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Novena to the Holy Spirit – Day 3

Ask the Holy Spirit for the fruit of peace on the third day of Novena to the Holy Spirit.


Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful, and kindle in them the fire of your love. Send forth your Spirit, and they will be created.
– And you will renew the face of the earth.


Father of mercy, your Holy Spirit is the sign and instrument of your peace in the world. Fill our hearts with this peace, so that, like St Philip, we may conform our lives to your holy will. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Reading | Ph 4:5-7,9

The Lord is near. Have no anxiety at all, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God. Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus Keep on doing what you have learned and received and heard and seen in me. Then the God of peace will be with you.

Responsory | cf. Rm 5:5; 8:11

The love of God has been poured into our hearts (alleluia).
– By his Spirit living in us (alleluia).


“He who wishes for anything but Christ does not know what he wishes; he who asks for anything but Christ does not know what he is asking; he who works, and not for Christ, does not know what he is doing.” Such single- mindedness lies at the heart of St Philip’s approach to life and ministry, and gives us insight into the source of the peace which pervaded his personality. St Thomas says that the peace that is a fruit of the Holy Spirit involves two things: “freedom from outward disturbance”, since our hearts are so fixed on God that they do not attend to external things, and perfect calm, since “our desires rest altogether in one object”, namely, doing God’s will. St Philip was aware that God required not only all of his love, but also his full attention and complete confidence; because he was able to give them, he enjoyed real peace. “To be entirely conformed and resigned to the divine will is truly a road in which we cannot go wrong, and is the only road which leads us to taste and enjoy that peace which sensual and earthly men know nothing of.”

But how does someone know he is truly resigned to the divine will? For St Philip the answer lay in distrusting the self, and putting complete confidence in one’s spiritual director. He insisted that the primary relationship in the life of anyone striving for virtue is one of obedience to the spiritual father. “He always asked advice, even on affairs of minor importance. His constant counsel to his penitents was that they should not trust in themselves, but always take the advice of others, and get as many prayers as they could.” “They who really wish to advance in the way of God,” he said, “must give themselves up into the hands of their superiors always and in everything There is nothing which gives greater security to our actions, or more effectively cuts the snares the devil lays for us, than to follow another person’s will, rather than our own, in doing good.”

One anecdote shows how seriously St Philip took his own counsel in regard to obedience. He was on friendly terms with Ignatius of Loyola, who came to visit him often with letters from a fellow Jesuit, Francis Xavier, who was working as a missionary in India and the Far East. As he listened to St Ignatius read these letters, St Philip found himself burning with desire to follow in St Francis’s footsteps, and there came a time when he had gathered twenty or so men and was ready to set sail with them for pagan territories. But he would not go until he had consulted a priest whom he had come to trust. This priest told St Philip, “Your Indies are in Rome”, and he accepted the advice with peaceful resignation. This conversation took place in 1556; for the next forty years, St Philip worked diligently in Rome and never left the city.

As a spiritual director himself, St Philip often shared this gift of peace with those who turned to him for guidance. Some “recovered their lost peace of mind by simply looking Philip in the face. To dream of him was enough to comfort many. In a word, Philip was a perpetual refreshment to all those who were in perplexity and sadness.” Because of this he was in great demand as a counsellor and confessor, and his penitents gave him little rest, even when he was sick. But he held nothing back from those who needed to know God’s peace; indeed, Newman tells us, “When he was ill, he did not so much receive as impart consolation.”

Litany (optional)

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy. Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.
Christ, hear us. Christ, graciously hear us.

God the Father of Heaven, Have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world,
God the Holy Spirit,
Holy Trinity, One God,
Holy Spirit, proceeding from the Father and the Son,
Holy Spirit, co-equal with the Father and the Son,
Promise of the Father, most bounteous,
Ray of Heavenly Light,
Author of all good,
Source of living Water,
Consuming Fire,
Burning Love,
Spiritual Unction,
Spirit of truth and power,
Spirit of wisdom and understanding,
Spirit of counsel and fortitude,
Spirit of knowledge and piety,
Spirit of fear of the Lord,
Spirit of compunction,
Spirit of grace and prayer,
Spirit of love, peace and joy,
Spirit of patience,
Spirit of longanimity and goodness,
Spirit of benignity and mildness,
Spirit of fidelity,
Spirit of modesty and continence,
Spirit of chastity,
Spirit of adoption of sons of God,
Holy Spirit, our Comforter,
Holy Spirit, our Sanctifier,
You Who in the beginning moved upon the waters,
You through Whom spoke holy men of God,
You Who overshadowed the Virgin Mary,
You by Whom Mary conceived Christ,
You Who descend upon men at Baptism,
You Who, on the Day of Pentecost appeared through fiery tongues,
You by Whom we are reborn,
You Who dwell in us as in a Temple,
You Who govern and animate the Church,
You Who fill the whole world,

That You will renew the face of the earth, We beseech You, hear us.
That You may shed Your Light upon us,
That You may pour Your Love into our hearts,
That You may inspire us to love our neighbour,
That You may teach us to ask for the graces we need,
That You may enlighten us with your heavenly inspirations,
That You may guide us in the way of holiness,
That You may make us obedient to Your commandments,
That You may teach us how to pray,
That You may always pray with us,
That You may inspire us with horror for sin,
That You may direct us in the practice of virtue,
That You may make us persevere in a holy life,
That You may make us faithful to our vocation,
That You may grant us good priests and bishops,
That You may give us good Christian families,
That You may grant us a spiritual renewal of the Church,
That You may guide and console the Holy Father,

Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world: Spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world: Graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world: Have mercy on us.
Holy Spirit, hear us. Holy Spirit, Graciously hear us.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy. Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Create a clean heart in us, O Lord. Renew a right spirit in us, O Lord.

Let us pray:
O God, who enlightens the hearts of the faithful by the light of the Holy Spirit, grant to us the same Spirit, that we may be truly wise and ever rejoice in his consolation. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Our Father – Hail Mary – Glory Be

Concluding Prayer

Heavenly Father, hear the prayers that we make in the name of your Son, and give us the Paraclete whom he promised you would send. May the peace that your Holy Spirit brings transform our lives, remove anxiety and teach us to be obedient to you. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Read more about St Philip Neri and the Holy Spirit

This novena is extracted from our book Novena to the Holy Spirit. After Jesus’s ascension into heaven, his apostles remained nine days in Jerusalem, praying for the coming of the Holy Spirit. This has inspired the Christian novena to prepare for major feasts or for special intentions.

Pray to the Holy Spirit with the novena, hymns, litanies, and learn more about the Holy Spirit, by ordering your copy of Novena to the Holy Spirit today.