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."

October 1: Holy Protection of the Mother of God, Theotokos

Posted by Jacob

Beneath your compassion we take refuge
O Virgin Theotokos
Despise not our prayer in our need
But deliver us from danger
For you alone are pure and blessed.

Today, October 1, we celebrate the feast of the Holy Protection of the Mother of God, the Theotokos. The feast celebrates the protection afforded the faithful through the constant intercessions of Our Blessed Mother, the Mother of God, Theotokos. Commonly celebrated in Eastern Orthodox and Byzantine churches, this feast is also recognized by the Catholic faithful. Referred to by Eastern churches as Pokrov (which means “veil” in Russian), the name evokes the image of the shroud or cloak of Mary, our protector and advocate.

As we do always, today, we glorify the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Most Holy Mother of God, as our Protector and Defender. We entreat, by her intercession, God's loving-kindness and forgiveness, recognizing our sinful ways and need of grace. And Our Blessed Mother lifts our prayers to the Lord, who listens attentively to His Mother’s supplications.

Mary has, throughout the ages, been responsible for aid to Christians, both to individuals and groups, in peace and in war, in deserts, grottos, muddy fields, and crowded cities. The event that we commemorate and celebrate today is consistent with Our Mother’s ongoing protection.

On October 1st, in the year 911, an all-night vigil was held at the Blachemae church of the Mother of God in Constantinople. As the church was crowded, Saint Andrew (referred to as the “Fool for Christ”) was standing at the back of the church with his disciple Epiphanius. At four o'clock in the morning, the most holy Mother of God appeared above the people with a veil spread over her outstretched hands, as though to protect them with this covering. She was clad in gold-encrusted purple and shone with an unspeakable radiance, surrounded by apostles, saints, martyrs and virgins. She knelt and prayed with tears for all faithful Christians in the world. The Virgin Mary asked Her Son, Jesus Christ, to accept the prayers of all the people entreating Him and looking for Her protection. Once Her prayer was completed, She walked to the altar and continued to pray before vanishing.

Saint Andrew asked of Epiphanius, gesturing toward the Holy Mother: “Do you see, brother, how the Queen and Lady of all [the Theotokos] is praying for the whole world?”

Epiphanius replied: “Yes. I see it and I stand in awe.”

An icon was created based upon Saint Andrew’s recollection of the appearance of the Mother of God, and the feast we celebrate today was instituted to remind us of Mary’s constant protection whenever we prayerfully seek that protection—in the shelter of her veil-- in distress.

Great and most high God, you alone possess immortality and dwell in unapproachable light. You made all creation with wisdom, dividing light from darkness, establishing the sun to rule the day and the moon and stars to rule the night. You have allowed us sinners to approach your presence with thanksgiving in this present hour and to offer you evening praise. O Lord, Lover of us all, make our prayer ascend to you like incense and accept it as a sweet fragrance. Grant that we may spend the present evening and the coming night in peace; clothe us with the armor of light. Deliver us from the fears of the night and from everything that lurks about in darkness.

Grant that the sleep you have given us to refresh our fatigue may be free from all illusions of the devil. Yes, O Master of all, giver of good things, let us feel contrition as we lie on our beds, remembering your name throughout the night. Enlightened by meditation on your commands, may we rise with gladdened soul to give glory to your goodness, offering prayers and supplications to your compassion for us in our sins and those of all your people. Visit us with mercy through the intercession of the holy Theotokos.

For you, O God, are good and love us all, and we glorify you, Father+, Son and Holy Spirit, now and ever and forever. Amen.

Day 274 of 365
Prayer Intentions: Protection of Our Blessed Mother.
Requested Intentions: Successful outcome of court case and employment (L); For guidance and righteous love (K); Restoration of a relationship (H); For successful employment (I); For a daughter’s successful relationship (M); For a relationship sanctified by God (M); For health of father; For canonization of Pope John Paul II (A); For the conversion of a family (L); For the ill (A); For the health of a family (I); For a father’s successful surgery and recovery (G); For those who are ill, and their caretakers (D); For the safety of a sister who is traveling (A); Recovery of mother with cancer (R); Successful acquisition of a visa (T); Restoration of a marriage (A); For employment and health of mother (G); Successful employment (M); Restoration of a family, End to brother's addiction, Successful marriage (R); Employment (I); Successful recovery of a mother; for all stroke victims (D); Successful return to the faith (A); Emotional, physical, and financial healing (D); Diagnosis and recovery (A); For a successful relationship (J); Those suffering from depression (J); Successful adoption (S); Healing of a father battling cancer (S).


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