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Rosary | by Lawrence OP
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Rosary

"I believe these memories speak to us of the nearness of God. The mystery of the Incarnation is not only about the birth of the Lord in millennia past, but about the incarnation of grace, or the birth of God, in our own daily lives. Jesus lives and His Spirit continues to heal, teach, forgive, comfort and challenge us. This is not an empty abstraction, but rather is made visible in and through the images associated with the mysteries of the Rosary. Awareness of the incarnation increases as one allows these images to intersect with the concerns of our own daily life. Thus, the Rosary is profoundly incarnational, biblical, Christ-centered, and contemporary.

 

Most obviously, the Rosary is Marian. Let us be clear as to what this means. In Mary, divinity becomes united with humanity; the creature becomes one with the Creator. In Mary we recognize both our identity and our destiny. We see this holy communion of God-with-us and God-within-us. We realize that our God is God-for-us—redeemer and savior, sanctifier and glorifier...

 

After Vatican II, we tended to downplay the importance of “popular religiosity.” Correctly, we emphasized biblical study and greater liturgical participation. In doing this, we also minimized those popular expressions that allowed greater religious sentiment to be expressed; e.g. benediction, processions, pilgrimages to Shrines, Rosary devotions, etc. Now, after forty (40) years of experience, we see that people both old and young need these expressions in order “to fan into a flame the gift that God gave you.” (2 Tim. 1:6)

 

...I have come to see the Rosary as indeed a beloved universal prayer. Whether in Italy or The Ukraine, Mexico or the United States, the Philippines or Vietnam, Kenya or Nigeria, the Rosary is found, prayed and loved. I believe one reason for this is because it is a tangible reality as well as a prayer. It is something almost every Catholic owns. It is given as a gift. It is a ritual whether said alone or together. It is something we can touch, hold, and even grasp at difficult moments of our life; it is like grasping the hand of Mary herself. The Rosary is placed in our hands both at the “hour of our death” and afterwards when we are buried. The prayers of the Rosary are summaries of our faith. Learning these prayers is like learning to talk; it is the beginning of our prayer life; and yes, it is also the end of our life of prayer—“your will be done” “now and at the hour of our death.” We are given a Rosary in our youth, we receive a Rosary when we take the habit, and a Rosary is at our side when we are buried."

 

- from the letter marking the Dominican Year of the Rosary by fr Carlos Azpiroz Costa OP, Master of the Order of Preachers.

 

October is the month of the Holy Rosary.

 

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Taken on September 28, 2008