October (which is tomorrow: surprise!) is traditionally honored as the Month of the Holy Rosary. The Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary is October 7th. I am going to go and pray my daily rosary in a few moments (and will remember you all in my intentions).
Fr. Patrick Peyton was the famous Irish priest who traveled the world during the last century promoting the family prayer of the rosary. His famous line was: “The family that prays together stays together“. So many problems in family life today could have been avoided if only families prayed more.
I know several families that faithfully pray the rosary together on a daily basis.
The rosary is not an easy prayer – for some (like me), at least. For some of us it takes a lot of practice, and even then, we regularly find ourselves distracted and thinking of other things. “Hail Mary, full of grace….Gosh, I’ve got to clip my fingernails….the Lord is with thee….Oh look! Something shiny!….Blessed art though among women….Look at all that dust on that shelf. Someone should really clean that….and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus….Oh, what mystery is this? I was distracted again!…..”
Others find it quite easy to get used to. Either way, we should all pray it.
Devotion to the Holy Rosary has been promoted by all of the modern popes. Pope Leo XIII (in office 1878-1903) alone wrote 12 encyclical letters on this prayer. We all remember Pope John Paul II’s great devotion to the rosary. Pope Benedict prayed it publicly on various occasions and wrote about how it was part of his daily prayers as well. And Pope Francis memorably prayed it publicly most recently in the Vigil for Peace in Syria and the World.
Taylor Marshall has a good page on how to pray the family rosary. For many families it would be a big adjustment to go from little to no prayer to an entire rosary each day. But he has some great tips on how to form that habit wisely.
This PDF guide is very useful for learning how to recite the rosary on an individual basis.
For those who are getting used to meditation, it can help to have a good meditations booklet to follow. The prayer book that I link to on the right side of this blog has wonderful, short meditations composed by St. Josemaria Escrivá in it. (for those accessing via a mobile device, here is the link)
A plenary indulgence is available each day for group recitation of the rosary. For individual recitation, pray it in a church to get the plenary indulgence, or pray it anywhere for a partial indulgence.
Maybe the Month of the Rosary would be a good time for you to take up the regular prayer of the Holy Rosary, if it is not part of your life already!