Fr. Chris' Article - October 6, 2019

Oct 4, 2019

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

As we step into the month of October, it is also worth noting that this is also regarded in the Church as the month of the Most Holy Rosary.  It is chiefly known as such because of the celebration on October 7th of the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary.  This great opportunity to answer one of the questions was dropped into the “Ask Father” box some weeks ago.

“Father Chris,

           I try to pray the rosary often and always pray the sorrowful mysteries.  Does this matter?  I know there is a “schedule” as to when to pray [certain] mysteries [on a given day].  Please explain the necessity of this schedule.”

This is a good nuts-and-bolts question!  The very simple answer is that it’s always good to pray the Rosary, and to meditate over any of the mysteries, but you don’t have to pray certain mysteries on certain days.  It’s simply a suggestion.  Some people even pray all of the Mysteries every day.  The Rosary of Our Lady (also known as the Dominican Rosary after St. Dominic who received the prayer from the Blessed Virgin herself) is simply a scriptural meditation on the life and central events of the lives of Our Lord and Our Lady.  It is separated into four sets of five ‘mysteries’ (3 traditional sets and the Luminous, recently instituted by St. John Paul II).  These are the Joyful, Sorrowful, Luminous, and Glorious mysteries.  The so-called ‘schedule’ of praying the rosary is a guide to help those who wish to pray the rosary daily to consistently ponder all the mysteries throughout the week.  Some of the days also correspond to the days of the week that one or more of the mysteries in question occurred.  So for example, the Resurrection happened on Sunday, so the Glorious Mysteries are usually prayed then.  The first Eucharist was celebrated on Thursday, so it is encouraged to pray the Luminous Mysteries on Thursday.  Saturday is regarded as a day to honor the Blessed Virgin Mary, and the Joyful Mysteries fall then on the weekly rotation since she is a central figure in many of those mysteries.  The Crucifixion is one of the Sorrowful Mysteries, and it occurred on a Friday.  The rest tend to simply rotate through in order to give them their fair shake.  The rotation is as follows:

Monday and Saturday: Joyful (Annunciation, Visitation, Nativity, Presentation, Finding in the Temple)

Tuesday and Friday: Sorrowful (Agony in the Garden, Scourging, Crowning with Thorns, Carrying of the Cross, Crucifixion)

Wednesday and Sunday: Glorious (Resurrection, Ascension, Descent of the Holy Spirit, Assumption of Mary, Crowning of Mary as Queen)

Thursday: Luminous (Baptism in the Jordan, Wedding at Cana, Proclamation of the Kingdom, Transfiguration, Institution of the Eucharist)


I hope this helps and renews an interest in people to take up this ancient and powerful devotion to Our Lord and Our Lady!

In Christ the Son of Mary,

-Fr. Chris


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