Maria Rosa Mystica devotion comes to the Diocese of Evansville

Special to The Message

In today’s secular culture, it has become normal – and in cases encouraged – to cohabitate with sin. Many of us find these trends troublesome, but we don’t know how to react or what to do. When we are confronted with sin in its most blatant forms, some might lash out; some might become quiet; some might not know what to do at work because we might be “cancelled.” It feels like we are fighting a losing battle. 

Shown is one of the three perpetual traveling statues that are part of the Maria Rosa Mystica devotion in the Diocese of Evansville. Submitted photo

There is no doubt that our generation is in the fight of our lives against a culture that wants to cancel Christianity at all costs because it doesn’t fit its designs. Our Catholic Church, and more specifically, our priests, are in grave danger. Many times, we, the laity, feel helpless and wonder: what can we do for our priests? How can we help our consecrated souls?

Even though the Church is Christ’s and He has the perfect plan for it, the Maria Rosa Mystica devotion offers us a solution to our desire to help; our desire to fight evil; our desire to “cancel” sin. The battle that we are waging against the forces of evil requires an army of love. Our good priests need all the love, strength and prayers that we can offer. The Maria Rosa Mystica Knights is a group created in the Diocese of Evansville to pray, fast and do penance for protection and strengthening of all consecrated souls and vocations. 

We are the infantry of the Virgin Mary going into spiritual battle for our priests and consecrated souls. Priests are essential parts of this battle against sin, as through the consecrated hands of priests we are able to receive the necessary grace to conquer it. And therefore, our priests are the souls most in danger and under attack, as evil wants to choke the channel to God’s grace. In past centuries, there were many religious orders of nuns and monks dedicated to contemplative prayer specifically focused on the protection and strengthening of priests. But as these orders have dwindled significantly and many have completely disappeared, it is up to us, the laity, to stand in the gap.

What can we do? Like Blessed Pope Pius IX said: “Give me an army saying the Rosary and I will conquer the world.”

The Maria Rosa Mystica devotion was established in the 1940’s and was brought to the Evansville diocese in 2019. It has been formalized through the creation of the Maria Rosa Mystica Knights. We have three distinct elements for this devotion in our area: 

  • Personal daily prayers, penance and sacrifice by the praying knights’ group
  • Three perpetual traveling statues, where host families across the diocese pray a novena in their homes then travels to the next home
  • A monthly celebration event held on the 13th of each month at Saint John the Evangelist Parish in Daylight

A key component of the Maria Rosa Mystica devotion is the celebration on her annual feast day, July 13. We are excited to announce that this year, we are planning a celebration for our diocese at St. Benedict Cathedral. The celebration will begin with a Mass at 6:00p.m. CDT, followed by a procession with the Maria Rosa Mystica traveling statues while praying the rosary, and a reception afterwards to celebrate our priests and consecrated souls, and to answer any questions for anyone interested in joining the praying Knights group. 

Borrowing from Churchill’s sentiment during World War II, “we shall defend our church, whatever the cost may be, however many rosaries it might take, we shall love God above all, we shall teach the faith, we shall love our neighbor as ourselves, we shall fight in our environments and in the streets, we shall fight against the forces of evil; we shall never surrender.”

If you feel a call, if you simply feel that you want to attend this special celebration or you are curious about this group, join us July 13 at St. Benedict Cathedral!

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