Credidimus Caritati 私たちは天主の愛を信じた


"On the Rosary" Sermon by Fr. Laisney SSPX : 英語版「ロザリオについて」聖ピオ十世会司祭 レネー神父様

2016年10月17日 | お説教・霊的講話



On the Rosary

My dear brethren,

The month of October is the month of the Rosary: it is the custom of the Church to encourage the recitation of the holy Rosary especially during this month. The Church wants that, taking the habit of saying a daily Rosary during this month, the faithful may continue this holy habit throughout the whole year! Pope Leo XIII encouraged this devotion, and rewarded it with many indulgences, but it is much older than him.

The Holy Rosary was given by our Lady herself to St Dominic early in the 13th century, and was the means of innumerable graces of conversion, of holiness and victory over sin, and even famous victories over the enemies of the true faith, in particular over Islam: Lepanto, Vienna, and others are famous such victories. The very feast of the Holy Rosary was instituted by Pope Saint Pius V on the 7th of October, as the anniversary of the victory of Lepanto: it was first called “feast of our Lady of Victories” and later “feast of our Lady of the most Holy Rosary”.

When the three children of Fatima asked the beautiful Woman whom they saw what her name was, she answered: “I am the Lady of the Most Holy Rosary”. The apparitions of Fatima culminated with the famous miracle on the 13th of October 1917, which further spread devotion to the holy Rosary. So why does the Church recommend so highly this devotion? Why does God Himself recommend it by the miracles He performed through it? Because the Holy Rosary is an excellent means to acquire Christian perfection and save our souls!

Indeed Christian perfection essentially consists in our Lord Jesus Christ living in us: “I live, now not I; but Christ liveth in me. And that I live now in the flesh: I live in the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and delivered himself for me” (Gal. 2:20). This is the very purpose for which our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God Himself, came down from Heaven: “I am come so that they may have life, and may have it more abundantly” (Jn. 10:10). That “more abundant life” is everlasting life, eternal life: “God so loved the world, as to give his only begotten Son; that whosoever believeth in him, may not perish, but may have life everlasting” (Jn. 3:16). It consists essentially in the knowledge and love of God: “Now this is eternal life: That they may know thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent” (Jn. 17:3).

Knowledge without love of God would be a very deficient knowledge, because “God is charity: and he that abideth in charity, abideth in God, and God in him” (1 Jn. 4:16). Hence St John says: “He that loveth not, knoweth not God: for God is charity” (1 Jn. 4:8). That knowledge and love of God, we acquire by contemplation of our Lord Jesus Christ: “By this hath the charity of God appeared towards us, because God hath sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we may live by him” (1 Jn. 4:9).

Contemplation is a loving look at our Lord Jesus Christ, and desires to unite ourselves more and more with Jesus, to unite ourselves with Him in the mystery of his death so that we may be united with Him in the mystery of His Resurrection. Indeed “we are the sons of God, and if sons, heirs also; heirs indeed of God, and joint heirs with Christ: yet so, if we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified with him” (Rom. 8:16-17). Here you have the whole Rosary: “we are children of God” in Christ, these are the joyful mysteries; “if we suffer with Him”, these are the sorrowful mysteries; “that we may be also glorified with Him”: these are the glorious mysteries.

Similarly in the Creed, we have the whole Rosary – or in the Rosary we have the whole Creed. Indeed the heart of the Creed is the faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, “who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary” – these are the joyful mysteries – “suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, buried and descended into Hell” – these are the sorrowful mysteries – “the third day He rose from the dead, ascended into Heaven, sitteth at the right hand of God the Father almighty” – these are the glorious mysteries. Note that the Creed goes straight from the birth from the Virgin Mary to the suffering under Pontius Pilate, from the joyful to the sorrowful mysteries: no so-called “luminous mysteries”.

Now this contemplation of our Lord Jesus Christ in His Incarnation, and especially in the Mystery of His Passion and death so as to be united in the Mystery of His Resurrection, this is the whole Rosary! No one has ever understood our Lord Jesus Christ more than His holy Mother. She did contemplate and meditate on these great truths, as the Gospel itself gives testimony: “But Mary kept all these words, pondering them in her heart” (Lk. 2:19). So it is in her Immaculate Heart that we shall find the proper understanding of these great truths; her Immaculate Heart will give us that understanding which she had acquired so deeply.

