CV NEWS FEED // The Diocese of Baton Rouge is sponsoring a “Rosary for Healing and Hope After a Loss from Suicide” at the end of November.
The diocese is sponsoring the rosary event at St. Aloysius Catholic Church in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on November 30, through the collaboration of the directors of four diocesan departments: the Evangelization & Catechesis Office, Catholic Schools Office, Marriage & Family Life Office, and Youth & Young Adult Ministry Office.
“People seem more open to talking about their experiences of a loss by suicide, and so we felt called to gather in prayer for healing and hope,” Dina Dow, Director of Evangelization and Catechesis for the diocese, told CatholicVote.
“This is the first time we have hosted an evening of prayer specifically focused on those who have experienced a loss from suicide or have accompanied another who experienced a loss from suicide. It is also for those who are without any personal experience with suicide loss yet feel called to pray with the faith community,” said Dow.
Suicide is the third leading cause of death for people aged 10-24 in Louisiana, according to the Louisiana Department of Health. For every one person who dies by suicide, 135 people on average knew him or her, the LDH estimates. Among these 135 suicide loss survivors, more than six experience a “major life disruption” as an effect of the suicide.
Additionally, the LDH reported that suicide loss survivors are at greater risk for suicide themselves.
The rosary will be prayed with “accompanying meditations” at the prayer event, Dow explained. “[This will] include passages from Sacred Scripture, as well as reflections focused on the feelings that one may experience from such a loss. There will also be petitions for grace, comfort, strength, and hope.”
Dow talked about the role that praying the rosary and the Blessed Virgin Mary have in offering hope to those who have lost a loved one to suicide.
“Suffering is what most of us would like to avoid, yet many know that suffering is part of living. This is true in the life of Christ Jesus. This is true in the life of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This is true in the life of all disciples who follow the Lord. Entrusted to Mary at the foot of the Cross, the Church, under Mary’s maternal care, seeks her intercession as our light of hope,” Dow said.
Dow quoted the words of Pope Benedict, who wrote, “The Church greets Mary, the Mother of God, as ‘Star of the Sea.’ Life is like a voyage on the sea of history, often dark and stormy, a voyage in which we watch for the stars that indicate the route.”
“Mary is a light of hope,” Dow said after recalling Mary’s title as Star of the Sea. “Through the intercession of the Blessed Mother, one who herself experienced the depths of sorrow…, we anticipate in this time of prayer to be filled with God’s healing love. As a result, we follow the light of divine compassion to discover true consolation in Christ Jesus, the Light of the World.”
To register for the Diocese of Baton Rouge rosary for healing from loss from suicide, click here.