Tag Archives: Gloria Brady Hoffner

100th Anniversary of the Apparitions of Fatima Rosary by Ghirelli

13 May

    May 13, 2017 marked the 100th Anniversary of the day on which Mary, the Blessed Mother, appeared to three children, Lucia, Francisco, and Jacinta, in Fatima, Portugal.   On that day, Mary told the children to return to the same place on the 13th of each month.  The children did as they were told and saw Mary every month from May 1917 to October 1917.

The Ghirelli Company, supplier of religious articles to the Vatican, made a rosary to commemorate the anniversary.

 The crucifix of this 100th anniversary rosary shows the Basilica and the Colonnade, the shrine that now marks the place of the Apparitions.  The three  children are shown walking toward the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

 The reverse of the crucifix has the anniversary dates, 1917-2017, and the words that Mary said to the children, ” My Immaculate Heart will be your refuge and the way that will lead to God”.

 The center medal has an image of Mary and a Crown of Thorns in the shape of the Immaculate Heart.

  The reverse of the center medal has the words, ” In the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph”.

Our Lady of the Rosary

In 1947, Jose Thedim received a commission to create a statute to commemorate Mary’s appearance to Lucia, Francisco, and Jacinta. The sculptor based his art on a description he received directly from Lucia, who in 1947 was a nun living in a convent in central Portugal.  (Francisco and Jacinta died in childhood during a  flu epidemic.)   The statue is remarkable in that it is the only artistic representation of Mary that is based on a description from someone who actually saw her.

This representation of Mary wearing a white gown is often called Our Lady of the Rosary because that is the title Mary used when the children asked for her name.

 

To learn more about rosaries, crosses, crucifixes, and medals read The Rosary Collector’s Guide by Gloria Brady Hoffner and Helen Hoffner.  This 152 hardcover reference book, published by Schiffer Publishing, has over 200 color photographs of rosaries ranging from the Boxwood Rosary of England’s King Henry VIII to those honoring Pope Francis.

The Rosary Collector’s Guide is available from Barnes and Noble, Amazon, the Catholic Faith Store, and other book stores, religious article stores, and online vendors.

 

 

First Holy Communion Rosaries, Prayer Books, and Cake Toppers

30 Apr

 

Do you remember the day you received your First Holy Communion?  Today most Catholics  receive their First Holy Communion as children, usually at age 7 or 8.  Before 1910, however, Catholics were not permitted to receive Holy Communion until they had reached age 14.    On August 15, 1910, Pope Pius X issued a decree re-establishing Quam Singulari, an ancient church law on first communion. This decree lowered the reception of communion from age fourteen to age seven, an age at which the church felt children understood right from wrong.

 

Families often celebrate a child’s First Communion Day with a party and a special cake.  The classic cake topper shown above was first made in 1959 by Hartland Plastics. It was six inches tall and was available in retail stores as well as catalogs including Sears & Roebuck, Montgomery Ward, and J.C. Penney.  Customers could purchase a cake topper with a girl or a boy.  The design has remained popular although it is outdated.    When it was created in 1959, most Catholics received communion by kneeling at an altar rail like the little girl shown.  After the 1960s reforms of Vatican II, however, it has become more common for Catholics to stand when receiving communion.  The cake topper had a certificate on the bottom so that the family could record the child’s name as well as the date and the church in which First Holy Communion was received.

 

  Many churches award certificates to each child who makes First Holy Communion.

  A rosary and prayer book is the traditional gift at First Communion.  Many of the early prayer books contained a pocket to hold the rosary.  Traditionally, girls receive a white or pink rosary and boys receive a black or blue rosary.

Gloria Brady made her First Holy Communion in St. Barnabas Church in Philadelphia in 1934.   She received a rosary that day and became so fascinated with it that she began to collect rosaries.    In 2014, she collaborated with her daughter, Helen Hoffner, to write The Rosary Collector’s Guide, a 152 page hardcover book that explains the many variations of the rosary approved by the Catholic Church.

 

    

Now Gloria Brady Hoffner exhibits her collection and discusses her research with those who share her interest in the rosary.

 

   The Rosary Collector’s Guide, published by Schiffer Publishing, is available in Barnes and Noble, Amazon, the Catholic Faith Store, and other book stores, religious article stores, and online sellers.  The book has over 200 color photographs of rosaries, crosses, crucifixes, and center medals ranging from the Boxwood Rosary owned by England’s King Henry VIII to rosaries honoring Pope Francis.

