Commemorating the 450th Anniversary of the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary, families from parishes across Australia joined together virtually in prayer and petition through the Recitation of the Holy Rosary.
Organised by Somascan Movement Australia, an alliance of laity and religious, participants from four Somascan parishes in Perth and Sydney were invited to send a video of their families praying the Rosary together.
These videos were compiled into one Somascan Family Rosary, led by Fathers Mathew Velliyamkandathil CRS and Chris de Sousa CRS, and released on 7 October.
“The opportunity to be a part of the Somascan Family Rosary was really uplifting,” said Rebecca Coorey, member of Somascan Movement Australia.
“It enabled a sense of communal prayer during a time when we have been disconnected more than ever.
“This experience truly highlighted the fact that ‘the family that prays together, stays together’.
“With the multitude of families that came together to contribute to this initiative, it shows the importance of taking quality time out to pray and to stop everything else and simply focus on Jesus, Mary and all of the Saints.”
The production and release of the Somascan Family Rosary also marked the final day of a 54-day Novena which had been live-streamed daily by the Somascan Fathers at St Joseph’s parish in Moorebank.
Each day, an average of 70 families would watch the livestream and join the Somascan Fathers in prayer for their own personal intentions and for those of the whole world.
Parishioner Amanda Coorey found it a beautiful experience to participate in the 54 day Rosary Novena with the Somascan community across Australia.
“The novena helped me connect and strengthen my bond with the parish community and with God during the lockdown,” said Ms Coorey.
“It was amazing to be able to pray virtually with the community. I felt empowered when we approached the Lord together.
“I found that the structured rosary time, each day, helped set a routine of prayer in my life, enabling personal spiritual growth.”
Music composer Robert Ianni and fiancee Sally relied on the power of prayer for guidance and comfort after having to postpone their wedding due to the lockdown.
“As a couple about to enter into the Sacrament of Marriage, praying the rosary daily has helped us stick together and navigate the stressful times of covid and the lockdown,” said Mr Ianni.
“During a time when churches have been closed, Our Lady has guided our hearts to Christ and kept our faith strong.”
Though the Novena has ended, the Holy Rosary will continue to be recited each evening at 6.30pm AEST via the Somascan Movement Australia Facebook Page to honour Our Lady in the Month of October.
Those who wish to pray in their own time can find a playlist of all four Mysteries of The Holy Rosary, produced by Somascan Movement Australia, available for download on all major music platforms such as Spotify or via Youtube.
The playlist was produced in response to Bishop Robert Barron’s suggested five paths for bringing the unaffiliated back to the Church which he outlined in his presentation to the United States Catholic Bishops in 2019.