Our Lady of the Rosary
Feastday: October 7
October is the month of the Holy Rosary. Today’s Feast was originally known as Our Lady of Victory because “On October 7, 1571, a great victory over the mighty Turkish fleet was won by Catholic naval forces primarily from Spain, Venice, and Genoa under the command of Don Juan of Austria.
Visions of Our Lady of the Rosary
According to Dominican tradition, in 1214, St. Dominic was in Prouille, France attempting to convert the Albigensians back to the Catholic faith. The young priest had little success until one day he received a vision of the Blessed Virgin, who gave him the Rosary as a tool against heretics. While Mary's giving the rosary to St. Dominic is generally acknowledged as a legend, the development of this prayer form owes much to the followers of St. Dominic, including the 15th century priest and teacher, Alanus de Rupe.
On December 3, 1836, Fr. Charles Eléonor des Genettes had an interior locution directing him to dedicate the parish of Our Lady of Victory to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
On October 13, 1917, Our Lady of Fatima told the shepherd children, "I am the Lady of the Rosary".
In 1987, during the civil war with the anti-clerical Sandinista government in Nicaragua, sacristan Bernardo Martinez reported seeing an apparition of Our Lady who urged him to pray the rosary and work for peace. One of the appearances was in the parish church of Our Lady of Victories near Cuapa.
Our Lady of Victory
Our Lady of Victory
Pius V then instituted "Our Lady of Victory" as an annual feast to commemorate the victory, which he attributed to the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Dedications to Our Lady of Victory preceded this papal declaration. In particular, Simon de Montfort, 5th Earl of Leicester built the first shrine dedicated to Our Lady of Victory in thanks for the Catholic victory over the Albigensians at the Battle of Muret on September 12, 1213.
Our Lady of the Holy Rosary
In 1573, Pope Gregory XIII changed the title of the "Feast of Our Lady of Victory" to "Feast of the Holy Rosary". Pope Clement XI extended the feast to the whole of the Latin Rite, inserting it into the General Roman Calendar in 1716, and assigning it to the first Sunday in October. Pope Pius X changed the date to 7 October in 1913, as part of his effort to restore celebration of the liturgy of the Sundays. In 1960 Pope John XXIII changed the title to "Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary".
Our Lady of the Rosary is the patron saint of several places around the world. The diocese of Malaga, Spain (which, however celebrates her patronage on September 8), and the Spanish cities of Mellila and Trujillo celebrate Our Lady of Victories as their patroness. Furthermore, María del Rosario is a common female Spanish name (colloquially abbreviated to Rosario or Charo). Rosario can also be used as a male first name, particularly in Italian.
Churches named for Our Lady of the Rosary
The Cathedral of Our Lady of the Rosary is located in Duluth, Minnesota. The cathedral church of the Diocese of San Bernardino, California is also named in honor of Our Lady of the Rosary. The Church of Our Lady of the Rosary on State Street in New York City began in 1883 as the Mission of Our Lady of the Rosary for the Protection of Irish Immigrant Girls; it houses the Shrine of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton.