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9 Days of prayer to spiritually prepare for Christmas

THE INCARNATION
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Here's a unique novena to help prepare for the birth of Jesus.

Christmas is almost here! The great feast is right around the corner, and it’s important to pause our busy lives and examine how well we are spiritually prepared for the birth of Jesus in our hearts.

If you feel like you need to spiritually bolster the final days of Advent, here is a unique novena from Pope Pius IX. It was issued on September 23, 1846, and was designed to call to mind more frequently the mystery of the Incarnation. It can be prayed any month of the year, but has a particular relevance during December.

The following five “offerings” were intended to be prayed one after another, followed by the closing prayer, each day of the nine days preceding December 25. It is another option drawn from the treasury of the Church that can help us prepare our hearts for Christmas Day.

First Offering.
ETERNAL FATHER, I offer to thy honor and glory, and for my own salvation, and for the salvation of all the world, the mystery of the Birth of our Divine SAVIOR. [Glory Be]

Second Offering.
ETERNAL FATHER, I offer to thy honor and glory, and for my eternal salvation, the sufferings of the most holy Virgin and of St Joseph in that long and weary journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem;
I offer 
Thee their pain in finding no place wherein to shelter themselves, when the SAVIOR of the world was to be born. [Glory Be]

Third Offering.
ETERNAL FATHER, I offer to thy honor and glory, and for my eternal salvation, the stable where
JESUS was born, the hard straw which served Him for a bed, the cold He suffered, the swaddling clothes which bound Him, the tears He shed, and his tender infant cries. [Glory Be]

Fourth Offering.
ETERNAL FATHER, I offer to thy honor and glory, and for my eternal salvation, the pain which the divine Child JESUS felt in his tender infant body when He submitted it to the keen knife of circumcision; I offer Thee that Precious Blood which then first He shed for the salvation of the whole race of man. [Glory Be]

Fifth Offering.
ETERNAL FATHER, I offer to thy honor and glory, and for my eternal salvation, the humility, mortification, patience, charity and all the virtues of the Child JESUS; I thank Thee, and I love Thee, and I bless Thee without end, for this ineffable mystery of the Incarnation of the divine Word. [Glory Be]

V/. The Word was made flesh.
R/. And dwelt amongst us.

Let us pray.
O GOD, whose only-begotten SON was made manifest to us in the substance of our flesh; grant, we beseech Thee, that our souls may be inwardly renewed through Him, whom our eyes have seen
externally like unto ourselves. Who liveth and reigneth with Thee for ever and ever. Amen.

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