The Rosary Campaign: Changing the Course of History

Fr. Mark-Mary and Fr. John Anthony Boughton talk about the influence The Rosary has had throughout history. It ain’t just your grandma’s prayer!

The Rosary has influenced many conversions and led to massive victories for the Church against her enemies. One of these victories came on October 7th, which later became the feast day of Our Lady of the Rosary. This day was chosen as her feast day because it was on this day that the Church defeated the rise of the Ottoman Turks.

In 1571, the Turkish Empire was on the verge of seizing all of Europe, which would have led to the capture of several large Christian territories. In response, Pope Pius IV called for two things: for people to rise up and help defend the Church, and an international rosary campaign. He also commanded that an image of Our Lady of Guadalupe be placed on the front of the Christian command ships. 

So on the day of the Turk’s arrival, before the battle, all the Christian soldiers knelt and prayed the rosary for protection. It seemed that all the odds were against them, however, at just the right time, the winds shifted in their favor, sending their boats sailing into the Ottoman’s, and defeated an army who was 5 times larger than them. This victory stopped the Turks from entering and seizing Europe, and ended their conquest. 

But this isn’t the only time the rosary has influenced history. During WW2, the Bishop of Portugal asked for a national rosary campaign to be said for protection from the Germans. And as a result, while the rosary was being said, the Germans never showed up to take Portugal. No one can explain why they wouldn’t have showed up. 

One more example was in 1945 when 8 Jesuit priests were in Hiroshima, less than a mile from where the atomic bomb was laid. Everything around them was utterly destroyed, including their church, but their small parish home was left untouched, and they were free from radiation as well. All because they were praying the Rosary.

The Rosary can cause real change to happen, and will protect you in any circumstance you find yourself in. So when you feel overcome with the weight of today’s world, or feel that evil is taking over, sit down and pray the rosary. We’ve seen history changed by it before, and it can happen again so long as we have faith. 

New to the Rosary? Looking to go deeper? Check out Ascension’s Pocket Guide to the Rosary from Matt Fradd. It draws from the writings of the saints, the Bible, and Catholic tradition to help Catholics deepen their prayer life and improve their ability to pray.

Meet Fr. Mark-Mary

Father Mark-Mary was ordained as a Franciscan Friar of the Renewal (CFR) in 2018 and lives at a friary in the Bronx.

The mission of the CFRs is to wholeheartedly embrace Jesus through fidelity to the Church and her Sacraments. Paired with their commitment to prayer, contemplation, and study of Sacred Scripture, the CFRs serve those around them, especially the poor, in the footsteps of Christ.

Discover beautiful music from the CFRs and Fr. Mark-Mary’s book Habits for Holiness: Small Steps for Spiritual Progressboth available from Ascension.