Saturday, 11 July 2020
The Seventh of October PDF Print E-mail

Feast of the Holy Rosary

The feast day of Our Lady of the Rosary was instituted by Pope St. Pius V in commemoration of the victory of the Battle of Lepanto on October 7, 1571 against the Turks who were threatening Europe . . .

The defeat of this threat to Christendom was due to the special assistance of the Mother of God. The Rosary
was recited throughout the countries of Europe for the success of the Christian forces, outnumbered three to one, and the victory was attributed to Our Lady.

Pope Pius V, a member of the Dominican Order, interrupted a meeting with Cardinals at the Vatican and went to a window and started to pray the rosary. He was deeply concerned about the future of the Church and Christendom that was being decided in those Mediterranean waters. After the Pontiff finished praying the rosary, he returned to the meeting and told the Cardinals that the Catholic fleet had been victorious. He had received a revelation while he was praying the rosary. It was the way Our Lady showed him that she linked that victory to his praying of the rosary.

Understanding this, St. Pius V instituted the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary, which was later extended to the whole Church. To honour this great Dominican pope, all succeeding popes wear the white cassock of the Dominicans.

Above right, the statue of Pope St Pius V, in the basilica of St Mary Major, Rome.
Below the statue, in a glass casket, his body is preserved.

The Rosary has been a great weapon against heresy and crisis in the Church, but it is also the safeguard of the domestic church, the family, its peace and holiness. Today our families live in the shadow of 9/11. Gone are the evils of the Cold War and Communism, warned of at Fatima, only to be replaced by the threat of global Jihad. In an era of globalisation, acts of terror are no longer remote. They may be only a bus, train, underground or flight journey away. Migration of population in a globalised world brings the possibility of terror to our own doorstep.

Let us take up once more in our families the great spiritual weapon of prayer, given to us by Our Lady, namely the Rosary .