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."

January 6, 2013: Saint Erminold of Prüffening

Posted by Jacob

Today, January 6, we celebrate the fest of Saint Erminold of Prüffening (died, 1121), abbot and martyr for the faith.  Saint Erminold was a Benedictine abbot, who maintained such strictness in his monastery, that he was slain by one of his own lay brothers.  His life is an example of order and devotion, in a troubled world.  He is famed for his spirit of prayer and charity for the poor and needy.

Erminold was born to one of the royal families in Swabia (one  of the four original provinces of Germany), and was given to the abbot of Hirschau, a local monastery, to be educated. His tutor, William, was one of the most learned and pious men of those times, and Erminold flourished under his tutelage, by the grace of God.  He made rapid progress in his studies, and upon completion, promptly took the vows of monastic life.  There, he lived a life of quiet devotion and strict adherence to community rules.

In 1110, Erminold was appointed Abbot of the Monastery at Lorch by Emperor Hney V.  However, as the Emperor owed Erminold’s brother a favor, he refused the position, given the appearance of simony (the buying or selling of ecclesiastical positions, or profit from sacred things).   Returning to Hirschau, he resumed his quiet life.

Only seven years later, the Bishop of Bamberg, invited Erminold to assume the abbotship of the Abbey at Pruffening, near Ratisbon, Germany.  He became the first father there, attracting new members and growing the congregation in the faith.

Saint Erminold was a great friend of the poor. Upon assuming leadership at Pruffening, Erminold emptied all the storehouses of his monastery to feed the needy during a famine. When at length nothing was left to feed his monks, the saintly man begged God to intervene, and invoked the intercession of the martyr, Saint George. His prayers were answered when the next day a rich noble came to the abbot, promising to relieve their want from his own wealth.

Saint Erminold insisted on strict discipline, according to the Rule of Saint Benedict.  While the majority of his community lived in harmony, some lay brothers took offense at his strictness, and in 1121, one named Aaron killed him.  It is said by some that he was beaten with a piece of timber, whereas other accounts indicate he was stabbed.  All accounts agree that following his mortal wound, he lingered in life for a few days, passing into Heaven on Epiphany at the hour he had predicted. He had stated, “Tomorrow, during the solemnities of the greater Mass, with the choir singing, ‘Glory to God in the highest,’ I shall depart from this world.”   Following his death, a large number of miracles were recorded at his tomb at St. George Church at Prüffening Abbey in Regensburg, Germany

Throughout 2013, I will be posting the prayer requests received from the previous week on Sundays.  Please join me in lifting these intentions to Our Lord, through the intercession of Our Blessed Mother.

Prayer requests, 2013: Week 1:
For healing of a brain disorder (J, United Kindgom); Improved relationship with the Lord, increased faith and grace (E, Finland); For a family’s successful reconciliation (M, USA-MA); Health, safety, and protection (J, Ireland);  Healing of an ill husband, blessings upon a daughter’s family (S, India); For financial security and protection (P, India); Blessings and health, financial security (J, Oman).


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