In particular we find in the Immaculate Heart of Mary the hatred for sin and the desire for reparation for sin. She asks for that at Fatima. And the modern world does need very much such detestation of sin. One of the characteristic of the modern world is the refusal of the very notion of sin: modern man claims “I can do whatever I want. Nobody can tell me what to do – not even God!” This is a horrible blasphemy and the open door to the most abominable sins, in particular the sin of abortion, which is the epitome of the wickedness of the modern world.

But if with our Lady we contemplate our Lord Jesus Christ from His Incarnation on the day of the Annunciation to His death on the Cross, then we can only but say an absolute NO to sin, and yes to God, and offer ourselves as victims of expiation in union with our Lord Jesus Christ on the Cross and with our Lady at the foot of the Cross, to make reparation for sin – first for our own sins, but also for the sins of the world, which are so much multiplied today.

Indeed the Annunciation shows that God cares for men; God who created us did not abandon us after the sin of Adam, but promised to send a Saviour and fulfilled that promise on that day of the Annunciation. What a beautiful passage of the Gospel! All is holy, all is pure, all is charity in that first mystery. The humility of the Angel before a young girl; the humility of She who was just chosen as the Mother of God and offers herself as the servant, the handmaid of the Lord; and finally the humility of the Son of God Himself who becomes the son of Mary, “emptying himself, taking the form of a servant, being made in the likeness of men, and in habit found as a man” (Phil. 2:7).

Not only God cares, but He loves us so much that He wants this most intimate union with us, as when Jesus was in the bosom of Mary. He wants to live in us, as He lived in Mary. The Annunciation already announces the beautiful mystery of the Holy Eucharist, in which we have the same grace: Jesus living in us as He lived in Mary, and transforming us as He transformed our Lady. This is the beautiful prayer: “O Jesus, living in Mary, come and live in Thy servants, in the spirit of Thy holiness, in the fullness of Thy might, in the truth of Thy virtues, in the perfection of Thy ways, in the communion of Thy mysteries. Subdue every hostile power, in Thy Spirit for the glory of Thy Father.”

In the Visitation, we see how the Love of God immediately leads to the love of the neighbour. Our Lady, filled with the Son of God, immediately goes to serve her cousin Elisabeth. We also see that the true love of the neighbour consists in bringing Jesus to them. And this is the joy of Elisabeth: “whence is this to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?” (Lk. 1:43). Both Elisabeth and St John the Baptist in her womb are sanctified by the presence of Jesus living in Mary. As the house of Elisabeth and Zachary was sanctified by the coming of Mary, so are your families going to be sanctified when our Lady comes by the family Rosary. The daily family prayer is a most important moment of the day for the whole family and the source of innumerable blessings.

In the Nativity, we start to see the opposition of the world to our Lord Jesus Christ: the inn closes its doors to Mary and Joseph and as a consequence will not have the blessing of the coming of Jesus. Let us never close our heart to Jesus! Rather like the shepherds, let us keep watching, ready to follow our guardian angels that lead us to Jesus in the arms of Mary: “they found Mary and Joseph, and the infant lying in the manger” (Lk. 2:16). They found Jesus because they found Mary: she leads us to Jesus. She is like the star that guided the Magi: “they found the child with Mary his mother, and falling down they adored him” (Mt. 2:11). She teaches us the divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ, worthy of our adoration, of our worship. Those who refuse to adore our Lord Jesus Christ do not know God: “He that believeth in the Son, hath life everlasting; but he that believeth not the Son, shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him” (Jn. 3:36).

In the Presentation we admire the obedience of Mary and Joseph to the Law. There was a clause that exempted our Lady from a law requiring purification: Moses could not have included the most pure Virgin, the Virgin of virgins, in a law of uncleanness! Yet out of humility, in order not to singularise herself, our Lady submitted to the Law and offered the sacrifice of two little birds, the sacrifice of the poor, according to the Law. And the Holy Ghost led the old man Simeon to the Temple and he sang the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ: “A light to the revelation of the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel” (Lk. 2:32). But he also prophesised the sword that shall pierce Mary’s heart, thus introducing her into the mystery of the Cross: this was the first sorrow of our Lady! These mysteries were “mixing joys and tears” as the Liturgy sings.

