11/29/2021 – St. Catherine Laboure

Today is the feast of St Catherine Laboure, the Daughter of Charity who received the Miraculous Medal from Our Lady.

St Vincent De Paul and St Louise, the founders of the Daughters of Charity, taught their nuns “to pray the rosary as their own breviary. During the centuries they used to wear the rosary on their belt. This was to help them to pray while they were coming and going in the service of the poor, and a reminder to meditate on the mystery of salvation. I have heard witness from Sisters whose spiritual life was revitalized, thanks to the simple prayer of the rosary which brought them safe from many dangers of life.

Signs and symbols are remainders of deep realities. We are taught to carry them with us in faith. Symbols often say much more than words. They express deeply personal, affective undercurrents that words are not able to communicate.

…, I remembered many stories of witness from the poor persons I served of the value of the well-known symbols of the Cross, the Medal and the Rosary. Each of these three concrete material symbols has a very deep meaning for our Christian life in our Vincentian tradition.

The medal is a little sign of highly biblical significance…

The Cross is the sign of our redemption and Christ’s infinite love for us. … The rosary is a mini-gospel, an easy Christian prayer, that helps to connect many faithful people to God through the intercession of Mary. …Simple rosary beads put us into a mystical frame of mind. They bring us discipline for meditation and they calm our restless hearts and scattered superficial minds. The repetitive prayer of the rosary quiets the mind and allows the depth of the soul to rise.

The rosary helps us to meditate on the greatest Christian mysteries – the birth of Jesus, his preaching of the good news, his suffering, death, resurrection and ascension to heaven – from a variety of angles with different emphases. The rosary is a slow prayer of the deep soul. It has enormous spiritual power. I have heard many witnesses of spiritual revitalization thanks to the prayer of rosary.

As Vincentians we journey through life with the poor, and we contemplate and find God in daily events by sharing them with those who live near to us.

Pope Francis invited the whole Church to pray the rosary and ask Mary’s intercession for the needs of our world. Let us simply put our faith and hope in God, sure that He will answer our needs. (Sr. Neghesti Michael, DC)