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 13: Saint Edward the Confessor

Posted by Jacob

Today, October 13 we celebrate the feast day of Saint Edward the Confessor (1003-1066), benevolent and pious ruler of England. Through worthy and just rule, Edward worked for the glory of the Lord, serving the poor, enacting social change, and building and consecrating many churches (including London’s Westminster Abbey). He is remembered for miraculous healing touch, curing many sick and ill, both prior to and following his death.

Edward was born the second son of King Ethelred, whose kingdom of England fell to Danish invaders when Edward was just a boy. Following his father’s loss of the throne, Edward and his brother were sent to Denmark to be quietly killed, but the officer in charge took pity on the boys, and sent them instead to Sweden. From there, they were moved to the court of the King of Hungary to be raised and educated. From an early age, Edward’s interests were in things religious, and he prayed and meditated each day on the glory of the Lord. Remaining pious, chaste, and virtuous throughout his young life, along with his brother, Edward moved to Normandy, where they awaited their chance to return to England.

In 1035, when Edward was approximately 33, Edward and Alfred (his brother) tried to regain the crown of England, but they were turned back and Alfred was killed. Edward returned to Normandy, and waited seven years before again coming to England. At that time, he was chosen king by public acclamation, and ascended to the throne in 1042, and the age of 40. Edward gained a reputation as just and worthy of the kingship, and the people of England supported him without question or doubt.

When Edward ascended to the throne, his virtues, evident during his youth - simplicity, gentleness, humility and charity, but above all his angelic purity-- shone with new brightness and inspired his subjects. Pressed into marriage by the masses, he took a wife, but together they decided to live in virtuous chastity, maintaining their virginity for the Lord. All Edward had, he gave away, caring little for riches or fineries. It is said that on three separate occasions, he caught his servant robbing the treasury, and on each occasion, he let the man go recognizing that he needed the gold more than Edward. As king, he spent time with his people, standing at the palace gates, speaking kindly to the poor beggars and lepers who crowded about him, healing many of their illnesses and maladies with a simple touch. The people rejoiced in having a Saint for their king.

Edward’s reign ushered in twenty four years of peace, which restored the kingdom long devastated by war. The country grew prosperous, ruined churches rose again under his hand, the weak lived securely, and to this day, people still speak of the “laws of good Saint Edward.” Particularly devoted to the holy Apostles Saint Peter and Saint John the Evangelist, Edward made a promise never to refuse any alms asked in the name of the latter. One day when he had no money with him, Edward chose to give up a valuable ring to a beggar. This act inspired the holy legend (taken from Percy Dearmer's 'The Little Lives of the Saints'):

"One day, the old king was attending the dedication of a church in honor of St. John, when a poor man came up to him, and begged an alms "for the love of St. John." St. Edward put his hand to his purse, but neither silver nor gold could he find. He sent for his almoner, but he was lost in the crowd; and still the poor man stood before him and begged. Edward was in great distress, till he remembered that he wore a large and very precious ring. This he drew from his finger; and for the love of St. John he gave it to the beggar, who thanked him gently, and disappeared.

And now you shall hear what happened to the ring. That night, far away in Palestine, two English pilgrims lost their way in the wilderness. The sun had set behind the bare mountains, and the two men were all alone in the desolate place, knowing not which way to turn, nor where to find shelter from robbers and wild beasts. As they were wondering what to do, a band of youths in bright raiment appeared before them; and in their midst was an old man, white and hoary, and wonderful to look upon.

"Dear friends," he said to the pilgrims, "Whence come you? Of what creed and birth are you? Of what kingdom and king? What seek you here?"

"We are Christians, and from England. We have come to expiate our sins, seeking the holy places where Jesus lived and died. Our king is named Edward; and we have lost our way."

"Come after me, and I will conduct you to a good hostelry for the love of King Edward." So he led them to a city, where they found an inn with the table laid for supper; and, after they had eaten, they went to rest.

Next morning the old man came to them, and said: "I am John the Evangelist. For the love of Edward I will not fail you, and you shall arrive safe and sound in England. Then go to Edward, and say you have brought a ring which he gave to me at the dedication of my church, when I besought him in poor array. And tell him that in six months he shall come to me in Paradise."

The pilgrims came back to England without misadventure, and gave the ring back to Edward with St. John's message.

When the king heard that he was soon to die, he gave away all his money to those who were in need, and passed his time in devotion."

Edward died approximately six months later, on January 5, 1066. Numerous miracles occurred at his tomb. In 1102 his body was exhumed and found intact and flexible, with its habits perfectly preserved and appearing to be new. He was canonized in 1161 by Pope Alexander III.

Tomb of Saint Edward the Confessor

Year 2: Day 286 of 365
Prayer Intentions: Simplicity, gentleness, humility and charity
Requested Intentions: Successful work placement, continued health (A); Grace and healing for a family (P); Healing of a father (M); Academic success for son, employment for husband and brother (B); Freedom from anxiety and panic attacks (R); Health and healing in preparation for surgery (C); Healing of a chronic illness (P); Safety of a family during storms (A); Successful home ownership (P); Healing of a marriage (M); Employment for a husband, blessings for a marriage (E); Successful examinations for a daughter, healing of a relationships (V); Blessing for a family (V); Healing of baby girl M and all children suffering (M); Special intentions (R); Business success, peace, health (E); Conversion and deliverance of those who suffer, increase in vocations (M); Financial security and safe housing (M); For a daughter (K); Conversion of a family, deliverance of the souls in Purgatory (S); Successful marriage (A); Health, safety, grace, success of a building project (A); Successful treatment and recovery from cancer (D); Clear speech for a child (C); Conversion of a family (A); Successful employment (S); For the healing of impaired vision (F); For a couple experiencing difficulties (L); Successful employment after finishing college (M); Mother’s health (A); Financial security, freedom from anxiety (S).


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