Three separate houses of worship in honor of Mary have a Doylestown mailing address: Our Lady of Czestochowa Shine, and Our Lady of Guadalupe and Our Lady of Mount Carmel parishes.

To further honor the Blessed Mother for her blessing upon us, Our Lady of Mount Carmel Parish will begin a novena to Mary on Friday, July 8.

The Novena to Our Lady of Mount Carmel will consist of traditional hymns in honor of Mary, psalms and readings that reflect her life, a special novena prayer asking for her intercession, and the blessing and distribution of brown scapulars.

Participants are invited to the church each night at 7 p.m. — except on the two Saturdays of July 9 and 16, when the novena prayers will be included within Saturday night Mass at 5 p.m.

A novena — a word that means “nine” and is typically a time of prayer consisting of nine days — is a devotion to ask Jesus and Mary to grant a specific intention such as clarity on an important decision, forgiveness, courage, healing or another need. It’s not magic, but the primary intention is always to grow in patience as one places trust in God.

The devotion is rooted in the Bible. The Acts of the Apostles (2:1) recounts how the disciples gathered around Mary on the Ascension of Jesus Christ and prayed for nine days while awaiting the descent of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost.

At Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church, parishioner Cydney Bittner, who aspires to be a sacred artist, has created two beautiful paintings illuminating why the geography of Mount Carmel is significant in the Bible and in Catholic tradition. These paintings will be on display throughout the novena.

Music each night will be provided by Rudy Lucente and Abigail Chapman. Priests from throughout the area will lead the faithful in prayer and preaching each night.

July 16 — the Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel — will mark the conclusion of the novena with the celebration of Mass, with Peter Conte’s Choir performing. A light reception will follow Mass.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church is located at 235 East State Street, Doylestown.