UPDATED: 29th April 2018
The Rosary On The Coast took place earlier this afternoon, along coastlines spanning the entire outline of the United Kingdom.
Although I had intended to join a particular group, in the end I was the only person present on the beach. However, despite being alone I did not feel at all alone; I was deeply conscious of the thousands of other people around the various coastlines, offering the same Rosary – it had been agreed that the Glorious Mysteries would be prayed. There was something wonderful about standing literally at the edge of the sea, looking across to the islands and watching as the tide receded gently, and feeling a deep sense of unity with all those other souls doing exactly the same thing.
There was also a deep sense of the spiritual during the third Mystery, the Descent of the Holy Spirit, emphasised by the wind blowing powerfully along the empty beach and taking the prayers out across the sea. That was a very powerful moment which I will remember.
For many thousands of people to come together at the same moment, scattered across every corner of the land but all praying the Rosary in unison, is quite extraordinary.
Events of this sort bear fruit. Those fruits may be seen soon or perhaps later, but they will certainly be seen at some future point. They are spiritual fruits primarily, but will have a very real effect on the nations of the United Kingdom in one way or another – the precise nature and effects of those fruits will become apparent in time, God willing.
What is certain is that the Blessed Virgin heard the prayers offered today in Her honour, and She will obtain great grace from the Lord as a result; She is never outdone in generosity.
Now, it is just a question of waiting patiently and continuing to pray.
Tomorrow afternoon, Catholics across the nations of the United Kingdom will gather in groups all along the British coastline to take part in ‘Rosary On The Coast’. For some weeks, numerous parishes across the Dioceses of Great Britain – from the south of England to the Isles of Scotland – have been planning and arranging, organising buses, deciding on locations, taking names. At the time of writing, there are more than 360 locations showing on the map.
The purpose of the event is stated on the Rosary On The Coast website –
‘To witness to the power of prayer to change lives as we come together to ponder, like Our Lady, on the events of her Divine Son’s life reflected in the mysteries of the Holy Rosary, the compendium of the Gospel. To witness to the ancient and vibrant Christian history that is at the heart of our national story by praying and doing penance to bring unity, peace and healing to our troubled society. We hope to contribute to the re-establishment of a culture of life in our nations through prayer and sacrifice. We hope to inspire a pro-life conscience among all peoples through a loving and compassionate witness.’
The event is subtitled ‘for faith, life and peace in the British Isles’ and it is timed to coincide with the fiftieth anniversary of the passing into legislation of the Abortion Act on 27th April 1967. A period of forty days of spiritual preparation for the day began on the feast of Saint Joseph, 19th March. It is also envisaged that the event will form part of the spiritual preparation for the re-dedication of England under it’s ancient title as the Dowry of Mary; this will be undertaken by the Catholic Hierarchy of England on the feast of the Annunciation in 2020. The Catholic hierarchy across the nations of the United Kingdom have broadly supported the event. One of the leading supporters has been Bishop John Keenan of the Diocese of Paisley, Scotland, who wrote –
“Our world is engaged in a fraught struggle over the meaning of the human person. Aggressively secular anthropologies insist that nothing is really true or given in human nature, and the only lasting good for each human person comes about when they can choose everything about their identity from its very source. It brings a radically new meaning to the idea of pro-choice because it seeks to lay hold on the very prerogatives of Creation itself. Against this our Christian anthropology battles on proposing that God, in His loving plan of Creation, has already given us a nature that is best for us, so that our meaning and happiness are integrally linked to discovering, rather than inventing, the truth of who we are, and so entering its path to real dignity, freedom and peace. Since this task is now, in our times, an adventure of evangelisation we need God’s supernatural assistance in grace and mercy, which the laity are beginning to cry out for in initiatives like the Rosary on the Coast, asking the Woman who was content to be the handmaid of God’s plan to be their intercessor and guide.”
The explanatory material provided by the co-ordinators of the event notes that –
‘The religious response of people of Faith is to turn to Jesus and to appeal to Our Lady as Queen of Peace, who witnessed the most terrible of evil of all at Calvary andwhose silent sacrifice, in union with Her Son‟s, saw that same evil defeated andlasting grace inaugurated. It is the Lord‟s triumph over death, which transforms thehopelessness of the tomb into the joy of Easter Resurrection. With Christ at the heart of our lives we can dare to HOPE for change!
Are we prepared to stand at the foot of the Cross-of the Calvary of our time and in fervent prayer, plead for the Mercy of God to descend and for the precious blood of Jesus to cleanse us and make way for the healing and purifying rays of Divine Mercyto envelop us all and prepare the way for God‟s reign of blessing and peace throughout the world?’
May the Mother of God hear and answer the prayers of the faithful gathered to honour Her through the recitation of Her holy Rosary, and by means of it to seek Her maternal and very powerful intercession.