October brings us many Catholic Feast days and celebrations. One of my favorites is the celebration of the Holy Rosary. The Rosary is a uniquely Catholic tradition.
When we meditate on the mysteries of the Rosary we are, in essence, studying the Gospel of Jesus’ life. The Joyful Mysteries focus on his birth and childhood. The Sorrowful Mysteries explore his crucifixion and death. The Glorious Mysteries look at his resurrection and gift of the Holy Spirit, and the Luminous Mysteries celebrate the Lord’s ministry on Earth. Even the youngest child can learn the story of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection by reciting the Rosary.
Other ways we can encourage the recitation of the Rosary with our students:
- Create a living rosary. Have the students line up and each child represents one rosary bead. As you pray around the room, each student leads the bead that they represent.
- Make rosaries. Rosary kits are available through most Catholic online stores, or at Catholic bookstores. Teach your students to make rosaries and send them to a Catholic mission for distribution.
- Special intentions offered through the rosary. When my own children were small, we used to let them offer an intention before each prayer that each bead represented. For example: The first Our Father before the first mystery might be for a classmate or a friend. It does take a lot longer to say the rosary this way, but it brings new energy to the students’ prayer life.
- Don’t let time limitations stop you. If you only have class for an hour, you probably can’t devote 20-30 minutes of that to say the entire rosary. Instead, consider praying only one decade. It only takes about five minutes to do this. Perhaps you could suggest that the students finish the rosary at home with their parents.
- Make “How to pray the Rosary” cards available to students and parents.
There is a wonderful Catholic expression, “In Christ, through Mary.” This means that drawing closer to Our Lady will always bring you closer to Christ. That is her mission, to help lead us to her Son. May you be blessed.