The novena of Masses, which began Nov. 29, is preceded by the rosary and sung litanies.
De Donatis’ prayer, which was inspired by Pope Francis’ 2013 apostolic exhortation “Evangelii gaudium,” reads:
To you, O Mary, Mother of the Church and Queen of the family, we entrust our family in this time of anticipation for Christmas.
You see our joys and our hopes, our sadnesses and our fears. You, who transformed a stable for animals into a home for Jesus with some poor strips of cloth and a mountain of tenderness, help us to welcome him into the simplicity of our home.
You, who are the little servant of the Father that exults in the faith, help us to lift our praise and our thanks to God. You, who was pierced by the sorrow of the cross, understand all our pains.
As the mother of all, you are a light of hope even in dark times; you are the missionary who draws close to us to accompany us in life, opening our hearts to the faith with maternal affection.
As a true mother, walk with us, sing with us, and constantly deepen in us closeness to the love of God.
We entrust to you grandparents, the elderly, the sick. We entrust to you spouses, parents, sons and daughters. We entrust to you young adults, adolescents, children. We entrust to you those who are in pain or in mourning. We entrust to you the poor and those who are alone.
We are certain that, with your motherly presence, our home will be always overwhelmed by faith and can be a little Church, where we will always recognize the presence of God.