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For the town in Singapore, see Novena, Singapore.
For the open-source computer, see Novena (computing platform).
A group of pious women gathered for a novena to Our Lady of Mount Carmel, most likely a mourning event. circa 1940.

A novena (from Latin: Novem, meaning Nine) is an institutional act of religious pious devotion in the Roman Catholic Church, often consisting of private or public prayers repeated for nine successive days in belief of obtaining special intercessory graces.[1]

The prayers are often derived from devotional prayer books, or consist of the recitation of the rosary (a "rosary novena"), or of short prayers through the day. Novena prayers are customarily printed in small booklets, and the novena is often dedicated to a specific angel, saint, a specific Marian title of the Blessed Virgin Mary, or it invokes one of the personages of the Holy Trinity.

Within the Roman Catholic discipline, novena prayers for public use must have an Imprimatur, Nihil Obstat, and Imprimi potest. These ecclesiastical sanctions are usually granted by a bishop or any ranking prelate for publication and approval.


The practice of saying novenas is not explicitly derived from Holy Scripture, but was rather influenced by an early Greek and Roman custom performed by families consisting of nine days of mourning after the death of a loved one, followed by a feast.[2]

The practice was later adopted by new converts to the Roman Catholic faith who associated the event of the Twelve Apostles and the Blessed Virgin Mary in the Upper Room as they prayed for nine days until the Holy Spirit descended on the Feast of the Pentecost. In the New Testament, this biblical event is often quoted from Acts of the Apostles, 1:12 – 2:5.

There are four recognized categories of novenas which belong to more than one of these categories:[2]

  • Mourning, or in anticipation of a Burial
  • In anticipation for a Church Feast or ending in Vespers (often requires Church attendance)
  • Individual or Group Petition (Expiatory)
  • Indulgence for the remission of Sins (often requires Sacrament of Confession or Church attendance)

By standard liturgical norms, novenas are performed in church, at home, or anywhere where solemn prayers are appropriate, though some indulgenced novenas require church attendance. Sometimes, a special candle or incense is lit at the beginning of the novena which burns during the nine days of prayer.

The first chapter of the General Principles of Sacrosanctum Concilium, #13 is often cited as a guideline regarding the implementations of public novenas.[3][4]

Other Christian use[edit]

Novena prayers are also practiced by some Orthodox and Anglican Christians, who hold close or similar beliefs regarding its pious practice.

See also[edit]



  • Right Reverend Monsignor Joseph F. Stedman, The New Revised 'Triple' Novena Manual, Confraternity of the Precious Blood, 1975.
  • Barbara Calamari & Sandra DiPasqua, Novena, Penguin Studio, 1999. ISBN 0-670-88444-8.

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Novena — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.
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308880 news items


Thu, 20 Nov 2014 12:35:04 -0800

More than 10,000 people are expected to come through the doors to pray for those they love and care for during the Solemn Novena liturgies Nov. 17 to 25 at the Miraculous Medal Shrine at 500 East Chelten Avenue in Philadelphia's Germantown section.
Times of India
Mon, 24 Nov 2014 12:37:30 -0800

Several thousands also participated in the eight novena masses celebrated in the pandal outside the Basilica of Bom Jesus. The theme for this Exposition, and this year's novenas and feast is, 'Faith creates communion, strengthens family, commissions to ...

The Catholic Sun

The Catholic Sun
Mon, 03 Nov 2014 17:41:15 -0800

The Crosier Fathers and Brothers, in conjunction with St. Theresa Catholic Church, are offering a novena of intercession for protection from the Ebola virus. The services began Oct. 28 and continue for nine consecutive Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. at St ...
Georgia Bulletin
Thu, 30 Oct 2014 10:13:01 -0700

PHOENIX—In Arizona, the Crosier Fathers and Brothers announced Oct. 24 the community would offer a novena of intercession for protection from Ebola in conjunction with St. Theresa Church in Phoenix. The novena was to begin Oct. 28 and continue for ...
Mainline Today
Sat, 08 Nov 2014 10:11:15 -0800

The Shrine of the Miraculous Medal will host the Annual Solemn Novena (Nine Days of Prayer), November 17th to 25th with Fr. Michael Whalen, C.M.. The Theme is: “The Hail Mary: Prayer of Angels, Saints, and Sinners.” Mass, homily and Novena prayers at ...
Times of India
Fri, 07 Nov 2014 11:30:00 -0800

PANAJI: The novena for the canonization of Venerable Agnelo D'Souza at Pilar will be held from November 11 to 19. It will culminate in his 87th death anniversary on. November 20. Novena masses will be celebrated every day at 5:30am, 6:45am, 8:00am, ...
Waterford Today
Wed, 19 Nov 2014 01:18:34 -0800

A Novena of Masses for the Holy Souls is taking place in Ballybricken Church from Thursday 13th to Friday 21st November at 7pm. On Friday the 21st of November, the last evening of the Novena, there will be a special candle lighting ceremony in ...
Patheos (blog)
Sun, 16 Nov 2014 18:26:51 -0800

My very dear friend, Kara, will be induced tomorrow with her ninth baby. Lucy is the girl her mom waited for patiently – two daughters, and then six boys in a row, before she once again will have a little bit of pink. It is a day that she has looked ...

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