Rosary is a universal prayer, recited in almost every language and every country. It has a Biblical and universal spiritual meaning. It is, besides, a very old prayer.
During the first centuries, Christian people has been reciting the 150 biblical psalms. These psalms have been replaced by 150 « Je vous salue, Marie » or « Ave Maria ». For the Christians, it is very important to address Mary. The words are Angel Gabriel ‘s greetings words to Mary and the very words of Elisabeth, which Mary visited very soon after the angel’s announcement
« Hail, Mary, full of grace, our Lord is with thee » Luke, 1, 28 « Blessed are thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb » Luke, 1, 42.
All along the centuries, the 150 « Ave » have been divided into three groups of 50. Each group has been called a «chapelet » with 5 dozens of « Ave Maria ».
Reciting the Rosary
Rosary consists in meditating Gospel and mysteries of Our Lord ‘s life with Mary ‘s intercession.
- Happy Mysteries: Annunciation, Visitation, Nativity, Presentation in the Temple, Recovering in the Temple.
- Luminous Mysteries: Baptism of Jesus, Cana wedding, Kingdom Announcement, Transfiguration, Eucharist.
- Painful Mysteries: Agony, of Jesus Flagellation, Thorn Coronation, Cross Carrying, Crucifixion and Death
- Glorious Mysteries: Resurrection, Ascension, Pentecost, Assumption of the Blessed Virgin, Mary’s Coronation
During the XIXth century
After the devastations caused by French Revolution, dechristianisation is important, unbelief is developing, Christian people are like warmness ; at that time, workers suffer of misery and social injustice.
With her burning soul, Pauline realizes that one must give again people inclination to God. Ardent to the devotion to Virgin Mary and member of the Rosary Confraternity, she feels that this prayer, many times recommended by the Popes, is able to wake up society .
« I was incessantly praying our Lord so that he saved the sinners …I wanted to contribute to Lord’s glory. »
« This beautiful prayer has been left to devote by trade women, even if they were old and had nothing to do; that was a false prejudice…. »
How to manage so that everybody adopted this prayer?
In 1826, with her usual intuitivism and sense of organization, Pauline distributes Rosary recitation amongst groups of 15 persons or « partners », in honor of the different mysteries; each person binds oneself to say a dozen every day, meditating one mystery of Our Lord’s life. People were drawing lots of this mystery during their weekly meetings. This way, the whole Rosary will be recited every day by the group of 15 people; all the mysteries are meditated in turn. A zealot woman is responsible for each group.
Besides, each person promised to recruit a new member in every class of society and pay an annual amount of money for the good press spreading.
Pauline will incitate these women to form fifteens which will comprise each: « good people, feeble people, and others persons which have only their good-will. 15 embers, only one is fired up, three or four are half-fired up, the others are not. Put them together and it becomes a blazing mass. »
Then Partners are forming a praying chain, by the meditated Mysteries solidarity and constitute, in hearts union, a large spiritual family.
« What a blessing to be joined to such good souls ! How beautiful is this charity, that makes with a great number of persons different by their age and their social conditions a single family whose mother is Mary »
Pauline herself will call it the Living Rosary. Partners are invisibly but actually bound in the Living Rosary that they are reciting every day, following Pope ‘s praying intentions for peoples evangelization, sinners conversion and faith preservation inside Catholic Church.
« Living Rosary, the Mary crown joins us extraordinarily, although we are many, as a rose has many petals, a rose-tree many roses, a garden many rose-trees. »
Groups multiply in France first and hen in the whole world. In 1834, Living Rosary counted ore than one million of members in France. Pauline may write:
« Dozens still multiply..We’ll be soon in prayer communion with all the peoples in the world »
Pauline receives oral support from the Popes, who will commit Living Rosary to the Dominican family. This family will assure international development of the Work from Lorette House until Pauline’s death in 1862.
Today, Rosary is still recitated all over the world in different manners, in religious Communities, in Parishes, Spiritual Works, Marial Associations, Pilgrim places.