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Novena to St.Philomena (Day 9)

God has given St.Philomena an abundance of graces that show us she is in glory in Heaven with all the martyrs who surround God’s alter in praise. Her history on Earth, as well as her history of signs, wonders and miracles, convince us of the power of her intercession. When it comes to St. Philomena, our cup overflows with grace, mercy, and the glory of God. Jesus transformed her sorrow and suffering even as she faced her greatest trials, and now she shines with glory at His side in Heaven, working with Him for our good in our own journeys and trials. 

A Reading from the Book of Revelation: 

Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say:

“Now have salvation and power come,

and the kingdom of our God

and the authority of his Anointed.

For the accuser* of our brothers is cast out,

who accuses them before our God day and night.

They conquered him by the blood of the Lamb

by the word of their testimony;

love for life did not deter them from death.

Therefore, rejoice, you heavens,

and you who dwell in them.

The Word of the Lord

-Thanks be to God

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St.Philomena, we face so many hardships and trials. But today, help us to praise God in the midst of them, to join Heaven in the constant ecstatic praise of the Lord. We know that praise of God defeats the enemy, that the Lord inhabits the praises of His people. May praise of the Blessed Trinity lift us up today, and fill us with confidence and joy. Like you may we lift up our heads, knowing our deliverance is at hand.

[Here mention your petitions and trials to St.Philomena, asking for her prayers and intercession.]

In  the depths of our hearts let us hear you say to us, “He can, and He will.”

Our Father…

Queen of Heaven, we love you, we bless you, we thank you for your graces and love for St.Philomena, for all your did to encourage and assist her. Be close to us when we are anxious or afraid.  Help us to remember your own beautiful glory in Heaven beside your Divine Son, after your humble life of service and love.

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Hail Mary…

Radiant girl, courageous and free of heart, our friend and guide, protect us, lead us, for the glory of God.

Glory Be…

St. Philomena, be blessed forever, and pray for us, always.

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“He can and He will.”

❤️⚓️🌻

For more stories and information about St. Philomena, her tomb, devotions to her, her sacramentals, visit philomena.it

 

 

Novena to St.Philomena (Day 8)

A very import part of St. Philomena’s relationship with Jesus was the vow of virginity she had made at the age of 13. When the Romans arrested Christian girls, knowing their chastity was sacred to them, their modesty and sense of purity was often a particularly targeted as punishment or a way to break them down. St. Philomena was no exception, according to private revelation about her life. She endured being stripped down and whipped in public, and the attempted unwanted attentions of the Emperor, and even being begged by her parents to give up her vow to save her life, but she stayed strong in her faith and personal commitment to Christ.

St.Philomena has been held up as “Patroness of Purity for Youth” because of her resolve in the face of torment and humiliation, and because of her consecration.

 

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A Reading from the Song of Songs

The Bridegroom: A garden enclosed, my sister, my bride,

 garden enclosed, a fountain sealed!*

Your branches are a grove of pomegranates,

with fruits of choicest yield:

Henna with spikenard,

spikenard and saffron,

Sweet cane and cinnamon,

with all kinds of frankincense;

Myrrh and aloes,

with all the finest spices;

A garden fountain, a well of living water,

streams flowing from Lebanon.

Bride: Awake, north wind!

Come, south wind!

Blow upon my garden

that its perfumes may spread abroad.

 Let my love come to his garden

and eat its fruits of choicest yield.

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St. Philomena, you drew joy and strength from your intense inner relationship with Jesus, and to Him, your soul was His beautiful garden enclosed, His fountain, His place of rest. You were completely consecrated to Him. Nothing could take that away from you, and nothing could change it, and you wouldn’t have given up that inner garden for anything at all. Help us to tend the gardens of our souls that we each be a beautiful place for Jesus to be, in exactly the way our hearts we created to live.

Beloved Lord, may the scent of the perfume of our lives and our offerings of love rise up to you like incense.

Our Father…

Mary, Queen of Virgins, we dedicate and consecrate ourselves to you. We give into your hands for Jesus, everything that we have, and everything that we are. Humbly we lay our souls in the light of your purity, with St. Philomena.

