These words were spoken by Our Lady of the Rosary at Fatima on July 13, 1917 to Lucia, Jacinta and Francisco. Mary had been appearing to the three children for six months, from May to October 1917. On each appearance she urged the children to “Continue to pray the Rosary”. She reminded them and us that wars are a consequence of sin. As a remedy, she asked, that we first amend our lives through conversion from sin. We must remember too that graces or favours are not automatically given by God. We must ask for them.
Our Lady showed us that the best way of asking for peace is by praying the Rosary daily. For the love of God, we must repair the damage of sin – our personal sins, the sins of others and of nations – by reparation.
Our Lady revealed two means of reparation. The first is by offering sacrifices to God, especially those demanded by fulfilling the daily duties of our state in life. The second – the first Saturday Devotion – makes reparation especially for the sins committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
Pope John Paul II praised the Rosary when he went to Fatima and spoke eloquently of its spiritual power: “The Lady of the message points out the Rosary which can rightly be defined as ‘Mary’s Prayer’, the prayer in which she feels particularly united with us. She herself prays with us. The Rosary prayer embraces the problems of the Church, of the See of St Peter and the problems of the whole world. In it we also remember sinners that they may be converted and saved, and the souls in purgatory.”
The Holy Rosary is composed of the most beautiful vocal prayers of the Catholic religion. Added to them for prayerful meditation are 20 mysteries or events of Jesus’ life. No wonder Our Lady wants this prayer! It is an easy way to nourish our Catholic faith, make each Catholic family a home and fortress of holiness, safe from the evils of the day. This is what Mary, the Mother of the Church, wants for her children.
The Rosary is Mary’s gift to us. Let us all use it daily.
The feast of Our Lady of the Rosary is celebrated on October 7annually; additionally, the month of October is especially dedicated to praying the Rosary.
– submitted by Ruby Nelson
Archdiocesan Catechetical Office