Day 1: Novena to the Holy Spirit

This is part one of a nine-day prayer series to the Holy Spirit.

Daily Opening Prayer

Come, Holy Spirit, come! And from Your celestial home shed a ray of light divine! Come, Father of the poor! Come, Source of all our store! Come, within our bosoms shine. You, of comforters the best; You, the soul’s most welcome Guest; Sweet Refreshment here below; In our labor, Rest most sweet; Grateful Coolness in the heat; Solace in the midst of woe. O most blessed Light divine, Shine within these hearts of Yours, And our inmost being fill!

Where You are not, we have naught, Nothing good in deed or thought, Nothing free from taint of ill. Heal our wounds, our strength renew; On our dryness pour Your dew; Wash the stains of guilt away. Bend the stubborn heart and will; Melt the frozen, warm the chill; Guide the steps that go astray. On the faithful, who adore and confess You, evermore in Your sevenfold gift descend; Give them virtue’s sure reward; Give them Your salvation, Lord; Give them joys that never end. Amen.

 

Day One — Wisdom

Very truly, I tell you, if you ask anything of the Father in my name, He will give it to you. —John 16:23

Jesus does not suggest that prayer is a way to force God’s hand, as if all I need do is use the right words — “I ask this in Jesus’ name” — and God will give me whatever I want. The “you” in Jesus’ words is plural, not singular. It refers to the community of faith gathered in His name and heard by God, our loving Father. What might this have meant to Jesus’ disciples gathered in His name? His resurrection hit them like a bombshell; and, at His Ascension He had been “lifted up” (Acts 1:9) before their wondering eyes. Jesus had said that He would send the Holy Spirit, but how long must they wait? When would their prayers be answered? Wisdom guides us to pray patiently and with an open heart, ready for whatever may come. Wisdom helps us to know what to pray for and where to use the talent and resources God gives us. Equally important, Wisdom opens our eyes to see God’s response to our prayers when there seems to be no response at all. When Jesus died on the Cross and was buried, He looked like the biggest failure who ever lived. Wisdom helped His disciples see the triumph of Jesus’ Cross, and it can help us do likewise. We receive the gift of Wisdom at our Baptism and affirm it at Confirmation, but we must be willing to use it.

Prayer

Come, Holy Spirit, fill us with the clear light of Your Wisdom. Help us to pray for what we need to follow Jesus faithfully. Help us to use the gift of Wisdom to serve one another. Help us to see that Wisdom is a gift to all those You have gathered, not just a few. Give us Wisdom to embrace the truth wherever we may find it.

 

Daily Concluding  Prayer

 

O Lord Jesus Christ, Who, before ascending into heaven, promised to send the Holy Spirit to finish Your work in the souls of Your apostles and disciples, grant the same Holy Spirit to me, that He may perfect in my soul the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may not be attached to the perishable things of this world, but aspire only after the things that are eternal; the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the Light of Your Divine Truth; the Spirit of Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven; the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You land that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation; the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God and know myself, and grow perfect in the science of the Saints; the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable; the Spirit of Fear of the Lord that I may be filled with loving Reverence towards God and may avoid anything that may displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord, with the sign of Your true disciples and animate me in all things with Your Holy Spirit. Amen.

 

An Act of Consecration to the Holy Spirit

On my knees — before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses — I offer myself, soul and body, to You, eternal Spirit of God. I adore the brightness of Your purity, the unerring keenness of Your justice, and the might of Your love. You are the Strength and the Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am. I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart to avoid any sin against You.

Mercifully guard my every thought, and grant that I may always watch for Your light and listen to Your voice and follow Your gracious inspirations. I cling to You, and give myself to You, and ask You — by Your compassion — to watch over me in my weakness.

Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus — and looking at His Five Wounds — and trusting in His Precious Blood — and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart — I implore You, Adorable Spirit, Helper of my infirmity, to keep me in Your grace that I may never sin against You. Give me grace, O Holy Spirit — Spirit of the Father and the Son — to say to You always and everywhere, “Speak, Lord — for Your servant hears.” Amen.

 


 

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