Novena for Work
to Saint Josemaría Escrivá
1st day
Work as a path to holiness

Reflection: Saint Josemaría says
We have come to call attention once again to the example of Jesus, who spent thirty years in Nazareth, working as a carpenter. In his hands, a professional occupation, similar to that carried out by millions of people all over the world, was turned into a divine task. It became a part of our Redemption, a way to salvation.
(Conversations with Monsignor Josemaría Escrivá, n. 55)

Your ordinary contact with God takes place where your fellow men, your yearnings, your work and your affections are. There you have your daily encounter with Christ. It is in the midst of the most material things of the earth that we must sanctify ourselves, serving God and all mankind.
(Homily, Passionately Loving the World, in Conversations with Monsignor Josemaría Escrivá, n. 113-114)

To find a job
May our Lord God guide me in the effort to seek work and bless me, enabling me to obtain honest, dignified and steady employment; and then help me to see my job as a path to holiness and a service to others, where God my Father awaits me at every moment, asking me, in each situation, to imitate Jesus when he worked as a carpenter in Nazareth.

To do a good job
May our Lord God help me see my job as a path to holiness and a service to others, where God my Father awaits me at every moment, asking me, in each situation, to imitate Jesus when he worked as a carpenter in Nazareth.

Prayer to St Josemaría
 
2nd day
Work done for love of God

Reflection: Saint Josemaría says
The dignity of work is founded on Love. Man's great privilege is to be able to love, transcending from what is fleeting and ephemeral.
(Christ is Passing By, n. 48)

Do everything for Love. That way there are no little things: everything is big. Perseverance in little things, for Love, is heroism.
(The Way, n. 813)

Let me stress this point: it is in the simplicity of your ordinary work, in the monotonous details of each day, that you have to find the secret, which is hidden from so many, of something great and new: Love.
(Furrow, n. 489)

To find a job
May our Lord God grant me the grace to get a job quickly, which will provide security for my family. At the same time, may he help me to understand that what gives value to any honest work is the love with which I do it: love for God, in the first place, to whom I can offer up my work; and love for my neighbour, whom I wish to serve and be useful to.

To do a good job
May our Lord God help me to understand that what gives value to any honest work is the love with wich I do it: Love for God in the first place, to whom I can offer up my work; and love for my neighbour, whom I wish to server and be useful to.

Prayer to Saint Josemaría
 
3d day
Working with order and constancy

Reflection: Saint Josemaría says
How short indeed is the time of our passing through this world! For the true Christian these words ring deep down in his heart as a reproach to his lack of generosity, and as a constant invitation to be loyal. Brief indeed is our time for loving, for giving, for making atonement. It would be very wrong, therefore, for us to waste it, or to cast this treasure irresponsibly overboard. We must not squander this period of the world's history that God has entrusted to each of us.
(Friends of God, n. 39)

When you bring order into your life your time will multiply and, as a result, you will be able to give greater glory to God, by working more in his service.
(The Way, n. 80)

Persevere in the exact fulfillment of the obligations of the moment. That work - humble, monotonous, small - is prayer expressed in action that prepares you to receive the grace of the other work - great and wide and deep - of which you dream.
(The Way, n. 825)

To find a job
May I get a stable and suitable job, with the help of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary. And when, through God's goodness, I am working, may I learn to use my time as the treasure it is, and make the effort to improve in the virtue of order, so as to work more punctually, intensely and constantly, without disorder or delays. May I achieve this by following a well-structured plan, which allows for me to spend the appropriate amount of time on each of my duties: spiritual life, family life, professional life and social relations, in a balanced way.

To do a good job
With the help of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary, may I learn to use my time as the treasure it is, and make the effort to improve in the virtue of order, so as to work more punctually, intensely, and constantly, without disorder or delays. May I achieve this by following a well-structured plan, which allows for me to spend the appropriate amount of time on each of my duties: spiritual life, family life, professional life and social relations, in a balanced way.

