July 26: St. ANNE
Saint Anne was mother of Mary and the grandmother of Jesus Christ.
Remember, O glorious and Good Saint Anne, that never was it known that anyone who fled to thy protection, implored they help and sought thy intercession, was left unaided.
Inspired by this confidence, behold, I cast myself at they feet, and beseech thee, by thy great prerogative of being the Mother of the Queen of Heaven and the Grandmother of Jesus, come to my aid with thy powerful intercession, and obtain from Almighty God through the ever Blessed Virgin Mary, this special favor which I beg of thee..
(Mention Your Request)
Cease not to intercede for me until, through Divine Mercy, my request may be granted. Above all, obtain for me the grace one day to behold my God face to face and with thee and Mary and all the Saints praise and bless Him through all eternity.
What little we know about Saint Anne comes from the apocryphal Gospel of James, also known as the Protoevangelium of James.
According to tradition, Anne was born in Bethlehem and married Joachim of Nazareth, both descendants of King David.
Joachim is described as “a rich and devout man,” who regularly gave to the poor and “made a double offering to the temple” in expiation for his sins.
Because Anne was barren, the temple priest rejected Joachim’s sacrifice, as childlessness was interpreted as a sign of divine displeasure. There was no greater misfortune for a Jewish person than to be childless.
Had not God promised to His people, through Abraham, “descendants as countless as the stars of the sky and the sands of the seashore”?
Joachim consequently “went into the desert to fast and pray” for forty days and forty nights. But Anne remembered the faith of her ancestors, and with renewed courage prayed:
“God of my fathers, bless me: Hear my prayer, as You blessed the womb of Sarah, and gave her a son Isaac!”. Her prayer was heard:
“Behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to her and said: ‘Anne, Anne, the Lord has heard your prayer: You shall conceive and bear, and your offspring shall be spoken of in all the world.
In an outpouring of faith, she who was to be Mary’s mother immediately consecrated her future offspring. An angel appeared also to Joachim, saying:
“Joachim, Joachim, God has heard your prayer. Go on your way, for your wife will conceive”.
And Joachim offered a thanksgiving sacrifice of ten she-lambs without spot or blemish for the Lord God, twelve tender calves for the priests and elders, and a hundred goats for all the people. He then returned to Jerusalem and embraced Anne at the city gate.