In 1883, Pope Leo XIII officially dedicated the month of October to the Holy Rosary. Throughout the Church’s history, Our Lady of the Rosary is credited with numerous military victories. One of the more famous of these battles is the Battle of Lepanto which took place on October 7th in the year 1571. Prior to this battle, the Catholic fleet under the command of John of Austria, joined together in praying the Holy Rosary in petition for the intercession of the Blessed Virgin in defeating the evil muslim hords. As a result, the Muslim (Ottoman) fleet was defeated which stopped their northern and western invasions. In honor of the victory, Pope Pius V instituted the Feast of Our Lady of Victory, which the Church celebrates this coming Wednesday as the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary (October 7).
“And out of his mouth proceedeth a sharp two-edged sword, that with it he may strike the nations. And he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness of the wrath of God the Almighty. And he hath on his garment and on his thigh written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.” Apocalypse 19:15-16.
Regarding the first event, there are those who will be present at the synod who have made public comments about their desire to change Church’s doctrine regarding the Sacraments of Matrimony and the Eucharist — in contradiction to the words of Christ himself while he walked on this earth with his own two feet. They desire to publicly welcome people in adulterous affairs and gravely disordered sexual relationships to receive Holy Communion without repentance. Although it is not our place to be at the Synod, to speak out in defense of the Church and her teachings, it is always our role, and duty, to pray for the Church and her leaders.
Regarding the second event, St. Maria Goretti is the patron saint of purity, and the age of twelve she raised up her right arm to resist an attack on her purity and was martyred for it. In a similar way the Church is in desperate need to be defended against an attack on her purity.
For this reason, I would ask you to join me along with many other Catholics around the world who are praying a Rosary Novena starting on October 7th, the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary. Starting on this date and continuing each day through October 15th, there will be a novena of rosaries, one each day, to pray for those present at the synod, asking Our Lady of the Rosary to intercede to the Holy Spirit for them– to embolden those who stand in defense of God and His Laws, and to convert those who do not.
We here in Charlotte will have the added benefit of joining St. Maria Goretti to our petition. How fitting that her whole skeletal remains will be coming to Charlotte with the exception of her right arm … the same arm that she used to defend her purity. Her right arm will remain at her home parish near Rome, a short distance from where the Synod is taking place. Just as she repelled an attack in defense of her purity, we can ask her to come to the aid of Holy Mother Church to repel those who are attacking the purity of the Church and her Sacraments. May God reward you for your prayers.
Attached below are some noteworthy updates for the Month of October:
1. This week there is a priests retreat in the Diocese of Charlotte, and at St. Ann’s there will be no Masses on Monday-Friday this week. This may result in cancellations in other parishes as well. Please consult your local bulletins.
3. Saturday, Oct 24th: There will be a Solemn High Mass at St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte on Saturday Oct 24th at 10:00am. The Mass will be a Votive to St. Maria Goretti and will be celebrated in the presence of her major relics. To be clear, the major relics are her full skeletal remains inside a glass-sided casket. The wax statue of her in repose contains her skeletal remains which are not visible. Her body is not incorrupt. But her skeleton is complete except for some small amounts of bone that went into reliquaries and her right arm that her mother Assunta donated to the Church of St. Nicholas, known as the Sanctuary of St. Maria Goretti, in her birth town of Corinaldo. Maria used her right arm to defend her purity in the attack.
4. Sunday, Oct 25th: Feast of Christ the King: Missa Cantata, St. Ann Catholic Church in Charlotte; 12:30pm.
— Please note that you are able to earn one plenary indulgence for the dead each day of November 1st-8th when you make a visit to a cemetery to pray for the deceased, and when the usual requirements for an indulgence (Confession, Communion, prayers for the Holy Father’s intentions and detachment from sin) are met. Help those suffering souls who can no longer help themselves and they will bless you with their prayers for you when they enter Heaven.
— Please note that there was originally a Solemn Requiem Mass scheduled at St. Marks Catholic Church in Huntersville, however, this was cancelled.