Category: Marian Articles

When Roses Make The Devil Flee: A Fragrant Dominican Tradition.  

When Roses Make The Devil Flee: A Fragrant Dominican Tradition.  

Today is Rosary Sunday, which includes the blessing and distribution of what might seem a rather random sacramental.

With the Rosary, the Christian people sit at the school of Mary and are led to contemplate the beauty of the face of Christ and to experience the depths of his love John Paul II, Apostolic Letter Rosarium Virginis Mariae.


Why bless roses on Rosary Sunday

For many centuries, devotion to the Rosary has been entrusted by the Church in a special way to the Dominican Order. Even today, Dominican parishes observe Rosary Sunday with a public recitation of the Holy Rosary, the blessing of rosaries, and the blessing and distribution of roses (or rose petals). Now rose petals might seem a bit random for a sacramental, but there is a real genius to connecting this particular flower and the powerful prayer of Our Lady.


A rose by any other name

The name of the Rosary stems from the Latin word rosarium, meaning a garland or bouquet of roses. As early as the 4th century, Gregory of Naziansus speaks of “weaving a chaplet for the Virgin Mary.” Chaplet here means the same thing as crown or wreath. Further, according to 13th-century German and Spanish legends, a monk saw the “aves” he offered to Mary turn into a chain of roses. These Hail-Marys-seen-as-roses would be rendered into English as the Rosary.

What a lovely image! Pope Leo XIII says, “For as often as we greet Mary with the angelic salutation, ‘full of grace,’ we present to the Blessed Virgin, in the repetition of our words of praise, roses which emit the most delightful perfume.” Each prayer offered through Mary takes on the sense of a rose being lovingly arranged.


Evoking the Passion.

Lest our concept of the Rosary be reduced to the romantic sentimentality of presenting flowers, we ought to recall that roses have a darker side, too. The thorns of their stems should remind us of the crown our Savior wore during his passion.

Red petals evoke the drops of blood he shed. Their slender stalks? They recall the reed he held as he was cruelly mocked and the rods which beat him. Their leaves? The clothes stripped from his tortured body.

It is no accident that Christians would take the rose, which the Greeks associated with Aphrodite, the goddess of love, and apply it to Mary. Mary leads us deeper into the mystery of the love of Christ, all the while reminding us that all true love requires sacrifice. For Christians, the rose is a catechism of the charity of Christ.


Sign of grace

Finally, roses are signs of the graces Divine Providence accords Mary to offer. Roses tumbled from the tilma of Juan Diego


A rose graced the Virgin’s brow at Knock. At La Salette roses crowned her head, a wreath of roses adorned her cloak, and a third garland surrounded her slippers. At Lourdes, St. Bernadette saw upon each of her feet a blossoming rose.

The repeated appearance of the rose indicates its privileged place in connection with devotion to Our Lady. Mary herself has chosen them as one of her signs.


Among the many things the rose represents, we should interpret them as manifestations of, says Pope Pius XII, “the fullness of her perfections and the delicacy of her goodness.”


Squander them not

Phrases like “gather ye rosebuds” and “stop to smell the roses” show us that the rose is synonymous with beauty and good fortune, but can be passed by or ignored.

Take advantage this October, the month of the Holy Rosary, to seize the bouquets of grace Our Lady wants to offer. Pick up the rosary, and lay your prayers at her feet.


Blessing of Roses

For the Feast of Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary (October 7).


From the Dominican Breviary.

O God, Creator and Preserver of the human race, who grant us the Holy Spirit with His seven-fold gifts, and who generously bestow eternal salvation:

Sanctify, we pray, and bless these roses. We present them before You today, and seek Your blessing upon them, to express our thanks to You, and our devotion towards the blessed Ever-Virgin Mary and her Rosary.


You created these roses as a source of pleasant fragrance and gave them to us to lift our spirits. Then through the power of the holy Cross pour out upon them Your heavenly + blessing.


Signed by the holy + Cross may they receive so powerful a blessing that in the houses and hospitals where they are taken, the sick may be healed. From the places where they are kept, may the powers of evil flee in fear and terror, nor may they presume again to disturb Your servants.


We ask this through Christ our Lord.
Amen.


– Originally Written By  Fr. Patrick Briscoe.

As October Devotion Begins, This Story Might Inspire Someone.

As October Devotion Begins, This Story Might Inspire Someone.

As October devotion begins today, this story might inspire someone:

The girl! 

