Parish rosary challenge for vocations in the Diocese of Saginaw

(by Deacon David Gillespie, Director of Parish Life, Our Lady Consolata Parish, Cass City/Gagetown/Sebewaing)

Can 20 minutes bring about change?

A staff member (Julie) was traveling this summer and attended Mass at St. Patrick Parish in Hudson, Wis. Looking at the parish’s bulletin, Julie noticed that the parishioners at St. Patrick had taken on a Rosary challenge with the intention of an increase in vocations in their diocese. St. Patrick’s set a goal of praying 1,200 rosaries in one month and more than doubled that goal, praying 3,235 rosaries.

Julie brought the bulletin back with her to Our Lady Consolata Parish (Cass City, Gagetown Sebewaing) and suggested that maybe we could do a similar challenge. Knowing that October is the Month of the Rosary, and that this year’s pastoral plan theme for Our Lady Consolata Parish is “Year of Prayer,” we thought, the Rosary challenge would be great. We researched how large St. Patrick Parish is and decided that, although we are about half the size, to set a goal of praying 1,000 Rosaries for an increase in vocations to the priesthood in the Diocese of Saginaw.

We announced the challenge in our parishes during weekend Masses and also in our bulletin the first weekend of October. As of October 10, 422 rosaries were prayed, and by the following week a total of 904 rosaries were prayed. The wonderful thing about all the rosaries being prayed is that we have not held a large rosary gathering. People are practicing their faith outside of Mass and without the promise of a “reward” when we reach our goal.

Our Lady implores everyone to: follow her son, pray the Rosary each day and to do penance for our sins. We are prayerful that in some small way our parish will contribute to an increase in vocations to the priesthood. Even if we do not see the increase immediately, Our Lady Consolata Parish is trying our best to practice our faith not just on Sunday but every day.

We are so proud of how our parishioners have responded to our “Rosary challenge.” In the end, we prayed just over 1,800 rosaries for vocations.

What is your parish doing to increase awareness about vocations in our diocese? One easy way we have found is to ask our people to start with praying the rosary.

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