Signifying Catholics’ emphasis on Marian devotion and Respect Life initiatives during October, Southern Tier parishes joined in with a variety of events.
At Blessed Trinity/St. Patrick parishes in Tioga County, a Living Rosary took place at Waverly’s St. James Church Oct. 9, two days after the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary. Nearly 50 people attended, with participants taking turns leading the Hail Mary at the microphone. Meanwhile, votive candles — in the shape of a rosary and surrounding a statue of Mary — were lit, one by one, for each bead prayed. When the rosary concluded, Father Anthony Amato, parochial vicar of Blessed Trinity/St. Patrick, addressed the congregation about the importance of the rosary in today’s world and society.
The Living Rosary is organized by St. James’ Altar and Rosary Society each October, as well as in May, which also is a Marian month.
“It’s important that we continue this tradition, this devotion to our Blessed Mother,” said Lainie Lasater, the society’s president.
Elsewhere in Blessed Trinity/St. Patrick, a Public Square Rosary took place Oct 13 at the Newark Valley Village Green near St. John the Evangelist Church. This rosary is held nationwide each Oct. 13 beginning at noon to note the anniversary of the Miracle of the Sun, an apparition of the Blessed Mother in 1917 in the Portuguese community of Fatima. In addition, on Oct. 14, St. Patrick Church in Owego hosted adoration and a Holy Hour before a full-sized replica of the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe.
Father Amato acknowledged the importance of his parishes’ Marian events, saying, “Through the ages, it has always been our mother Mary who has guided us as a church in times of great turmoil. We have a mother in heaven who watches out for us, protects us and gives to us all the graces that flow from the heart of Jesus. Whether it is under the title of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Our Lady of Fatima or one of the many titles we give her, the people of our (Tioga) churches know they have a loving mother who provides her immaculate heart as our refuge.”
Among the other recently held rosary and Marian events in the Tier:
‚Ä¢ Public Square Rosary gatherings also took place Oct. 13 at St. Casimir Church in Elmira (Most Holy Name of Jesus Parish); Harry Allen Park in Honeoye Falls (St. Paul of the Cross, Honeoye Falls/St. Rose, Lima/St. Agnes, Avon); St. Brendan in Almond (Diocese of Buffalo) with parishioners from Our Lady of the Valley in Steuben County joining in; and across the street from the Planned Parenthood facility in Ithaca. In addition, a rosary rally was held Oct. 14 at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in Painted Post, followed by exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and adoration.
‚Ä¢ The pilgrim statue of Our Lady of Fatima was on display Oct. 6-20 at St. Paul of the Cross Church in Honeoye Falls, with the rosary being prayed every weekday. In addition, the church hosted a rosary and Holy Hour on Oct. 18, with Nancy Lynch from Notre Dame Retreat House serving as guest speaker.
‚Ä¢ St. Mary Church in Corning took part in a Rosary Coast to Coast initiative Oct. 7, with the rosary being prayed in locations across the country on the Our Lady of the Rosary feast day. Also at St. Mary, a novena to Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal, begun Oct. 9, is continuing each Tuesday through Dec. 4 at 6:30 p.m.
‚Ä¢ All churches of St. Luke the Evangelist Parish in Livingston County offered rosary recitation before Masses in October.
‚Ä¢ The rosary was prayed before Masses all month at St. John Vianney Parish in Steuben County.
‚Ä¢ A special rosary, Benediction and litany took place Oct. 23 at Elmira’s Our Lady of Lourdes Church.
Additionally, Respect Life Month was highlighted by the following Tier events:
‚Ä¢ National Life Chain was held Oct. 7 at the corner of Church and North Main streets in Elmira. Participants prayed silently from 2 to 3 p.m. for the end of abortion, as did groups across the country on the same afternoon.
‚Ä¢ The 40 Days for Life fall campaign in Ithaca will conclude Nov. 4. As part of a national initiative, constant prayer for the end of abortion is being held daily by groups and individuals from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. near Planned Parenthood at 620 W. Seneca St.
‚Ä¢ St. Mary, Honeoye/St. Matthew, Livonia collected diapers and wipes for Mary’s Place, a refugee ministry in Rochester, in observance of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Respect Life Program.