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Accompanying Expectant Mothers Considering Adoption


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Novena to St. Joseph: For Those on the Path of Adoption

 

Invoking the intercession of St. Joseph, foster father of Jesus, we pray that the Lord will bless all who travel upon the path of adoption. And, recalling the mercy which God our Father has shown to us, we also ask that, through our words and actions, they may encounter the outstretched hands of his mercy. May all know the care of the Father, whose love for each person "gushes forth from the depths naturally, full of tenderness and compassion, indulgence and mercy" (Misericordiae vultus, 6).


 

For Mothers Who Place Their Children for Adoption

SCRIPTURE

Pharaoh then commanded all his people, "Throw into the Nile every boy that is born, but you may let all the girls live."

Now a man of the house of Levi married a Levite woman, and the woman conceived and bore a son. Seeing what a fine child he was, she hid him for three months. But when she could no longer hide him, she took a papyrus basket, daubed it with bitumen and pitch, and putting the child in it, placed it among the reeds on the bank of the Nile. His sister stationed herself at a distance to find out what would happen to him. Then Pharaoh's daughter came down to bathe at the Nile, while her attendants walked along the bank of the Nile. Noticing the basket among the reeds, she sent her handmaid to fetch it. On opening it, she looked, and there was a baby boy crying! She was moved with pity for him…She named him Moses; for she said, "I drew him out of the water."

Exodus 1:22 – 2:6, 2:10

SILENT REFLECTION

PRAYER

Heavenly Father,

Bless all expectant mothers
who are placing their children for adoption
and who may also be young and afraid.

They love their children so much
that they are willing to place them
with a loving family.

Bless, too, all the women who already
have shown the sacrificial nature
of a mother's love in making adoption plans
for their children.

Give them all your courage and your peace, through
Christ our Lord. Amen.

PETITION TO ST. JOSEPH

St. Joseph,

Though you must have been troubled
by Mary's news, you trusted in God's promises.

Elizabeth, too, though she was
thought to be barren,
trusted in the promises of God,
and she bore a son, John,
who would herald the arrival of the Messiah.

Hear the prayers of all mothers
who place their children for adoption
and intercede for them
before your adopted Son and Savior.

St. Joseph, husband of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
pray for us.

CONCLUDING PRAYERS

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be

(back to top)


 

For Fathers Who Place Their Children for Adoption

SCRIPTURE

For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life.

John 3:16

SILENT REFLECTION

PRAYER

Heavenly Father,

By your word, the whole world was created.

By your word, your Son was conceived
and became man.

Bless all fathers of children who have been placed
for adoption.

May these men always know of your great love for
them, in the same way that they will always love
their children.

Grant them your courage and your peace. Amen.

PETITION TO ST. JOSEPH

St. Joseph,

You, too, experienced fear and doubt, but trusted
always in the will of God.

Hear the prayers of these fathers
and bring them to Jesus.

St. Joseph, ever faithful, ever loving, pray for us.

CONCLUDING PRAYERS

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be

(back to top)



For Family Members of Children Placed for Adoption

SCRIPTURE

This is my commandment: love one another as I love you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one's life for one's friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. I no longer call you slaves, because a slave does not know what his master is doing. I have called you friends, because I have told you everything I have heard from my Father. It was not you who chose me, but I who chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit that will remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name he may give you. This I command you: love one another.

John 15:12-17

SILENT REFLECTION

PRAYER

Lord Jesus,

in word and sacrament, you make known the depth
of your love for each person.

Never let us forget the tender compassion and
mercy which you have shown and continue to
show to us.

Instill in our hearts deep love for those who suffer,
and help us reflect the face of the Father's mercy.

May the family members of each child to be placed
for adoption lovingly support his or her mother as
she chooses love and life.

And may these family members themselves
find continued support in the kindness and
encouragement of others.

Give to all wisdom and understanding,
and may we be instruments of your grace. Amen.

