LIBERA ME, Domine, Iesu Christe, ab omnibus iniquitatis meis et universis malis,
fac me tuis semper inhærere mandatis et a te numquam separari permittas. Amen.

Friday, 29 October 2010

Five for Sorrow, Ten for Joy

October – the Month of the Rosary – draws towards its end; but I hope that none of us lose our commitment to the Most Holy Rosary, and the easy way which that offers of keeping directly in touch not only with Our Lady, but also with Our Lord through the repeated contemplation of the mysteries of His life and death.

There are, of course, many splendid books – and probably even more rather ‘average’ books – about the Rosary and its mysteries; and of course it’s never a bad thing to read and consider one of the good books, as it not only may give us some new insights, it will in any event freshen up our existing considerations just because changes in language and phrasing offer new directions for perception, and thus solidify and deepen our understanding of the implications and dimensions of the mysteries . . . which hopefully has benefits for us not only now, but into the future.

The very first book I personally read about the Rosary was perhaps, in one way at least, an unusual and unexpected book : Five for Sorrow, Ten for Joy by J. Neville Ward was first published in 1971, and republished in 2007.

Unusual and Unexpected ? Well, I know that a lot of people, both at the time of its publication and ever since, have found it odd that a Methodist Minister wrote a book about – and enthusiastically commending – the Rosary; and I have heard (and have no reason to doubt) that Pope Paul VI had, and used, a copy of it in translation . . . which is all perhaps a little surprising, even now; and in 1971 was probably even more bewildering.

Let me commend the book to you; it will give you ideas and insights into the Mysteries of the Holy Rosary (alright; the original fifteen; it was written well before the Luminous Mysteries were suggested by His late Holiness), and stimulate your mind in ways which will undoubtedly have an effect on you . . . and very probably expand your thinking about the mysteries of the Rosary for ever.

Read the book – it’s still easy to obtain – I hope enjoy it, and do please say a prayer for the repose of Neville Ward’s soul.

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