I am sure you saw the very good news this week: Alabama has passed a law banning all abortions. This law was promoted by women and signed into law by a woman. Some people reacted angrily and have even described children in the womb as parasites. Just to be very clear: groups such as Planned Parenthood do not deserve our support. When we hear “reproductive rights” that means abortion. Abortion is the murder of innocent children in the womb. If one supports such groups, one supports killing innocent children and causing serious mental and emotional harm, and also physical harm to women. Politicians who support such things also do not deserve our support. Such politicians who support “reproductive rights” support abortion. To support them is to support abortion. If one has supported such causes or politicians, it is time to turn to the way of life. There is even a legislator from Alabama on video saying “kill them now, or kill them later”. This is the epitome of the culture of death that groups such as Planned Parenthood and most of Hollywood espouses.
Cease the support and go to confession before receiving Holy Communion. When we pray the creed at Mass we bow at the words that describe the moment the angel whispered into the Virgin’s ear and she conceived our Lord in her womb. From the moment of conception the human is a new life, and something sacred has happened. Yet many have lost sense of this; many have turned the sexual act into entertainment, into a weapon, into something base. It is something sacred with a higher purpose: the binding of the husband and wife and the potential for the creation of new life. This is why things such as fornication, adultery, homosexual acts, contraception, and abortion are gravely immoral. This is not the love Jesus calls us to live. He calls us to a sacrificial love, to forgive, to pray, and give ourselves for the salvation of souls. Even in the midst of a gravely evil act, if the physical act takes place and conception occurs, God has brought a good about. He is already working to redeem by bringing a new life into being. It is our duty to protect and cherish life in the womb.
It is a clear indicator that this culture of death is in need of a real conversion. So many are looking for peace, for joy, but often turn in the wrong ways. We want a deep spiritual life, but don’t know where to turn, so some begin to turn to things like television shows that dapple in the occult, some turn to false eastern religions. We drown out this hole in our lives with constant travel, entertainment, music, sports…Some simply turn toward pleasure: presuming that the moral code has relaxed and living in a state of sin is somehow ok. Of course we should never turn these directions. We turn towards one person: Jesus Christ, who is the way, the truth, and the life. There is no other way to salvation and eternal life. Yet we need lots of help; there is so much distraction, so much violence, so much noise. Where can we turn, and what can we do?
It is very helpful to turn to the one who heard the angel whisper in her ear: “you will conceive in your womb and bear a son…” (cf. Luke 1:31). The chosen instrument, the chosen mother of our savior. She has a powerful way of drawing us deeper into the life of Christ. She is able to make the life of Christ present in our lives. One of the most powerful weapons we have to transform this culture of death to a civilization of love is the Holy Rosary.
The Holy Rosary is not just a prayer that old women pray—although we do need more old women who pray the Rosary! The Rosary is a prayer that everybody is able to pray, even small children can pray at least parts of the Rosary. In praying the Rosary one is drawn into the events of the life of Christ. It is primarily a way of praying the Gospel. Men should always remember that beside every good man is a good woman, and the rosary is a real weapon in the spiritual battle. One is drawn to gaze upon the face of Christ through the prism of Mary, who knows Christ better than anybody. She has her hands open ready to bestow graces upon us, but do we even ask for these graces? Parents teach your children to pray the Rosary, and pray at least part of it together. It’s a better way to end the day together than slumping on the coach watching television. Holding on to the physical Rosary is a way we can hold the hand of our Mother in Heaven. What help and comfort she will give especially to souls tormented by temptations of any kind.
Saint Louis de Montfort wrote a beautiful book about the Rosary called “The Secret of the Rosary”. It is a very helpful book, and he describes the graces found in the Rosary. I really encourage you to purchase it and read through it. If you have never prayed the Rosary, now in the month of May is a good time to begin. If you have lapsed in your Rosary praying, or have lost your love for the Rosary, allow this to be a time to rekindle your love for this great gift. In praying the Hail Marys and Our Fathers, we weave a crown of Roses for the Blessed Mother. The more love we put into our praying, the better the Roses. We don’t want to give her a crown of wilted and dead flowers.
One of the promises of the Blessed Mother to those who pray the Rosary daily is that “THE ROSARY WILL MAKE VIRTUE AND GOOD WORKS FLOURISH, AND WILL OBTAIN FOR SOULS THE MOST ABUNDANT DIVINE MERCIES; IT WILL SUBSTITUTE IN HEARTS LOVE OF GOD FOR LOVE OF THE WORLD, AND WILL LIFT THEM TO THE DESIRE OF HEAVENLY AND ETERNAL THINGS. HOW MANY SOULS SHALL SANCTIFY THEMSELVES BY THIS MEANS!”
The Rosary has a powerful way of simply drawing us into the Heart of Christ. Those who pray the Rosary everyday will overcome sin and be drawn to Confession. Those who pray the Rosary everyday will leave sinful lifestyles. Those who pray the Rosary will find peace in their homes. Those who pray the Rosary will grow in holiness and virtue.
“Some people are so foolish that they think they can go through life without the help of the Blessed Mother. Love the Madonna and pray the rosary, for her Rosary is the weapon against the evils of the world today. All graces given by God pass through the Blessed Mother.” -St. Padre Pio
“The holy Rosary is a powerful weapon. Use it with confidence and you’ll be amazed at the results.” -St. Josemaria Escriva
“The Rosary is a powerful weapon to put the demons to flight and to keep oneself from sin…If you desire peace in your hearts, in your homes, and in your country, assemble each evening to recite the Rosary. Let not even one day pass without saying it, no matter how burdened you may be with many cares and labors.” – Pope Pius XI
“Just as two friends, frequently in each other’s company, tend to develop similar habits, so too, by building familiar converse with Jesus and the Blessed Virgin, by meditating on the mysteries of the rosary and by living the same life in Holy Communion, we can become, to the the extent of our lowliness, similar to them and can learn from these supreme models a life of humility, overtly, hiddenness, patience, and perfection.” Bl. Bartolo Longo
If you want to get to heaven and help others to get to heaven, pray the Rosary. If you want to have a deep relationship with God, pray the Rosary. If you are afraid to pray, pray the Rosary. If there is something missing in your life, pick up the Rosary. If there isn’t something missing in your life, pick up the Rosary to pray for somebody else who IS suffering. If you don’t want this eternal life with God, to win in the spiritual battle, then don’t pray the Rosary. The Rosary is the weapon of all the saints. At Confirmation, the person is made a soldier of Christ. Every soldier needs a sword, and our sword is the Rosary. Let us use the sword to convert the world. No other devotion has been so highly praised by the saints throughout the ages. Jesus calls us to convert the world, to transform this culture of death to a civilization of love, and one of the most powerful ways we can do that is to bring the world to His Mother. Let us give her many beautiful roses by praying the Rosary everyday. Saint Alphonsus Liguori reminds us that, “Elizabeth knew full well that when Mary comes, she brings Jesus.”