Why pray the Rosary every day for a year?

Each time the Blessed Virgin has appeared-- whether it be to Saint Bernadette Soubirous at Lourdes; to Lucia, Jacinta, and Francisco at Fatima; or to Mariette Beco at Banneux-- she has asserted the importance, saving grace, and power of praying the Holy Rosary on a daily basis. Based upon her words, the Rosary is penance and conversion for sinners, a pathway to peace, an end to war, and a powerful act of faith in Jesus Christ. Pope Paul VI presented the Rosary as a powerful means to reach Christ "not merely with Mary but indeed, insofar as this is possible to us, in the same way as Mary, who is certainly the one who thought about Him more than anyone else has ever done."

To show us how this is done, perhaps no one has been more eloquent than the great Cardinal Newman, who wrote: "The great power of the Rosary consists in the fact that it translates the Creed into Prayer. Of course, the Creed is already in a certain sense a prayer and a great act of homage towards God, but the Rosary brings us to meditate again on the great truth of His life and death, and brings this truth close to our hearts. Even Christians, although they know God, usually fear rather than love Him. The strength of the Rosary lies in the particular manner in which it considers these mysteries, since all our thinking about Christ is intertwined with the thought of His Mother, in the relations between Mother and Son; the Holy Family is presented to us, the home in which God lived His infinite love."

As Mary said at Fatima, "Jesus wants to use you to make Me known and loved. He wishes to establish the devotion to My Immaculate Heart throughout the world. I promise salvation to whoever embraces it; these souls will be dear to God, like flowers put by Me to adorn his throne."

Marian Mondays: Acts of Reparation

Posted by Jacob

Marian Mondays is a weekly post focusing on Our Blessed Mother, Mary, Queen of Heaven and Earth. In this post, we explore her life, her special mission, her sanctity, and the Biblical bases for the beliefs of the Church.

We take a slight "detour" from our weekly Marian Mondays column at the start of the Holy Month of May, dedicated to Our Blessed Mother. At this time, we instead, look to Mary, and offer an Act of Reparation for the insults and blasphemy committed against her.

An Act of Reparation is a prayer or devotion with the intent to repair the "sins of others.” For example, one might pray to repair the sins of blasphemy or insult committed by others, for the sufferings of Christ, or the attacks on the sanctity of Our Holy Mother. The sole aim of these prayers is to repair the sins of the world, as our Blessed Mother has encouraged us to do at each of her holy apparitions. At Lourdes, for example, she encouraged Saint Bernadette to pray for sinners, stating, “Penance. Penance. Penance for sinners.” To Sister Sasagawa, Our Lady of Akita stated, “Many men in this world afflict the Lord. I desire souls to console Him to soften the anger of the Heavenly Father." To the visionaries at Fatima, Our Blessed Mother urged prayer “in reparation for the outrages, sacrileges and indifferences by which He is offended."

In his encyclical Miserentissimus Redemptor, Pope Pius XI defined reparation as follows: “The creature's love should be given in return for the love of the Creator, another thing follows from this at once, namely that to the same uncreated Love, if so be it has been neglected by forgetfulness or violated by offense, some sort of compensation must be rendered for the injury, and this debt is commonly called by the name of reparation.”

Similarly, Pope John Paul II referred to reparation as the "unceasing effort to stand beside the endless crosses on which the Son of God continues to be crucified.” As we consider the crucifixion, we remember Our Blessed Mother standing beneath her Son, a sword piercing her heart in His agony. In our effort to stand beside Jesus on His cross, we, too, stand beside the Blessed Virgin.

Throughout time, many have not simply downplayed or ignored devotion to Mary, but have actively attacked Marian doctrines (such as her perpetual virginity) that are attested from the earliest days of the Church. Further, critics of the Church call into question the sanctity of Our Blessed Mother, and the role in which she plays in the mediation of our sins and distribution of graces. In this prayer, we offer praise to the Blessed Virgin Mary and to the Holy Trinity in reparation for offenses against the Mother of God.

O blessed Virgin, Mother of God, look down in mercy from Heaven, where thou art enthroned as Queen, upon me, a miserable sinner, thine unworthy servant. Although I know full well my own unworthiness, yet in order to atone for the offenses that are done to thee by impious and blasphemous tongues, from the depths of my heart I praise and extol thee as the purest, the fairest, the holiest creature of all God's handiwork. I bless thy holy Name, I praise thine exalted privilege of being truly Mother of God, ever Virgin, conceived without stain of sin, Co-Redemptrix of the human race. I bless the Eternal Father who chose thee in an especial way for His daughter; I bless the Word Incarnate who took upon Himself our nature in thy bosom and so made thee His Mother; I bless the Holy Spirit who took thee as His bride. All honor, praise and thanksgiving to the ever-blessed Trinity who predestined thee and loved thee so exceedingly from all eternity as to exalt thee above all creatures to the most sublime heights. O Virgin, holy and merciful, obtain for all who offend thee the grace of repentance, and graciously accept this poor act of homage from me thy servant, obtaining likewise for me from thy Divine Son the pardon and remission of all my sins. Amen


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