OCTOBER IS DEDICATED TO MARY AND THE ROSARY
When you look at the world today, both secular and within the Church, it is obvious that we are in need of help like never before. This is another reason to be grateful to God for His gift of Mary, especially during this month of October, a month the Church has long dedicated to our Blessed Mother. How do we honor Mary and seek her intervention? First and foremost, it seems natural to listen to what she says when she appeared to the children of Fatima: Mary reassured the children in a gentle voice, saying “Do not be afraid; I will do you no harm.” She told Lucia, “I come from Heaven.” She asked the children if they would “pray the Rosary every day, to bring peace to the world and an end to the war.” On June 13, as Mary appeared to the three children, Lucia asked, “What do you want me to do?” The Lady responded, “Continue to pray the Rosary every day and after the Glory Be of each mystery, add these words: ‘O my Jesus, forgive us our sins! Save us from the fire of Hell. Lead all souls to Heaven, especially those in most need of Thy mercy.’”
God loves us so much that He desires for us to know Him and receive His personal love. We offend God when we don’t make time for Him each day in prayer. There is no better prayer than the rosary, a prayer that brings us to meditate on the events in the life of Jesus through the eyes and heart of Mary. In the Rosary we encounter Christ through quietly reflecting on how He faced various situations in life; from the events prior to his birth in the Joyful Mysteries, the events of his public life in the Luminous Mysteries, the events of his passion in the Sorrowful Mysteries and his resurrection and events following in the Glorious Mysteries. These reflections can prove to be helpful in our own circumstances. Further, we are transformed by praying the words of three profound prayers: The Our Father, which Jesus gave us; the Glory Be which gives glory to the Father, Son and Holy Spirit; and the Hail Mary which asks for her intercession as the Mother of God. If praying the Rosary each day seems too daunting, start out by praying a decade, and a Rosary will be completed every five days. Doing this each day during the month of October will help build a habit that can be the base of a deeper prayer life.
I would encourage everyone to honor Mary in a special way in this month of October. As Catholics, we do not worship Mary; however, we do hold that she is in a special place in heaven, and we honor her. We ask for her intercession, that God may listen to her prayers for her children, and turn His gaze upon us. If there are sins you are trying to overcome, if there are health issues you are facing or if you are seeking reconciliation in your relationships, if you are concerned for our Church, our nation or the unborn children; the list is almost endless for us in these days. Turn to Mary and place your trust in her hands. Who better to trust in than the woman God entrusted His Son to in this world?