Novena Church Journeys with Ministries at the Margins

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(Singapore) In the spirit of Synodality, Pope Francis calls the church to journey with and to listen to those at the margins. Certainly, it is a call that resonates with every Redemptorist. The Redemptorist community at Novena Church made its own effort to journey with those at the margins of the church. 

As part of preparations for its feast day, the church welcomed many ministries to take part at the Saturday novenas. Among the groups that were welcomed were a community of divorced people and a group called Courage, who minister to LGBTQ persons. Special novenas were organized for both these groups that included testimonies, a message of God’s plentiful redemption, the Novena to Our Mother of Perpetual Help and benediction. The setting was intimate and followed by a small reception where those who attended could interact with the Redemptorists. 

The groups spoke of how they often do not find a place in many Christian communities, even as the church’s ministry is evolving to reach out to those at the margins. It was very moving to listen to the stories of persons who are divorced and are LGBT and to hear them express their thanks for being welcomed in a special way at the shrine of Our Mother of Perpetual Help. Many also shared how they had often sought consolation at the novena before the icon of Our Blessed Mother. 

Many other groups were included as well – ministries serving those with dementia, people with physical disability, migrants and refugees and families with children with special needs – and special events were organized for them. We give thanks to God for making this outreach possible.

Novena Church community