary indulgence, once a month, on any day, to all who shall have said it every day for a month, under the usual conditions.

The Ninth Day
Mary in Heaven, the Help of Christians on Earth
Preparatory Prayer

O MARY, Virgin most blessed and Mother of Our Lord and Redeemer Jesus Christ, through thy mercy I beseech thee to come to my aid, and to inspire me with such confidence in thy power, that I may have recourse to thee, pray to thee, and implore thy aid in all needs of soul and body.
Meditation

Mary’s help as Mother of mercy is not confined to individuals. She is the protectress and helper of the whole Church. All over the earth, wherever we cast our glance, in the records of the history of times long past and those of recent occurrence, we find testimony of the graces and benefits obtained through her intercession. The feasts celebrated by the Church throughout the year, what are they but evidences of gratitude offered to the queen of heaven for the oftentimes miraculous delivery from war, pestilence, and other great afflictions? Hence she is rightly invoked as the “Help of Christians.”
Practice

In our days, too, storms and dangers threaten the Church. Let us, therefore, by calling on Mary for help, do our part toward shortening the days of visitation and trial. Let us not confine our petitions to her within the narrow limits of our own personal needs, but let us join in the cry for help ascending to the Mother of mercy throughout all Christendom. Let us daily, for Holy Church, send up our petition to Mary’s heavenly throne: “Help of Christians, pray for us!”
Prayer of the Church

WE BESEECH Thee, O Lord, pardon the shortcomings of Thy servants; that we who, by our own works, are not able to please Thee, may be saved by the intercession of the Mother of Thy Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

Litany of Loreto
Prayer

O Glorious Virgin and Mother of God, Mary, queen of heaven! Forget us not. Thou art the help of Christians; lighten our tribulations, and help us with motherly intercession at the throne of thy divine Son. With Holy Church I join in the petition to thee: “Holy Mary, aid the miserable, assist the desponding, strengthen the weak, pray for the people, plead for the clergy, intercede for the devout female sex. Let all who have recourse to thee experience the efficacy of thy help!”

Hail Mary, etc.
Ejaculation

Sweet heart of Mary be my salvation!

Indulgence. (1) 100 days, every time. (2) A plenary indulgence, once a month, on any day, to all who shall have said it every day for a month, under the usual conditions.

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