Friday, February 9, 2007

The Mexican Folk Rosary

A major rap against the saying of the rosary that I used to have was that I would get bored and be thinking of anything but prayer long before I got to the second decade. Thus, some time ago, I started saying "scriptural rosaries" where every Hail Mary has a particular meditation relating to its mystery. Do an internet search, or better yet, make your own scriptural rosary prayers using your bible and other resources.

Jayne from So Many Devotions who keeps resurrecting old and new devotions left and right has come up with another one, the Mexican Folk Rosary. Check it out.

Thinking about that, I was musing about another blogger who informed me that she attempts to say her Rosaries in Latin! Wow, when that Tridentine Indult comes down the pike, if and when, she'll be right up there with the Pharisees in the front pews with her Paters and Aves and Glorias, I would guess!

But folks who are still on the adventurous side might also think about saying their conventional rosaries in Spanish. What a great way to learn a foreign language. I would imagine it would raise a few eyebrows, though, when you order your tacos by saying "Give us this day my daily taco" before your vocabulary gets expanded.

It seems that Rosary practices are not the same in every country. At least that's what I discovered at, the bilingual network about travel, faith, and the arts. As this website states:

The basic elements are always the same, namely, the meditation themes called the Mysteries and the decade prayers that accompany them. But the Church allows worshipers to add other pious exercises before, during, and after the Rosary, according to local custom and personal preference.

English-speaking Roman Catholics in the United States perform a comparatively simple version of the Rosary. Spanish-speaking Roman Catholics in Mexico perform a more elaborate version of the Rosary.

Are you familiar with the Mexican Folk Rosary? It is a Church-approved devotion that is especially suited to public worship:

Roman Catholics in Mexico have a special affection for the Holy Rosary. They hold Rosary events in church, in private homes, outdoors, or anywhere the faithful choose to meet for prayer. Most parish churches offer a daily Rosary every afternoon.

Rather than offer only the required prayers, Mexican Catholics add invocations, the Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary, hymns, and prayers borrowed from many sources, including the Psalms, the Angelus, and the liturgy of the Mass...When a priest is not present, a lay volunteer called a rezandero or rezador (feminine: rezandera/rezadora) leads the prayer.

There are many social occasions when Mexicans gather to pray the Rosary: Christmas season parties (posadas); inauguration and retirement ceremonies for officers of religious sodalities; during or after religious processions; the nine nights following the death of a family member; other life cycle observances; and the eight afternoons preceding the feast day of a favorite saint. A ninth rosary is held on the afternoon of the actual feast day.

The folks at ixeh offer online versions of the Rosary. For the U.S. Rosary online, go here. For the Rosary Mexican-style, go here.

In case you're wondering...ixeh, in Nahuatl (the principal native language of Central Mexico), means a person who is intelligent and wise. The goal of is to "encourage better communication between the peoples of Latin America and the United States, including matters concerning the Roman Catholic faith." So Many Devotions. . . So Little Time
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