Novena for World Day of the Sick

Novena For World Day of the Sick – 3 to 11 February 2021

Ahead of the celebration of the World Day of the Sick on 11 February 2021, the Bishops’ Council for Healthcare offers the following Novena to Our Lady of Lourdes to pray for those who are sick, for all who work in the medical profession, and for an end to the pandemic.

The Novena begins on Wednesday 3 February and concludes on Thursday 11 February – the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes and World Day of the Sick.

The Novena can be prayed each day as follows:

1. Make the sign of the Cross
2. Say the novena prayer
3. Pray a decade of the rosary.
4. The invocations
5. Read the reflection for each day.
6. The Confiteor
7. To conclude recite the Act of Spiritual Communion

Novena Prayer

Our Lady of Lourdes,
you appeared at the grotto of Massabielle
to Bernadette, a simple shepherdess.
You brought her the radiant light of your smile,
the gentle, resplendent brightness of your presence.
Day by day, you built a relationship with her
where you gazed at her gently
as one person talking to another.

We, too, come before you in our poverty,
and we humbly pray to you.
May those who doubt discover the joy of trust.
May those who despair sense your discreet presence.

Our Lady of Lourdes,
you revealed your name to Bernadette
by simply saying “I am the Immaculate Conception”.
May we discover the joy of a forgiveness that never falters.
Instil in us the desire for a rediscovered innocence
and a joyful holiness.
Help the blinded sinner.
You who gave birth to the Saviour of the world,
look tenderly on our beautiful but tragic world.
Open in us the path of hope,
guide us to the One who is the Living Source,
Jesus, your Son, who teaches us to call God Father.

Decade of the Rosary

  • Wednesday 3rd – The first Glorious Mystery – The Resurrection
  • Thursday 4th – The First Luminous Mystery – The Baptism of Jesus in the Jordan
  • Friday 5th – The First Sorrowful Mystery – The Agony in the Garden
  • Saturday 6th – The First Joyful Mystery – The Annunciation
  • Sunday 7th – The Second Glorious Mystery – The Ascension
  • Monday 8th – The Second Joyful Mystery – The Visitation
  • Tuesday 9th – The Second Sorrowful Mystery – The Scourging at the Pillar
  • Wednesday 10th – The Third Glorious Mystery – The Descent of the Holy Spirit
  • Thursday 11th – The Second Luminous Mystery – The Wedding Feast at Cana


The Invocations

“Our Lady of Lourdes, pray for us!”

“Saint Bernadette, pray for us!”

“O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee!”


Wednesday 3 February

In telling the parable of the ‘Good Samaritan’ Jesus offers his disciples a model of how we should behave towards others particularly towards those who are suffering. Noticing those who need our help, becoming a “neighbour”, listening, empathy, compassion and action are all crucial. Reflect for a few moments in silence on how you are responding to Jesus invitation to be a ‘Good Samaritan’.

Thursday 4 February

The experience of sickness makes us realize our own vulnerability, our innate need for others, and even more so, our dependence on God. Sickness can help us get closer to God, but sometimes, unfortunately, to move away from God as well. It can be a time of grace or a time of misfortune. Reflect for a few moments in silence on what your feelings towards God are in times of illness and suffering?

Friday 5 February

Sickness sometimes prompts a search for meaning in life and a new direction for our existence. We need to address this in our own experience but also to help others who are sick to find meaning in their experience as well. Reflect for a few moments in silence on the quality of your presence to those who are sick in your own circle of family and friends.

Saturday 6 February

There are some in our society who are ignored, excluded, or victims of social injustices that deny their fundamental rights, including the right of access to the necessary healthcare. Reflect for a few moments in silence on how access to healthcare, and other fundamental services, is granted to the vulnerable people in our society? How can we help our policy makers to promote healthcare as a common primary good?

Sunday 7 February

The Church, the community of lay faithful, religious and clergy together, is called to care and assist the needy who live among us. Reflect for a few moments on how much time I devote to volunteering to help our brothers and sisters in need?

Monday 8 February

During the pandemic, we have observed the dedication and generosity of health care professionals, and many other frontline workers. They have treated, comforted and served many sick, elderly and vulnerable people in our communities. Reflect for a few moments in silence on what we have learned from the dedication and commitment of frontline workers in healthcare, and in the wider community, and the hope that they bring to us for the future of our society.

Tuesday 9 February

During the past year we have rediscovered an appreciation for the gift of human life in all its stages and the lengths to which we go to protect and save life. Reflect for a few moments in silence on how we are called to guard and protect all human life as sacred.

Wednesday 10 February

Communal solidarity is expressed in various ways to support our neighbour. Caring for our sick and suffering brothers is not a task only for health care/pastoral workers. Christian love generates a healing community, that does not leave anyone behind, is inclusive and welcomes the most vulnerable. Reflect for a few moments in silence on how we can help build a community that reaches out to those who are most vulnerable.

Thursday 11 February – Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes

At the heart of Pope Francis’ message for this World Day of the Sick is an insistence that for therapy to be effective it must have a “relational aspect” which can enable a more holistic approach to the person who is sick or suffering. Pope Francis points to the example of Jesus in the gospel who “heals not by magic but as the result of an encounter, an interpersonal relationship”. Reflect for a moment on how I can bring healing by developing a deeper relationship with those who need myassistance.


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