PETITION TO ST. JOSEPH

Blessed St. Joseph,

At the angel's direction,
you supported Mary in her "yes"
to bear the Son of God.

Trusting in the Lord, you accompanied her on that
journey, offering her your protection
and steadfast love.

Pray that the family members of each child
placed for adoption may lovingly support
the child's mother, and also find support
in the open hearts of each other and of friends.

Please intercede for these family members,
that they may be channels of God's tender love
and also that they may themselves encounter the
outstretched hands of your merciful love.

St. Joseph, Mainstay of Families, pray for us.

CONCLUDING PRAYERS

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be

(back to top)



For Children Awaiting Adoption

SCRIPTURE

Then children were brought to him that he might lay his hands on them and pray. The disciples rebuked them, but Jesus said, "Let the children come to me, and do not prevent them; for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these."

Matthew 19:13-14

SILENT REFLECTION

PRAYER

Lord Jesus,

You saw in the innocence of children
the attributes which make us worthy of heaven–
trust, joy, humility, obedience and faithfulness.

Bless all children who are awaiting adoption.

They seek love–may they find it in loving parents.

They seek stability–may they find a home
rooted in faith.

They seek acceptance–may their gifts be
recognized and nurtured.

And may they always know your steadfast love for
them and the true joy of loving you.

PETITION TO ST. JOSEPH

Blessed St. Joseph,

You welcomed the Christ Child into your home,
provided for his daily needs, and helped him
to grow in wisdom, age, and grace.

Hear the prayers of all children
who are awaiting a loving home,
and intercede for them
before your adopted Son and Savior,
Jesus Christ our Lord.

St. Joseph, Guardian and Protector, pray for us.

CONCLUDING PRAYERS

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be

(back to top)



For Married Couples Pursuing Adoption

SCRIPTURE

For those who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you received a spirit of adoption, through which we cry, "Abba, Father!" The Spirit itself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if only we suffer with him so that we may also be glorified with him.

Romans 8:14-17

SILENT REFLECTION

PRAYER

Heavenly Father,

You are the Author of life and love.

You have called us by name
and made us your sons
and your daughters,
and you know your plan for our lives.

If it be your will,
bless those who are pursuing adoption,
give them generous hearts,
and send them a child to love
and with whom to share your great love for us.
Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Petition to St. Joseph

St. Joseph,

You know the yearning in the hearts of
married couples pursuing adoption.

They have so much love to give
and wish to share that love with a child.

As you took Mary and Jesus
into your home at Nazareth,
may the grace of parenthood also be granted
for such as these.

We beg your intercession before the Father.

St. Joseph, foster-father of Jesus, pray for us.

CONCLUDING PRAYERS

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be

(back to top)


 

For Adopted Children

SCRIPTURE

And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate to be with you always, the Spirit of truth, which the world cannot accept, because it neither sees nor knows it. But you know it, because it remains with you, and will be in you. I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you. In a little while the world will no longer see me, but you will see me, because I live and you will live. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father and you are in me and I in you. Whoever has my commandments and observes them is the one who loves me. And whoever loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and reveal myself to him."

John 14:16-21

SILENT REFLECTION

PRAYER

Father,

We are all your adopted children, not by flesh or by
desire, but through the power of the incarnation of
your most beloved Son, Jesus Christ.

Bless those children who have been adopted into
new families, that they may experience the love that
you have shown us which surpasses even the love of
a mother for her child. 

In the difficult transitions and hardships that might
beset them in their struggle for belonging, give every
adopted child the grace to embrace their new family
and trust in your paternal care for them, which
lasts forever.

Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

PETITION TO ST. JOSEPH

Blessed Joseph,

Christ Jesus humbly accepted you as his earthly
father and was obedient to you and the Blessed
Virgin Mary.

In turn, you raised Jesus as your own son, protected
him from harm, provided for his daily needs and
loved him with all your heart.

Pray for all adopted children – infants, children,
and teens.

Hear the desires deep in their hearts
for acceptance and love,
and keep them safe from all anxiety.

