Holy Thursday

The Institution of the Eucharist –

Having blogged at Contemplative Haven for almost six years now, and at this site for the past few, it has always been a difficult choice as to what to focus on for Holy Thursday.  So many things happened on this night:  the Last Supper, the washing of the feet, the betrayal of Judas, the Agony in the Garden, the arrest of Jesus, His intense suffering at the hands of the Roman soldiers, Peter’s denial…  During Mass, we also have the chrism oils, and remember that this is the most holy day of the year for our priests.

But this year, as I was reflecting on all these, the Rosary also came to mind – the fact that the Last Supper (when Christ instituted the Holy Eucharist) is the fifth Luminous mystery (mystery of Light), and that Mary is the Mother of the Eucharist.  The Holy Eucharist and the Blessed Virgin Mary are forever entwined, and why wouldn’t they be, since the Holy Eucharist is the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of our Lord, Jesus Christ, and Mary is the Mother of God – and their Sacred and Immaculate Hearts are perfectly united.

We have been given everything we need to help bring Light into the darkness.  As Gerald Francis wrote in “Our Lady and the Eucharist”, at The Real Presence “When Catholics anchor their faith on these two indestructible, inseparable pillars-the Eucharist and our Lady-then the enemy will be defeated and a great calm will descend upon both the Church and the world.”

A Rosary Teaching

Sr. Rebecca Shinas, OP gives a beautiful little teaching on The Rosary (and how to say a scriptural rosary) for all who would like to learn, and also to inspire or re-inspire others.

I have also posted Sr. Rebecca’s video on contemplative prayer today over at Contemplative Haven. All of Sister’s videos can be found at the YouTube Channel of the MSJ Dominicans.

Thank you, Sister Rebecca!  I love your videos, as well as your gift for song-writing and singing. 

Memorial of Our Lady of the Rosary

Blessed Mother, thank you for this gift of the rosary, for all those who have instructed us on how to pray it, taught us so much about it as well as the graces it brings ourselves and others, and for all those who have prayed it for us and with us.  Thank you for this beautiful, contemplative treasure that helps to bring us closer to your Son Jesus throughout all its Mysteries and its mystery.

This beautiful image was found on the site of Liturgies.net, which has many wonderful resources such as the Divine Office, several online rosary links, special prayers to Mary, and much more.

Virtual and Audio Rosaries

Readers have provided me with a couple of excellent links to sites where you can not only learn about the Rosary, but also pray it online.

My friend Carol highly recommends the Virtual Rosary site, and recent commentor Diane let me know about this excellent resource on Father Corapi’s website.

For the past couple of years I have been using the Rosary resources offered by Rosary Army, whose wonderful consecration podcasts I embedded on this site as well.  I downloaded their Rosary recordings onto my iPod, and am able to pray along with them as I ride the bus to and from work.  

The resources available to us now are seemingly endless; you can locate many other wonderful sites through your own search engines. If you spend some time on the sites I’ve linked to here, you will see that they provide information on many topics, along with the Rosary.

Thanks again, Carol and Diane, for sharing your finds, and thank you to all those who are behind the scenes setting up these resources for us. They are much appreciated.

Today is Wednesday. Would you like to pray the Glorious Mysteries with me (it doesn’t matter when you may be reading this, does it? After all, with God, there is no time) – together with Greg and Jennifer of Rosary Army? Let’s.

Fatima – The Miracle of the Sun

In his book, “The Whole Truth about Fatima. Science and the Facts” (pgs. 293-303), Frère Michel de la Sainte Trinité writes that while the crowd was watching the miraculous spectacle of the sun moving around in the sky, Lucy, Jacinta and Francisco were witnessing something else as well. 

The three seers were given a sequence of three pictures, and Lucy describes each one:

  1. The Vision of the Holy Family“After Our Lady had disappeared into the immense distance of the firmament, we beheld St. Joseph with the Child Jesus and Our Lady robed in white with a blue mantle, beside the sun.  St. Joseph and the Child Jesus appeared to bless the world, for they traced the Sign of the Cross with their hands.”
  2. The Vision of Our Lady of Sorrows“When, a little later, this apparition disappeared, I saw Our Lord and Our Lady; it seemed to me that it was Our Lady of Sorrows.  Our Lord appeared to bless the world in the same manner as St. Joseph had done.”
  3. The Vision of Our Lady of Mount Carmel“This apparition also vanished, and I saw Our Lady once more, this time resembling Our Lady of Mount Carmel.”  

Now, it was on this day, October 13, 1917, that the Blessed Virgin first introduced herself as Our Lady of the Rosary.  Frère Michel makes a connection between the three apparitions noted above and the rosary; he writes that the three visions are “three living images of the mysteries of the rosary.”

He sees the vision of the Holy Family and the blessing being given as illustrative of the Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary; the second vision, of Our Lady of Sorrows (and as Lucy later informed a priest, the Lord in this vision was dressed in red, “no doubt to remind us of the purple mantle in which he was dressed in the pretorium, during the scene of the outrages and the crowning with thorns”) he relates to the Sorrowful Mysteries of the Rosary; the third vision, of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, he connects with the Glorious Mysteries of the Rosary, because Mary was holding the scapular in her hand, offering it to the world. 

Isn’t it wonderful that Jesus and Mary leave nothing undone; they leave no loose ends.  As I was reading this interpretation by Frère Michel, of course the Luminous Mysteries of the Rosary introduced by Pope John Paul II came to mind – and what would they correspond to on this special day of October 13, 1917?  Why, the main spectacle, of course – the Miracle of the Sun!

Fatima Miracle of the Sun 1

Fatima Miracle of the Sun 2

Our Lady of the Rosary

Our Lady of the Holy Rosary




Mary has asked us over and over to pray the Rosary every day.


Isn’t it time, now? 


She asks so little of us, and she gives so much.

Rosary Renewal

The video in my post today is one I viewed recently over at Cathy’s site, A Bit of the Blarney, and my heart was filled with joy.  While listening to the young people, I thought the question might have been, “Why do you pray?”  Arriving at the end and discovering that the question was in fact, “Why do you pray the Holy Rosary?”, I played it several more times to listen closely and ponder their responses, and my joy increased even more.

Then this morning I read a lovely post at Immaculate Heart of Mary’s Hermitage Report which presents a recent address given by Pope Benedict XVI on the recitation of the Holy Rosary.  Three lines particularly struck me having so recently watched the young peoples’ video (but I encourage you to read the entire address):

Today, together we confirm that the Holy Rosary is not a pious practice banished to the past, like prayers of other times thought of with nostalgia.  Instead, the Rosary is experiencing a new Springtime.  Without a doubt, this is one of the most eloquent signs of love that the young generation nourish for Jesus and his Mother, Mary.