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Magisterial Documents: Recurrens Mensis October

Magisterial Documents: Recurrens Mensis October

Apostolic Exhortation on the Recurrence of the Month of October Pope Paul VI
7 October 1969

The full document is available on the internet.

Brief History

Recurrens Mensis October was written to commemorate the fourth centenary of Consueverunt Romani, an apostolic letter from St. Pius VI, who explained and fostered the traditional form of the Rosary. The main objective of the document is to refresh and encourage the rosary devotion. The three parts discuss the intercession of Mary as a way to turn to God. The first section calls everyone to be peacemakers. The second part is devoted to the obligation of every Christian to pray, and the third part lists the prayer intentions.

The document is pastoral and devotional in nature, and does not incorporate a broad range of doctrinal concepts. It is mentioned in this study to indicate the continuum in Pope Paul VI's thought regarding Marian intercession and devotion, particularly the rosary.

Through Christ all grace is given. (cf. Rom 8:32) At the same time, "How can we do otherwise than to depend lovingly upon the incomparable intercession of Mary, his Mother, of whom the Gospel tells us that she 'found favor with God'?" (cf. Lk 1:30) (RMO 5) Mary's interecession is explained in view of the Cana episode in the Gospel. (Jn 2:15) As Lumen Gentium 62 taught, "Mary continues to intercede with her Son in favor of her children on earth." (RMO 8)

The Rosary is called – "as Pope John XXIII desired, 'a great public and universal prayer for the ordinary and extraordinary needs of the holy Church, of the nations, and of the entire world,' for this Rosary is, as it were, 'the Gospel in miniature,' and 'henceforth, a devotion of the Church.'" (RMO 15)


Misunderstandings prevalent
I. The Intercession of Mary
No peace without God
Reasons for confidence
II. Obligation of Every Christian
All must pray
III. Prayer Intentions
All must be peacemakers


AAS 61 (1969):649-654;
The Pope Speaks 14:3 (1969):247-251

© This material has been compiled by M. Jean Frisk.
Copyright is reserved for The Marian Library/International Marian Research Institute.
Most recently updated in 2005.

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