 

Divine Mercy Rosaries

22 Apr

Sister Faustina is shown with a painting recreating the vision of Christ.

On April 30, 2000, Pope John Paul II declared, “Throughout the world the Second Sunday of Easter will receive the name Divine Mercy Sunday, a perennial invitation to the Christian world to face, with confidence in divine benevolence, the difficulties and trials that mankind will experience in the years to come.”   The pope made that proclamation during the mass in which he canonized Saint Faustina. ( The Feast of Mercy, EWTN, http://www.ewtn.com).

Saint Faustina was given the name Helen Kowalska at birth and took the name Sister Maria Faustina when she entered the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy.  It is said that Christ came to her and asked her to spread word of his mercy.  This Polish nun was instructed to have a painting made showing Christ with blood and water flowing from His sides and the words, “Jesus, I trust in you.

Sister Maria Faustina Kowalska (1905-1938) was a member of the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy.  Many rosaries have been created as remembrances of Divine Mercy.  The rosary shown above has a center medal showing Christ and it comes in a box that honors Saint Faustina.

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Pope Francis declared a Jubilee Year of Mercy that stretched from 2015 to 2016.  The Ghirelli Company created a rosary to honor that special time.  The Ghirelli Year of Mercy Rosary has a cross that shows both Christ and Pope Francis.

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The center medal of the Ghirelli Year of Mercy Rosary shows the Prodigal Son to emphasize the beauty of mercy and forgiveness.

 

The Divine Mercy Rosary shown above has beads of red and white to symbolize the blood and water flowing from Christ.  The center medal has Saint Faustina on one side and Christ on the reverse.

Catholics are encouraged to say the prayers known as the Chaplet of Divine Mercy at any time of the year.  Divine Mercy is especially remembered, however, on the Sunday following Easter.

To learn more about rosaries, center medals, crosses, and crucifixes, read The Rosary Collector’s Guide by Gloria Brady Hoffner and Helen Hoffner.  This hardcover reference book published by Schiffer Publishing contains over 200 color photographs ranging from the carved boxwood rosary owned by England’s King Henry VIII to rosaries honoring Pope Francis.  The Rosary Collector’s Guide is available at Barnes and Noble, Amazon, The Catholic Faith Store, and other book stores, religious article stores, and online sellers.

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Rosaries of Easter

14 Apr

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Easter, the greatest feast of the Catholic Church, celebrates Christ’s resurrection from the dead. Rosaries honoring this special day often have centers with symbols of the resurrection or a figure of the risen Christ and beads of pastel colors. Many have additional features on the crucifix in remembrance of the events of Holy Week, the days preceding Easter.

The rosary shown above has a center with the Risen Christ and beads in the colors of Easter.

The lily is the traditional flower of Easter because according to legend, lilies could seen growing in the Garden of Gethsemane after Christ’s suffering on Good Friday. Lilies are reminders of hope and life after trials.

Each bead of the rosary shown below is formed in the shape of a lily.  The center medal shows the Risen Christ.

The rosary shown below has a color picture of the Risen Christ in the center medal.

Easter is a time to celebrate the beauty of the rosary.

To learn more about unique rosaries, crosses, crucifixes, and center medals read The Rosary Collector’s Guide. This hardcover, 152 page reference book, contains 240 color photographs of rosaries and related religious articles. Published by Schiffer Publishing, The Rosary Collector’s Guide is available on Amazon.com, the Catholic Faith Store Online, Barnes and Noble, and other bookstores and religious article stores.

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Going Dancing with the Stars? Take Your Rosary !

1 Apr

 When Olympic gymnast Simone Biles traveled to Los Angeles to compete in Dancing with the Stars  did she bring along her gold medals?  Probably not, but it is highly likely that she brought her rosary.   During her years of competing in national and international events,  the talented gymnast always carried her rosary in her duffel bag.  She told US Weekly, “My mom, Nellie, got me a rosary at church. I don’t use it to pray before a competition. I’ll just pray normally to myself, but I have it there in case.” *

Gold medals are great souvenirs but a rosary is essential.  When you see Simone on the dance floor, know that her rosary is with her.

