A man adorned in the flag of Spain prays the rosary for Spain on Dec. 8, 2023. / Credit: ACI Prensa
ACI Prensa Staff, Jan 3, 2024 / 07:00 am (CNA).
The Rosary for Spain, which has been prayed in Madrid since Nov. 12, has announced that on Jan. 6 it will be united in communion with a worldwide prayer crusade promoted by the Confraternity of Our Lady of Fatima.
The objective of the initiative, a response to what the confraternity calls “the tremendous crisis now afflicting the Catholic Church,” is to implore, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, God’s help and intervention, particularly for the Holy See in Rome.
Last November, a group of faithful began praying the rosary for Spain in front of Immaculate Heart of Mary Shrine in Madrid, located near the national headquarters of the ruling Spanish Socialist Workers Party (PSOE), where uninterrupted citizen protests continue.
At the origin of these demonstrations and the public praying of the rosary in Madrid are the post-election political deals reached by Spain’s President Pedro Sánchez, which include agreements with political forces that have supported terrorism in the past or were involved in the attempted secessionist coup d’état in Catalonia in 2017.
These pacts were branded “immoral” by several bishops and the Spanish Bishops’ Conference (CEE) expressed its concern about the deterioration of social and political coexistence in the country.
Encouraged by the regular participation of the faithful at the Rosary for Spain in Madrid, and given the attempts to prevent these public expressions of faith by the government, the organizers called for a nationwide rosary on Dec. 8, the solemnity of the Immaculate Conception.
Due to the success of that event, which spread nationally and internationally, the organizers announced that same day that, in addition to the daily prayer in Madrid, they were asking the faithful in Spain to pray the rosary in public on the first Saturdays of each month.
Reasons to pray the rosary on Jan. 6
At the moment, 45 Spanish cities and three locations abroad have already confirmed where the rosary will be prayed on Jan. 6, the feast of the Epiphany of the Lord.
In Colombia, the initiative has been taken up by Myriam Margarita Ruiz Rivera, a 59-year-old social worker who told ACI Prensa, CNA’s Spanish-language news partner, that she is convinced to pray “for the triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary in the Church and in consecrated religious in Colombia, the Americas, Spain, France, and throughout the world.”
In Ireland, a 48-year-old mother, Kathy Cidón, was encouraged to call for praying the rosary in public in her town of Naas along with other Spanish families when she saw “that this initiative came from laypeople convinced of the power of the rosary as an indispensable spiritual weapon for these times.”
According to Cidón, “praying the rosary together with thousands of people in Spain and around the world fills us with hope and increases our confidence that it is our Mother who guides us and takes care of us. We come to her like little children kneeling at her feet.”
In León, Spain, professor Virginia Sáenz de Miera, 51, will lead the rosary in Immaculata Square. Sáenz is convinced that “we are living in times in which we can’t afford being lukewarm. We must be brave and fight for our Catholic roots and values.”
Sáenz said that “the rosary is the most powerful weapon to win the battle against evil. If before we prayed it in our homes, now we pray it together and in our squares. That’s what you get when you try to destroy our nation. We will continue fighting and we will win because God is with us.”
Esther Senosiain is a building engineer and lives in Pamplona, Spain. She believes that “Catholics must play a primary role in public life” and that “not doing so has led us to the times we live in.”
Senosiain said she hopes that through these prayers, the Virgin “may forgive us, help us, that she may remember what this land once was for world Catholicism, that we may serve as an instrument so that other people would want to seek God again.”
The main reason for Miguel Ángel Martínez, an artisan in traditional fabrics, to organize the public prayer of the rosary in Valencia, Spain, is “the persecution suffered by the Catholic Church internationally,” and his goal is “the restoration of the reign of Christ in Spain and the world.”
From Salamanca, Spain, Miguel Ángel Sánchez, 26, maintained that “without God’s help we cannot achieve anything, which is why we want to ask the Virgin to intercede for Spain at this critical moment.”
Sánchez said: “It’s important to do it publicly, even more so now that the world demands that we leave our faith at home to continue de-Christianizing our country.”
Fernando Terrones is a 42-year-old coach who has decided to lead next Saturday’s prayer in Jaén, Spain, next to the Assumption of the Virgin Cathedral.
His motivation is clear: “Evil is making its last offensive to steal from God all the souls it can, before the imminent triumph of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Those of us faithful to him must do everything in our power to impede evil, which we can only do if we go hand in hand with Our Lord Jesus Christ.”
Jesús María Álvarez, a professional in the steel industry in his 50s from the Asturias region on Spain’s northern coast, could not sit idly by last Dec. 8 when the first national rosary prayer event was announced. ”Seeing that no one was inspired to call for one in Asturias, I decided to take the step,” he told ACI Prensa.
“For quite some time now, Catholics have been fighting a full-fledged spiritual battle. Satan has infiltrated not only the Church but also the institutions,” he pointed out.
Álvarez commented that the belief that “nothing is a sin anymore” has been established in society while “they want to destroy the concept of the [Spanish] homeland with separatism, communism, freemasonry, socialism, etc.”
Faced with this situation, which he called a “crossroads,” he said that “we have to show our faces. Lukewarmness is not acceptable, Christ does not want it. We are the Church militant and our weapons to combat evil are the holy rosary and the holy cross.”
This Saturday’s event will also be held in the island territories of Spain. From the city of Santa Cruz on Tenerife Island in the Canaries, Pablo Valera, a 21-year-old student, said that “the national rosary headed up by our colleagues from Ferraz [Street in Madrid] aims to make Spaniards aware that the sociopolitical chaos we suffer is nothing but an effect of national spiritual illness. From Santa Cruz of Santiago on Tenerife, we will ask most holy Mary to obtain for us from God the spiritual reconquest of her land.”
This story was first published by ACI Prensa, CNA’s Spanish-language news partner. It has been translated and adapted by CNA.