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."

Our Lady of Loreto: Feast of the Translation of the Holy House of Loreto

Posted by Jacob

Today, December 10, is the feast day of Our Lady of Loreto, a longstanding devotion to Our Blessed Mother. The title Our Lady of Loreto refers to the Holy House of Loreto, the house in which Mary was born, and where the Annunciation occurred. This title further refers to a beautiful and ancient statue of Our Lady which is found there, and revered still today. Church holy tradition tells us that the angels scooped up the humble home of Mary from the Holy Land, transporting it three times-- first to Tersato, Dalmatia in 1291, three years later to Reananti, and finally to Loreto, Italy where it has remained for centuries. The Holy House of Loreto is the first shrine of international renown dedicated to the Blessed Virgin, and has been known as a Marian center for centuries. Popes have always held the Shrine of Loreto in special esteem, pronounced it’s veracity as the dwelling of the Holy Virgin, and it falls under their direct authority and protection because of the "divine mysteries which took place there." Today, a Basilica has been built around the tiny house, and thousands flock to visit each year.

The history of the translation of the Holy House of Loreto has been investigated and approved by countless popes over the centuries. It begins at the end of the thirteenth century, as the Crusades were coming to an end, the Holy Land having been lost by Christians to the Muslims. When the news reached Rome, it was accompanied by other news—news of great joy: the holy house of Nazareth, where the Blessed Virgin had lived and received the great news from the Angel Gabriel—had miraculously disappeared, leaving only it’s foundation behind. News simultaneously arrived of the house’s miraculous appearance near Tersatz in Dalmatia (Yugoslavia). The small house, containing only three walls (as the fourth had opened into a grotto in it’s original placement), contained within it an alter and an ancient statue of Our Lady.

The residents were further astounded when their bishop—who had been bedridden for months, was suddenly cured and joined them in contemplation of the house. By his report, the holy bishop had prayed to be able to go see the prodigy for himself, and the Mother of God had appeared to him, saying, in substance:

“My son, you called Me; I am here to give you powerful assistance and reveal to you the secret you desire to know. The holy dwelling is the very house where I was born... It is there that when the announcement was brought by the Archangel Gabriel, I conceived the divine Child by the operation of the Holy Spirit. It is there that the Word was made flesh!

After My decease, the Apostles consecrated this dwelling, illustrated by such elevated mysteries, and sought the honor of celebrating the August Sacrifice there. The altar is the very one which the Apostle Saint Peter placed there. The crucifix was introduced by the Apostles, and the cedar statue is My faithful image, made by the hand of the Evangelist Saint Luke.

This beloved house, so dear to Heaven, highly honored for many centuries in Galilee but today deprived of due homage caused by to the general decay of the Faith, has been transported from Nazareth to these lands. The author of this great event is God, for whom nothing is impossible.

For you to be bear witness to all that I tam telling you now, you will suddenly be cured and return to full health after the long illness you have borne, so that through you all will believe in this miracle.”

The governor of the area in which the house appeared wished to verify the origins of the structure. He sent the bishop, and a group of learned men to Nazareth, where they were to examine the original site of the house. There, they discovered the foundation, but the house was gone. And in examining the foundation, confirmed every detail of dimension and substance, to the stones at the base of the house now in Dalmatia. The testimony of the delegates was drafted according to legal formalities, and confirmed by a solemn oath.

After three years in Dalmatia, the house disappeared again during the night. Paul Della Selva, a holy hermit of that period and of the region of Ancona, wrote: “During the night of December 10th, a light from heaven became visible to several inhabitants of the shores of the Adriatic Sea, and a divine harmony woke them that they might contemplate a marvel exceeding all the forces of nature. They saw and contemplated a house, surrounded by heavenly splendor, transported through the air.”

The house was again set down, this time in a forest not too far away from Dalmatia. Upon discovery, the small Holy House became a pilgrimage site, but after only three years, it moved again, finding it’s final resting place atop a barren hill in Loreto, Italy. Modern day investigators have confirmed that the reddish-black stones of the house are a sort entirely foreign to Italy; the mortar cementing them is again entirely different from the volcanic-ash-based substance used in that country.

Local residents constructed a shelter for the building of heavy bricks, attempting to prevent the elements from wearing away their sacred treasure. No sooner had they completed this wall, however, they found that in the night it had been moved away from the house, as if to say that this treasure, miraculously transported, would also be protected by the Lord.

Over the centuries, many Pontiffs have testified to the authenticity of the Holy House and the miracles that have been attributed to it and have granted numerous indulgences to those who visit it. Pope John XXIII pronounced in 1962: "This is the lesson that comes from Nazareth: holy families, blessed love and homely virtue, blossom from the warmth of ardent hearts that are full of generosity and good will." The same theme was also taken up by Pope John Paul II when he went on a pilgrimage to Loreto on September 1979. He said at that time: "The House of the Holy Family! It was the first temple, the first church, on which the Mother of God shed her light through her motherhood. She irradiated it with the light which comes from the great mystery of the Incarnation; from the mystery of her Son."

Today, we call upon Our Blessed Mother, to hear our prayers, fill us with the grace she mediates, and protect us in our times of trouble.  Our Lady of Loreto, pray for us!

Our Lady of Loreto, Our Glorious Mother, we confidently turn to you; receive our humble prayer. Humanity is troubled by great evils, which it wishes to overcome on its own, and is in need of peace, justice, truth and love, yet thinks it can find these divine realities away from your Son.

O Mother! You, who carried the Divine Savoir in your immaculate womb and lived with Him in the Holy House that we venerate on the Loreto Hill, grant us the grace to seek Him and imitate His example, He who leads us to salvation.


  1. Daniel said...

    It is good to know the Tradition behind the veneration the Holy House on the hill of Loreto. It helps us appreciate the mystery of our Catholic Faith. Our Lady of Loreto, our Mother pray for us and your children and intercede for our prayer intentions. Amen

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