Each year, people have been praying for life in October and January. After all, October is Respect Life Month and January is the anniversary of Roe v. Wade.
“We were looking for ways to make being pro-life an issue that is more prominent in the Catholic Church,” said Dcn. James Matthias, director of the Respect Life Ministry for the archdiocese. “The goal is to make praying for life a regular occurrence and not just something that happens in October and January.”
So, this summer, the Archdiocese of Milwaukee and the Respect Life Office started a Traveling Rosary program to pray for the protection of the unborn and support for mothers and fathers facing difficult pregnancies. On the first Saturday of every month, a different parish in the archdiocese hosts the Traveling Rosary.
“We didn’t want it to always be in one place, like in front of an abortion clinic or at a particular corner. We wanted to be able to move the event around so that it could be in Fond du Lac, it could be in Racine, it could be in Brookfield, it could be at the Cathedral. And people could attend these events, even if it wasn’t at their parish,” Dcn. Matthias said.
Because the archdiocese covers 10 counties, there are plenty of opportunities to visit different churches.
“We want to bring it to many parishes throughout the archdiocese and develop a regular band of ‘rosary groupies’ who love the rosary and like to see other churches in action,” Dcn. Matthias said.
That is exactly what has started happening. The first event was held in July at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Racine. In August, it was held at St. Sebastian in Milwaukee, where Matthias serves as a deacon.
“We had people who regularly attend adoration at our parish, but we also had three people who traveled to it. One person even took a bus from Butler and came to the event,” Dcn. Matthias said.
Dcn. Matthias has attended all the services.
“It has been beautiful so far,” he said. “I think it is cool to visit the different churches and see what they are like. Some of those churches I haven’t been in. Some of them are older, some of them are newer. And different people are involved.”
Each event typically lasts about an hour. Each parish determines the type of service it will host. Some parishes are having a Mass. Some offer reconciliation. Some have adoration.
“It can be any combination of those things. Each parish can put together whatever prayers they would like. They can add music. They can be silent. During the summer months, we would love to see it held outside,” Dcn. Matthias said. “The key ingredient is there will be a Rosary for Life, which includes petitions for the protection of life from conception to natural death.”
Dcn. Matthias noted that over the past 50 years, many people have spent time offering their prayers and petitions through the rosary for an end to abortion.
“Now that it has happened, we continue to pray for the softening of hearts and changing of minds that is necessary to build a culture of life throughout our world,” he said. “Being pro-life isn’t just something we do in October and January. It needs to be taught and lived every day – in our homes, schools, and our communities.”
Praying the rosary and asking Mother Mary to intercede for life issues has been very important in the past.
“People who stood in front of the abortion clinics and prayed the rosary, those prayers did not go unheard. We don’t know how many people were turned away by just having seen us praying the rosary. We don’t know how much effect this had on Roe v. Wade being overturned,” Dcn. Matthias said. “All the glory to God, because it doesn’t happen by us, it happens through him. And the rosary is a great way to communicate with God.”
However, the job is not done yet.
“Money that was being spent to subsidize abortion centers needs to be redistributed to parents who choose life for their babies. We have to make abortion unthinkable and choosing life easier. We can’t do it alone and so we continue to pray,” Matthias said.
The next Traveling Rosary for Life will be held at 9 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 1, at St. Dominic Catholic Church, 18255 W. Capitol Drive, Brookfield. Dcn. Jeff Kucharski will lead the rosary and Eucharistic Adoration at the event.
For a current schedule of the Traveling Rosary or more information, visit www.archmil.org/travelingrosary or email Dcn. Jim Matthias at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Traveling Rosary for Life – Schedule
Saturday, Oct. 1, 9 a.m.
Dcn. Jeff Kucharski
Rosary and Eucharistic Adoration
18255 W. Capitol Drive, Brookfield
Saturday, Nov. 5, 8 a.m.
Rosary, Mass and Reconciliation
Mass at 8 a.m.; Eucharistic Adoration, Reconciliation and the Rosary for Life from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m.
Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary
701 Michigan Ave., North Fond du Lac
Saturday, Dec. 3, 1 p.m.
Dcn. Mike Finley and Dcn. Dennis Petrie
Rosary and Eucharistic Adoration
St. Anthony on the Lake
W280N2101 Prospect Ave., Pewaukee
Saturday, Jan. 7, 2023, 8 a.m.
Fr. Subi Thomas
Rosary, Mass, Eucharistic Adoration and Reconciliation
Ss. Cyril and Methodius
822 New Jersey Ave., Sheboygan
Saturday, Feb. 4, 2023, 8 a.m.
Rosary and Mass
St. John Vianney
1755 N Calhoun Road, Brookfield
Saturday, March 4, 2023, 9 a.m.
Fr. Tim Kitzke and Fr. Carlos Londoño
Rosary, Adoration and Reconciliation
2011 N. Oakland Ave., Milwaukee