Saint Mary’s initiates the “Traveling Rosary”
Emilie Kefalas | Tuesday, October 7, 2014
To commemorate the month of the rosary, Saint Mary’s Campus Ministry will host a weekly Traveling Rosary in each of Saint Mary’s dorms every Tuesday during the month of October, Fr. John Pearson said. The first rosary was held Tuesday evening outside McCandless Hall, marking the start of what Pearson hopes will become a tradition long after October.
“It’s the first time we’ve ever tried this in my nine years [at Saint Mary’s],” Pearson said. “We just wanted to jump start it. The month of the rosary seemed like a good time, a natural time. We thought, ‘Why not do it in every dorm every week?’”
Pearson came up with the notion of the “traveling” rosary, not to be confused with praying the rosary while walking in a group.
“We actually thought about that,” Pearson said. “I’ve been in places where we’ve tried to do that, and it’s very hard. You’ve got the people in the front who know what’s going on, and then the people in the back are just trying to keep up.”
Campus Ministry hopes to make each rosary at every location special in some way. By holding the service at 7 p.m., students will be available after dinner for prayer, Pearson said.
“We’re starting right on the feast of the Lady of the Rosary,” Pearson said. “We’ve had the rosary for a long time on Tuesdays. My hope is that we’ll have established a group that will by the end of the year will want to pray the rosary.”
For those who don’t have a rosary with them on campus, Campus Ministry and Pearson provide rosaries with prayer cards.
“We have a whole bunch of rosaries the sisters gave us,” Pearson said. “Most students have a rosary their grandmother gave them. I’m going to have a bag of rosaries in general and a bag of prayer cards in case people freak out at the Apostles’ Creed.”
As a reminder for students and a promotion for the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary, the Noble Family Dining Hall prepared and served a special themed cake during lunch and dinner hours.
“We’re serving a cake tomorrow for Our Lady of the Rosary,” Pearson said. “We have table tents set up in the dining hall to try to remind them, and get a leader from each dorm who will do a set of mysteries each night. We’re going to rotate through the mysteries on Tuesdays. We’re going to mix them up.”
With the help of hall ministry assistants and flyers across campus, Pearson has received a positive response to this month-long series of prayer.
“I’m looking forward to it,” Pearson said. “I love to pray the rosary. Nobody prays the rosary as much as they ought to. This is an exciting thing, a chance for people to take part in something special.”
All of the previous student leaders who led the rosary last year have graduated, Pearson said. This offers a chance for a fresh start in a different way, and many students have already contacted him saying they would like to participate, he said.
“I’ve been interested in praying the rosary since I got here,” Pearson said. “… Praying the rosary … is a very [critical] part of Catholic culture.”