Our Lady of the Rosary
October 7, 2014
Today is the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary! St. Joseph’s Women’s Guild is inviting everyone to come to St. Joseph, Richardson (600 S. Jupiter Rd., Richardson, TX 75081), to pray the “Living Rosary” from 7pm to 8pm with a reception afterwards in the Dining Hall.
I read about the Battle of Lepanto again this weekend. During the 1560s, Muslims were torturing and killing thousands of Christians who refused to renounce their faith and destroying anything Catholic. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? During the Muslim occupation of a Greek island, two young boys, ten and twelve, were martyred. The youngest one, almost cut to pieces, was told to hold up one finger if he wanted to deny Christ and live. He clenched his fists so tightly that they couldn’t be opened even after his death.
Pope St. Pius V was trying to organize an alliance against the increasing danger, but most leaders were indifferent or made excuses. He asked for more prayers from pious Catholics, especially monks and nuns. And he prayed so much himself that he was known as the “Pope of the Rosary.” Finally, in March of 1571, he had an agreement between governments that were willing to defend the faith, but he still needed to name a commander. He prayed for guidance and went in to celebrate the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. When he reached the Gospel of St. John, he read, “There was a man from God whose name was John.” He knew then that Don Juan of Austria would lead the Christian forces into battle. (The Last Crusader, by Louis de Wohl, is a pretty good novel about Don Juan of Austria.)
In the middle of September, the Christian fleet set sail. All of the 81,000 soldiers and sailors had been to confession and received Holy Communion. They also each carried a rosary. One of the three admirals was Andrea Doria, who carried with him into battle a small copy of Mexico’s Our Lady of Guadalupe. This image is now enshrined in a church in Italy. I read that when St. Juan Diego asked Our Lady her name, she answered in Aztec "Te Quatlasupe." To the Bishop, this sounded just like the name of the Madonna from Spain with the Islamic name, "Guadalupe." So the bishop called her "Our Lady of Guadalupe." She stands on top of a crescent, the symbol of an evil Aztec serpent god – also the symbol for Islam. Interesting…
Pope St. Pius V knew that the Christian forces were greatly outnumbered, and he called on all of Europe to pray the Rosary for victory. On October 7, 1571, Catholic forces powered by the Holy Rosary defeated the Muslims and prevented the invasion of Europe. At the hour of victory, Pope St. Pius V, several hundred miles away from the battle, is said to have gotten up from a meeting, gone to a window, and said, “ The Christian fleet is victorious!”
Our Lady of the Rosary, pray for us!
Prayer, Civic Action & Outreach Director
More on the Battle of Lepanto: "The Battle of Leponto: Our Lady of the Holy Rosary" >> http://bit.ly/1vpn5Ms
Tags: Our Lady of the Rosary, Our Lady of Guadalupe, feast day