Week 1: February 23 – March 1
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 5:3
Let us pray that we may desire holiness above all else.
Diocese of Bismarck Novena Prayer
Most Holy Father in Heaven,
We pray, through the intercession of
Blesseds John Paul II and John XXIII,
that we would follow their example
by living our Catholic Faith with joy, hope, and confidence.
Grant us the courage to denounce the evils of our time,
including the culture of death, moral relativism,
and all that keeps us from loving You
and sharing the Gospel with our neighbor.
We pray that You, Father, would use us,
the people of the Diocese of Bismarck,
as an instrument of Your love and light to all people.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son,
who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
“The words and deeds of Jesus and those of his Church are not meant only for those who are sick or suffering or in some way neglected by society. On a deeper level they affect the very meaning of every person's life in its moral and spiritual dimensions. Only those who recognize that their life is marked by the evil of sin can discover in an encounter with Jesus the Savior the truth and the authenticity of their own existence. Jesus himself says as much: ‘Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick; I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance’ (Lk 5:31-32). 
The divine origin of this spirit of life explains the perennial dissatisfaction which man feels throughout his days on earth. Because he is made by God and bears within himself an indelible imprint of God, man is naturally drawn to God. When he heeds the deepest yearnings of the heart, every man must make his own the words of truth expressed by Saint Augustine: ‘You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you’.25
This excerpt was taken from Pope John Paul II’s encyclical Evangelium Vitae
published on March 25, 1995.
Chaplet of the Divine Mercy