The loss and finding of the Child Jesus in the Temple are a further introduction into the mystery of the Cross. “Son, why hast thou done so to us? Behold thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing” (Lk. 2:48). In this third sorrow of our Lady, it is no longer the persecutor like Herod that is making our Lady suffering, but it is our Lord Jesus Christ Himself! He parted company with them; He was the cause of her suffering! Why? Our Lady does not condemn Him, but she does ask: “Why? Why hast Thou done so to us?” And our Lord’s answer is full of mystery: “I must be about my father's business” (Lk. 2:49). “And they understood not the word that he spoke unto them” (Lk. 2:50). But our Lady did learn the lesson, and later when Her Son would again cause her the utmost suffering when she saw Him hanging on the Cross, she did not ask Him again “Why”, she knew why, she knew that He “was about His Father’s business”, the Redemption of the world through the Sacrifice of the Cross!

Thus this last joyful mystery introduces us to the sorrowful mysteries. This was the purpose for which our Lord Jesus Christ had come: “he shall save his people from their sins” (Mt. 1:21). The first sorrowful mystery is very important: we tend to look only at the physical sufferings of Christ, yet in the garden He is so overwhelmed by the spiritual horror of all the sins of men that this leads Him to a true agony, so much so that He was sweating blood! Deign to give us, o Lord, a true horror for sin, a true detestation of our own past sins and of all the sins of the world, so that we may dedicate ourselves to making reparation for sins as Thou didst! If only we would understand how much God hates sin, to the point of sending His Son to the sacrifice of the Cross to make reparation for it! And Jesus fully enters into the plan of His Father; He wants to suffer because He wants to make reparation for sin! He hides His divinity in order to suffer more fully. And our Lady also hates sin: she is Immaculate, absolutely without sin – by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. We must keep our soul free from sin, and by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ this is possible! If we would have constantly the Passion of our Lord in front of our eyes, we would never sin: how could we dare to add to His sufferings?! Hence the Holy Rosary that brings us again and again this Holy Passion in front of our eyes is a very great help to avoid sin and to live a holy life.

The scourging at the pillar is in particular opposed to the sins of impurity: while people pamper their flesh, our Lord’s flesh was horribly torn by these whips, to make reparation for all these impurities. “Jesus, the author and finisher of faith, having joy set before him, endured the cross, despising the shame” (Heb. 12:2). On the Holy Shroud, the marks of the scourging are the most remarkable. Doctors have counted up to above 100 marks! Let us remember that when we are tempted! Can we add to these sufferings by offending Him again? No! It is out of question! With our Lady of Fatima, let us make reparation to all these offenses against Christian purity, offenses so incompatible with the Immaculate Heart of Mary!

The crowning with thorns is in particular opposed to all the sins of pride. Here you have the most High, the supreme Wisdom treated like a fool! In particular they mocked His Kingship. Our Lord Jesus Christ is King indeed, the Supreme King. But people refuse to submit to His Law. Modern man in particular refuses any law above men – thus practically destroying all laws. Modern man wants to be free from God, and mocks Christ the King. The pride of modern man goes so far as to claim a right to offend God, rights to abortion, right to unnatural vices, and so on. But our Lord Jesus Christ came to make reparation for this pride by His humiliations in His Passion and especially in this crowning with thorns. May He grant us the love of humility and the generous acceptation of humiliations for His sake! Humility is the great virtue of the Blessed Virgin: “he hath regarded the humility of his handmaid” (Lk. 1:48).

The carrying of the Cross teaches us patience and perseverance in suffering: “you shall be hated by all men for my name's sake: but he that shall persevere unto the end, he shall be saved” (Mt. 10:22). With our Lady, St John and the holy women, let us follow Christ until the end! Let us not so much weep over Him, Who is innocent and like the “green wood” is accomplishing the mystery of Redemption and acquiring by His Sacrifice an eternal glory, but let us rather weep over sin, over sinners, over ourselves first, because this is the true evil: sin is the root of all evil. Sin is the only evil that must be avoided at all cost. Physical suffering, if borne with innocence, becomes a cause of redemption: the Martyrs would rather die than sin. Let us renew this firm resolution: to die rather than to sin!

The three hours on the Cross and death of our Lord on the Cross was the most solemn and sublime moment in the whole of human history: then the supreme Sacrifice was offered to the most Holy Trinity, God was honoured as He deserved, souls were being redeemed by the Precious Blood of the Immaculate Lamb, the Son of God acquired and united unto Himself and sanctified millions of Saints as members of His Mystical Body, the devil was vanquished and sin was compensated by an overabundant satisfaction. And to continue the effects of this most Holy Sacrifice, our Lord Jesus Christ had instituted the day before during the Last Supper the most Holy Eucharist, in which He Himself continues to offer Himself by the ministry of His priests as the Immaculate Lamb and feed us by His own Flesh and Blood, so that we may live by Him! Our Lady was there at the foot of the Cross, perfectly one with Him, and became there the New Eve, the Mother of all the living, i.e. of all those who live of our Lord Jesus Christ, our Mother. May she grant us the knowledge and the love of that great mystery!

