Pray Rosary for Peace, Benedict XVI Urges

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VATICAN CITY, OCT. 7, 2007 ( Benedict XVI asked that the rosary be prayed for peace in families and in the world.

"This is something that Mary has also offered in various apparitions," the Pope explained today to the thousands of pilgrims gathered in St. Peter’s Square for the midday Angelus.

"I am thinking especially of her appearance at Fatima which took place 90 years ago," the Holy Father said from the window of his study. "To the three little shepherds, Lucia, Jacinta and Francisco, presenting herself as 'the Madonna of the Rosary,' she insistently recommended praying the rosary every day to bring an end to the war."

"We also desire to welcome the Virgin’s maternal request, committing ourselves to saying the rosary with faith for peace in our families, in countries, and in the whole world," he added.

On this day that the Church celebrates Our Lady of the Rosary, the World Day of the Rosary also takes place. That initiative began 11 years ago in Mexico, uniting millions of people on five continents to pray the rosary in public places.

The Pope explained, "[T]he rosary is a means given by the Virgin for contemplating Jesus and, meditating on his life, for loving and following him always more faithfully."