The Sisters of Providence invite us to participate in the Novena to Our Lady of Providence, Queen of the Home on Nov. 9-17, and the Mass in honor of her Feast Day on Nov. 18. As we contemplate this invitation, we may find ourselves somewhat overwhelmed by the number of ways in which Jesus’ mother Mary merits those facets of her title. How could one choose a mere nine aspects to reflect upon during the Novena? Let me share two of my favorites.

Sister Mary Rita Griffin, SP at the National Shrine of Our Lady of Providence at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods.

One occurred when Mary was a betrothed teenage virgin. Without her free and courageous “yes” to conceive Jesus, in circumstances that could have subjected her and her baby to rejection by her husband-to-be, and to social and religious ostracism in her community, God’s providential  plan for His Son to become man and die for our sins would have been frustrated.  Her “Yes” was itself providential.

Another occurred late in her life, standing near her dying Son’s cross with the disciple whom Jesus loved. In His final agony, Jesus told her, “Woman, here is your son,” and the disciple, “Here is your mother.” “And from that hour,” the disciple’s own Gospel tells us, “the disciple took her into his own home” (John 19:25-27). What Jesus said to His Mother and that disciple, he intended for us as well – He made His mother ours, too, to reign over the homes and families of those of us who follow the disciple’s example and take her in.

Fortunately, the Sisters of Providence encourage us to participate in the Novena even if we don’t have the time or inclination to identify and reflect at length on Gospel accounts of episodes in Mary’s life, and choose ways that validate the title under which we will celebrate her Feast Day on November 19. The Sisters have furnished us with prayers, one for each of the nine days of Novena preceding her Feast as Our Lady of Providence, Queen of the Home. Here is the prayer for the first day:

Day 1

Our Lady of Providence,
Mother of the Church, pray for our Holy Father,
Pope Francis, our bishops and all other clergy, religious,
the laity and for vocations to the priesthood or
religious life.

After each daily intention , pray the Novena Prayer:

Remember, O most faithful Lady of Providence,
that you have been given to us by your Son to be our mother.
We entrust to you our labors; bless them.
We commend to you our needs; supply them.
Show for us the same concern you manifested at Cana,
for we trust that whatever you ask of your Son will be done.
Pray for us on our pilgrimage that we may share
the faith and hope that marked your life.
Full of confidence in your power before God,
we place ourselves, our loved ones and all our petitions
in your providential care. Amen.

You can find the complete Novena to Our Lady of Providence here.