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St. Theresa Novena   

Every Saturday  after 4:00 pm Divine Liturgy 

"Pictures" from St. Theresa's Nine-Day Novena 2007

"Pictures" from St. Theresa's Nine- Day Dovena 2006

Newspaper article: " Years of Devotion & Tradition"

from "Times leader" 9/22/2007

Anne and Paul Bedwick have been attending the St. Theresa Novena at St. George Chapel for most of their lives. The 80th annual novena begins on Sunday.   CLARK VAN ORDEN/THE TIMES LEADER



WILKES-BARRE – Paul and Anne Bedwick wouldn’t think of missing the annual St. Theresa Novena at St. George Chapel and they’re not alone.

The nine-day service, which is in its 80th year, has become an annual tradition for them and the community, attracting almost 200 people.

The Novena to St. Theresa the Little Flower begins Sunday. The Rev. Bill Bonczewski, of St. George Chapel, has been going to the Novena since he was a child. He said that people who make the novenas are seeking a variety of requests, including special blessings and graces.

“People come to discover their faith and new ways of loving the Lord,” Bonczewski said. “Some come for decisions regarding business or where to move. Some even decide to become priests after attending. When they come to pray and receive a blessing, they receive answers to their prayers.”

Prayers for healing of the sick and help with finances are a few other reasons people attend, he said.

The church keeps a book filled with testimonies of people who attended the novena, prayed and asked for a blessing, and had their prayers answered. These testimonies date back to 1939.

Paul Bedwick, 72, of Hanover Township, has been attending the Novena since he was 6 or 7 years old and attributes many of his blessings to the prayers. He and his wife, Anne, plan to begin the nine-day devotion on Sunday.

“I not only go for the nine days of prayer, I go every Monday,” Paul said. “St. Theresa is my patron saint because whatever favors we’ve asked, she’s always been there for us.”

Paul said that St. Theresa was there for him four years ago when he was gravely ill. Because he has no recollection of those 72 hours, Anne told his story.

On June 3, 2003, Paul’s heart defibrillator went off 21 times, and on the 22nd time, he went into cardiac arrest and was put onto a ventilator, Anne said. Her husband was in a coma, doctors had no hope and she was told to call their children.

Their pastor at the time, Monsignor Peter Azar, came to the emergency room and brought with him a relic of St. Theresa.

Azar stood over Paul’s bed to say a prayer, he placed the relic on the patient and began to pray. Azar and Anne describe what happened next as a miracle.

“He opened his eyes right away,” Azar said. “He looked right at all of us, and tears came down, tears of joy and of deep faith. We looked at each other with big, big surprise.”


The 80th annual Novena to St. Theresa begins at 5 p.m. Sunday and ends with a Mass at 5 p.m. Oct. 1. Prayers will be offered at 4 and 7 p.m. Sept. 24-Sept. 30.

St. George Chapel is at 79 Loomis St., Wilkes-Barre.


St. Anthony in W-B having days of prayer in honor of St. Sharbel

Attorney Ferris Webby, left, a nephew of the late Chorbishop George Webby, holds the picture taken by Webby's uncle on a visit to Lebanon in 1950.  The image, right, of the monks of a monastery where St. Sharbel lived, is believed to also contain the likeness of the saint.

In 1950, Father George Webby, a Maronite priest from Scranton, visited Lebanon, took a photo of monks outside the wall of the monastery in which St. Sharbel had lived and upon development of the picture saw that St. Sharbel miraculously appeared with the monks, according to information provided by St. Anthony’s Church.

Art work for holy pictures of this saint is now taken from this photo.

St. Sharbel is listed among The Incorruptibles, saints whose bodies were found intact years after burial. His body kept pouring oil and blood until the year before his canonization in 1977.

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