Tag Archives: Our Lady of the Rosary

Our Lady of the Rosary

October 7th brings us to moment when we realize that Our Lady, through the gift of the gift of the Rosary opens a new vista for meditating on Life of Christ and the gift of salvation.

From a sermon of St Bernard of Clairvaux

We should meditate on the mysteries of salvation

The child to be born of you will be called holy, the Son of God, the fountain of wisdom, the Word of the Father on high. Through you, blessed Virgin, this Word will become flesh, so that even though, as he says: I am in the Father and the Father is in me, it is still true for him to say: “I came forth from God and am here.”

In the beginning was the Word. The spring was gushing forth, yet still within himself. Indeed, the Word was with God, truly dwelling in inaccessible light. And the Lord said from the beginning: I think thoughts of peace and not of affliction. Yet your thought was locked within you, and whatever you thought, we did not know; for who knew the mind of the Lord, or who was his counsellor?

And so the idea of peace came down to do the work of peace: The Word was made flesh and even now dwells among us. It is by faith that he dwells in our hearts, in our memory, our intellect and penetrates even into our imagination. What concept could man have of God if he did not first fashion an image of him in his heart? By nature incomprehensible and inaccessible, he was invisible and unthinkable, but now he wished to be understood, to be seen and thought of.

But how, you ask, was this done? He lay in a manger and rested on a virgin’s breast, preached on a mountain, and spent the night in prayer. He hung on a cross, grew pale in death, and roamed free among the dead and ruled over those in hell. He rose again on the third day, and showed the apostles the wounds of the nails, the signs of victory; and finally in their presence he ascended to the sanctuary of heaven.

How can we not contemplate this story in truth, piety and holiness? Whatever of all this I consider, it is God I am considering; in all this he is my God. I have said it is wise to meditate on these truths, and I have thought it right to recall the abundant sweetness, given by the fruits of this priestly root; and Mary, drawing abundantly from heaven, has caused this sweetness to overflow for us.

On the Rosary

bvm-and-st-dominic-and-rosaryOctober is devoted to the Rosary. Yesterday was the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary (Oct. 7th). So, to continue our thinking on the importance of the rosary in spiritual discipline, Pope Leo XIII writes the following to see the mind of the popes on this subject:

“Since, therefore, it is clearly evident that this form of prayer is particularly pleasing to the Blessed Virgin, and that it is especially suitable as a means of defense for the Church and all Christians, it is in no way wonderful that several others of Our Predecessors have made it their aim to favor and increase its spread by their high recommendations. Thus Urban IV testified that “every day the Rosary obtained fresh boon for Christianity.” Sixtus IV declared that this method of prayer “redounded to the honor of God and the Blessed Virgin, and was well suited to obviate impending dangers;” Leo X that “it was instituted to oppose pernicious heresiarchs and heresies;” while Julius III called it “the glory of the Church.” So also St. Pius V, that “with the spread of this devotion the meditations of the faithful have begun to be more inflamed, their prayers more fervent, and they have suddenly become different men; the darkness of heresy has been dissipated, and the light of Catholic faith has broken forth again.” Lastly Gregory XIII in his turn pronounced that “the Rosary had been instituted by St. Dominic to appease the anger of God and to implore the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary.””

Our Lady of the Rosary

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“The Rosary, though clearly Marian in character, is at heart a Christocentric prayer. In the sobriety of its elements, it has all the depth of the Gospel message in its entirety , of which it can be said to be a compendium. It is an echo of the prayer of Mary, her perennial Magnificat for the work of the redemptive Incarnation which began in her virginal womb. With the Rosary, the Christian people sits at the school of Mary and is led to contemplate the beauty on the face of Christ and to experience the depths of his love” (Rosarium Virginis Mariae, 1).

 

St. Josemaria Escriva said, “The Rosary is a prayer very pleasing to our Lady, which has been part of the life of Catholics for many centuries. At the same time, it is a meditation on the mysteries of the life of our Lord and his Mother.

“Therefore, I recommend it with all my heart, also as a prayer that can be done as a family, although you shouldn’t force your young children to pray it . . . if they want to join the others, fine; if not, let them be, and eventually they will come. It has to be something voluntary” (Notes, November 17, 1972).

Our Lady of the Rosary

Pio praying rosary“Have you not often met poor old women who are most faithful to the pious recitation of the Rosary? You also must do all that you can to recite it with fervour. Get right down, at the feet of Jesus: it is a good thing to make oneself small in the presence of so great a God.”

Blessed Columba Marmion, OSB
Christ, the Ideal of the Priest

Our Lady of the Rosary

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Pour forth, we beseech you, O Lord, your grace into our heart, that we, to whom the Incarnation of Christ your Son was made known by the message of an Angel, may, through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, by his Passion and Cross be brought to the glory of his Resurrection.
Those who pray the Angelus will recognize this opening Collect for Mass for this feast. It keys us into the Mystery of the Word made flesh, of God entering into our history.
I once was working with a youth group for a summer and the leader told me that his colleagues in this particular diocese gave him grief that he prayed the rosary with his 60 teens at the weekly meeting. They couldn’t believe that anyone would do this, and they were more surprised that teenagers would agree to pray the Rosary. I was appalled that any Catholic youth minister would dismiss praying with sacred Scripture. The experience was golden: sitting in a circle, someone introduced the mystery of the Rosary, and everyone in the room announced the intention(s) that they needed Mary’s help on. Each teen took a Hail Mary. No gimmick, just prayer. Following the prayer, then there was “the program.” To me, the Rosary was enough.
It seems to me that if you want to experience the habit of prayer, to know the biblical narrative of Love, and be faithful in what the Mother of God asked us to do to decapitate sin, then praying the Rosary is the prayer form to do. Saints and sinners, popes and common people have all recommended the Holy Rosary taking up what the collect indicates, to the Incarnation of the Lord made known by the Angel.
Our Lady of the Holy Rosary, pray for us.

About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]yahoo.com.
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