Why the Rosary?

People who meet me notice that I always have a rosary hanging from the belt of my habit. It’s a convenient place, easily accessible while waiting at the check-out line at the grocery store. I pray for the exasperated parents tired of chasing their four-year old daughter around the store (Lord, give them patience – Ave Maria). My right hand slips down and takes one of the wooden beads between its fingers, caressing the wood, and it raises my mind back to the Lord. To Jesus, through Mary. Today, the Church honors Mary under the title, Our Lady of the Rosary. This memorial invites us to meditate upon the mysteries of Christ, following the example of Mary who was so singularly associated with the incarnation, passion and glorious resurrection of the Son of God.

One of my favorite scripture passages gives us insight as to Mary’s role in our life of prayer. In the Gospel of John, chapter 2, Mary intercedes to Jesus on behalf of the newlyweds of Cana, and it is through her intercession His first recorded miracle in John takes place. It is Jesus who miraculously turns water into wine, but at whose request? Yes, Jesus is our Savior and Authority, but He honors Mary by listening to her intercession for us still. When Christians pray to Mary, it is a way of honoring her as Mother of God, and in doing so, she directs us always to her Son. This is evident at the wedding feast of Cana – she intercedes to Jesus, and He acts according to her wishes in abundance. And what does she say to the servants? Mary tells them, “Do whatever he tells you.” (John 2:5) This is the relationship Christians have with Mary. Jesus is the Son of God, come into the world through a woman – Mary – who, intercedes to Jesus on behalf of our daily, human needs. When we are called to serve the Lord, it is Mary who is pointing us always – ALWAYS – to her Son, our Lord. I ask you, why wouldn’t we wish to honor the Mother of God?

Hail Mary, Full of Grace, the Lord is with you.

Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus.

Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners,

now and at the hour of your death. Amen

Pray for us O Holy Mother of God,

that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ!


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