Several months ago, The Catholic Company sent me a copy of Novenas for the Church Year to review. At one point our parish priest was sharing upcoming novenas and PrayMoreNovenas.com had some of the major novenas as well, but I wanted to be able to plan ahead a little and pick some favorites so I was really excited to receive this book for review.
There were a few things about this book that I really liked. The book is laid out beginning the start of the year and includes not only the novena prayer itself, but also a little bit about the particular feast, apparition or whatever that that novena is ending on. From just the point of view of learning more about a particular feast, that’s very handy. I also liked the encouragement to use a particular novena when it’s SUBJECT struck you and to not be limited by date constraints.
There were unfortunately, a couple things I DIDN’T like about this book. First of all, the explanation of why or how to say a novena was a little lacking. I’m pretty sure that many of them want you to add the big 3 (Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be), but I’m not sure.
Second, was the lack of index or chart with start dates. I’m horrible with math and was really bummed that I had to make my own chart with start/end dates of the novenas. I marked up the whole back & part of the front covers doing so.
If, however, novenas are old hat to you, you are pretty familiar with the church calendar and you’re not looking for a manual, this would be a good resource for you. On the plus side, it’s small and a good size for putting in your purse or at your bedside table. Overall, I liked it, in spite of its limitations and will be keeping it around.
Disclaimer: This review was written as part of the Catholic book reviewer program from The Catholic Company in exchange for a copy of the book. Visit The Catholic Company to find more information on Novenas for the Church Year. The Catholic Company is the best resource for all your seasonal needs such as First Communion gifts as well as ideas and gifts for the special papal Year of Faith.