The Rosary and other religious symbols worn as jewelry or tattoos are getting a lot of attention these days. In a recent blog post in the Washington Post, the author opined that this is part of a growing movement of separating the spiritual from the religious. Religious jewelry “caters to people who are expressing their personal spirituality rather than an affiliation with organized religion.”
Putting my jewelry to work
I am someone who owns a rosary bracelet, that though it can easily be mistaken for a silver beaded bracelet, is for me, my traveling rosary, always within easy reach if the opportunity to steal a few minutes of prayer presents itself.
For a recent talk that I was giving, I re-read Pope John Paul II’s Apostolic Letter, The Most Holy Rosary. I had forgotten how beautiful it is. I recommend you celebrate today’s feast of the rosary by reading it! The Pope speaks about how in the rosary we learn Christ through Mary. We don’t just learn about Christ, we learn Christ. “The Rosary is also a path of proclamation and increasing knowledge, in which the mystery of Christ is presented again and again at different levels of the Christian experience. Its form is that of a prayerful and contemplative presentation, capable of forming Christians according to the heart of Christ. When the recitation of the Rosary combines all the elements needed for an effective meditation, especially in its communal celebration in parishes and shrines, it can present a significant catechetical opportunity …. In this way too Our Lady of the Rosary continues her work of proclaiming Christ.
This Saturday, October 10 at 2:30 p.m., the archdiocese hosts its annual pilgrimage to the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. We make a pilgrimage to “Mary’s House” to ask her intercession on our behalf for a particular intention that is on the heart and in the mind of the church at this time.
Mother of the Church and Mother of Families
As part of our commitment to the New Evangelization, we will ask Mary, Mother of the Church to pray with us that our work will bear fruit in our parishes. As Mother of Families, we ask her to join with us in our pray for the people we love most who are inactive in the practice of their faith or alienated from the church. We will ask Mary, to intercede with her son, Jesus, to give us courage to speak about our faith and to be bold in inviting family, friends, co-workers and neighbors to take a second look at the church– to come home– and join their church family.
The right first step
Do you have someone in mind whom you would love to invite to join you at church or with whom you would like to have a serious conversation about their faith or their participation in the life of the church? Are you wondering how to begin a conversation? Do you need a little more courage to be bold? Why not make the commitment to join us for the rosary and for Mass? Make this your first step –to pray on behalf of the person– and to entrust the person to Mary’s care.
A tool for the Evangelizer
Pope John Paul II writes “The history of the Rosary shows how this prayer was used in particular by the Dominicans at a difficult time for the Church due to the spread of heresy. Today we are facing new challenges. Why should we not once more have recourse to the Rosary, with the same faith as those who have gone before us? The Rosary retains all its power and continues to be a valuable pastoral resource for every good evangelizer.”