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Hail Mary…

Radiant girl, courageous and free of heart, our friend and guide, protect us, lead us, for the glory of God.

Glory Be…

St. Philomena, be blessed and pray for us.

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Novena to St.Philomena (Day 7)

St. Philomena seems to have an unusual intercessory style. She has been known to grant a sudden and complete healing, but to leave a faint line to show that a break in the bone was once there, or to save a drowning child who was wearing her “cord,” ( a traditional sacramental of St.Philomena,) leaving the cord completely dry as a sign. All over the world people have reported knocking sounds when they ask for her intercession, or her statues turning rose colored. She is even said to have helped a stone carver who accidentally broke an alter her was making out of marble who sent his panicked entreaties her way, but to have left, to his amusement, a faint outline of the breakage on the alter. 

None of that is necessary to obtain her help, and she does not always leave a signature like that. However, these anecdotes do give a little light to us about her playful personality, and her nearness to us when we call. 

Perhaps you will feel her prayerful hand on your shoulder in some way today. Keep your eyes open for a surprise from her sometime during this novena.  

A reading from the Book of Proverbs

I was beside Him, like a master worker;
and I was daily His delight,
rejoicing before Him always,
rejoicing in His inhabited world
and delighting in the human race.

The Word of the Lord

-Thanks be to God

St.Philomena, as expressed by Holy Wisdom in this passage from Proverbs, you, too, as a Saint in Heaven, are beside God now, working with Him, being His delight, rejoicing in Him, and taking joy also in us and the world we live in. We are thankful for your glory with God, thankful for your intercession, thankful for your playful and miraculous spirit among us. We submit to you our worries, in faith filled expectation, with a sense of wonder at all you have already done in people’s lives from your place in Heaven. [Here, talk to St.Philomena about your petitions, and have faith that she is listening.] Compassionate and wonder working Saint, leave your sweet signature on our hearts. Never let us forget what you have done for us.

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Sometimes, Beloved Lord, we are so consumed in our troubles that we forget the joy of belonging to You. St. Philomena’s playful extravagance reminds us that Your yoke is easy and Your burden light, that though we know sorrow, we already possess a joy that can never be taken away. She reminds us that with the faith of a child, we can move mountains; that your love, your gifts, are poured into our laps, into the fold of our garments; good measure, shaken down, and still over flowing, more than enough to share.

Our Father…

Sweet Mother of Our Lord, you yourself came to God as a child presented in the Temple and dancing up the steps before all the priests. When you were St. Philomena’s age you also gave your entire life and future over to the Holy Spirit in saying yes to God with courage, humility and love.

You were poor on earth, but your life with Jesus and Joseph was rich beyond imagining; full and overflowing with love and joy. Help us to remember the joy of Jesus.

Hail Mary… 

Radiant girl, courageous and free of heart, our friend and guide, protect us, lead us, for the glory of God.

Glory Be…

St. Philomena, be blessed and pray for us.

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Novena to St. Philomena (Day 6)

 

One of the most famous healings recorded at the tomb of St. Philomena aside from that of Venerable Pauline Jaricot, is the healing of a blind girl, and a change of heart in a non-believer who was present, who later gave money to build the shrine where St. Philomena’s body still rests today. Eight days after Philomena’s body was moved from Rome, and settled in the Italian town of Mugnano, in 1805, there was a large crowd of people gathered for evening prayer in the church. Miracles and healings had already been taking place, so a mother had brought her blind child. The little girl, about two years old, had been blind since she had contracted small pox. She dipped her hand into the oil from the oil lamp before St. Philomena’s coffin, and applied it to her child’s eyes. The girl was instantly healed, both mother and daughter started to shout with joy and excitement. All eyes were on them, and an un-believer present, as mentioned earlier, was moved to give the money to build the shrine to house St.Philomenas’ relics. Through St. Philomenas’ physical presence, two miracles happened in moments: the opening of the eyes of a blind child, and the opening of the eyes of a heart closed to Jesus, that both might see in the way each needed the most. 

