Friday, March 4, 2016

New Products

I’m pleased to announce 3 new products that I created by hand … gemstone traditional rosaries, gemstone Santa Muerte rosaries, and gemstone pendulums. You’ll find them on my website

History of the Rosary

Introduction to the Rosary and the Mysteries

The rosary is one of the most cherished prayers of our Catholic Church. Introduced by the Apostles' Creed which summarizes the great mysteries of the Catholic faith, the Our Father (the Lord's Prayer) which introduces each mystery, three Hail Marys which is the angel's words announcing Christ's birth and Elizabeth's greeting to Mary, Glory Be (the Doxology), and concluded with Hail Holy Queen (the Salve Regina). The Rosary involves the recitation of five decades (5 sets of 10 beads) consisting of the Our Father, 10 Hail Marys and the Doxology. During this reciting, the individual meditates on the Mysteries of the events of our Lord's life and the witness of our Blessed Mother; one Mystery for each decade.

The Mysteries include Joyful, Luminous, Sorrowful and Glorious mysteries of the rosary. One set of Mysteries is prayed on a rosary that has five decades. Each set is prayed on designated days of the week. While praying a decade, you reflect on a mystery. There are specific mysteries for each day of the week. For example, when praying the Holy Rosary on a Monday or Saturday, you meditate on the Joyful Mysteries. During the recitation of first decade, you meditate on the Annunciation of Mary. During the recitation of the second decade, you meditate on the Visitation. During the recitation of the third decade, you meditate on the Nativity of Jesus, etc. There are variations however, and in some countries the rosary may even have different mysteries. Through these Mysteries, the individual brings to mind our Lord's incarnation, life, passion, death and resurrection from the dead. It also gives us the prayers to our Blessed Mother, who leads all believers to her Son. In contemplation of these Mysteries, the rosary brings us closer to our Lord and reveals a depth of faith that cannot be found in any other way.

Origin of the Rosary

The origin of the rosary is highly debated, but one thing for sure is that it was based on the use of "prayer beads". Many cultures in pre-Christian times used beads to aid in meditation and prayer. The word "bead" comes from the word "bede" which means prayer. Originally, the rosary was called "The Psalter of Jesus and Mary" because it consisted of the prayer Jesus gave us (The Our Father) and the prayer the Angel Gabriel gave us (The Hail Mary). The word Psalter, refers to the Book of Psalms in the Bible, which has 150 psalms. In early Christian times, beads were used to count Our Fathers and Hail Marys and were known as "Paternosters," the Latin for "Our Father." Many people of this age could not afford to purchase the Psalter which was used by the religious orders and clergy and because of lack of printing, was in short supply. In order to supply the great number of faithful with some prayer form which would be easily accessible, itinerant preachers developed and encouraged the use of a string with beads upon it. Each bead would represent a prayer to be said--either the Lord's Prayer, the Hail Mary, and the Doxology. In time, other prayers would be added to make up what we now call the Rosary.Between the 1100s and 1400s, the Christian "prayer beads" were linked with the verses of psalms and other phrases celebrating the lives of Jesus and emphasizes the unique role of Mary, Mother of God in the plan of salvation. It was in the 1200s that St Dominic was linked to the creation of the rosary. This has been debated ad infinitum, but during this time, the beads became known as the "rosarium" or "rose garden" a common name for an anthology of similar stories. As Dom Louis Cougaud stated in 1922, "The various elements which enter into the composition of that Catholic devotion commonly called the rosary are the product of a long and gradual development which began before St. Dominic's time, which continued without his having any share in it, and which only attained its final shape several centuries after his death."

During the 1400s, the structure of the five-decade rosary along with the Mysteries became the standard for what we now know as the Rosary. Blessed Alan de la Roche also furthered the use of the Rosary by unceasingly preaching it and expanding its reach to hundreds of thousands of souls. Then a Carthusian named Henry Kalkar is credited with bracketing the 150 Hail Marys (from the Psalter) into decades (sets of ten), separated by Our Fathers. Shortly thereafter, the Hail Mary's were separated into five decades. In 1520, Pope Leo X officially approved the universal use of the rosary. In 1571, St. Piux V declared the first Feast of the Holy Rosary which was made universal by Pope Clement XI. In 1917 the Blessed Mother selected for herself the name "Our Lady of the Rosary" at Fatima when she appeared to three children in Fatima saying, "I want you to continue to say your rosary every day in honor of Our Lady of the Rosary to obtain the end of the war and peace in the world". In 2002 Pope John Paul II introduced new mysteries (Mysteries of the Light or Luminous Mysteries) to the Rosary and wrote his apostolic letter "On the Most Holy Rosary" (Rosarium Virginis Mariae).

Views on the Rosary

Archbishop Fulton Sheen said, "The rosary is the book of the blind, where souls see and there enact the greatest drama of love the world has ever known; it is the book of the simple, which initiates them into mysteries and knowledge more satisfying than the education of other men; it is the book of the aged, whose eyes close upon the shadow of this world, and open on the substance of the next. The power of the rosary is beyond description."

Padre Pio, the famous stigmatic, said, 'Love the Madonna and pray the Rosary, for her Rosary is the weapon against the evils of the world today.'

Sister Lucia, who as a child was the most responsible of the three seers at Fatima, declared confidently when she was a nun, 'There is no problem that cannot be solved effectively by the Rosary and by our sacrifices.'

The Purpose of the Rosary

As a Catholic devotion, the Rosary involves meditating on the twenty mysteries surrounding the lives of Our Lord Jesus and the Blessed Virgin Mary. The Rosary engages our thoughts, our imagination, our emotions, and our desire. This serves the purpose of mobilizing our faculties in order to deepen our convictions of faith, prompting a conversion of heart and a strengthening of our will to follow Christ. As you can see, the rosary we know today is the result of many evolutions dating back several hundred years. Although the manner in which the rosary is recited has changed, the results of praying the rosary are still the same.