The Holy Name of Jesus

for Older Saints

Throughout the history of the Church, special honor has been given to the name of Jesus. His name was given to Joseph by an angel, and St. Paul tells us that the very name of Jesus is so powerful that “At the name of Jesus every knee should bend, of those in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord.” Philippians 2:10-11 St. Paul also instructs us that we should “do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus” Colossians 3:17 and Jesus Himself told us, “Amen, amen, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in my name he will give you.” John 16:23

So you can see that the Holy Name of Jesus is so important that we should use it with reverence and care (as the second Commandment tells us). Past popes have recommended that Catholics bow their heads slightly whenever they hear the name of Jesus during Mass or prayers (you can still do this today—it will really help you pay attention to the words of the prayers!).


There is a litany to the Holy Name that you can pray, and a novena (a prayer that is said for nine days in a row, for a particular intention). The novena prayer goes like this:

Start with an Our Father, Hail Mary, and Glory Be

Merciful Jesus, who started Your work of salvation as an infant by taking the name Jesus (“God saves”), thank You for showing Your love for us. Together with the angels and saints, we honor Your Holy Name.

Because we believe in Your words and Your mercy, and because you said, “where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them,” we ask that you come into our hearts. Through the power of Your Name, which is honored in heaven and feared in hell, and comforts those who suffer, we ask you to grant our petitions (name your petition here).

Mary, Mother of God, we ask you to bring our intentions to your Son, in His Name. Also ask Him to imprint His Name on our hearts so that it is always with us, in rejoicing and suffering, now and at the moment of our death. Amen.

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