Prayer to Saint Josemaría
 
4th day
Well-finished work

Reflection: Saint Josemaría says
It is no good offering to God something that is less perfect than our poor human limitations permit. The work that we offer must be without blemish and it must be done as carefully as possible, even in it smallest details, for God will not accept shoddy workmanship. 'Thou shalt not offer anything that is faulty,' Holy Scripture warns us (Lev 22:20), 'because it would not be worthy of him.' For that reason, the work of each one of us, the activities that take up our time and energy, must be an offering worthy of our Creator. It must be operatio Dei, a work of God that is done for God: in short, a task that is complete and faultless.
(Friends of God, n. 55)

The important thing is that we should love the Mass and make it the center of our day. If we attend Mass well, surely we are likely to think about our Lord during the rest of the day, wanting to be always in his presence, ready to work as he worked and love as he loved.
(Christ is Passing By, n. 154)

To find a job
With our Lady's help, may I not take long to resolve the problem of my unemployment. And when I start a new job, may God help me to work well, with the greatest possible perfection. May I never work carelessly, but be convinced that work done badly cannot be sanctified, because it lacks love, and love alone enables any human action to be pleasing to God.

To do a good job
May God help me to work well, with the greatest possible perfection. May I never work carelessly, but be convinced that work done badly cannot be sanctified, because it lacks love, and love alone enables any human action to be pleasing to God.

Prayer to Saint Josemaría
 
5th day
All honest work is dignified

Reflection: Saint Josemaría says
It is time for us Christians to shout from the rooftops that work is a gift from God and that it makes no sense to classify men differently, according to their occupation, as if some jobs were nobler that others. Work, all work, bears witness to the dignity of man, to his dominion over creation.
(Christ is Passing By, n. 47)

Before God, no occupation is in itself great or small. Everything gains the value of the Love with which it is done.
(Furrow, n. 487)

You really do need to make an effort and put your shoulder to the wheel... For all that, you should put your professional interests in their place: they are only means to an end; they can never be regarded - in any way - as if they were the basic thing.
(Furrow, n. 502)

To find a job
May God grant me the joy of getting a job, at which I can be useful
and develop my abilities. And if, for the moment, the job were to be below my level of competence and my legitimate aspirations, may I not belittle it. Rather, while seeking something more appropriate, may I carry it out in a fully responsible way, giving it the same value as Jesus gave his work at Nazareth.

To do a good job
If my present job is below my level of competence and my legitimate aspirations, may I not belittle it. Rather, while seeking something more appropriate, may I carry it out in a fully responsible way, giving it the same value as Jesus gave his work at Nazareth.

Prayer to Saint Josemaría
 
6th day
Work done in company with God, and with rectitude of intention

Reflection: Saint Josemaría says
I beg you, don't ever lose the supernatural point of view. Correct your intention as the course of a ship is corrected on the high seas: by looking at the star, by looking at Mary. Then you will always be sure of reaching harbour.
(The Forge, n. 745)

As a Christian, you should always carry your Crucifix with you. And place it on your work table. And kiss it before you go to rest and when you awake.
(The Way, n. 302)

Place on your desk, in your room, in your wallet... a picture of Our Lady, and look at it when you begin your work, while you are doing it, and when you finish it. She will obtain for you - I assure you! - the strength to turn your task into a loving dialogue with God.
(Furrow, n. 487)

To find a job
May God grant me an honest and dignified job, and open the eyes of my soul to understand that he is always at my side. So as not to lose sight of this marvellous reality, may I make the effort to stay in God's presence during my work, using as a discreet "reminder" a small crucifix, or a smal picture of Our Lady or of some saint to whom I have devotion, positioned where I can see it often, without attracting unnecessary attention.

To do a good job
May God open the eyes of my soul to understand that he is always at my side. So as not to lose sight of this marvellous reality, may I make the effort to stay in God's presence during my work, using as a discreet "reminder" a small crucifix, or a small picture of Our Lady or of some saint to whom I have devotion, positioned where I can see it often, without attracting unnecessary attention.

