Devotion to Saint Anne is devotion to the gospel message. As the mother of Mary and the grandmother of Jesus, St. Anne embodies and symbolizes devotion to Mary and love for our Lord and His teachings. As a Jewish woman, Saint Anne represents ecumenism and respect for another’s faith and race. As a grandmother she exemplifies the importance of family and respect for the elderly. As an ordinary woman of faith, she represents down to earth, common, human virtues, and holiness through love for family and neighbors.
Saint Anne had a daughter with an unplanned pregnancy and a son-in-law who threatened to divorce her. Saint Anne’s daughter was a refugee in her flight to Egypt, and her grandson was a prisoner on death row. She had to deal with the death of her spouse. Saint Anne knew hard work and her simple lifestyle places her in solidarity with the poor of today’s world. She taught her daughter how to pray, to work, to be a good neighbor, even how to decipher political situations, whether at home before Herod, or on foreign soil.
A novena encourages and recognizes the power of prayer. Our Lord told us to “pray always”. St. Anne’s novena is a prayer of persistence. Our Lord encouraged us to “knock and the door will be opened, to ask, and you will receive”.
Saint Anne’s Novena is a community prayer. Jesus said, “if two of you agree on earth about anything you ask, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven.” Mt. 18:19.
Saint Anne’s Novena imitates the disciples and Mary who gathered together after our Lord’s Ascension to pray for nine days and who were then “filled with the Holy Spirit…They went to the room upstairs…All these were constantly devoting themselves to prayer, together with certain women, including Mary the mother of Jesus…They were all together in one place. And… all of them were filled with the Holy Spirit”. (Acts 1:13,14 & 2:1,4.)
Saint Anne’s Novena recognizes that God has put us on earth to help each other in a variety of ways including prayer for each other. We pray for one another just like St. Paul who said, “Join me in earnest prayer to God on my behalf.” (Romans 15:30)
Prayer to Saint Anne
Great St. Anne, whose name our parish bears, protect us and pray for us, that like you, we may serve God faithfully here on earth and be with Him in Heaven for all eternity. Amen