Saturday, April 16, 2005

Novena for the Conclave & New Pope
We began a new novena tonight in my parish. It consists of a few prayers with the Rosary and a Novena to the Holy Spirit occupying centerstage. The intention of this novena is to pray for the Cardinals as they prepare to enter the Conclave and to already anticipate the new Pope's ministry by praying for him. Should the Pope be elected while we are still praying this novena, we will make the intention more strictly for him. Again, this novena was well-attended, much like the previous novena of mourning for Pope John Paul II had been.

As regards credit: I put together this novena from several different sources and different prayers. Some is from Scripture. Some from JP II's Apostolic Constitution on the Vacancy of the Apostolic See. I wrote the statement of intention myself. There is the Rosary and the traditional Holy Spirit prayer. I should give credit to Dr. Mark Miravalle, whose prayer I used as an "additional prayer" towards the end of the page. Also, the concluding prayer comes from an old Missal, pulled off of a novena on Catholic Exchange. I thought I would share this compilation in case any priest out there might like to use it publicly or any other person might like to use it publicly or privately. It is free for the taking. I think it is rather pious, if I may say so myself. The novena prayers follow below:

Novena to the Holy Spirit

Read: Acts 1:12-14 (The first novena).

Read: Pope John Paul II, Universi Dominici Gregis, n.84
84. During the vacancy of the Apostolic See, and above all during the time of the election of the Successor of Peter, the Church is united in a very special way with her Pastors and particularly with the Cardinal electors of the Supreme Pontiff, and she asks God to grant her a new Pope as a gift of his goodness and providence. Indeed, following the example of the first Christian community spoken of in the Acts of the Apostles (cf. 1:14), the universal Church, spiritually united with Mary, the Mother of Jesus, should persevere with one heart in prayer; thus the election of the new Pope will not be something unconnected with the People of God and concerning the College of electors alone, but will be in a certain sense an act of the whole Church. I therefore lay down that in all cities and other places, at least the more important ones, as soon as news is received of the vacancy of the Apostolic See and, in particular, of the death of the Pope, and following the celebration of his solemn funeral rites, humble and persevering prayers are to be offered to the Lord (cf. Mt 21:22; Mk 11:24), that he may enlighten the electors and make them so likeminded in their task that a speedy, harmonious and fruitful election may take place, as the salvation of souls and the good of the whole People of God demand.

Statement of Intention (All recite together):
(Before the election): O Holy Spirit, Almighty God, we offer these novena prayers for the intention of the Cardinal Electors of the Holy Roman Church that, according to Your promptings and Your Will, they may faithfully select for Your Church a new Pope who will guide us to eternal salvation and to life with You.

(After the election): O Holy Spirit, Almighty God, we offer these novena prayers for the intention of the new Supreme Pontiff of the Holy Roman Church, Pope (Name). We pray that he may be filled with Your grace, Your blessing, and Your wisdom, so to be faithful in proclaiming the Gospel, teaching us Your Truth, and guiding us into the flock of the blessed in the eternity of Heaven.

Rosary: In particular, the Glorious Mysteries would be appropriate.

Novena Prayer:
All: Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of Your faithful and enkindle in them the fire of Your love.

Leader: Send forth Your Spirit and they shall be created.
People: And You shall renew the face of the earth.

Leader: Let us pray. O God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit did instruct the hearts of the faithful, grant us in the same Spirit to be truly wise and ever to rejoice in His consolation. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

Additional Prayer (Before the election) All recite together:
Heavenly Father,
We, the People of God, gathered in solidarity as did the disciples in the Upper Room, pray for the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Cardinals who will be in Conclave for the election of the next Vicar of our Lord Jesus Christ. May the hearts of our Cardinals be open to the wisdom of the Holy Spirit, beyond any human judgment, to elect the candidate most pleasing to you, Heavenly Father, and who will guide the Church at this momentous time in history at the beginning of the Third Millennium.
We invoke our Mother Mary, united in prayer with the disciples in the Upper Room, to intercede for our Cardinals to select the next Pope in docility to the promptings of the Holy Spirit, her divine Spouse. Holy Mary, Mother of God and of the Church, we entrust this Conclave to your maternal and Immaculate Heart, and we offer these prayers for your guidance and protection over the choosing of the next Vicar of your Son.

Closing Prayer (Leader):
O Lord, with suppliant humility, we entreat Thee, that in Thy boundless mercy Thou wouldst grant the most holy Roman Church a pontiff, who by his zeal for us, may be pleasing to Thee, and by his good government may ever be honored by Thy people for the glory of Thy name. Through Our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, who with Thee livest and reignest world without end. Amen.

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