The Archdiocese of Armagh is holding a Rosary Relay during the month of May in schools and across the archdiocese as part of the Jubilee Year of Mercy.
Announcing the prayer initiative, Archbishop Eamon Martin, Primate of All Ireland, said “In my Pastoral Message for the Year of Mercy, I indicated my wish for schools throughout the diocese to participate in a Rosary initiative and this has become our Rosary Relay. My vision is firstly to unite the pupils of the Archdiocese of Armagh in prayer during the month of May and then, through their example, to pass on the good news about the Rosary to families and others in the community.
“My intention is that across the Archdiocese as many young people as possible will learn to pray together a decade of the Rosary at 12 noon each day during the month of May. Then, as if in a relay, they will pass on the story of the rosary to their families and friends. The aim of this Rosary Relay is to engage the pupils and staff in the mysteries of our faith and to be part of what Pope Francis has described as an ‘extraordinary moment of grace and spiritual renewal’ in this Year of Mercy”.
Already many of the schools of the diocese have responded to Archbishop Eamon’s invitation to participate in the Rosary Relay during May. To date the diocese has despatched 19,000 rosaries as well as 19,000 rosary prayer cards in readiness for 1 May. Many children will also bring their own rosaries into school.
Archbishop Eamon continued: “While the Rosary Relay will begin in our schools, I am also inviting all the faithful of the diocese to pick up the RosaryRelay baton and pass it on to others. We will be using social media #RosaryRelay to invite as many people as possible at home and in the community to say a decade of the Rosary themselves and then to pass on the invitation to their friends, colleagues and families. We have prepared some excellent online resources to accompany the RosaryRelay and to help people who may not know, or may have forgotten how to pray the Rosary.
I have always liked what the Dominicans teach about the Rosary – Rosarium magis est modus praedicandi quam orandi – that it is more than a method of prayer, but is also a mode of preaching.
As the great Lacordaire put it: the Rosary is the Gospel on its knees!
In extending this invitation I am mindful of what Pope Francis said about education of children in the faith in his recent Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia on love in the family. He said ‘Children need symbols, actions and stories.’ The Rosary has all of these things together – the wonderful symbolism of the Rosary beads, the stories contained in the Mysteries of the Rosary and the actions of offering a prayer.”
To assist schools new rosary resources, including a video of the Mysteries of the Rosary aimed at children, have been made available on the diocesan website at www.archdioceseofarmagh.com