(LifeSiteNews) — “In the face of the onslaught of Evil on our current world: the pandemic and all its disastrous consequences, numerous natural disasters, scandalous laws against Life, the inversion of values and attacks against the Church, there is an urgent need to unite in an international movement of prayer for the world!”
With these words, a group of French lay women who launched a Perpetual Rosary one year ago following what it felt was heavenly inspiration, recently added a new dimension to its initiative. During this month of October, which is traditionally the “month of the Rosary” in the Catholic Church because this Marian prayer obtained the victory of the Christian alliance against Islam and the Turks at the naval battle of Lepanto in 1571, has appealed to the faithful all over the world to join a special prayer “relay” in which different language groups take turns to implore the Virgin Mary for protection and for peace.
“In the face of the urgency of the world situation, let us unite, from all countries, to implore the help of the Lord through the intercession of Mary, during the month of the Rosary!” said the organizers of the campaign on their website.
The International Relay started at the beginning of this month with a daily rosary in every country of the world from October 1 to 3. French-speaking people committed to pray a daily chaplet (five decades corresponding to the Joyful, Sorrowful and Glorious mysteries, or a suggested sequence taken from these, from the Annunciation to the Crowning of Mary), or at least a daily decade of the Rosary, from October 4 to October 10.
Starting this Monday, English-speaking people are invited to do the same, from October 11 to October 17. Spanish-speaking people will follow suit from October 18 to October 24. From then on until the end of the month, Portuguese-speaking faithful (and those who speak other languages) will be tasked with the last “leg” of the relay.
“Of course,” the organizers insist, “everyone can unite with the others by praying the Rosary throughout the month.”
The campaign started with a night of prayer and worship when the core group gathered before the Blessed Sacrament at the Carmel of Chambéry in the French Alps, where the initiative was first launched.
The original Perpetual Rosary campaign was set up in France in memory of a miracle that happened near Chambéry when a community of Benedictine monks was protected from a landslide that devastated a mountain in the 13th century, causing thousands of people to lose their lives.
The monks had been expelled from their monastery and had found refuge in a chapel where a black statue of the Virgin Mary had been venerated since the 11th century; there they heard the mountain crash and prayed the Rosary for dear life. The mud and rocks never reached the chapel, leaving it unharmed as the landslide separated, following its course left and right of the praying monks.
But as the mud and rocks approached, the story goes, the monks saw demons pushing the rocks down to the chapel, but while some demons were encouraging others to destroy the sanctuary, those in front screamed: “We cannot, the Black One is preventing us!”
The campaign can be joined by registering online here. Participants commit to pray the Rosary at a given time on one day of the week. The organizers suggest choosing a three-month commitment but this can be adjusted to any length of time, from one day to several months. The initiative is also available through the prayer commitment website hozana.org.
Explaining their decision to go on to organize a special International Prayer Relay, the organizers said: “Considering the gravity of the situation on a global scale, the prayer of the Rosary in each country is very important to build together a great bulwark of protection for our world.”
“Do you really know the full power of the Rosary?”, they asked. “The Rosary is undoubtedly the most powerful prayer that we know. Since the Middle Ages, many dramatic events have been avoided thanks to the prayer of the Rosary. Like, for example, in 1870 when Prussian troops invaded France. The very day after some children prayed the Rosary in Pontmain, in the presence of the Virgin Mary, the Prussian Army, in spite of the fact that it had the upper hand, incomprehensibly turned back. This is just an example among many others, just as real and extraordinary …”