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The Story of Our Faith

Memorial of Our Lady of the Rosary

First Reading: Galatians 3:7-14

Brothers and sisters:
Realize that it is those who have faith
who are children of Abraham.
Scripture, which saw in advance that God
would justify the Gentiles by faith,
foretold the good news to Abraham, saying,
Through you shall all the nations be blessed.
Consequently, those who have faith are blessed
along with Abraham who had faith.
For all who depend on works of the law are under a curse;
for it is written, Cursed be everyone
who does not persevere in doing all the things
written in the book of the law.
And that no one is justified before God by the law is clear,
for the one who is righteous by faith will live.
But the law does not depend on faith;
rather, the one who does these things will live by them.
Christ ransomed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us,
for it is written, Cursed be everyone who hangs on a tree,
that the blessing of Abraham might be extended
to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus,
so that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.

Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 111:1B-2, 3-4, 5-6

R. (5) The Lord will remember his covenant for ever.
I will give thanks to the LORD with all my heart
in the company and assembly of the just.
Great are the works of the LORD,
exquisite in all their delights.
R. The Lord will remember his covenant for ever.
Majesty and glory are his work,
and his justice endures forever.
He has won renown for his wondrous deeds;
gracious and merciful is the LORD.
R. The Lord will remember his covenant for ever.
He has given food to those who fear him;
he will forever be mindful of his covenant.
He has made known to his people the power of his works,
giving them the inheritance of the nations.
R. The Lord will remember his covenant for ever.

Gospel: Luke 11:15-26

When Jesus had driven out a demon, some of the crowd said:
“By the power of Beelzebul, the prince of demons,
he drives out demons.”
Others, to test him, asked him for a sign from heaven.
But he knew their thoughts and said to them,
“Every kingdom divided against itself will be laid waste
and house will fall against house.
And if Satan is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand?
For you say that it is by Beelzebul that I drive out demons.
If I, then, drive out demons by Beelzebul,
by whom do your own people drive them out?
Therefore they will be your judges.
But if it is by the finger of God that I drive out demons,
then the Kingdom of God has come upon you.
When a strong man fully armed guards his palace,
his possessions are safe.
But when one stronger than he attacks and overcomes him,
he takes away the armor on which he relied
and distributes the spoils.
Whoever is not with me is against me,
and whoever does not gather with me scatters.

“When an unclean spirit goes out of someone,
it roams through arid regions searching for rest
but, finding none, it says,
‘I shall return to my home from which I came.’
But upon returning, it finds it swept clean and put in order.
Then it goes and brings back seven other spirits
more wicked than itself who move in and dwell there,
and the last condition of that man is worse than the first.”

NAB

oct-7-2

Today is the memorial of Our Lady of the Rosary. Being a recent convert to Catholicism, the Rosary is not a tradition that I grew up with. As a young Protestant I saw the string of beads and the prayers that accompany them as foolish and superstitious, a distraction from true worship of Christ Jesus. As far as I knew, the rosary was used for worshipping Mary.

It’s true that in praying a full rosary you end up saying 53 Hail Marys. And it’s true that meditating on the life of Mary and her perfect trust in God can benefit our spiritual lives. But the Rosary, like any true Marian devotion, doesn’t stop at Mary—it always points to Christ.

In the seven years since I entered the Catholic Church I have come to see the Rosary for what it really is: a beautiful meditation on the Life of Christ. Or as Venerable Fulton Sheen puts it, “where souls see and there enact the greatest drama of love the world has ever known.”  The Rosary is the story of our faith, of God’s love for us, and a means to express our love back to Him.

In today’s First Reading Saint Paul emphasizes the importance of faith. False teachers had arisen in the Church at Galatia who were telling the new gentile Christians that they needed to adhere to the laws of the old Mosaic covenant to be saved. But Saint Paul was reminding them that it is only through faith in Jesus that we receive salvation. Any ritual or tradition, if it is devoid of faith, is worthless.

The power of the Rosary is revealed when we use it to deepen our faith in Jesus, and invite Him into our hearts once again. The repetition of the prayers becomes sanctifying when we infuse them with love.

“Love is never monotonous in the uniformity of its expression . . . when we say the Rosary, we are saying to God, the Trinity, to the Incarnate Savior, to the Blessed Mother: ‘I love you, I love you, I love you.’” –Venerable Fulton Sheen.

Quotes taken from ‘The World’s First Love,’ by Bishop Fulton J. Sheen, publisher McGraw-Hill Book Company, Inc., New York, 1952.

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Say a Rosary today to meditate on the amazing love story that is our Faith. If you’re having trouble staying focused, try offering each decade for a specific intention.

Anna Coyne is a Saint Paul native, wife, mother, and convert to the Catholic faith. When not chasing after her two young children you can probably find her teaching piano lessons, knitting, tripping over wooden train sets, or writing. Find out more about her here.

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