The Rosary Christian Tutorial Association is a non-profit Catholic Spiritual Apostolate. We are dedicated to the task of the new evangelisation within Australia.
Our Mission is accomplished primarily through mass media communication inclusive of Publishing, Internet, Television, Satelllite and Radio broadcasting.
We are totally and sincerely loyal to the One Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church and adhere entirely to the truths of the Magisterium, Scripture and Tradition as proclaimed by the Supreme Holy Pontiff and his predecessors.
History of the Devotion to Our Lady Help of Christianswith kind permission of Servants of Mary Help of Christians (Australia)
The Blessed Virgin Mary is venerated under many titles, and over the centuries when invoked by the faithful she has come to the aid of individuals, of families, of towns, kingdoms, and whole nations; but the title under which Mary has performed Her greatest prodigies is that of "Help of Christians". Five times in the course of two and one half centuries Mary has virtually saved Christanity from eclipse and from a 'spiritual dark age'.
Constantinople had fallen in 1453, and the whole of the East was under Arab rule. In the year 1571 a huge Turkish armada set sail to capture the Eternal City. An insignificant fleet manned by Christians assembled at Lepanto. From the human point of view the outcome was inevitable-destruction, enslavement, spoilation, desecration. The Pope of the day, St Pius V, called upon every Catholic to invoke the aid of the Mother of God under Her title 'Help of Christians', and to storm heaven unceasingly with Rosaries; the faithful responded, and the battle got under way. It would be many days afterwards before word reached Rome of the outcome of the struggle, but the Pope was granted a vision in which he saw that christendom was saved that day. Forthwith he proclaimed on that day October 7th 1571, a new Feast in honour of Our Lady. The Feast of the Most Holy Rosary.
But though the Arab power had been broken the determination ultimately to prevail remained and finally motivated the Arab leaders to try again. The new threat came in 1683 when an army of 200,000 Turks faced an army of 30,000 Christians whom they besieged in Vienna. Once again the outlook, by human standards was hopeless, the Christians outnumbered seven to one.
When the reigning Pontiff Blessed Innocent XI heard of the predicament of the Christian forces, he immediately commended the Christian cause to Our Lady Help of Christians, and besought all christendom to recite Her Rosary. The Battle for Vienna began on the Birthday of Our Lady September 8th. It raged on for four terrible days; and when it ended on the Feast of the Holy Name of Mary, the Turkish army was crushed and would never again present a threat to Christendom.
A little over a century later, in 1800, what the Turks had failed to do, the French, under Napoleon, succeeded in doing; the Eternal City fell; fifty venerable churches in Rome were put to the torch, and the Pope, Pius VI, was carted off to France where he died in prison from the effects of ill treatment. The forces of atheism had triumphed ... God was dead, the Pope was dead, and when the new Pope Pius VII was elected, the anti-clerical newspapers made the pun: "Not Pius VII but Pius the last!"
In 1809 Bonaparte again seized the new Pope and had him dragged off to France where he languished in prison, suffering greatly at the hands of his anti-catholic gaolers. The whole of Europe was now subservient to Bonaparte; yet the despot wished to rule the world, and with this in mind he made a proposition to the Pope: "If you will show your approval and crown me," he said, "I will set you free, and when I have conquered the world, we will rule it together, I it's secular head, and you it's spiritual head." The Pope only smiled at such vanity and impudence; and instead of ceding to the tyrant's secular crowning request, (Bonaparte crowned himself) he made a vow to Our Lady that if she would restore freedom to the Church, he would honor her with a new Feast. Forthwith he succeeded in smuggling out from prison a message beseeching the bishops to call on the faithful to pray to Our Lady Help of Christians for deliverance.
Napoleon, at the head of an army of one million men, set out on the next stage of his conquest of the world- Russia! By the spring, all his fine troops were dead, except a mere thirty thousand, and the mighty Bonaparte was no longer Emperor. On the very day Napoleon signed his abdication, Pope Pius VII made his triumphal re-entry into the Eternal City, after five agonising years incarceration; and on that same day, May 24th 1814, the Pope, true to his vow to Our Lady, proclaimed as his first official act the Feast of Mary Help of Christians.