God seems to show us that He loves to share his grace and glory with His holy ones, even and maybe especially after their deaths, by His miracles through their physical presence.

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representation of St. Philomena’s body in her tomb

A reading from the Second Book of Kings

As they were burying a man, behold, they saw a marauding band; and they cast the man into the grave of Elisha. And when the man touched the bones of Elisha he revived and stood up on his feet.

The Word of the Lord

-Thanks be to God

St. Philomena, we come into your spiritual presence with our needs and pressing burdens, our longing for healing, for change of heart, for truth, for new life, for help with our difficulties.  In spirit, we bring our broken hearts before the lamp at your tomb in Mugnano as we pray with faith. [Here express your petitions and needs to St. Philomena.] Dear compassionate and miraculous friend, we trust in your intercession. Your name, Philomena, means “Daughter of Light.” May God pour over us the brightness of His light through you, His dearly beloved saint.

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Our Father…

Holy Virgin Mary, you have shown that St. Philomena was especially close to you when your brilliant light came into her prison cell and healed her of her wounds from being whipped, her humiliation from being punished in public, and the sorrow she felt about her family and her impending suffering and death. You showed her the Child Jesus, and your encouraged her with the hope of Heaven. Visit us now and protect us from evil and despair, that we might be encouraged and filled with new hope.

Hail Mary…

Radiant girl, courageous and free of heart, our friend and guide, protect us, lead us, for the glory of God.

Glory Be…

St. Philomena, be blessed and pray for us.

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Novena to St. Philomena (Day 5)

 

The only accounts we have of the life of St. Philomena are two corroborating private revelations (from different people in different places) that have been approved by the Church, but are not as certain as written testimony from her contemporaries would be of course. According to these private revelations and the hints from the drawings on her tomb, she had been through and survived several humiliations and tortures to try  to break her down and many attempts by her captors to kill her before she was finally beheaded. 

She gave herself to God bravely one life-threatening moment after another. Her trust converted many of the people who witnessed it. I am sure God was speaking to St. Philomena, too, in the way He is said to have saved her miraculously from two attempts to execute her, once by drowning, once by arrows. God often sends us messages in our lives, as well, often when our suffering is deepest, and our challenges urgent, to let us know, “I am with you.”

Because of her union with God, and her willingness to follow His lead wherever it might take her life, her moments of fear and suffering became her finest.

A Reading from the Letter of St. Paul to the Philippians 

Conduct yourselves in a way worthy of the Gospel of Christ, so that… you are standing firm … struggling for the faith of the Gospel,not intimidated in any way by your opponents. This is proof to them of destruction, but of your salvation. And this is God’s doing.For to you has been granted, for the sake of Christ, not only to believe in him but also to suffer for him.

The Word of the Lord

-Thanks be to God.

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St. Philomena, pray for us that our pivotal moments may be transformed in Jesus, and that in these we might glorify His love. May God increase the strength of our souls, and exceed all we have ever known of Him. [Here mention your petitions.] Trusted Saint, lead the way for us bravely, and help us to see the movements of the Holy Spirit in the events of our lives, that every one of them will become sign posts of the way forward. Pray to God for us, that He may turn darkness into light before us, and make crooked ways straight. May we shine with the power of the Lord when we come to moments of decision, and may God bless our efforts to be faithful, as you were unfailingly.

Our Father…

Mother of God, may the sweet companionship of your spirit make our paths bright with meaning and love and grace. As you accompanied St. Philomena to such great bravery, we ask that you also accompany us, especially in times of trial and discouragement. Shine the brilliant light of the Gospel on our paths, that we may see our way through our troubles, and that the grace we will know may, in turn, strengthen the faith of others.

Hail Mary…

Radiant girl, courageous and free of heart, our friend and guide, protect us, lead us, for the glory of God.

Glory Be…

St. Philomena, be blessed and pray for us.

