Today in the Church we celebrate the Feast of our Lady of the Rosary. This feast used to be called the Feast of our Lady of Victory as it marked a victory of Europeans over the Ottoman Empire in a battle in 1571. Pope Pius V called for a constant praying of the rosary during this battle and credited the victory to the prayers offered. The feast's named was changed to its current name by Saint Pope John XXIII in 1960.
As is our custom on this day, we are presenting our sophomores with rosary beads. Every year, we present symbols of our faith to our students (freshmen receive a San Damiano wall cross, juniors a Tau cross to wear around their necks, and seniors a decorated candle symbolizing that they are to be the light of Christ). The presentation of the rosaries is done in our chapel during the sophomore theology classes and I will also give them a handout on how to pray the rosary and the texts of the various prayers.
I will tell the students that the rosary is a way for us to reflect on the life of Jesus Christ in its various stages and by saying the Hail Mary over and over again, our minds are cleared and we are able to discover how we are to be Christ - not be like Christ - but TO BE Christ.
In honor of Mary, our morning prayer too will be the Hail Mary.