Browsing Fr. Poggemeyer's Weekly Letter

June 27, 2021


Dear Parishioners,

What does a pastor’s rosary look like? I don’t mean the physical look.… (But, I can tell you the rosary I use now is one that was gifted to me from a family from Mexico. The various decades are created with beads that are white, red and green, i.e., the colors of the Mexican flag. And there is an image of Our Lady of Guadalupe right before all the decades start. This rosary hangs on the chair in my rectory chapel.) I carry always in my pocket a plain black rosary, given to me by Pope Saint John Paul II.

Anyhow, I really mean, how does a pastor pray the rosary? My praying of the rosary has evolved throughout the years of my life. Here’s a bit of a glimpse at what it looks like now. Maybe it can give you some inspiration regarding how the rosary works in your own life.

Before the Rosary starts, I offer it for the poor souls in purgatory, my godchildren, my relatives adopted and biological in every direction on earth, and towards heaven, those who are on the list for prayers in our bulletin, those who are afflicted in any way by the extraordinary work of the devil in our diocese, and finally for vocations from our parish.

For the first “Our Father” (the one right after the Creed), I think about the Pope, and everybody immediately around him who tries to help him; and I asked Our Lady to guide him and protect him from error. Then, I also think about Bishop Thomas, and I ask Our Lady to provide for him everything he needs for the day. Then, I think about all of the priests in our diocese, especially those with whom I work most closely, those in my priests’ support group, and those I remember from around the country and around the world, with whom I have studied or worked. I also think about the priests I helped form in seminary work. Then with this Our Father I also think about any spiritual directees I have, then seminarians, then religious sisters… And I ask the Blessed Mother to meet all their needs for the day, guiding the graces from her Son Jesus. 

After that “Our Father”, I recite the three “Hail Mary’s” for an increase in the theological virtues of faith, hope and charity. 

Next come the decades where we focus on the individual mysteries of Our Lord’s life. I follow the traditional schedule for the mysteries… The Joyful Mysteries on Monday and Saturday, the Sorrowful Mysteries on Tuesday and Friday, the Luminous Mysteries on Thursday, and the Glorious Mysteries on Wednesday and Sunday.

Before each decade, in order both to announce the decade and apply it in an intercessory way for my parish, I say following prayer, which I made up: “Blessed Mother, by the merits and graces of your Son’s scourging at the pillar [or nativity, or transfiguration, etc., etc.], overcome within my parish boundaries all the ordinary and extraordinary work of the devil, and bring us all to fervent holiness.”

I end each decade with the “Glory Be” and the “Fatima Prayer” (i.e., “Oh my Jesus, forgive us our sins,... etc.). And, I usually add after that a prayer I learned some years ago from the Family Apostolate near Steubenville, Ohio: “All for the Sacred and Eucharistic Heart of Jesus, all through the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary, all in union with Saint Joseph.”

When all five decades are complete, I conclude the rosary with the “Hail Holy Queen” and the “Prayer to St. Michael”.

So, there is what a pastor’s rosary looks like. Have a blessed week and great 4th of July celebrations!

In cordibus Iesu et Mariae,

Fr. Poggemeyer


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