DAILY CATHOLIC     TUESDAY     September 8, 1998     vol. 9, no. 175


To print out entire text of Today's issue, go to SECTION ONE and SECTION TWO


Day One and Two

A nine day Novena from the Vigil of the Birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary to the feast of Our Lady of Sorrows and endorsed by the National Conference of Catholic Bishops. Compiled by Father James Moroney Executive Director, NCCB Secretariat for the Liturgy

         At times, it seems that life is threatened on all sides. This month, as Congress once again considers important legislation impacting the lives of unborn children, join with others across the nation in prayer. For the nine days between September 7 and September 15 we pray for the intercession of Mary, the Mother of our Life, our Faith and our Hope.

    God, come to my assistance. Lord, make haste to help me.

    Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

    Holy Mother of God, hear the prayers of the Church for all mothers, especially those wearied by life and overcome by the suffering they bear for their children.

    Hail Mary...

    O Mother of the Word Incarnate, intercede for them from your place in heaven, that the mercy of your divine Son might lighten their burden and give them strength.

    Hail Mary... Glory Be...

          "As we contemplate this Mother, whose heart Ďa sword has pierced' (cf. Lk 2:35), our thoughts go to all the suffering women in the world, suffering either physically or morally. In this suffering a woman's sensitivity plays a role, even though she often succeeds in resisting suffering better than a man. It is difficult to enumerate these sufferings; it is difficult to call them all by name. We may recall her maternal care for her children, especially when they fall sick or fall into bad ways; the death of those most dear to her; the loneliness of mothers forgotten by their grown-up children; the loneliness of widows; the sufferings of women who struggle alone to make a living; and women who have been wronged or exploited. Then there are the sufferings of consciences as a result of sin, which has wounded the woman's human or maternal dignity: the wounds of consciences which do not heal easily. With these sufferings too we must place ourselves at the foot of the Cross."

      Pope John Paul II (Mulieris Dignitatem, 21)

Day 1 - Monday, September 7, 1998 - Vigil of the feast of the Birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Labor Day - Pray for the Suffering Women of the World

      Labor day usually brings to mind images of factory workers, farmers or heavy equipment operators. Yet we also use labor to describe the first work which brought each one of us to birth: those first hours of maternal sacrifice which brought us into the world. It's too easy to forget that and all the other sacrifices which the vocation of motherhood entails. Pray for the mothers "in labor" today. Those who give birth. Those who work two jobs to support a child. Those who "go without" so their child's needs are met. Those whose patient endurance is a sign of God's love upon the cross.

Scripture Reading: Luke 7: 11-15

    Day 2 - Tuesday, September 8, 1998 - Feast of the Birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary

    The Birth of the Virgin Mary - Pray for Mothers who will Give Birth Today

          "At first I as scared," Sarah told me. "I was scared, excited and filled with the most incredible expectation. It was like those words we hear at Mass: we wait in joyful hope. I thought of all those women who feel the first kick, the stirrings of life deep within them. I prayed for them, that they would love their child, cherish their little baby and know that in being a mother they are involved in something so much bigger than themselves. They have been chosen by God to be custodians of the mystery of life. At first I was scared, and then I just cried ... with joy."

    Scripture Reading: Matthew 1: 18-23

Tomorrow: Day 3 of the Novena for Life

September 8, 1998       volume 9, no. 175


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