| Introduction |
Encouragement of the Pope |
| Our Lady's Shrine and Devotions |
About the Novena |
| THE PERPETUAL NOVENA TO OUR LADY OF ARABIA |
| "Because they are not asked for .." |
To Perpetual Remembrance |
ABOUT THE NOVENA
Saturday evening is certainly, all year round, an inspiring
occasion at the Shrine of Our Lady of Arabia in Ahmadi.
The Ladies of the Sodality start, reciting their Little Office.
Then the Holy Rosary is said by all those in the Church. The Perpetual
Novena is then offered, according to the intentions of those who
requested favours. At 6:00 p.m. the Votive Mass of Our Lady of Mount
Carmel - granted by a special privilege of the Holy See to the
Carmelite Order on every Saturday — is sung with the attendance and
the choir of the Men Sodality. The joyous and solemn tunes of the
SALVE REGINA, according to the impressive Carmelite ceremonial,
pay a grand homage of praise to the heavenly Queen.
At last the Office of the Immaculate by the Men Sodality concludes an evening which befits the day, specially dedicated to our
Blessed Mother, a Saturday, in a Shrine consecrated to her honour.
In these Novena prayers one finds that special emphasis has
been given to the number seven. The Sorrows of Our Lady are
honoured as seven, the same as her Joys. There is also reference
to the seven ‘‘Words of Mary’’ recorded in the Gospel. Besides the
many recurrences of this number in OUR catechism - seven Sacraments,
seven gifts of the Holy Ghost, seven works of mercy, etc. -
this number appears to be greatly esteemed by the Arabs too, e.g.
the seven trumpets of wisdom.
Another feature of this Novena, which you will note, is the
thanksgiving at the end. We use the ‘‘Magnificat, ’’ the very words
of her whom we are invoking, and this is something which is usually
overlooked in other Novena formulas.
The prayers we say are taken from the Missal, being mainly
directed to Our Lord through the intercession of His and Our Blessed
Mother. Thus we use the expressions of the Church in her official
May Our Lady of Arabia grant every petition of ours and keep
us always in the grace of God.