Our Mother, the Virgin Mary
"It becomes you to be mindful of us, as you stand near him who granted you all graces, for you are the Mother of God and our Queen. Help us for the sake of the King, the Lord God and Master who was born of you. For this reason, you are called full of grace. Remember us, most holy Virgin, and bestow on us gifts from the riches of your graces, Virgin full of graces." St Athanasius, Bishop and Doctor (lived 298-373).
From the Catechism of the Catholic Church, Paragraph 783 we already know that "Jesus Christ is the one whom the Father anointed with the Holy Spirit and established as priest, prophet, and king. The whole People of God participates in these three offices of Christ and bears the responsibilities for mission and service that flow from them."
From the above, we learn that we are priest, prophet and king as the last sentence in CCC 783 indicates, an awareness that comes to us through our Baptism. And St. Athanasius in his beautiful prayer to the Virgin Mary, confides that we are a Royal people, because the Lord God is King, and, Mary is our Queen.
Realizing all that, then why is it that so many Catholics have stopped praying the Rosary? Now especially, with the state this world is in, a very dangerous time, we should and must ask Our Mother, the Virgin Mary for her intercession to her Son, Jesus, and to the Father, to bring back the Peace that once reigned before people began to fool around with instruments of war that can annihilate entire Nations.
The most valid prayer to Mary and her Divine Son, is the Holy Rosary. The "Our Father", "Hail Mary", and "Glory Be," that make up the Rosary, are Gifts from Heaven. The "Our Father" is the prayer of Jesus to His (and our) Father; the "Hail Mary" is Archangel Gabriel's manner of addressing the Holy Virgin as he brought the announcement that a Son would be born to her and that she was to call him, Jesus. And, the "Glory Be" is also a very old prayer from 529 or perhaps older.
The other week, I stumbled and fell getting into a minivan. Did damage to my knee and shin and after a week of meds it still hurts. Asked people in my fraternity to pray for me, and they did. One brought me a wonderful dinner from a local restaurant, and another suggested I pray the Rosary. I pray the Liturgy of the Hours daily, but the Rosary … that hasn’t happed for quite a while. It is time to start that wonderful habit again. Can’t write about it and then do nothing. So let’s get those Rosaries going. Yes, it is a great prayer, a prayer written by the actions of Jesus and Mary.
Let us then set aside 10-15 minutes every day to pray the Rosary, or better yet, a half an hour while meditating on each Decade, using perhaps Scriptural verses or Sacred Images to keep your mind on Mary and her Son.
Peace and Good,
Fred S. Schaeffer, OFS
As an aside, I am using an old Rosary given to me in the late 1980's by Fr. Donatus Goetz, OFM Cap. (1913-2007). He was Director of Novices at St. Lawrence Friary, Milton, MA., when I was there in 1958. In 1988 or 1989 he vacationed in Florida, and he came to look me up, and gave me this rosary. A worthwhile keepsake to this holy man who has done so much for me. May he rest in peace.
Secular Franciscan Order
Ordo Franciscanus Sæcularis
Divine Mercy Fraternity
Vero Beach, FL
Officers as of 1/10/2016
Fred Schaeffer, OFS
Helen Caldarone, OFS
Mary "Jean" McGovern, OFS
Jack Reddy, OFS
Donna Haro, OFS
Joanne Giordano, OFS
Fred Schaeffer, OFS