The Portal November 2017 - Page 10

THE P RTAL November 2017 Page 10 Thoughts on Newman Memento Mori The Rosary, Newman and memories from The Revd Dr Stephen Morgan E very so often – though not nearly often enough – I give myself over to some act of conventional piety. I wondered whether the most apocalyptic predictions about the hundredth anniversary of the final appearance of Our Lady at Fatima might not just be right, so I thought to mark October, the month of the Holy Rosary, with scrupulous attention to that “Gospel in miniature”, as Pope St John Paul II called it. My devotion to the Rosary has, I admit, waxed and waned over the years, although my confessor is a great devotee and never tires of proposing it as a cure for lack of fervour in prayer.   So, it was with these thoughts in mind that I took up again the set of brown, polished wooden beads that lie on the table in my study next to my Breviary. This Rosary was a present to me thirty years ago when I began (subsequently aborted) seminary studies at Oscott. It had been given to me by a dimunitive woman in my home parish, into whose four feet ten frame God had crammed enough faith for someone twice the size. The Rosary had belonged to her husband who had died some years before, clutching them, as he clutched them every night as he prayer himse