During this month of October all Catholics are encouraged to grow in devotion to the Holy Rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary! For a time after the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965) the practice of praying the Holy Rosary waned among many Catholics around the world. Such a falling away from praying the Holy Rosary was not part of the Second Vatican Council. Rather, it was part of a misinterpretation and misrepresentation of true devotion to the Virgin Mary and the real Second Vatican Council.
Thankfully, there has been a resurgence of devotion to the favored practice of frequently praying the Holy Rosary. St. John Paul II helped devotion to the Holy Rosary immensely throughout his long pontificate (1978-2005), especially through his Apostolic Letter, Rosarium Virginis Mariae (The Holy Rosary of the Virgin Mary, released in October, 2002) and by declaring a year of the Holy Rosary (from October, 2002 – October, 2003).
In his Apostolic Letter on The Holy Rosary of the Virgin Mary, St. John Paul II listed a new set of five mysteries called the Luminous Mysteries. This has been a great blessing for all the faithful! I encourage you to pray the Holy Rosary every day! I encourage you to pray the Holy Rosary with your spouse and your family! I encourage you to come to the Holy Mass early and pray the Holy Rosary with other parishioners! I encourage you to turn to our Blessed Mother Mary each day and throughout the day to find comfort, answers, courage and innumerable graces for every need. This can happen through the Holy Rosary and devotion to the Virgin Mary!
Here are the words of St. John Paul II to encourage all of us even more: “The Rosary, though clearly Marian in character, is at heart a Christocentric prayer. In the sobriety of its elements, it has all the depth of the Gospel message in its entirety, of which it can be said to be a compendium. It is an echo of the prayer of Mary, her perennial Magnificat for the work of the redemptive Incarnation which began in her virginal womb. With the Rosary, the Christian people sits at the school of Mary and is led to contemplate the beauty on the face of Christ and to experience the depths of His love. Through the Rosary the faithful receive abundant grace, as though from the very hands of the Mother of the Redeemer.” (The Holy Rosary of the Virgin Mary, 1)
Here are a few more quotes from the saints on the Holy Rosary:
“The faults of children are not always imputed to the parents, especially when they have instructed them and given good example. Our Lord, in His wondrous Providence, allows children to break the hearts of devout fathers and mothers. Thus the decisions your children have made don't make you a failure as a parent in God's eyes. You are entitled to feel sorrow, but not necessarily guilt. Do not cease praying for your children; God's grace can touch a hardened heart. Commend your children to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. When parents pray the Rosary, at the end of each decade they should hold the Rosary aloft and say to her, "With these beads bind my children to your Immaculate Heart", she will attend to their souls.” -- St. Louise de Marillac
“'If you say the Rosary faithfully until death, I do assure you that, in spite of the gravity of your sins "you shall receive a never-fading crown of glory." Even if you are on the brink of damnation, even if you have one foot in hell, even if you have sold your soul to the devil as sorcerers do who practice black magic, and even if you are a heretic as obstinate as a devil, sooner or later you will be converted and will amend your life and save your soul, if - and mark well what I say - if you say the Rosary devoutly every day until death for the purpose of knowing the truth and obtaining contrition and pardon for your sins.'” --St. Louis Marie de Montfort
Through the intercession of Mary, Queen of the Holy Rosary, St. Joseph, St. Paul and St. Michael, may we be led to a deeper love our Lord Jesus, a deeper gratitude for His Blessing and Goodness, and deeper resolve to strive for eternal glory through a true love for God, neighbor and self!