And when they pray,
intercede for them before the Father.

St. Joseph, Guardian of the Christ Child,
pray for us.

CONCLUDING PRAYERS

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be

(back to top)


 

For Adoptive Mothers

SCRIPTURE

Standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother and his mother's sister, Mary the wife of Clopas and Mary of Magdala. When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple there whom he loved, he said to his mother, "Woman, behold, your son." Then he said to the disciple, "Behold, your mother."

John 19:25-27

SILENT REFLECTION

PRAYER

All loving and merciful Father,
by your abiding presence and abundant grace you
know our every need.

Bless all women who have adopted a child.

They have so valued your gift of life
that they have welcomed a child into their home,
and opened their hearts and their lives.

Help them to know your loving Providence,
and guide them in their journey of motherhood.

Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

PETITION TO ST. JOSEPH

St. Joseph, husband of the Virgin Mary,

you witnessed first-hand
the joy of her motherhood.

Be attentive to the needs of these women
who long to welcome a child through adoption.

Give encouragement to all adoptive mothers, that,
with the support of their husbands, they might
know the joy that comes from a lifetime of serving
as mother, nurturer, and friend.

Intercede for them before the Father, we ask you.

St. Joseph, spouse of the Mother of God,
pray for us.

CONCLUDING PRAYERS

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be

(back to top)


 

For Adoptive Fathers

SCRIPTURE

Now this is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about. When his mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found with child through the holy Spirit. Joseph her husband, since he was a righteous man, yet unwilling to expose her to shame, decided to divorce her quietly. Such was his intention when, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, "Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary your wife into your home. For it is through the holy Spirit that this child has been conceived in her. She will bear a son and you are to name him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins." When Joseph awoke, he did as the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took his wife into his home.

Matthew 1:18-21, 24

SILENT REFLECTION

PRAYER

Fatherhood has its origins in God,
and so we pray to you, Father Almighty,
for those men who have adopted a child.

Give them a mind receptive to your guidance,
a patient voice, and a loving heart.

May they know the joy of following your will and
reflecting your constant and steady love.

Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

PETITION TO ST. JOSEPH

St. Joseph, adoptive father of Jesus,
you, too, welcomed a child into your home
because you were obedient to the plan of God.

Give encouragement to all adoptive fathers,
that with the support of their wives,
they might know the joy that comes
from serving as guardian, father, and protector.

St. Joseph, patron of fathers, pray for us.

CONCLUDING PRAYERS

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be

(back to top)


 

For Family Members Welcoming Children through Adoption

SCRIPTURE

For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named…that you, rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the holy ones what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

Ephesians 3:14-15, 17-19

SILENT REFLECTION

PRAYER

Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
You are one God, living in a relationship
of love.

When Christ became Man,
you shared that divine love with the
human race, forever wedding earth to heaven.

Send your blessings upon all who nurture
children who have been adopted.

Give them generous and
understanding hearts.

Give us all a spirit of understanding and welcome
so that all peoples of every nation, race, and tongue
may live together peacefully as members of your family.

Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

PETITION TO ST. JOSEPH

Blessed Joseph,

You took Mary and Jesus into your
home. You followed the prescripts of the Law,
presented Jesus in the Temple,
taught him skills at the plane and the lathe, and,
daily, you shared traditions which were built on the
covenants he came to fulfill.

Hear the prayers of the siblings, grandparents,
aunts, uncles, and entire families of children who
have been adopted.

May they be a source of loving welcome and a
fount of faith.

Through Christ our Lord.

St. Joseph, descendant of David, pray for us.

CONCLUDING PRAYERS

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be

(back to top)

 

 

 


Pope Francis, Bull of Indiction of the Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy: Misericordiae vultus (Vatican City: Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 2015), no. 6.

Scripture texts in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Washington, D.C. and are used by permission of the copyright owner. All rights reserved.

Copyright © 2016, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Washington, DC. All rights reserved.

 


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