As I picked up her rosary beads to pray, tears came to my eyes. The tiny brownish beads felt strange and hard on my fingers. I had not prayed the rosary in years. I wasn’t even sure I could still remember the prayers correctly. I was not the praying type. But I was now determined to try. The little girl had been very clear when she gave me that one last instruction. It seemed God had given her that last moment of lucidity. I would never be able to forgive myself if I didn’t do as she asked…

***

I had begun the day full of confidence, without an inkling I would end up here. Being owner and CEO of chains of companies meant you constantly had to be at meetings and seminars on end. This was my life. I lived and loved it. Herbie, my wife had waved at me from the patio as Suleiman my driver drove me out of the compound that early dawn. Herbie was still donned in her nightie and she looked like she would be going right back to bed. Unlike Herbie, I was an early bird. I went to bed early and rose early. Today, I had a 7:00am flight to Abuja (Nigeria), and I left as early as 5:00am. I never joked with time.
We had just left the gate before Suleiman (the driver) started acting up, or so I thought. He drew the black luxurious SUV to the side of the street, put the car on park, and quickly went out of the vehicle. Before I could ask what the matter was, he was retching noisily into the gutter nearby. I waited about ten seconds before coming out of the car. 

“Are you okay?” I asked, as soon as I was standing by Suleiman’s side. 

“Yes sir!” He answered. But he didn’t seem fine to me. He was sweating profusely in that morning chill. He bent double again and continued emptying whatever he had inside his stomach into the gutter. 

“What did you eat?” I asked again, when it seemed he was done. 

“Oka, I nor know fah. Wallahi! But I nor peel pine Oka. Kai mana!” (Boss, I don’t know at all, but I don’t feel too good). 

“Are you sure?”

“Yaawah!”

“Okay, take me back to the compound and call me another driver.” I glanced at my gold-plated wrist watch. I had already lost close to twenty minutes. 

Suleiman looked at me with a pained expression on his face. “Oka, nor vex fah! Na only me dey today. Madam say na just to drive go airfort today.” (“Boss, don’t be offended, I’m the only driver available”). 

I rubbed my gradually balding head and straightened out the collars of my navy blue Tuxedo. I had two options – call a cab, or drive myself. I looked at my wrist watch again – forty minutes lost! 

“Okay, tell Madam I’ll leave the car at the airport garage. She can send someone to get it later.”

Yes sir.” Suleiman seemed relieved. He was wiping his mouth and trying to look smart in his chauffeur uniform. I waited for some more seconds before getting into the car and driving off in a rush… 

***

I knocked her over before I saw her. How was I to know there was a child in the middle of the road that early morning? I had been so occupied with the things I had to do as soon as I got to Abuja that I wasn’t really concentrating on the driving… 

***

She couldn’t have been more than twelve. The pain that tugged at my heart was too much to bear. She hadn’t given me any number to call. She hadn’t been able to talk much after the accident. I had driven like a maniac to a private hospital, with the child at the back seat, but it had been too late. 

Just before they had taken her into the ICU, she had pressed her rosary beads into my hands and looked straight into my eyes, “I forgive you,” she said, in a voice barely audible enough to hear. “Pray the rosary for me. I forgive you…”

Minutes later, she was dead. That was when I called Herbie… 

***

I was later to accept the fact that no one seemed to know the child. We went to media houses and put up announcements, hoping anyone would call with information about the girl. None came. I was completely dazed. It was the strangest day of my life. For the first time in my life, I, Chief Mike Anuforo had a situation I couldn’t handle. Not in my sixty years of existence had I witnessed anything like it. I had completely forgotten about the rosary till later that night when I switched the Cable TV to Channels Television. The plane I was to take to Abuja had crashed on landing, killing everyone on board. As Herbie prayed the rosary with me, amidst many tears, I realised that an angel had given her life for mine… 

THE END! 

© Oselumhense Anetor, 2017.

Please share!

As October Devotion Begins, This Story Might Inspire Someone.

As October Devotion Begins, This Story Might Inspire Someone.

As October devotion begins today, this story might inspire someone:

The girl! 

As I picked up her rosary beads to pray, tears came to my eyes. The tiny brownish beads felt strange and hard on my fingers. I had not prayed the rosary in years. I wasn’t even sure I could still remember the prayers correctly. I was not the praying type. But I was now determined to try. The little girl had been very clear when she gave me that one last instruction. It seemed God had given her that last moment of lucidity. I would never be able to forgive myself if I didn’t do as she asked…

***

I had begun the day full of confidence, without an inkling I would end up here. Being owner and CEO of chains of companies meant you constantly had to be at meetings and seminars on end. This was my life. I lived and loved it. Herbie, my wife had waved at me from the patio as Suleiman my driver drove me out of the compound that early dawn. Herbie was still donned in her nightie and she looked like she would be going right back to bed. Unlike Herbie, I was an early bird. I went to bed early and rose early. Today, I had a 7:00am flight to Abuja (Nigeria), and I left as early as 5:00am. I never joked with time.
We had just left the gate before Suleiman (the driver) started acting up, or so I thought. He drew the black luxurious SUV to the side of the street, put the car on park, and quickly went out of the vehicle. Before I could ask what the matter was, he was retching noisily into the gutter nearby. I waited about ten seconds before coming out of the car. 

