Flight for refuge: Weekly Message for 10-05-2021

Dear Friends in Christ,

Pope Leo XIII was a great proponent of the rosary. He wrote 10 encyclicals focused primarily on the prayer, starting with Supremi Apostolatus Offico in 1883.

In that encyclical, he proposed the rosary as an effective spiritual weapon against the evils afflicting society.

“It has always been the habit of Catholics in danger and in troublous times,” Leo wrote, “to fly for refuge to Mary, and to seek for peace in her maternal goodness.”

That encyclical appeared less than six months after the death of Karl Marx, whose own ideas would help to open a Pandora’s box of evils in the 20th century.

But has the 21st century proven to be much better? One wonders.

The World Health Organization estimates that there are 40 million to 50 million abortions globally each year. Even at that lower estimate, this century already seems bent on being the bloodiest in history. 

So linger the troublous times of humanity. How can anyone grapple with such darkness? 

It’s beyond any of us to fix the world. And that is why Leo XIII’s words ring as true now as ever: We need to fly for refuge to Our Lady.

This month of the rosary is as good a moment as any to take up this powerful prayer. And it might be worth spending some time meditating on the Immaculate Heart that hears our petitions.

It’s no small comfort to be reminded of how glorious a Mother we have on our side.

In Christ,

Father Edward McIlmail, LC
Ask a Priest contributor

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