A Novena is a prayer, or series of prayers, prayed over nine days.
There is, of course, no magic to the number, but the tradition derives from prayer offfered by the Church over the nine days between the Ascension of the Lord and the day of Pentecost.
During those days, the Acts of the Apostles tells us, the apostles and Mary the mother of Jesus, toegher with several other women and the brothers of the Lord were joined in constant prayer.
Presently the ‘nine days’ between these two historical events is somewhat obscured by the current liturgical calendar for England and Wales. For some years now Ascension Day is transferred to the 7th Sunday of Easter. However that does not mean we cannont begin a Novena to the Holy Spirit on the Thursday of the sixth week of Easter that would formerly have been Ascension Day – nor, come to that…
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