On the Third Day He rose again from the dead: as death is the consequence of sin, so the victory over death on Easter follows the victory over sin on Good Friday. His Resurrection is His greatest miracle: He appeared so many times to His Apostles and gave them so much proof of His Resurrection that they were ready to die for Him: they knew that they too would rise again glorious with Him if they were faithful to Him until death. We are united to His resurrection by Baptism. Indeed we are buried with Christ into death so that we may rise again with Him unto newness of life: therefore “do you also reckon, that you are dead to sin, but alive unto God, in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom. 6:11). As Christ gave the only-begotten son of the widow of Naïm back to his mother after He rose him from the dead, so He gave Himself back to His Mother Mary, who also was widow and had lost her only-begotten Son: he could not do less for His mother than for that widow of Naïm.

After many apparitions, He ascended gloriously into Heaven on the 40th day after His Resurrection, and He sits at the right hand of the Father Almighty. The Angels assured the Apostles that He will come again as gloriously as He went; He will come to judge the living and the dead. May our Lady help us to live in such a way as we may deserve to hear those beautiful words: “Come, ye blessed of my Father, possess you the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world” (Mt. 25:34). And may we always absolutely shun sin, lest we hear those other words, most frightful ones: “Depart from me, you cursed, into everlasting fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels” (Mt. 25:41). In Heaven he appeared to St Stephen, encouraging him to profess the faith even until death; He encourages all the martyrs; He encourages us to live a holy life, a life of faith and fidelity to all the Commandments, even until death!

The Apostles prepared themselves for nine days with our Lady until the coming of the Holy Ghost on Pentecost day, and He filled them with His gifts and above all with His Charity: they were burning with the love of God and wanted to inflame the whole world with that love, as our Lord had announced: “I am come to cast fire on the earth; and what will I, but that it be kindled?” (Lk. 12:49). Our Lady’s heart was enlarged to embrace all the members of our Lord Jesus Christ, all the members of the Church. She is now our Mother and has no greater desire for us than our salvation. She wants us also to be filled with the Holy Ghost, the Spirit of holiness, of love of God above all things and of the neighbour for God’s sake; she wants us to be missionary around us, and kindle that same love in all those close to us.

Our Lady was conceived immaculately; she lived immaculately, without giving an inch to the devil, without the least discrepancy with God, always absolutely faithful to the Holy Ghost. Now came the time of the reward: she who has not known sin could not know the consequence of sin, the corruption of the tomb. She who had given life to the Son of God was to receive the immediate reward not only for her soul but also for her body with her glorious Assumption. She has thus become the living proof that God’s reward is worth every effort, and infinitely above any earthly joy. May this great mystery of her Assumption lift our hearts and soul above those passing, fleeting joys of the world, and set our hearts fixed in Heaven!

Up there she was then crowned as Queen: her divine Son has given her that great power for our benefit, in order to help us here below with her intercession and motherly care. She has at her disposal all the Angels, to execute her mandates! And they are most happy to do so; they all admire the fullness of grace and glory that was given to her. They are her knights, and we too can be and should be her knights, by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. In serving Mary, it is Jesus whom we serve because He is the King! May we so live here below as to go to Heaven for ever with our Lady and all the saints, taking our delight in God for ever and ever!

As you see, the holy Rosary by making us meditate on all the essential mysteries of our Faith, lead us into the deep knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ through Mary. It is composed essentially with two most beautiful prayers: the Our Father, taught by our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, the best of all prayers, in which we ask in an orderly way all what we need to please Him. And the Hail Mary also is composed from the words of the Holy Scriptures, not only the first half but also the second half, put together by the Saints. These prayers become like the breathing of the soul while meditating on the Mysteries. Their repetition is as essential for the life of our soul as the repetition of breathing is necessary for the life of our body. The praying well of the Holy Rosary will make us enter more and more into the Immaculate Heart of Mary, and through that most holy path enter into the most Sacred Heart of Jesus, where we will find eternal happiness.

May we love the Rosary, may we live the Rosary, may we spread the Rosary especially in our families, with devotion to the Immaculate Heart, for the extension of the kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ, in order to go to Heaven! Amen.

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