August Rosary Crusade a powerful outpouring of prayer

Rocio Madera

In August, Archbishop Samuel J. Aquila launched a Rosary Crusade to ask for Mary’s intercession and God’s protection during these uncertain times. He personally asked all Catholics to join him in praying the Rosary for 30 days. 

“The last several months of the coronavirus epidemic, the civil unrest that has broken out in different parts of the archdiocese and our nation, and the challenges the Church is facing have made the need for Mary’s intercession abundantly clear. Mary is our Mother and desires only our good like the Father,” said Archbishop Aquila. 

The 30 days of praying the Rosary began on the Solemnity of the Assumption of Mary, August 15, and ended on the Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows, September 15. 

It didn’t take long for the community to respond. From day one, the Archdiocese of Denver shared different prayer intentions on its social media platforms that were immediately shared by the faithful who began to pray the Rosary pleading for the intercession of Mary. 

The Archbishop highlighted the importance of praying the Rosary and turning to Mary in times of hardship, remembering how throughout history, Mary has answered our prayers and she, herself, has asked us to pray the Rosary for world peace, as it happened in the apparitions at Fatima. 

“We know, too, from history that Mary has answered prayers brought to her through the Rosary and that she has personally asked people to pray it for the most serious needs, especially for the conversion of souls,” Archbishop Aquila recalled.  

While some people chose to pray the Rosary individually, some parishes created prayer groups to pray the Rosary daily via Zoom or other digital platforms.  

“It has been a great opportunity for our parishioners to pray together as we are spread over great distances here in the mountains. Thanks again and God bless all you do!” said Denise Cook, participant of a prayer group. 

The Rosary Crusade not only brought communities together, but also helped many get closer to God by making this prayer part of a daily routine and having an intimate moment with Him. 

“I pray at least one decade of the Rosary every day but during the Rosary Crusade I prayed all five decades every day, said another local parishioner, Jason Roberts. “There were times of not really wanting to but did it anyway and times where I was almost in tears when praying the Rosary and really focusing on the Mysteries. A few times I prayed the Rosary during Adoration at our parish and that was when Jesus spoke to me very directly. Still praying the Rosary every day!” 

Without a doubt, the Rosary is a very powerful prayer that not only brings us closer to our mother in heaven, but it can also bring us the peace and harmony that many of us seek for. During these times of crisis, it is crucial that we continue to ask for the intercession of Mary by praying the Rosary with devotion and confidence that she will respond to our prayers. 

During the Rosary Crusade, the Archbishop asked the faithful to pray for these intentions: 

  • For a growth in faith, hope and charity in the heart and soul of every human being, and most especially in our own that we may seek only the will of the Father 
  • For a recognition of the dignity of life from the moment of conception until natural death and that every human being is created in the image and likeness of God 
  • A quick end to the coronavirus pandemic 
  • For all who are suffering from COVID-19, for their caregivers, and for those who have died from the virus 
  • In reparation for the sins of abortion, euthanasia, and racism 
  • In reparation for the sins and failings of our spiritual leaders and for our personal sins 
  • For healing and justice for all those who have been discriminated against because of their race 
  • For the conversion of the world and the salvation of souls 
  • For all those who are persecuted throughout the world for the Faith 
  • For the conversion of those who carry out acts of desecration against our churches, statues and religious symbols 
  • In reparation for these acts of desecration, especially against Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament 
  • For our civic leaders and those who keep us safe to experience a deeper conversion, to govern justly, and to seek the common good 
  • That we may learn how to love and forgive from the example of Jesus 
  • For all marriages and families, neighborhoods, churches and cities to be strengthened 
  • For an increase in vocations to the priesthood, diaconate and religious life 

We invite you to continue praying the Rosary and asking for these intentions! 

COMING UP: Preparing your Home and Heart for the Advent Season

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The Advent season is a time of preparation for our hearts and minds for the Lord’s birth on Christmas.  It extends over the four Sundays before Christmas.  Try some of these Ideas to celebrate Advent in your home by decorating, cooking, singing, and reading your way to Christmas. Some of the best ideas are the simplest.

Special thanks to Patty Lunder for putting this together!

Advent Crafts

Handprint Advent Wreath for Children 
Bring the meaning of Advent into your home by having your kids make this fun and easy Advent wreath.

Materials
Pink and purple construction paper
– Yellow tissue or construction paper (to make a flame)
– One piece of red construction paper cut into 15 small circles
– Scissors
– Glue
– Two colors of green construction paper
– One paper plate
– 2 empty paper towel tubes

1. Take the two shades of green construction paper and cut out several of your child’s (Children’s) handprints. Glue the handprints to the rim of a paper plate with the center cut out.

2. Roll one of the paper towels tubes in purple construction paper and glue in place.

3. Take the second paper towel and roll half in pink construction paper and half in purple construction and glue in place.

4. Cut the covered paper towel tubes in half.

5. Cut 15 small circles from the red construction paper. Take three circles and glue two next to each other and a third below to make berries. Do this next to each candle until all circles are used.

6. Cut 4 rain drop shapes (to make a flame) from the yellow construction paper. Each week glue the yellow construction paper to the candle to make a flame. On the first week light the purple candle, the second week light the second purple candle, the third week light the pink candle and on the fourth week light the final purple candle.

A Meal to Share during the Advent Season

Slow-Cooker Barley & Bean Soup 

Make Sunday dinner during Advent into a special family gathering with a simple, easy dinner. Growing up in a large family, we knew everyone would be together for a family dinner after Mass on Sunday. Let the smells and aromas of a slow stress-free dinner fill your house and heart during the Advent Season. Choose a member of the family to lead grace and enjoy an evening together. This is the perfect setting to light the candles on your Advent wreath and invite all to join in a special prayer for that week.

Ingredients:
– 1 cup dried multi-bean mix or Great Northern beans, picked over and rinsed
– 1/2 cup pearl barley (Instant works great, I cook separate and add at end when soup is done)
– 3 cloves garlic, smashed
– 2 medium carrots, roughly chopped
– 2 ribs celery, roughly chopped
– 1/2 medium onion, roughly chopped
– 1 bay leaf
– Salt to taste
– 2 teaspoons dried Italian herb blend (basil, oregano)
– Freshly ground black pepper
– One 14-ounce can whole tomatoes, with juice
– 3 cups cleaned baby spinach leaves (about 3 ounces)
– 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese, extra for garnish

1. Put 6 cups water, the beans, barley, garlic, carrots, celery, onions, bay leaf, 1 tablespoons salt, herb blend, some pepper in a slow cooker. Squeeze the tomatoes through your hands over the pot to break them down and add their juices. Cover and cook on high until the beans are quite tender and the soup is thick, about 8 hours. 

2. Add the spinach and cheese, and stir until the spinach wilts, about 5 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and season with salt and pepper. 

3. Ladle the soup into warmed bowls and serve with a baguette.