Joachim was a wealthy man and very God-fearing and used to give to the poor regularly. There is a story about Saints Joachim and Anne that their sacrifices at the temple used to be rejected because of their childlessness. Their lack of a child was viewed as though they were rejected in heaven. But Joachim would go to the desert do penance and fast for forty days. One time they were promised a child when angels delivered that message to the couple. The story of St Anne has a similarity to that of Hannah, the mother of Samuel, who was also still childless in her old age. Anne so much wanted to have a son but God had different plans and gave her a daughter. She named her Mary and dedicated her to the temple of the Lord just the same way Hannah dedicated Samuel to the temple.
The first time the feast of Saint Joachim was included in the General Roman Calendar was in 1584 and put on March 20 just after the Feast of Saint Joseph. It was transferred to the Sunday after the Octave of the Assumption of Mary in 1738. It was again transferred to August 16, just a day after the feast day of Assumption of Mary. In 1969 the feast day of St Joachim and the feast day of St Anne were joined together to be celebrated on July 26 as the feast of Saints Joachim and Anne.
St Anne and St Joachim
O Holy Mother and Father of the Blessed Virgin Mary, as parents, you guided and nurtured Mary and, under your protection and love, watched her grow in holiness.
Through your faithfulness and goodness the Will of God was fulfilled; the fruits of your virtue and faith brought salvation to the whole world with the birth of the baby Jesus.
“The Word was made flesh and dwelt among us.” (John 1:14)
Most Holy St’s Anne and Joachim, come close to us and guide our hand and our hearts in the way of virtue.
Help us to parent our children and grandchildren with a gentle heart as you did.
Show us how to raise our children in faith and bring our families into the Light of Jesus.
Remain close to us and help us on our journey to salvation.
St’s Anne and Joachim, we place our petitions in your hands and ask that you lay them before the child Jesus.
Seek this, my favour [State your request…] but only if it be for the greater glory of God and the good of my soul.
Pray: Our Father…, Hail Mary…, Glory be to the Father….
… St Anne and St Joachim: Pray for Us …
NOVENA PRAYER TO SAINTS ANNE & JOACHIM
Good parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
grandparents of our Savior, Jesus Christ,
When life seems barren,
help us to trust in God’s mercy.
When we are confused,
help us to find the way to God.
When we are lost in the desert,
lead us to those whom God has called us to love.
When our marriage seems lifeless,
show us the eternal youth of the Lord.
When we are selfish,
teach us to cling only to that which lasts.
When we are afraid,
help us to trust in God.
When we are ashamed,
remind us that we are God’s children.
When we sin,
lead us to do God’s will.
You who know God’s will for husband and wife,
help us to live chastely.
You who know God’s will for the family,
keep all families close to you.
You who suffered without children,
intercede for all infertile couples.
You who trusted in God’s will,
help us to respect God’s gift of fertility.
You who gave birth to the Blessed Mother,
inspire couples to be co-creators with God.
You who taught the Mother of God,
teach us to nurture children in holy instruction.
You whose hearts trusted in God,
hear our prayers for . . . (state your request).
Pray with us for the ministry of Catholic family life.
Pray with us for the ministry of Natural Family Planning.
Pray with us for all who give their time, talent, and treasure to this good work.
Hail Mary . . . Our Father . . . Glory be . . .
God of our fathers, you gave Saints Anne and Joachim the privilege of being the parents of Mary, the mother of your incarnate Son. May their prayers help us to attain the salvation you have promised to your people.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.
Prayer to St. Anne and St. Joachim
Dear Saint Anne and Saint Joachim, parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and grandparents of Jesus, our Divine Savior, have pity on thy loving and trusting client, and listen to the petition which I present before thee. Oh, blessed Saints, thou art both most dear to the Heart of Jesus, Whose beloved Mother was thy own tender, devoted child! Can He refuse anything to thee, in whose veins the same blood flowed which afterwards furnished the precious price of our Redemption? Great Saints, nothing was impossible to thy power and influence over the young Jesus “Who grew and waxed strong, full of wisdom” under the maternal care of thy glorious Daughter, the Queen of Heaven and Earth. In mercy and compassion, be like unto Him “Who went about doing good,” and come to the aid of thy servant in my great necessity!
Saint Anne, Saint Joachim, beloved parents of Mary, “our life, our sweetness and our hope,” pray to her for me and obtain my request.