Novena of Prayer

Mother of God, Light in All Darkness, Pray for Us!

To The Mother of God
Light In All Darkness

Praying for All who are Infected and Affected by HIV/AIDS

Fr. Bob Pawell, OFM
Tau House, New Orleans

Friends,

The World Health Organization has said that by the year 2000 an estimated 30-40 million people world wide are expected to be HIV-positive, carrying the virus that causes AIDS. Ninety percent of those infected will be in developing countries, 25 percent of those so infected will be children. The pandemic of AIDS touches every continent, and persons of every race and way of life.

We stand before this deepening crisis as men and women of faith. Despite the deepening darkness, we trust in God who brings Light out of darkness.

We come to a novena, nine days of intercessory prayer, before this icon of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Mother of God Light in All Darkness. The icon was painted for the National Catholic AIDS Network by the Jesuit artist Fr. William Hart McNichols

The artist says of this icon:
I wanted to create a contemplative image of absolute unconditional love and hope amidst the varied experience of darkness people with HIV/AIDS, and all of us, encounter in this life. The Mother of God holds Christ Emmanuel who guards and is the living flame of love, warmth, promise and joy. She gently repeats his gesture of shielding the Light.

The image expresses the loving bond between Mary, Christ, and, God's Suffering, Pilgrim People. Mary lovingly guarded and protected the Christ Child, Her son, a light shinning in the darkness, A light that darkness could not overcome, Christ who is our Peace and Reconciliation. Through her the Invisible God became Visible and Vulnerable, our very Brother, Who would bear our infirmities and carry our sorrows.

Mary is also the image and model Of the Church, God's Holy People. In Mary, we contemplate the image of All that the Church desires and hopes to be. We recognize in Mary the model of the path and the practice We must follow to bring Christ to birth in our world, Living the Word into flesh Full of Grace and Truth.

James, a PWA, once asked me how to pray a novena. My response: "Pray as you can, not as you can't." I say the same to you who begin to pray this novena. There is no rig ht or wrong way to do it. Your prayer can be expanded by meditating on the scriptures indicated for each day. The novena can be telescoped to a litany format as well. However you choose to use this novena, join yourself with all of your brothers and sisters throughout the world who are infected and affected by HIV/AIDS. Praying with you, I am,

Fraternally,
Fr. Bob Pawell, OFM


INTRODUCTION

V. The people who walked in darkness
R. Have seen a great light.

V. Upon those who dwelt in the land of gloom and the shadow of death
R. A Light has shone.

V. For unto us a Child is born,
R. Unto us a Son is given.

V. Whose name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
R. Everlasting Holy One, Giver of Peace.

HYMN


Mother of God Light in All Darkness,
Shelter Our Flame of Hope!
Repeat throughout chanting of the verses.

1. Shelter Him with tender hands. Shelter Him our flame of hope!

2. In times of dread and nightmares, let Him be our dream of comfort!

3. In times of pain and suffering, let Him be our healer!

4. In times of separation, let Him be our Communion!

Another Marian Hymn may be used

INTERCESSIONS

FOR THE FIRST DAY

Mother of God, Light in All Darkness, Pray for Us!

Mother of God Light in All Darkness,
Shelter O ur Flame of Hope!

We pray to you for all those living with HIV/AIDS.

(PAUSE and Recall those for whom you are praying)

For those isolated or driven into hiding in their illness. For all suffering because of HIV/AIDS beyond the boundaries of our vision those nearby and those in other countries and on other continents.

Silent prayer &/or "Hail Mary"

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; ble ssed art thou among women, and blessed is the Fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

[Isaiah 49: 8 - 16]

Thus says the Lord: In a time of favor I have answered you, on a day of salvation I have helped you; I have kept you and given you as a covenant to the people to establish the land, to apportion the desolate heritages; saying to the prisoners, "Come out," to those who are in darkne ss, "Show yourselves."

They shall feed along the ways, on all the bare heights shall be their pasture; they shall not hunger or thirst, neither scorching wind nor sun shall strike them down, for he who has pity on them will lead them, and by springs of water will guide them.

And I will turn all my mountains into a road, and my highways shall be raised up.

Lo, these shall come from far away, and lo, these from the north and from the west, and these from the land of Sye ne.