“Are you okay?” I asked, as soon as I was standing by Suleiman’s side. 

“Yes sir!” He answered. But he didn’t seem fine to me. He was sweating profusely in that morning chill. He bent double again and continued emptying whatever he had inside his stomach into the gutter. 

“What did you eat?” I asked again, when it seemed he was done. 

“Oka, I nor know fah. Wallahi! But I nor peel pine Oka. Kai mana!” (Boss, I don’t know at all, but I don’t feel too good). 

“Are you sure?”

“Yaawah!”

“Okay, take me back to the compound and call me another driver.” I glanced at my gold-plated wrist watch. I had already lost close to twenty minutes. 

Suleiman looked at me with a pained expression on his face. “Oka, nor vex fah! Na only me dey today. Madam say na just to drive go airfort today.” (“Boss, don’t be offended, I’m the only driver available”). 

I rubbed my gradually balding head and straightened out the collars of my navy blue Tuxedo. I had two options – call a cab, or drive myself. I looked at my wrist watch again – forty minutes lost! 

“Okay, tell Madam I’ll leave the car at the airport garage. She can send someone to get it later.”

Yes sir.” Suleiman seemed relieved. He was wiping his mouth and trying to look smart in his chauffeur uniform. I waited for some more seconds before getting into the car and driving off in a rush… 

***

I knocked her over before I saw her. How was I to know there was a child in the middle of the road that early morning? I had been so occupied with the things I had to do as soon as I got to Abuja that I wasn’t really concentrating on the driving… 

***

She couldn’t have been more than twelve. The pain that tugged at my heart was too much to bear. She hadn’t given me any number to call. She hadn’t been able to talk much after the accident. I had driven like a maniac to a private hospital, with the child at the back seat, but it had been too late. 

Just before they had taken her into the ICU, she had pressed her rosary beads into my hands and looked straight into my eyes, “I forgive you,” she said, in a voice barely audible enough to hear. “Pray the rosary for me. I forgive you…”

Minutes later, she was dead. That was when I called Herbie… 

***

I was later to accept the fact that no one seemed to know the child. We went to media houses and put up announcements, hoping anyone would call with information about the girl. None came. I was completely dazed. It was the strangest day of my life. For the first time in my life, I, Chief Mike Anuforo had a situation I couldn’t handle. Not in my sixty years of existence had I witnessed anything like it. I had completely forgotten about the rosary till later that night when I switched the Cable TV to Channels Television. The plane I was to take to Abuja had crashed on landing, killing everyone on board. As Herbie prayed the rosary with me, amidst many tears, I realised that an angel had given her life for mine… 

THE END! 

© Oselumhense Anetor, 2017.

Please share!

October With Mary

October With Mary


​OCTOBER WITH MARY

According to Our Lady’s Blue Book, page 51, the underlisted are suggested practices to make the month of October more beneficial to yourself and pleasing to Our Lady:

1. Attend Holy Mass and receive Holy Coomunion daily, as often as possible.

2. Try to overcome some bad habits and acquire the opposite virtue.

3. Ask Our Lord to give you the grace to imitate the virtues of His Mother.

4. Promote devotion to our Blessed Mother Mary.

5. Recite the Holy Rosary daily.
Here are some tips to help you pray the rosary daily.

1– Pray the rosary early morning before you go to work. That way, you will not get fixed and fail to get time.

2– Most Churches will be having rosary prayers daily either after benediction and Holy Mass or before. Get in touch with your parish and find out the time of the October devotion. Rosary is more efficacious when prayed in a group.

3– Make mandatory recitation with your family.

Mother Mary encourages us to pray the rosary in our families for peace.

4– Make time for this important devotion. Cut down on activities that give no benefit to your soul.

5Be creative: You can recite a rosary while in a bus, in a traffic, on the way to or from work, you can download an audio rosary app and use headphones to pray when you are free at work or travelling, 

6– Learn the prayers and mysteries by heart, that way you can always recite it whenever you get  free time.

7– Prepare your daily to do list alloting time to each, to enable you know the exact time you can pray the rosary.

