LITTLE HISTORY OF THE ROSARY
Introduction




"All generations will call me blessed": "The Church's devotion to the Blessed Virgin is intrinsic to Christian worship."515 The Church rightly honors "the Blessed Virgin with special devotion. From the most ancient times the Blessed Virgin has been honored with the title of 'Mother of God,' to whose protection the faithful fly in all their dangers and needs. . . This very special devotion. . . differs essentially from the adoration which is given to the incarnate Word and equally to the Father and the Holy Spirit, and greatly fosters this adoration."516 The liturgical feasts dedicated to the Mother of God and Marian prayer, such as the rosary, an "epitome of the whole Gospel," express this devotion to the Virgin Mary.

Medieval piety in the West developed the prayer of the rosary as a popular substitute for the Liturgy of the Hours. In the East, the litany called the Akathistos and the Paraclesis remained closer to the choral office in the Byzantine churches, while the Armenian, Coptic, and Syriac traditions preferred popular hymns and songs to the Mother of God. But in the Ave Maria, the theotokia, the hymns of St. Ephrem or St. Gregory of Narek, the tradition of prayer is basically the same.


  Meditation engages thought, imagination, emotion, and desire. This mobilization of faculties is necessary in order to deepen our convictions of faith, prompt the conversion of our heart, and strengthen our will to follow Christ. Christian prayer tries above all to meditate on the mysteries of Christ, as in lectio divina or the rosary. This form of prayerful reflection is of great value, but Christian prayer should go further: to the knowledge of the love of the Lord Jesus, to union with him.

THE ROSARY HELPS US TO BE LIKE CHILDREN


In October 1973, on the occasion of the 4th centenary of the Feast of the Rosary, the future Pope John-Paul I, Albino Luciani, then Patriarch of Venice, gave a homily suited to the occasion. It revealed a spirituality of «becoming like children again » and how the recitation of the rosary can help us in this sense.


We give extracts of the homily most useful for animators and children. « What would happen if during a meeting of Catholics someone asked you ladies and gentlemen to show the contents of your briefcases or handbags? One would certainly find combs, mirrors, lipsticks, purses, wallets, cigarette lighters and other objects more or less useful.

But how many rosaries?
Some years ago things were better. In the house where Manzoni lived in Milan, you can still see his beads at the head of his bed: he recited the rosary regularly and Lucia, one of the main characters in his book « The engaged couple », brings our her beads and recites the rosary at moments of difficulty. Non practising friends once asked Windthorst, a German statesman, to show them his beads. It was a joke : one of them had taken the rosary beads from his left pocket. Windthorst, not finding it in his left pocket plunged his hand into his right pocket and his face brightened. He always carried a second rosary!

The great musician Christophe Gluck, used to withdraw for a few minutes during receptions in Vienna to recite the rosary. Whenever Blessed Contardo Ferrini, professor at the University of Pavia, went out to dinner he would invite his hosts to recite the rosary with him. Saint Bernadette said that the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to her wearing a rosary beads on her arm and she asked Bernadette if she had a her beads too and if she and the other two children would like to pray the rosary. Why did I start with these examples? Because some people criticise the rosary.

They say it is a childish prayer, superstitious, not good enough for adult Christians. Or, it is an automatic prayer, a mere monotonous and boring repetition of the Hail Mary. Or again : it is not for our day, today we can do better: read the Bible for example which compared to the rosary is like good flour compared to bran ! Allow me to offer you a couple of impressions on this matter as a pastor of souls.

First impression : The crisis of the rosary will occur later. In our day it is preceded by a general crisis in prayer. People are totally absorbed in by their material interests; they hardly ever think of their soul, noise has invaded our life.
Macbeth could say once again: "I have killed sleep, I have killed silence!". It is difficult for us to find a brief moment for our spiritual life, for a "dulcis sermocinatio" ‘sweet conversation’ with God. This is a great pity. Donoso Cortes used to say: "Our world today is in a poor state because there are more battles than there are prayers". Community liturgies are celebrated.

This is very good but not sufficient: personal conversation with God is also necessary. Second impression. When we speak of "adult Christians" in prayer, at times we exaggerate. Personally when I speak tête-à-tête with God or with the Blessed Virgin Mary, more than an adult I prefer to think of myself as a child. The mitre, skullcap and ring disappear; I give a holiday to the adult and the bishop and also to heavy burdens, sober and pondered, and let myself go with the spontaneous tenderness of a child in front of his papá or mamma.

To be – at least for half an hour – before God as I truly am with my wretchedness and also with the best of myself: to feel rising from the depths of my being the child of other days who wants to talk and chat with the Lord and love him and who sometimes feels the need to cry that he may be granted mercy, all this helps me to pray. The rosary, a simple and easy prayer, helps me to be at times a child again and of this I am not in the least ashamed. The rosary a prayer of repetition ? Père de Foucauld used to say : "Love is expressed in a few words, always the same, repeated time and time again ".





 

 

 

 

 

A LENTEN PRAYER:
Way of the Cross "the face of Christ, the face of man"

Msgr. Giancarlo Maria Bregantini

He who saw this has testified so that you also may believe. His testimony is true, and he knows that he tells the ...to be continued

 

A LENTEN PRAYER:
Development of the Stations of the Cross

A prayer form that is most often associated with the season of Lent, the Way of the Cross (as it is formally called) is a ...to be continued

 

A LENTEN PRAYER

Called the Passion ...to be continued
Unlock the Stations of the Cross, Examen-Style - by Gary Jansen ...to be continued
Prayer for the Fifth Week ...to be continued
Station of the Cross ...to be continued

 

LIKE BARTOLOMEA I PRAY AT THE BEGINNING OF THE
The pupils of class 4

The pupils of class 4 of «istituto Margherita», after reflecting on the prayer of Bartolomea, wrote their own prayer: it ...to be continued

 

PRAYER: HOLY ROSARY
We ask Mary the gift of being WITNESSES OF MERCY

«We need constantly to contemplate the mystery of mercy...», but «At times we are called to gaze even more ...to be continued

 

HOLY ROSARY

As the Beatification of Pope Paul VI is getting near, let us ask him to accompany us with his words and exhortations, in order to revive our devotion to Mary, the Queen of Holy Rosary, and to intensify our prayer for the Church and for all mankind.

 

MARIALIS CULTUS, Apostolic Exhortation, February 2, 1974
CHRISTI MATRI; Encyclical on prayers during October, September 15, 1966
MENSE MAIO
; Encyclical On PrayersDuring May, April 29, 1965

 

LITTLE HISTORY OF THE ROSARY

"All generations will call me blessed": "The Church's devotion to the Blessed Virgin is intrinsic to Christian worship ...to be continued

 

LITTLE MEDITATION a unique school of prayer

Jhon Paul II

Kneeling here, before the grotto of Massabielle, I feel deeply that I have reached the goal of my pilgrimage. This ...to be continued

 

LITTLE MEDITAION Mary's steadfast faith throughout her life

John Paul II

The first beatitude cited in the Gospel is that of faith, and it refers to Mary: “Blessed is she who believed” (Lk 1:45). These ...to be continued

 

LITTLE HISTORY OF THE ROSARY Apostolic letter Rosarium Virginis Mariae

of the Supreme Pontiff John Paul II
The Rosary of the Virgin Mary, which gradually took form in the second millennium under the guidance of the Spirit of God ...to be continued

 

 

 

 

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