Sing for joy, O heavens, and exult, O earth; break forth, O mountains, into singing! For the LORD has comforted his people, and will have compassion on his suffering ones.

But Zion said, "The LORD has forsaken me, my Lord has forgotten me." Can a woman forget her nursing child, or show no compassion for the child of her womb? Even these may forget, yet I will not forget you.

See, I have inscribed you on the palms of my hands; your walls are continually before me.

 

FOR THE SECOND DAY

Mother of God, Light in All Darkness, Pray for Us!

Mother of God Light in All Darkness,
Shelter our Flame of Hope!

We pray to you for all who are affected by HIV/AIDS.

(PAUSE and Recall those for whom you are praying)

For families and friends -- for those who stand with the sick and support those who grieve.

Silent prayer &/or "Hail Mary"

Hail Mary, full of grac e, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the Fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

[I John 2: 7 - 11]

Beloved, I am writing you no new commandment, but an old commandment that you have had from the beginning; the old commandment is the word that you have heard. Yet I am writing you a new commandment that is true in him and in you, because the darkness is passing away and the true light is already shining. Whoever says, "I am in the light," while hating a brother or sister, is still in the darkness. Whoever loves a brother or sister lives in the light, and in such a person there is no cause for stumbling. But whoever hates another believer is in the darkness, walks in the darkness, and does not know the way to go, because the darkness has brought on blindness.

FOR THE THIRD DAY

Mother of God, Light in All Darkness, Pray for Us!

Mother of God Light in All Darkness,
Shelter Our Flame of Hope!

We pray to you for all those who have died from HIV/AIDS.

(PAUSE and Recall those for whom you are praying)

For those we have lived with, worked with, prayed with, loved with; the deceased of our community, (eg., the Tau House Faith Community, etc.)

Silent prayer &/or "Hail Mary"

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the Fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

[Revelation 21: 1 - 6]

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying,

" See, the home of GOD is among mortals. He will dwell with them as their God; they will be his peoples, and God will be with them; he will wipe every tear from their eyes. Death will be no more; mourning and crying and pain will be no more, for the first things have passed away"

And the one who was seated on the throne said, "See I am making all things new." Also he said, "Write this, for these words are trustworthy and true." Then he said to me, "It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give water as a gift from the spring of the water of life.

FOR THE FOURTH DAY

Mother of God, Light in All Darkness, Pray for Us!

Mother of God Light in All Darkness,
Shelter Our Flame of Hope!

We pray to you for all those living with HIV/AIDS.

(PAUSE and Recall those for whom you are praying)

We pray for all women and infants, youngsters and adolescents who because of this vir us suffer not only physically and emotionally but also are shunned and isolated through their illness.

Silent prayer &/or "Hail Mary"

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the Fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

[Matthew 11: 25 - 30]

And Jesus prayed this prayer: "Our Fath er, Lord of Heaven and earth, thank you for hiding the truth form those who think themselves so wise, and for revealing it to little children. Yes, Father, for it pleased you to do it this way!...

"Everything has been entrusted to me by my Father. Only the Father knows the Son, and the Father is known only by the Son and by those to whom the Son reveals him. Come to me and I will give you rest -all of you who work so hard beneath a heavy yoke. Wear my yoke - for it fits perfectly - and le t me teach you; for I am gentle and humble, and you shall find rest for your souls; for I give you only light burdens."

FOR THE FIFTH DAY

Mother of God, Light in All Darkness, Pray for Us!

Mother of God Light in All Darkness,
Shelter Our Flame of Hope!

We pray to you for all those who care for those infected and affected by HIV/AIDS.

(PAUSE and Recall those for whom you are praying)

For doctors, nurses, pastoral ministers, social workers, an d all other professions who work in AIDS related services; also for all who volunteer their time, talent and treasure to assist and serve in this crisis. We remember especially those serving in [Here mention those community associations you especially wish to include in your prayer].

Silent prayer &/or "Hail Mary"

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the Fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

[Matthew 25: 31 - 46]

When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on the throne of his glory. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, and he will put the sheep at his right hand and the goats at the left. Then the king will say to those at his right han d, 'Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.' Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?" And the king will answer them, 'Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me. Then he will say to those at his left hand, 'You that are accursed, depart from me into the enteral fire prepared for the devil and his angels; for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not give me clothing, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.' Then they also will answer, 'Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not take care of you?' Then he will answer them, 'Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.' And these will go away into enteral punishment, but the righteous into etern al life."

