Pray the Rosary: Easier than bathing in the Jordan

Letter from the District Superior, Rev. Robert Brucciani, May 2017

My Dear Brethren,

On 13 May, we commemorate the centenary of he first apparition of the Blessed Virgin Mary to three shepherd children, Lucia, Francisco and Jacinta, near Fatima in Portugal. There were six apparitions over six months and, in each of the apparitions, the Blessed Virgin Mary urged the children to pray the Rosary.

Since the devotion of the Holy Rosary was revealed to St. Dominic in its current form in 1214, it has been the most powerful and principal Marian devotion in the Church. To this devotion is attributed great apostolic, military and political victories. It is the bedrock of every holy Catholic's prayer life, it is Our Lady's psalter and a window through which we may contemplate the chief mysteries of our faith.

Unfortunately, however, many of us pray it so badly or infrequently. The Rosary, to those who do not recite it daily, might seem a daunting task, especially as a family. It is difficult to find the time, it is difficult to concentrate, it is so repetitive that the consolation of the senses are most often absent, it is so hard to keep the children in order. Sometimes there is the embarrassment of proposing the idea to one’s spouse, etc.

But do not be put off by these obstacles for Our Lady will provide the help necessary if only you would ask her. Remember that it is not necessary to concentrate on the individual words of each Hail Mary. Using a Rosary, a holy image or statue while enunciating the words is the perfect way to occupy the hands, the eyes, the ears and the tongue so that your mind is free to meditate upon the individual mysteries of Our Lord's life.

If you take a step back and consider that it is Our Lady's express desire that we pray the Rosary and that our own salvation and that of our loved ones is in large measure determined by our fidelity to this prayer, it is not much to ask.

Consider Naaman, the general of the army of the king of Syria:

So Naaman came with his horses and chariots, and stood at the door of the house of Eliseus: and Eliseus sent a messenger to him, saying: Go, and wash seven times in the Jordan, and thy flesh shall recover health, and thee shalt be clean. Naaman was angry and went away, saying: I thought he would have come out to me, and standing would have invoked the name of the Lord his God, and touched with his hand the place of the leprosy, and healed me. Are not the Abana, and the Pharphar, rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel, that I may wash in them, and be made clean? So as he turned, and was going away with indignation, His servants came to him, and said to him: Father, if the prophet had bid thee do some great thing, surely thou shouldst have done it: how much rather what he now hath said to thee: Wash, and thou shalt he clean? Then he went down, and washed in the Jordan seven times: according to the word of the man of God, and his flesh was restored, like the flesh of a little child, and he was made clean. (2 Kings 5:9-14)

Are not there more arduous and dramatic ways of practicing our religion? Of course there are, but God's desire is that we pray the simple, humble, loving prayer of the Rosary ... and our soul will be made like that of a child.

St. Louis Marie de Montfort has this to say about the Rosary:

When the Hail Mary is well said, that is, with attention, devotion and humility, it is, according to the saints, the enemy of Satan, putting him to flight; it is the hammer that crushes him, a source of holiness for souls, a joy to the angels and a sweet melody for the devout. It is the Canticle of the New Testament, a delight for Mary and glory for the most Blessed Trinity.

The Hail Mary is dew falling from heaven to make the soul fruitful. It is a pure kiss of love we give to Mary. It is a crimson rose, a precious pearl that we offer to her. It is a cup of ambrosia, a divine nectar that we offer her.

I earnestly beg of you… say the  Rosary too, and if time permits, all its fifteen decades, every day. Then when death draws near, you will bless the day and hour when you took to heart what I told you, for having sown the blessings of Jesus and Mary, you will reap the eternal blessings in heaven.

I wish you every grace this Eastertide. As a work of charity and solidarity in prayer, please offer your Rosaries for the intentions of the Rosary crusade.

In Jesu et Maria,

Rev. Robert Brucciani

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