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 29: Saint Narcissus, "the Holy Priest"

Posted by Jacob

Today, October 29, we celebrate the feast day of Saint Narcissus (99-215), Bishop of Jerusalem, hermit, and miracle worker. Saint Narcissus is said to have lived to the old age of 116 years, remaining true to the Lord, and serving those around him for the length of his days.

Little is known about the life of Saint Narcissus. From his youth, it is apparent that he applied himself with great care to the study of both religious and human disciplines. He entered into the ecclesiastical state, was held in high esteem, and was called “they holy priest” by many. Austere and penitent, he ministered to the people of his congregation with vitality and vigor!

Church history tells us that Narcissus became the bishop of Jerusalem in the late second century, when he was already approximately 80 years old. He was known for his holiness, but there are hints that many people found him harsh and rigid in his efforts to impose Church discipline. After he had led his congregation for some time, three of his many detractors accused him of a serious crime.

One said: "May I die by fire if it is not true!"
The second said: "May I be wasted away by leprosy if it is not true."
The third said: "May I be struck blind if it is not true."

Though the charges against him did not hold up, and few believed that he had committed the offense, Saint Narcissus came to believe that his leadership was a disservice to the community. He used the occasion to retire from his role as bishop and live in solitude as a desert hermit. His disappearance from the city of Jerusalem was so sudden and convincing that many people assumed he had died.

In his absence, several successors were appointed, each serving the city to the best of their abilities. Eventually, however, his three accusers each succumbed to the deaths they pledged in falsehood: burning, leprosy, and blindness. Hearing this, the people called for the return of “the holy priest” and after some time, he returned- older, weathered, stronger, and more zealous than previously. Saint Narcissus was persuaded to resume his duties, and despite his advanced age, served the city of Jerusalem for many years. As his age began to slow him down, he prayed in earnest for a bishop to assist him, and God sent Saint Alexander of Cappadocia. Together, the two oversaw the diocese until the death of the holy man at age 116.

Saint Narcissus is remembered for a miracle in which he turned ordinary water into oil for the Church lamps. As legend tells us, one Holy Saturday the faithful were distressed, because no oil could be found for the church lamps to be used in the Paschal vigil. Saint Narcissus bade them draw water from a neighboring well and after he blessed it, told them to put it in the lamps. It was changed into oil, and long afterwards some of this oil was still preserved at Jerusalem in memory of the miracle.

Today, in honor of Saint Narcissus, we pray for vocations, for reform in the clergy, and for zealous shepherds of the Lord in the form of priests and religious.

O God, Father of all Mercies, Provider of a bountiful Harvest, send Your Graces upon those You have called to gather the fruits of Your labor; preserve and strengthen them in their lifelong service of you.

Open the hearts of Your children that they may discern Your Holy Will; inspire in them a love and desire to surrender themselves to serving others in the name of Your son, Jesus Christ.

Teach all Your faithful to follow their respective paths in life guided by Your Divine Word and Truth. Through the intercession of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary, all the Angels, and Saints, humbly hear our prayers and grant Your Church's needs, through Christ, our Lord. Amen.

Year 2: Day 302 of 365
Prayer Intentions: Increase in vocations; Reform and renewal of the clergy.
Requested Intentions: Freedom to immigrate (D); End to debt (N);
Requested Intentions: Restoration of a marriage (A); Peace and tolerance in a family, support for those with Parkinson’s Disease (M); For the restoration of a daughter’s marriage, end to debt (S); Employment and continued strength (K); Successful examinations for a son (J); Employment and blessings of a child (S); Employment and financial security (F); 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).


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