Reichley and Deitz - Released 11/24/17
Storytelling is important to family and the larger community. This fact is both self-evident and lost in our culture. If you would like more evidence of the importance of storytelling, here are links to articles by experts:
The Stories That Bind Us by Bruce Feiler
A Voyage Homeward: Fiction and Family Stories – Resilience and Rehabilitation by Marshall P. Duke, PhD
Conference Talks by Dr. Stan Williams, PhD
My Uncle Jerry could tell stories and jokes. Every Thanksgiving he would have us laughing with his antics. One year, a particular story started with “I was doing a novena, when…”. That phrase made the entire story so much more enjoyable to me, knowing that he was familiar with novenas but that the subject had nothing to do with the actual story.
Novenas are traditional Christian devotional prayers that occur on nine successive days (or hours or weeks). Novenas help prepare a person or group for a special day (Pentecost, Christmas, A Saints’ feast day) or petition for special graces (such as discernment http://www.discerninghearts.com/catholic-podcasts/holy-spirit/ )or favors (such as healing https://www.stjohnpaul.org/healing-novena/.
Some good starting points for exploring Novenas are:
Our Sunday Visitor
where it is written by Marge Fenelon:
In his book, “The Church’s Most Powerful Novenas” (OSV, $14.95), Michael Dubruiel lists three main benefits of praying a novena: It helps develop the habit of daily prayer; it reinforces a sense that God is our Father and that he loves us; and it teaches us the benefits of praying with others to God.
This is especially true when we participate in communal novenas such as those said in informal groups or ongoing novenas in parishes.
For some time, novenas have lurked in the background of our popular piety. Now, they’re making a comeback.
The comeback, Dubruiel warns in his book, must not be one built on superstition or misconceptions.
“With all this going on, it’s no surprise that novenas are coming back, too,” he wrote, referring to recent changes in the Church. “The task now is to make certain that they return intelligently — that is, in a way consistent with Scripture and good theology.”