Prayer to Saint Josemaría
  7th day
Maturing in virtue through work

Reflection: Saint Josemaría says
Everything in which we poor human beings intervene - even sanctity - is a tissue of small trifles, which - depending on the purity of our intention - can form a tapestry of splendid heroism or of meanness, of virtues or of sins.
(The Way, n. 826)

A complete range of virtues is called into play when we set about our work with the purpose of sanctifying it: fortitude, to persevere in our work despite the difficulties that naturally arise and to ensure that we never let ourselves be overwhelmed by anxiety; temperance, in order to spend ourselves unsparingly and to overcome our love of comfort and our selfishness; justice, so as to fulfil our duties towards God, society, our family and our fellow workers; prudence, to know in each case what course to take, and then to set about it without hesitation... And all this, I emphasize, is for the sake of Love.
(Friends of God, n. 72)

All professional work demands previous training and a constant effort to improve one's formation and to adapt it to the new circumstances that may arise.
(Conversations, n. 90)

To find a job
With our Lady's help, may I find the job I am looking for. And when I devote myself fully to this new work, may God help me to develop the Christian virtues and to mature spiritually through the work I do. May I seek to be patient and understanding, both towards my managers and towards my colleagues and subordinates. May I be simple and humble, avoiding vanity and exhibitionism. In a word, may I do everything with purity of heart.

To do a good job
May God help me to develop the Christian virtues and to mature spiritually through the work I do. May I seek to be patient and understanding, both towards my managers and towards my colleagues and subordinates. May I be simple and humble, avoiding vanity and exhibitionism. In a word, may I do everything with purity of heart.

Prayer to Saint Josemaría
 
8th day
Work as service, a help for others

Reflection: Saint Josemaría says
Consider too that, by doing your daily work well and responsibly, not only will you be supporting yourselves financially, you will also be contributing in a very direct way to the development of society, you will be relieving the burdens of others and maintaining countless welfare projects, both local and international, on behalf of less privileged individuals and countries.
(Friends of God, n. 120)

When you have finished your work, do your brother's, helping him, for love of Christ, so tactfully and so naturally that not even the person you are helping realizes that your are doing more than in justice you ought. This indeed is virtue befitting a son of God.
(The Way, n. 440)

To find a job
May God our Lord grant me the job which I ask him for with so much faith. And may he infuse in my soul the desire to make of my work, not a self-centered activity geared to my own interests, but a service that is open and useful to many, done in the certainty that this ideal of service to others will give a new, higher and more joyful meaning to my life.

To do a good job
May God infuse in my soul the desire to make of my work, not a self-centered activity geared to my own interests, but a service that is open and useful to many, done in the certainty that this ideal of service to others will give a new, higher and more joyful meaning to my life.

Prayer to Saint Josemaría
 
9º día
Apostolate through work

Reflection: Saint Josemaría says
Professional work is also apostolate, an opportunity to give ourselves to others, to reveal Christ to them and lead them to God the Father.
(Christ is Passing By, n. 49)

Just live your ordinary life; work where you are, trying to fulfill the duties of your state in life, finishing off the tasks in your professional work or job properly, improving, getting better each day. Be loyal; be understanding with others and demanding on yourself. Be mortified and cheerful. This will be your apostolate. Then, though you won't see why, because you are very aware of your own wretchedness, you will find that people come to you. Then you can talk to them, quite simply and naturally - on your way home from work, for instance, or in a family gathering, on a bus, walking down the street, anywhere. You will chat about the sort of longings that everyone feels deep down in their soul, even though some people may not want to pay attention to them: they will come to understand them better, when they begin to look for God in earnest.
(Friends of God, n. 273)

To find a job
May God, through our Lady's mediation, make me find a good job in which I can grow professionally and give the best of myself. And may he make me see in the area of my work, a wide field for the apostolic mission that God entrusts to all baptized, using the opportunities he offers me to help my colleagues, friends and clients discover the marvels of the Christian faith.

To do a good job
May God help me see in the area of my work, a wide field for the apostolic mission that God entrusts to all the baptized, using the opportunities he offers me to help my colleagues, friends and clients discover the marvels of the Christian faith.

Prayer to Saint Josemaría
Spanish Translation