Hail and Blessed be the hour and moment in which the Son of God was born of the most pure Virgin Mary at midnight in Bethlehem in piercing cold. In that hour vouchsafe, oh my God, to hear my prayers and grant my desires through the merits of our Savior Jesus Christ and His Most Blessed Mother. Amen
I found this novena prayer several years ago. Of course, as a Catholic who came of age in the 70s and 80s, I never knew this prayer. Novenas were so out of fashion then and basically still are for most Catholics. Recall and be reminded of how dismissive, mocking and insulting ‘Is ‘Umbleness was about Argentinians who wrote to tell him about the 3000+ Rosaries they had prayed and offered for him.
I found a prayer card with a beautiful picture of the scene in the stable and the prayer on the reverse, noting that it is piously believed that those who recite this prayer 15 times daily from November 30th until Christmas will have their prayers answered. The Nihil Obstat was from 1899.
I have been praying this novena since November 30th. On that day, the novena came to mind, even though I hadn’t made up my mind to make an effort to do so. But it came to mind, and then I couldn’t find the card. Was it ten or how many times? I couldn’t remember and I couldn’t find the card! Yet, the prayer had been memorized from my past offerings. So I prayed it more than ten, more than 15, I can’t tell how many times, every day. After a week or so, I came across the old prayer card tucked away in my Bible. Ah, 15 times a day . . . Pelagian!
I continued to pray this prayer every day. Last week, in my office I glanced over at a bookshelf where I have some pictures, including one from when ‘Is ‘Umbleness was elected Pope. Blending in was a laminated prayer card that I thought was from the wake of a friend. I went to it and picked it up. On the front was a beautiful picture of the Nativity and on the reverse the Christmas Novena prayer, a mere six inches from Francis’ picture (which I still kept there despite my mistrust and disgust with his papacy thus far; he’s still the Pope). I don’t remember at all where it came from or when I got it, but I found it mere moments after I finished my recitation of the prayer. That still means to me that this is important.
This prayer is pregnant with the history of our salvation through the Incarnation, but Francis and his Modernist followers wouldn’t even bother with it because it’s so old – – – so pre-Vatican II – – – and something that does not exist as he says as quoted in the link above (“but this thing of counting… And these groups return to practices and to disciplines that I lived through – not you, because you are not old – to disciplines, to things that in that moment took place, but not now, they do not exist today…”). I guess I’m just a figment of someone’s imagination? Kind of like a “Twilight Zone” episode or something?
Let’s take the prayer apart and see how it teaches and reveals the facts:
“Hail and Blessed be the hour and moment in which”: The fact of the birth of Jesus actually happened. It is not just a story or myth, but a real, historical event.
“the Son of God was born”: Jesus was born, the Incarnation, when God took on human flesh, humbling Himself, and gave us His only begotten Son.
“of the Most Pure Virgin Mary”: our Blessed Mother’s Immaculate Conception is reiterated and confirmed, and she remained a Virgin even after the birth of Jesus, and she remains Pure and undefiled.
“at midnight”: the birth took place at a real time, again stressing that this is not a story or nice myth, which is a dogma of Faith.
“in Bethlehem”: again stressing the same point, and that this happened in a specific and very real place, which we can still visit today even though it’s overrun by Mohammedans who try to deny this but cannot.
“in piercing cold”: this real, actual event happened and even the climate is noted, again refuting the myth stupidity.
“In that hour, vouchsafe, oh my God, to hear my prayers and grant my desires”: This is an act of Hope, Faith and of trust in the faithfulness of our Father that He will not only hear our prayers but also grant them, so that we come to understand more fully that He is to be completely relied upon, that He is true to His Word to those who ask, seek and knock, as Jesus promises us, and that He cares for each one of us, little specks that we are.
“through the merits of our Savior Jesus Christ”: this reaffirms that Jesus’ sacrifice opens up Heaven to us and that, because of Him, we can dare to call God our Father, and through Him, we are the adoptive children of God, and that through His life and death, and through the sacraments He gives us in His Church that He founded, we can be saved from damnation and instead be able to attain a Heavenly abode for eternity with God.
“and His Most Blessed Mother.”: this reiterated that Mary is our mediatrix of grace, that Her intercession is also essential, and that she is worthy of the highest honor among all mankind.
I’m not a learned, degreed theologian and because of this prayer novena, I and anyone else do not have to be, and these most important points of our Faith are instilled, deeply internalized and lived when this prayer is recited devoutly 15 times a day, for nearly a month. I get the feeling that this really bothers many priests and prelates, who seem to insist that the “unlearned” must go only to them for understanding, wisdom and guidance in these matters, forgetting Jesus’ prayer of thanksgiving when He praises the Father for revealing these truths to the little ones and hiding them from the wise. Not that these guys believe that the Gospels are actually true any more. If you want to argue with that, first review what some of them said at the recent Synod on the Family, and since then, and then argue that they believe the Gospels. Chirp, chirp, chirp . . . Now read up on what Faithful believing prelates said, like Burke and Schneider. By their fruits you will know them, Jesus tells us.
More than just that month, this prayer I find myself praying during the rest of the year, and which again causes me to pause and be overwhelmed by God’s humility and care for me. As also the Rosary does when I pray while contemplating and meditating on the mysteries of the Gospel.
Francis and his modernist cohort mock this. Why? Wouldn’t he and his like-minded bishops, cardinals and priests want us to understand all of these beautiful truths, to have these truths internalized by all who strive to be Christian and to those who need to be converted to be saved?
No, to them, we are Pelagians, and they deny that these devotions even exist anymore since the halcyon days of their beloved Council, and by inference, that Catholics such as I even exist, except in a troublesome way, like a thorn in the sole of the foot. Of course they do, because they are worldly and their faith is centered around men, not God, and they can’t stand to have others still around to correct them, obstruct them, shine the light on them, and mock them in return with the real Truth.
I pray for their reversion to the Faith but I leave their fate to Jesus. St. John Chrystostum has said that the road to Hell is paved with the skulls or bishops and priests, and I have come to understand why he said that. Another Pelagian to be ignored these days, no doubt.
Keep the faith, even if everyone else doesn’t, and never give up, but persevere to the end, as Jesus tells us.