Over the course of the next nine Wednesday nights, leading up until March 16, the vigil of Saint Patrick’s day, Archbishop Eamon Martin of Armagh will lead a novena for renewal of faith and prayer to Saint Patrick. This novena will visit various locations associated with Ireland’s oldest patron saint, such as Saul in Downpatrick, and Lough Derg, along with other places with a tradition of deep devotion to Patrick.
In a video message announcing the novena and inviting people at home and abroad to participate, the Primate of All Ireland and successor to Saint Patrick, said, “There is a fantastic devotion to Saint Patrick in our country, and indeed all over the world. This year I am delighted that we’re able to have this novena in the nine Wednesdays leading up to Saint Patrick’s Day.
“Our hope is that we can recover the real sense of Saint Patrick which is brought out in his own writings, a man of faith with a deep devotion to the Trinity who was able to speak the faith in very difficult times and be a courageous missionary. Those are lessons for all of us today because as you know the faith is in decline, not just in Ireland, but in many parts of the world. But the faith can be strong if people have in their hearts the same kind of spirit and zeal that Saint Patrick had to be able to realise that Christ is protecting us.
“Christ surrounds us as Saint Patrick said , ‘Christ before me, behind me on my right on my left, Christ all around me.’ I really believe that if we can turn to Saint Patrick we can have a renewal of faith in this country and indeed all over the world.”
Inviting all people of faith to join in this novena, the Primate continued, “We invite people to join us just by tuning in, or even if you’re not able to tune in to the actual Mass, service and prayers, in your own hearts every Wednesday night from now until 16 March, please join your hearts with our hearts in prayer. Also, you’re welcome back here to Armagh for the vigil of Saint Patrick where we will close the Novena on the night before his feast day.”
Watch brief video here explaining the novena to Saint Patrick.