To learn more about rosaries, read The Rosary Collector’s Guide by Gloria Brady Hoffner and Helen Hoffner.  With over 200 color photographs of rosaries, crosses, crucifixes, and center medals, this 152 page hardcover book published by Schiffer Publishing will answer your questions about the rosary’s history.  From the boxwood rosary owned by England’s King Henry VIII to rosaries honoring Pope Francis, this book will show you unique rosaries throughout history.

The Rosary Collector’s Guide is available at Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com, the Catholic Faith Store, Rosary Parts, and other book stores, religious article stores, and online sites.

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Reference: Sprunk, Cara. World Champion Gymnast, Olympic Hopeful Simone Biles: What’s In My Bag?

http:/www.usmagazine.com/celebrity-style/news/simone-biles-whats-in-my-bag-w212070?utm_source=email

The Irish Penal Rosary: The Hidden Rosary

17 Mar

penal4  In the early 18th century, laws in Ireland kept  Catholics from practicing their religion openly.   Penal Laws of the day led Catholics to hide religious articles so that they would not be punished.   The Penal Rosary, a one decade rosary that could be hidden in a pocket or up a sleeve, was created for those wanted to pray the rosary secretly.

The Penal Rosary begins with a loop that slips around the thumb.   A capped Pater (Our Father) bead and  ten Ave (Hail Mary) beads  follow.    After the first decade of the rosary is said, the loop is moved to the first finger.  As each decade is completed, the loop is moved to the next finger.  The rosary is complete when five decades have been said.

penal3The Penal Crucifix contains symbols of the passion of Christ.   The jug shown near Christ’s right hand represents the chalice used at the Last Supper.  Instruments near Christ’s left hand symbolize cords used for binding.   The spear shown below  Christ’s right  side  represents the spear used at Calvary.  A ladder to Christ’s left refers to the act of crucifixion.

penal2The reverse of the Penal Crucifix contains additional symbols of the crucifixion.  The V shape in the middle represents three nails used for crucifixion.  The bird and container below it refer to the story that Judas betrayed Christ at the time of the crucifixion.

penal4The Penal Rosary is an appropriate form to use during the month of March.  It helps Catholics reflect upon the Crucifixion of Christ and recalls Irish heritage.

RosaryCollectorsGuideTo learn more about the history of the rosary, read The Rosary Collector’s Guide by Gloria Brady Hoffner and Helen Hoffner.  Published by Schiffer Publishing,  The Rosary Collector’s Guide is a 152 page hardcover reference book with more than 200 color photographs of rosaries, crucifixes, crosses, and center medals.  It helps collectors identify unique religious articles and explains their history.  The Rosary Collector’s Guide is available on Amazon.com, the Catholic Faith Store Online, Catholic Gifts, Barnes and Noble, and other bookstores, religious article stores, and online sellers.

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Rosary for a Snowy Day

14 Mar

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A winter snowstorm has hit many parts of the United States.  Have you ever experienced a summer snowstorm?

According to legend, a summer snowstorm occurred in Italy in 352 A.D.    On the night of August 4,  a wealthy couple prayed to Mary, Our Lady, because they wanted a child to make them a family.   That night, Mary appeared to them in a dream and instructed them to build a church in her honor on the Esquiline Hill.  Mary said that the site for the new church would soon be outlined in snow.   On the same night, Mary also appeared to Pope Liberius and announced the coming of a miraculous summer snowfall.  When residents awoke on August 5, they found the Esquiline Hill covered in snow.  The outline of a church could be seen in the snow.  Less than two years later, the Basilica of Saint Mary Major was built on that site.   In honor of that summer snowfall,  Mary is sometimes referred to as Our Lady of the Snows.

 

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The rosary shown here has clear blue beads and a center medal honoring Our Lady of the Snows.    In place of Pater Beads, it has medals honoring additional titles for Mary including Our Lady of Fatima, Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal, Our Lady of Lourdes. and Our Lady of Perpetual Help.   Rosary makers have created many rosaries to commemorate the miraculous summer snowfall.  Some have bubble beads with images of Mary while others have unique pater beads.

 

To learn more about antique and unusual rosaries, read The Rosary Collector’s Guide.  This 152 page hardcover book has over 240 color photographs of unique rosaries, crosses, crucifixes, and center medals.  The Rosary Collector’s Guide is available in Barnes and Noble, Amazon.com, the Catholic Faith Store online, and other bookstores.  For more information contact Schiffer Publishing by phone at (610) 593-1777 or online at http://www.schifferbooks.com

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