Each August we set aside nine days leading up to the Feast Day of our Foundress, Saint Jeanne Jugan, for a Novena of Masses offering thanks to all who support our mission. A basket filled with personal petitions from Residents, family and friends, was placed in front of the altar before Mass during the nine days of the novena. And, many of the Residents would add an intention every day for their families’ needs so by the end of the nine days the basket was overflowing with the colorful novena slips.
In addition each day before Mass, a passage was read from various sources of Jeanne’s life followed by a saying of Saint Jeanne Jugan. In the quiet time before Mass, everyone had the opportunity to meditate on Jeanne Jugan’s message that day. It seemed especially worthy that one of the passages read was of her saying, “Jesus is waiting for you in the Chapel. Go and find Him when your strength and patience are giving out, when you feel lonely and helpless”.
On August 30 for her Feast Day the chapel was filled with Residents, employees, AJJ Members, volunteers and, of course, Little Sisters. This made the Feast more joyful as we came together as a family to love and honor Saint Jeanne Jugan. Father Paul Reynolds was the main celebrant, along with Bishop Francis X. Roque DO, Monsignor William Varsanyi, and Father Clyde Walsh. After the entrance song “Sister and Servant of the Poor,” new Mass Booklets were used in celebration of the Feast of Saint Jeanne Jugan. “Ora Pro Noblis, Jeanne Jugan” was sung during the Presentation of the Gifts and the Communion hymn was “Unless a Grain of Wheat shall fall.” The Recessional song “Jeanne Daughter of Providence” was sung joyful by all. After the Final Blessing, all were invited to venerate a holy relic. “Sister and Servant of the Poor” was sung as the congregation came forward to kiss the relic of Saint Jeanne Jugan.
“He is so good….love God very much. All for Him, do everything through love.”
–St. Jeanne Jugan