Seven years later a disenfranchised Catholic minority in the British colony of New South Wales, began to build the first basilica dedicated to Mary Help of Christians, known today as St Mary's cathedral, Sydney; in 1844 the first Synod in the British realm since the Reformation proclaimed Mary Help of Christians Patroness of Australia; eight years later, Her Feastday was authorised on a national basis.
On the other side of the world, Our Lady appeared to Don Bosco in 1844 and commanded him to build Her a church under the title Mary Help of Christians, providing him with precise instructions down to the last detail of its construction; when work began, the saint could offer the contractor only eight cents towards the total cost; yet donations began to pour in from all parts of the world, so that when the magnificent basilica was completed with not a cent was owing.
Surmounting this structure are two lateral cupolas, on each of which stands an angel holding a banner; Don Bosco, subsequent to having received a vision, had one banner inscribed with the date 1571, and the second banner with the incomplete date 19--, thus presaging that in the latter part of this twentieth century, Mary Help of Christians would again be called upon to rescue Christendom from a seemingly all-powerful enemy.
Today we look back at the rise of Pope John Paul II, his motto - Totus Tuus - Totally yours. A Pope dedicated to Mary, his whole approach to Christ based on her, and we witnessed the "visible" defeat of communism with the Fall of the Berlin Wall and later collapse of USSR in 1991 after a century and a half of struggle.
Although Mary is venerated in Australia under a variety of titles...Our Lady of Fatima, Our Lady of Lourdes, Our Lady of Perpetual Succour, Immaculate Heart of Mary...one rarely comes across an image of Mary Help of Christians in the home, nor does one even hear of a Perpetual Novena to Mary Help of Christians.
American Catholics have a holy day of obligation on the Feast of their National Patroness, the Immaculate Conception; Australian bishops have recently elevated the Feast of Our Patroness to a Sunday observance Feast.
The Church is faced with new internal enemies, unlike those She faced at Lepanto, Vienna, and Moscow; the battle for Christanity is now raging in the consciences of individuals; the weapons being used against them are spiritual and more devastating than those used against previous generations. Secular governments are making laws whereby a variety of mortal sins become legal, and communications media are presenting these sins in the form of entertainment for all, whilst millions die through abortion.
Pope after Pope have issued their warnings and made their appeals; all have pointed to Mary whose help, which is none other than the power of the Eternal God, is only a prayer away; the enemies of the Church don't openly deny this; they merely insist that there is no cause for alarm; yet their aim is nothing less than the total destruction of the Christian cultural tradition. What bitter remorse would be ours if apathy for prayer on our part gave them the victory! Therefore let us take the positive step and pray now - today - for happily today is not too late. The true warriors of Holy Mother Church are rising yet again to victory led by the Holy Mother. The media and culture our new battleground.PRAYER FOR AUSTRALIA
Dear Mary Help of Christians,
In this time of rapid change and deep national need, contrive that a spirit of unselfishness shall sweep through this nation, so that, strong and orderly our- selves, we may be able more effectually to assist the hungry, oppressed, and underprivileged of other nations, and thus play a positive role among the peoples of the earth. Direct all peoples within our shores to pull together, with the Church, wherever She is working to spread the Gospel message of Jesus Christ.
Give Australia God-guided leadership; give her men of integrity, and women of gentleness, that the young may grow in their good example. When so many people lack the things they need, may we not waste our resources on that which we can do without. Inspire us to give more generously to assist the good works others have begun; to exchange our bitterness, grumbling, greed, fear, and prejudice, for faith, hope and love. In the past we have put money-making, material goods, and pleasure before our concern for other people; Do not allow barriers of mistrust to spring up between husbands and wives, parents and children, employers and employees, city dwellers and countrymen. We have resisted self-discipline and respect for authority; allowed perverted behaviour to become acceptable; and human sexuality to be exploited. Strengthen those who are working to raise the quality of our literature, films and television, so that, in place of doubt,and despair, there may be proclaimed the message of hope.
So often, Dear Mother, in the history of Europe, You have successfully been invoked to save Christian civilisation, and have come to the aid of your children in their struggles against barbarian hordes, and enemies of the Cross. We now call upon You, Mary Help of Christians, our Beloved National Patroness, as by a special right! Graciously hear our prayer. Amen.
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