October 7, 2016
Memorial of Our Lady of the Rosary
The Gospel Today
When Jesus had driven out a demon, some of the crowd said:
“By the power of Beelzebul, the prince of demons,
he drives out demons.”
Others, to test him, asked him for a sign from heaven.
But he knew their thoughts and said to them,
“Every kingdom divided against itself will be laid waste
and house will fall against house.
And if Satan is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand?
For you say that it is by Beelzebul that I drive out demons.
If I, then, drive out demons by Beelzebul,
by whom do your own people drive them out?
Therefore they will be your judges.
But if it is by the finger of God that I drive out demons,
then the Kingdom of God has come upon you.
When a strong man fully armed guards his palace,
his possessions are safe.
But when one stronger than he attacks and overcomes him,
he takes away the armor on which he relied
and distributes the spoils.
Whoever is not with me is against me,
and whoever does not gather with me scatters.
“When an unclean spirit goes out of someone,
it roams through arid regions searching for rest
but, finding none, it says,
‘I shall return to my home from which I came.’
But upon returning, it finds it swept clean and put in order.
Then it goes and brings back seven other spirits
more wicked than itself who move in and dwell there,
and the last condition of that man is worse than the first.”
REFLECTION (Sem. Peter Collin Crisostomo)
Today we commemorate the Feast of the Our Lady of the Holy Rosary. Based on accounts, it was through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary that the Christians won the Battle of Lepanto against the invading Muslim fleet. The Rosary is a powerful tool against the evils that surrounds us. It is of great use to guide us as well in meditating on the lives of Christ and Mary.
When I was young, it was my mother who taught me and my sister on how to pray the rosary. She said that the rosary is the best way to ask for the intercession of Mary. When I was already studying, our school had given great importance to praying the rosary. We devoted the whole month of October every year to praying the Holy Rosary and it usually culminated with a community recitation of the rosary. There would also be a group of performers that would showcase their talents for each mystery of the rosary.
In my past four years of teaching at the same school where I studied elementary and high school, I was assigned to manage a club. From them, I would select some of the members to perform for the community recitation of the rosary. It was a challenge for me and for the members as well because, aside from the chosen mystery, there would also be a central theme that we had to consider. For example, the most recent central theme was focused on vocation. What we did was a role play about a man who longed to become a priest. But before he reached that goal, he had to face a lot of trials along the way.
We Filipinos give much importance to the role of Mary in our faith for we consider her as our guide to her Son. It is also true that many miracles are attributed to praying the rosary. We should be thankful to God for giving us Mary, her mother, as our intercessor to Him.