May, A Month of Mary and the Rosary

African Man Praying with Rosary (Red Confidential/Shutterstock)

Sem. Robert Bigabwarugaba
Katigondo National Major Seminary.

The Church has long set aside the entire month of May to honor Mary. One reason is that in ancient Greece the Church went to Greece in its earliest apostolic missions and May was the Month of Artemil, the goddess of fertility. Rededicating the month to the Mother of God was a way the early Christians sought to ‘baptize’ pagan culture.

One of the roles that Mary fulfills is the Mother that we see in early Christianity, she is the role model for mothers; she also plays an important role throughout Christian history in providing us with a female that’s right at the heart of events.

Christianity, after all, can be a fairly male-dominated affair, The Holy Trinity always sounds to contemporary feminists rather than male-dominated, there’s a Father, Son and there’s a Holy Spirit, and the Characters in the New Testament are all male. But here we actually have somebody who we can interact with as a female in the Christian tradition.

As Jesus was dying on the Cross “He said to the Mother, ‘Woman behold, your son, then He said to the disciple, ‘son, behold, your mother” (John 19:26-27). In that moment, Jesus gave – us his mother. We honor Mary not only because she is our mother, but because God, himself honored her.

Out of all the women in the world, God chose Mary to bring his son into this world. Mary gave God her unawakening, yes, becoming a vessel for God’s plan for salvation from the moment of conception to the foot of the cross she is the perfect embodiment of the obedience of faith. It is for this, that we should hold Mary in such high esteem.

Praying the Rosary gives us the courage to say yes to receiving the fullness of divine grace. Then by our willingness – our obedience of faith we are able to adhere to God’s will, participate in Jesus’ redemptive work, and follow the promptings of the Holy Spirit. With that, our lives and our world can be renewed as our Lady of the Rosary promised, the Blessed Virgin Mary promised to Saint Dominic and to all who follow that “whatever you ask in the Rosary will be granted.” She left for all Christians fifteen promises to those who recite the Holy Rosary.

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Devotion to the Rosary as one of the most distinguishable features of popular Christian Spirituality especially in this month of May. The Rosary inspires us to meditate on the mysteries of the lives of Jesus and Mary. Meditating is important in our lives as Christians. 

The Rosary, we are told by the Church is an extraordinary means of changing tepid Christians into ardent followers of Christ. Why? Because the foundation of holiness is the practice of mental prayer and is the meditation on the truths of our faith.

According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, meditation of the Catholic Church, meditation engages thought, imagination, emotion and desire. This mobilization of faculties is necessary in order to deepen our convictions of faith, prompt the conversion of our heart and strengthen our will to follow Christ.

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As we meditate on the events in Jesus’ life, we focus on Him. Our Rosary prayer becomes a Prayer of adoration and recognition of who God is and what He has done for us and for our salvation because of His love for us. Taking the time to focus on God is important; it pulls us away from the temptation of self–absorbed and self–centered.

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