The Month of the Holy Rosary
This Sunday, the first in October, we keep ‘Rosary Sunday’ and on this coming Friday, October 7th, the Church celebrates the Feast of Mary, Queen of the Holy Rosary. The feast was established by Pope Saint Pius V in 1571 as a thanksgiving for a great naval victory over Muslim invaders at Lepanto, attributed to Mary’s intercession, as people in Christian Europe prayed the Rosary. The Church has since then dedicated the entire month of October to the Holy Rosary. But why? What is the point? That battle was centuries ago, surely, we’ve thanked Our Lady enough by now?
The point, as Holy Church knew then, as now, was ‘PEACE’. Our time, our world needs peace just as much as then: War rages in Ukraine and forgotten in Syria, Libya, Yemen, and many parts of Africa. Our Christian brothers and sisters are the most persecuted people of faith in our, so called, modern world; in Nigeria, Cameroon, D R Congo, Nicaragua, China, Iran, Iraq, to name but a few and our faith view is continually marginalised here and across the Western world. Families need peace and you and I need that ‘Peace which passes all understanding,’ in our lives, hearts, and souls.
We Need to Pray, We need to Pray for Peace, We need the Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ!!
Why the Rosary? Because Mary is our mother, devotion to her teaches us to be her authentic children; sons and daughters who truly love, listen and pray with her, to her Son, Our Saviour Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace, giver of Hope, bringer of Salvation. The Church encourages us to contemplate together with Mary’s joys, sorrow and glory, the spellbinding example, message and redemption won by Our Lord’s life, death and resurrection.
The great saint of the Holy Rosary, St Josemaria Escriva, suggested 6 ways to pray with devotion the Holy Rosary:
- Pray it daily privately or with friends and family with a spirit of faith and love. Our Lady will make sure she leads you along her Son’s path.
- Pray it during the day, don’t leave it until late because you’ll be sleepy and forget. Pray it as you walk or carefully drive or while you sit on the bus or in the queue. No one needs to know, just you and Her.
- If possible, use a book like “Holy Rosary” or an ‘ap’, even a ‘YouTube’ meditation, expand your vision and experience, deepen your thoughts and so your prayers.
- When praying as a family, especially with young children, use pictures, images of each mystery. We all love pictures! And picture stay in our heads and hearts.
- When you see an image of Our Lady at home, on the screen or in a church, direct a glance to her and send her your affectionate interior prayer or greeting. Remember She loves you!
- Walk saying your Rosary to Church or to ‘A Church’, like a pilgrim, saying 5 mysteries on the way and 5 mysteries when you arrive and even another 5 on the way back!
Our Lady of the Rosary told the children at Fatima to pray the Rosary each day for Poor Sinners and for Peace. We need it, the world needs it, so this October let’s do it!
Fr David Jones OLW