October 25, 2019frjohnma

“The traditional aid used for the recitation of the Rosary is the set of beads. At the most superficial level, the beads often become a simple counting mechanism to mark the succession of Hail Marys. Yet they can also take on a symbolism which can give added depth to contemplation.

Here the first thing to note is the way the beads converge upon the Crucifix, which both opens and closes the unfolding sequence of prayer. The life and prayer of believers is centred upon Christ. Everything begins from him, everything leads towards him, everything, through him, in the Holy Spirit, attains to the Father.

As a counting mechanism, marking the progress of the prayer, the beads evoke the unending path of contemplation and of Christian perfection. Blessed Bartolo Longo saw them also as a “chain” which links us to God. A chain, yes, but a sweet chain; for sweet indeed is the bond to God who is also our Father. A “filial” chain which puts us in tune with Mary, the “handmaid of the Lord” (Lk 1:38) and, most of all, with Christ himself, who, though he was in the form of God, made himself a “servant” out of love for us (Phil 2:7).

A fine way to expand the symbolism of the beads is to let them remind us of our many relationships, of the bond of communion and fraternity which unites us all in Christ” (St. John-Paul II, Rosarium Virginis Mariae, no. 36).

Comments (1)

  • Juliana-Mary Ukeje

    October 25, 2019 at 10:05 pm

    Wonderful! Very beautiful analogies; the Christocentric nature of the Rosary prayer, as linking chains to God, as well as its keeping us in tune with our sweet heavenly mother! really very encouraging.
    May God grant us the grace to make the most of this His very loving gift & powerful weapon, especially as we conclude October Rosary devotion soon.
    Many thanks Father for the post.

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