FOR THE SIXTH DAY

Mother of God, Light in All Darkness, Pray for Us!

Mother of God Light in All Darkness,
Shelter Our Flame of Hope!

We pray to you for all who seek a cure for this dreaded disease.

(PAUSE and Recall those for whom you are praying)

We pray for biochemists, pharmacists, chemists, and doctors. We pray for all who volunteer their time, talent, treasure and their very selves in experimental trails and protocols seek ing a cure of this disease and its infections.

Silent prayer &/or "Hail Mary"

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the Fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

[Sirach 38: 1 - 14]

Honor physicians for their services, for the Lord created them; for their gift of healing comes from the Most High, and they are rewarded by the king. The skill of the physicians makes them distinguished, and in the presence of the great they are admired. The Lord created medicines out of the earth, and the sensible will not despise them. Was not water made sweet with a tree in order that its power might be known? And he gave skill to human beings that he might be glorified in his marvelous works. By them the physician heals and take away pain; the pharmacist makes a mixture from them. God's works will n ever be finished; and from him health spreads over all the earth.

My child, when you are ill, do not delay, but pray to the Lord and he will heal you. Give up your faults and direct your hands rightly, and cleanse your heart from all sin. Offer a sweet smelling sacrifice, and a memorial portion of choice flour, and pour oil on your offering, as much as you can afford. Then give the physician his place, for the Lord created him; do not let him leave you, for you need him. There may come a time when recovery lies in the hands of physicians, for they too pray to the Lord that he grant them success in diagnosis and in healing, for the sake of preserving life.

FOR THE SEVENTH DAY

Mother of God, Light in All Darkness, Pray for Us!

Mother of God Light in All Darkness,
Shelter Our Flame of Hope!

We pray to you for all who carry the HIV virus but suffer no medical symptoms

(PAUSE and Recall those for whom you are praying)

We pray that this diagnosis may be for them a summons to a fullness of life and not a sentence of death. We pray that all who walk with this diagnosis live in the holy hope of healing.

Silent prayer &/or "Hail Mary"

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the Fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

[I Peter 1: 3 - 9]

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By his great mercy he has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who are being protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you rejoice, even if now for a little while you had to suffer various trials, so that the genuinenes s of your faith - being more precious than gold that, though perishable, is tested by fire - may be found to result in praise and glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. Although you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and rejoice with an indescribable and glorious joy, for you are receiving the outcome of your faith the salvation of your soul.

FOR THE EIGHTH DAY

Mother of God, Light in All Darkness, Pray for Us!

Mother of God Light i n All Darkness, Shelter Our Flame of Hope!

We pray to all those who grieve.

(PAUSE and Recall those for whom you are praying)

For all who grieve the many losses caused by AIDS. For all who have lost friends and companions, husbands and wives, sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, uncles and aunts. For all who have lost confreres and co-workers. For the many losses suffered in the HIV/AIDS pandemic. And, we pray as well for all who cannot or will no t grieve.

Silent prayer &/or "Hail Mary"

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the Fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

[Ezekiel 37: 1 - 14]

The hand of the Lord came upon me, and he brought me out by the spirit of the Lord and set me down in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones. He led me all around them; there were very many lying in the valley, and they were very dry. He said to me, "Mortal, can these bones live?" I answered, "O Lord God, you know." Then he said to me, "Prophesy to these bones, and say to them: O dry bones, hear the word of the LORD. Thus says the Lord God to these bones: I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live. I will lay sinews on you, and will cause flesh to come upon you, and cover you with skin, and put br eath in you and you shall live; and you shall know that I am the LORD."

So I prophesied as I had been commanded; and as I prophesied, suddenly there was a noise, a rattling, and the bones came together, bone to its bone. I looked, and there were sinews on them, and flesh has come upon them, and skin had covered them; but there was no breath in them. Then he said to me, "Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, mortal, and say the breath: Thus says the Lord God: Come from the four winds, O b reath, and breathe upon these slain, that they may live. I prophesied as he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived, and stood on their feet, a vast multitude.