8– Pray the rosary slowly and with meditation, do not rush the prayer.

9– Encourage and remind all your friends using all means possible, eg social media about October devotion.

10– Learn to love the rosary, you will enjoy the benefits both in this life and the next.
Below are some of the reasons we should pray the Holy Rosary daily:

   “Among all the devotions approved by the Church none has been so favored by so many miracles as the devotion of the Most Holy Rosary” (Pope Pius IX). 

   “Say the Rosary every day to obtain peace for the world” (Our Lady of Fátima). 

•    “There is no surer means of calling down God’s blessings upon the family . . . than the daily recitation of the Rosary” (Pope Pius XII). 

•    “We do not hesitate to affirm again publicly that we put great confidence in the Holy Rosary for the healing of evils of our times” (Pope Pius XII). 

•    “No one can live continually in sin and continue to say the Rosary: either they will give up sin or they will give up the Rosary” (Bishop Hugh Doyle). 

•    “The Rosary is a magnificent and universal prayer for the needs of the Church, the nations and the entire world” (Pope John XXIII). 

•    “The Rosary is the compendium of the entire Gospel” (Pope Paul VI quoting Pope Pius XII). 

•    “Meditation on the mysteries of the Rosary . . . can be an excellent preparation for the celebration of those same mysteries in the liturgical actions [i.e. the  Mass] and can also become a continuing echo thereof” (Pope Paul VI). 

•    “My impression is that the Rosary is of the greatest value not only according to the words of Our Lady at Fátima, but according to the effects of the Rosary one sees throughout history. My impression is that Our Lady wanted to give ordinary people, who might not know how to pray, this simple method of getting closer to God” (Sister Lucia, one of the seers of Fátima). 

•    “How beautiful is the family that recites the Rosary every evening” (Pope John Paul II). 

•    Pope John Paul II has called the Rosary his “favorite prayer,” after the Mass and the Liturgy of the Hours. 

•    St. Louis de Montfort warns us against both the ignorant and scholars who regard the Rosary as something of little importance...”the Rosary is a priceless treasure inspired by God.” 

•      St. Padre Pio called the rosary “My Weapon”, and usually had a rosary in his hand at all times.

•      St. Bartolo Longo was a satanist who became a saint after rejecting the devil, by promoting the Holy Rosary. 

•      St. John Vianney, patron of priests, was seldom seen without a rosary in hand. 

•      St. Francis de Sales said the greatest method of praying is – Pray the Rosary. 

•      Europe was saved from being taken over by the Muslim Turks at the Battle of Lepanto, after the Pope told his outnumbered forces to pray the Holy Rosary  before the battle in the year 7 October 1571.
Rosary Promises (Pieta, page 37).

1. Whoever shall faithfully serve me by the recitation of the Rosary, shall receive signal graces. 

2. I promise my special protection and the greatest graces to all those who shall recite the Rosary. 

3. The Rosary shall be a powerful armor against hell, it will destroy vice, decrease sin, and defeat heresies. 

4. It will cause virtue and good works to flourish; it will obtain for souls the abundant mercy of God; it will withdraw the hearts of people from the love of the world and its vanities, and will lift them to the desire of eternal things. Oh, that souls would sanctify themselves by this means. 

5. The soul which recommends itself to me by the recitation of the Rosary, shall not perish. 

6. Whoever shall recite the Rosary devoutly, applying himself to the consideration of its Sacred Mysteries shall never be conquered by misfortune. God will not chastise him in His justice, he shall not perish by an unprovided death; if he be just, he shall remain in the grace of God, and become worthy of eternal life. 

7. Whoever shall have a true devotion for the Rosary shall not die without the Sacraments of the Church. 

8. Those who are faithful to recite the Rosary shall have during their life and at their death the light of God and the plenitude of His graces; at the moment of death they shall participate in the merits of the Saints in Paradise. 

9. I shall deliver from purgatory those who have been devoted to the Rosary. 

10. The faithful children of the Rosary shall merit a high degree of glory in Heaven. 

11. You shall obtain all you ask of me by the recitation of the Rosary. 

12. All those who propagate the Holy Rosary shall be aided by me in their necessities. 

13. I have obtained from my Divine Son that all the advocates of the Rosary shall have for intercessors the entire celestial court during their life and at the hour of death. 

14. All who recite the Rosary are my children, and brothers and sisters of my only Son, Jesus Christ. 

15. Devotion of my Rosary is a great sign of predestination.

May God through Our Lady grant us the grace to give our best in this year’s October devotion for God’s glory, honour to Our Lady and for our spiritual upliftment and that of others around us, through Christ our Lord. Amen.

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