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Novena to St. Philomena (Day 4)

 

No matter what your troubles are, and if you are suffering very much, St. Philomena will intercede for you in a special way and companion you on your journey. She never gave up. She will help you never give up either and follow Christ to the end. She may bring a miracle that is more than you asked for, or she might help you accept the martyrs’ crown, even with love and joy. She knows better than most that our tears become jewels on our garments in God’s Kingdom and that every one of our trials suffered with Christ helps us grow in the knowledge and love of Him.

Let us pray this passage from Psalm 18

Antiphon: With my God I can scale any wall.

I love you, LORD, my strength,

LORD, my rock, my fortress, my deliverer,

My God, my rock of refuge,

my shield, my saving horn,* my stronghold!

Praised be the LORD, I exclaim!

I have been delivered from my enemies.

The cords of death encompassed me;

the torrents of destruction terrified me.

The cords* of Sheol encircled me;

the snares of death lay in wait for me.

In my distress I called out: LORD!

I cried out to my God.

From his temple he heard my voice;

my cry to him reached his ears.

The earth rocked and shook;

the foundations of the mountains trembled;

they shook as his wrath flared up.

Smoke rose from his nostrils,

a devouring fire from his mouth;

it kindled coals into flame.

He parted the heavens and came down,

a dark cloud under his feet.

Mounted on a cherub* he flew,

borne along on the wings of the wind.

He made darkness his cloak around him;

his canopy, water-darkened storm clouds.

From the gleam before him, his clouds passed,

hail and coals of fire.

The LORD thundered from heaven;

the Most High made his voice resound.

He let fly his arrows* and scattered them;

shot his lightning bolts and dispersed them.

Then the bed of the sea appeared;

the world’s foundations lay bare,

At your rebuke, O LORD,

at the storming breath of your nostrils.

He reached down from on high and seized me;

drew me out of the deep waters.

He rescued me from my mighty enemy,

from foes too powerful for me.

They attacked me on my day of distress,

but the LORD was my support.

He set me free in the open;

he rescued me because he loves me.

Antiphon: With my God I can scale any wall. 

St. Philomena, our hearts sing when we remember your determination, your patient endurance, your trust in God, through which you obtained everything. We know you call us to practice the same virtues, to love God and to let him empower us. Jesus taught us that with God all things are possible, that we can move any mountain, and that for us, He will walk on water, command any storm, if we have faith and trust in Him.

With Jesus, let us pray:

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Our Father…

By your courage, open-ness to the Holy Spirit, by your purity of heart, and your faithfulness to the Gospel, you were a beautiful reflection of Mary. No wonder she visited you in your hour of darkness and gave you strength for the battle that lay before you. How beautiful she must have been to you, lighting up that terrible place where you were chained. May the Mother of Jesus give us the hope of our future glory, as we take on the battles in our lives.

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Hail Mary…

Radiant girl, courageous and free of heart, our friend and guide, protect us, lead us, for the glory of God.

Glory Be…

St. Philomena, be blessed and pray for us.

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Novena to St.Philomena (Day 3)

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St. Philomena’s body was found in 1802 in the catacomb of St. Pricilla in Rome. Her epitaph said, “Peace be with you, Philomena,” and showed the martyr’s palm, a drawing of arrows and an anchor; the instruments of the torture she had undergone for her faithfulness to Christ. Inside were the bones of a 13-15 year old girl. Present also was the phial of blood often collected by the early Christians when one of them was martyred. Miracles and signs surrounded the opening of her tomb, and even of the opening of the phial of blood that day in May, 1802, wonders which were witnessed by many.

It seemed God was saying to the world, “Get to know this young woman. She is very close to Me, and I have given her great works to do in My Name.”

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A Reading from the Book of Acts: 

So they remained for a long time, speaking boldly for the Lord, who bore witness to the word of his grace, granting signs and wonders to be done by their hands.

The Word of the Lord

-Thanks be to God

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St. Philomena, who spoke boldly for the Lord, Who bears witness to the Gospel through signs and wonders done by your presence, intercession and prayers, obtain for us the courage that comes from dedicated love for Jesus. Lead us to see the signs God lays before us. Bend our hearts to God’s purpose and will in our lives, that we may run lightly in his paths, that He may give freedom to our hearts. [Here talk to St.Philomena about your situation, your petitions, and your search for God’s will in the matter.] Help us overcome our difficulties that our lives and our victories may beear witness to all of the greatness of your intercessory power and of the beauty of Gospel.