Then he said to me, "Mortal, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They say, 'Our bones are dried up, and our hope is lost; we are cut off completely.' Therefore prophesy, and say to them, Thus say the Lord God: I am going to open your graves, and bring you up from your graves, O my people; and I will bring you back to the land of Israel. And you shall know that I am the LORD, when I open your graves, and bring you up from your graves, O my people. I will put my spirit within you, and you shall live, and I will place you on your own soil; then you shall know that I, the LORD, have spoken and will act," says the LORD.

FOR THE NINTH DAY

Mother of God, Light in All Darkness, Pray for Us!

Mother of God Light in All Darkness,
Shelter Our Flame of Hope!

We pray to you for all nati onal, civic and religious leaders.

(PAUSE and Recall those for whom you are praying)

We pray for all who are placed in positions of authority, entrusted with the care for the common good and the protection of those abandoned and least able to help themselves. For freedom from ever form of discrimination and a just share in the commonwealth of resources and services for those infected and affected by HIV/AIDS.

Silent prayer &/or "Hail Mary"

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the Fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

[Isaiah 58: 6 - 12]

Is not this the fast that I choose; to loose the bonds of injustice, to undo the thongs of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, and to break every yoke?

It is not to share your bread with the hungry, and bring the homeless poor into your house; when you see the naked, to cover them, and not to hide yourself from your own kin?

Then your light shall break forth like the dawn, and your healing shall spring up quickly; your vindicator shall go before you, the glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard.

Then you shall call, and the LORD will answer; you shall cry for help, and he will say, Here I am. If you remove the yoke from among you, pointing of the finger, and speaking of evil, if you off er your food to the hungry and satisfy the needs of the afflicted, then your light shall rise in the darkness and your gloom be like the noonday.

The LORD will guide you continually, and satisfy your needs in parched places, and make your bones strong; and you shall be like a watered garden, like a spring of water, whose waters never fail.

Your ancient ruins shall be rebuilt; you shall raise up the foundations of many generations; you shall be called the repairer of the breach, the resto rer of streets to live in.

THE NOVENA PRAYER

Let us pray

God of the Living, Lover of All, We praise You for calling light from darkness On the First Day of creation. We thank You for Your Word of Life, Life for the light of all men and women, Born of the Virgin Mary, Mother of God Light in All Darkness.

Blessed are You, God of Israel For in Your tender Mercy You have visited and redeemed Your people! The Morning Star from the high has dawne d upon us Giving light to those who dwell in the darkness And in the shadow of death Guiding our feet into the Way of Peace.

You chose the Virgin Mary to be the God Bearer, Bring the Sun of Justice into the world. In her flesh, she was his Mother, In her person, his Disciple, In her love, his Servant.

God of Mercy, We come to You in this Novena of Prayer Through the intercession of the Mother of God Light in All Darkness, Praying for all who are Infected and Affected by AIDS/HIV. May w e, and all for whom we have prayed, Know Mary's tender protection. May she guard the Light of Faith, Shelter the Flame of Hope, and Kindle in our hearts the Fire of Love.

May she guide our journey through life toward your Kingdom. And, on the Day of Christ, which knows no sunrise or sunset, May we, and all for whom we have prayed, come to your Heavenly City, the New Jerusalem Where she intercedes as Mother and reigns as Queen. We ask this through Christ Our Lord.

AMEN

CONCLUDING BLESSING:

The Lord bless you and keep you
The Lord look on you with kindness, and have mercy on you
The Lord lift up the light of his face upon you and give you peace.
The Lord bless you
The Source of All Being, the Word made Flesh, and the Creator Spirit

HYMN

We place ourselves in your keeping, holy Mother of God.
Do not refuse the prayer of your children in their distress.
But deliver us from all danger, Ever Virgin,
glorious and blessed!

This or any other Marian Hymn may be sung

 

Mother of God, Light in All Darkness, Pray for Us!

 


Copies of The Icon of The Mother of God Light in All Darkness, are available from:

National Catholic Aids Network
P.O. Box 422984
San Francisco, CA 94142

Copies of The Novena to the Mother of God Light in All Darkness are available through:

Franciscan Charities
3140 Meramec Street
St. Louis, Missouri 63118

Published by Bro. Bill Schulte, O.F.M.
PSHDEV@AOL.COM

With permission of Superior
Very Fr. Kurt Hartrich, O.F.M.
Provincial Minister





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Page Last Updated: July 15, 2001