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Novena to the Ulma Family – Day 7

Prepare for the beatification of the Ulma family on 10th September 2023 by praying this official beatification novena, reflecting on the Ulmas' path to the glory of heaven.

Day seven: Blessed are the clean of heart
Thursday, Sept. 7, 2023
22nd week in Ordinary Time

“Blessed are the clean of heart, for they will see God” (Mt 5:8).

Today, on the first Thursday of the month, we give thanks to Jesus for the Eucharist, which is a gift of his infinite love for humanity. It continually embodies the mystery of his Passover — his passion, death and resurrection. It is through the Eucharist, by repeating his salvific sacrifice, that Christ makes us “the clean of heart,” so that we can respond to his love with our lives.

Having a clean heart is therefore a precondition for the beatitude that Jesus promises to his disciples. Today we want to open ourselves up to his message, which concerns the very essence of our consciousness and actions. Whenever Jesus speaks of the heart, he has in mind the whole “inner man.”

He is not just referring to feelings, but to the deepest self, the source of all attitudes and aspirations. Thus the source of man’s life, the whole person, should be pure. Józef and Wiktoria Ulma, who preserved their hearts from everything that could taint their love towards God and people, became models of work in this direction. Let us experience the First Thursday Eucharist with the desire to follow in their footsteps. Let us begin by acknowledging our own sinfulness in an act of penance, so that by the grace of Christ, through the power of the Holy Spirit, we can cleanse our hearts and be strengthened to live a life of sacrificial love.

Prayer prompts:

– Let us praise Christ that, through him, we have received the gift of a new heart, which can be made chaste by recognizing God and his truth in our daily lives. Let us remember, however, that purity of heart is not given once and for all, but is a task assigned to everyone. It must be guarded against the various forces of evil that seek to tear us away from God. Let us therefore ask for the strengthening of our faith and the determination to stand up for God and his commandments on a daily basis.

– One special threat to purity of heart is to undermine and deny the value of chastity. This is because it can inflict wounds or even kill an appropriate relationship between people. Let us apologize to God for sins from the area of emotional and sexual life. Let us give thanks for Wiktoria and Józef Ulma, who valued the virtue of chastity in their lives and marital vocation, asking that our marriages too may have the courage to live in and defend chastity.

– Purity of heart may be identified with a truthful life. We want our lives to be transparent, visible to all, without ambiguity or hypocrisy. Care for purity of heart therefore requires everyone to be concerned about the sincerity of convictions and conduct. In prayer before the Lord, who knows best the depths of our hearts, let us purify our intentions, let us tear off our masks before him, so that we may experience the promise of seeing God’s intervention in our daily lives, and one day seeing him face to face in heaven.

This novena was written for the Archdiocese of Przemysl. The English translation is courtesy of the Vatican’s Dicastery for Communication. Find the entire novena here

Images credit: From the archive of Mateusz Szptyma. All rights reserved.

Learn More About the Ulma Family

Józef and Wiktoria Ulma and their seven children will become the first family to be beatified at once on 10th September 2023! Their seventh child will become the first unborn child to be beatified.

Under the Nazi occupation of Poland during World War II, Jews were indiscriminately arrested, imprisoned, and killed. Christians who helped them hide or escape placed themselves in the same peril. Josef and Wiktoria Ulma, who, guided by the parable of the Good Samaritan, which was underlined in red ink in the family Bible, sheltered a Jewish family in their village of Markowa. As a result, in 1944, Josef, Wiktoria, and their seven small children – one not yet born – were murdered by the Nazis. This biography tells the story of the heroic virtue and sacrifice that lead to their beatification.

Click here to learn more about and order the book