Jesus, be in our very blood.

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Our Father…

St. Philomena, patroness of the children of Mary, strengthen our devotion to our most holy mother, that we may be her worthy daughters and sons, strong in faith and in following Jesus.  May our souls, like hers, magnify the Lord.

Hail Mary…

Radiant girl, courageous and free of heart, our friend and guide, protect us, lead us, for the glory of God.

Glory Be…

St. Philomena, be blessed and pray for us.

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Novena to St.Philomena (Day 2)

St. Philomena is the only saint ever to be canonized solely on the basis of her numerous miracles, some of them spectacular and public. She came to be called “The Wonder Worker,” and it was commonly said, “to St. Philomena, nothing is refused.” Among the countless people healed by her intercession is Ven. Pauline Jaricot who arrived at the shrine on the verge of death. She was dramatically healed amid shouts and rapping on the saint’s tomb from the crowd that was there. Philomena was St. John Vianney’s favorite saint. He talked to her every day, and had a small chapel built for the relic of her he was given. He encouraged devotion to her. Endearingly, he attributed all his miracles to her intercession.

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St. John Vianney and St.Philomena

 

A Reading From the Second Letter of Paul to Timothy:

Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, descended from David. This is my gospel, for which I am suffering even to the point of being chained like a criminal. But God’s word is not chained.  Therefore I endure everything for the sake of the elect, that they too may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus, with eternal glory. Here is a trustworthy saying:

 If we have died with him,
    we will also live with him;
 if we endure,
    we will also reign with him.

The Word of the Lord

-Thanks be to God

St. Philomena the Wonder Worker, reigning now with Jesus our King, we are in need of a miracle in our lives. [Here mention your request and talk to St.Philomena about the situation.] With faith in the intercessory power God has given to you, and by merit of the hardships you endured for the sake of the Church, help us on our way to salvation, and pray for us and with us for the miracles we hope to see in our lives.

Our Father…

St. Philomena, child of Mary, may the Queen of Heaven visit us in our unjust imprisonments in life, and heal our wounds, encourage us in our darkness, and give us hope of new life and of living out God’s will for us for His glory, as she did.

Hail Mary…

Radiant girl, courageous and free of heart, our friend and guide, protect us, lead us, for the glory of God.

Glory Be…

St. Philomena, be blessed and pray for us.

 

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Novena to St. Philomena (Day 1)

 

Once upon a time in Rome, during the reign of the Emperor Diocletian (in the third century), a young girl gave her life in witness to Christ under harrowing circumstances hard to imagine. She did this in spite of frightened parents, repeated and successively more cruel tortures, threats, and even persuasive words and temptations from those around her. She also spent some time chained, bleeding, and broken in the Emperor’s dungeon. There Mary is said to have appeared to her and healed her, strengthening her resolve with the promise of victory and the hope of Heaven. Some of her tormenters were converted to Christ by this child’s astonishing courage, faith and perseverance through punishment after punishment.

A Reading from from Book of Revelation

Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who is victorious, I will give some of the hidden manna. I will also give that person a white stone with a new name written on it, known only to the one who receives it.

The Word of the Lord

-Thanks be to God

St. Philomena, Virgin and Martyr, come and walk with us through our many sufferings. Pray for us that we may regain our strength, so that we, too, may be victorious in the purpose God has for us.

We know of your powerful intercession. By your obedience, humility, and trust, you captured the heart of Jesus. He worked in mighty ways through you in your life, and even more so now, He works miracles through you from your place in Heaven at His side.

Our Father…

Inspired by your courage and love, we ask you to pray for us for [mention your petition here.] Help us to live the Gospel so as to be a light before all that brings glory to God.  Comfort us with the consolation you yourself received from Mary.

Hail Mary…

Radiant girl, courageous and free of heart, our friend and guide, protect us, lead us, for the glory of God.

Glory be…

 

St. Philomena, be blessed and pray for us.

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