Tuesday, November 25, 2014

As Advent Nears

I love the Church's Liturgical Year!  Following it really helps our family's prayer life.  I especially love the season of Advent and the prayers our family recites throughout it.  All of the prayers help to fill our home with the holiness and beauty of this season of preparation.  Throughout Advent I will continue to post the prayers we use, hopefully early enough that you will have them if you also want to pray them.  The first of these prayers is the St. Andrew Christmas Novena Prayer; you should begin praying it November 30.

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St. Andrew's feast, which is celebrated on November 30, falls at the ending of one Liturgical Year of the Church and the beginning of the next. Advent always begins on the Sunday closest to November 30, which in fact in 2014 is the first Sunday of Advent.  While most novenas dedicated to saints end with that saint's feast day or the day before, the St. Andrew Christmas Novena, also known as the Christmas Anticipatory Prayer, begins on the feast of St. Andrew.  Also in contrast to most novenas that last nine days, the St. Andrew novena extends from the feast of St. Andrew, November 30th, until Christmas and is prayed fifteen times a day.

 This novena, which is a beautiful Advent devotion, is addressed to God the Father, asking Him to grant our requests in honor of the birth of His Most Beloved Son. The prayer is quite simple and meditative, drawing us into the anticipation of Christmas and that “blessed hour and moment,” while at the same time focusing our hearts on preparing spiritually for the birth of Christ.

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St. Andrew Christmas Novena Prayer

Hail and blessed be the hour and moment in which the Son of God was born of the most pure Virgin Mary, at midnight, in Bethlehem, in piercing cold. In that hour, vouchsafe, O my God! to hear my prayer and grant my desires (requests may be mentioned here), through the merits of Our Saviour Jesus Christ, and of His Blessed Mother.   Amen.

**It is piously believed that whoever recites the above prayer fifteen times a day from the feast of St. Andrew until Christmas will obtain what is asked.
Imprimatur: +MICHAEL AUGUSTINE, Archbishop of New York,1897

St. Andrew, Apostle

God bless and blessed Advent!

+ JMJ +

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