Finger Rosaries and booklets were presented to pilgrims courtesy of the Knights of Columbus. Rayanne Bennett photo

Finger Rosaries and booklets were presented to pilgrims courtesy of the Knights of Columbus. Rayanne Bennett photo

By Mary Stadnyk | Associate Editor

From the time they boarded the buses in the early morning hours of Nov. 4, straight through their return ride home that evening, the daylong diocesan pilgrimage to the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception provided participants of all ages an opportunity to immerse themselves in various forms of prayer experiences.

To aid the estimated 2,000 pilgrims in the recitation of the Rosary en route to and from the shrine in Washington, D.C., as well as throughout the day, the Knights of Columbus Supreme Council provided a generous gift to the Diocese of Trenton in the form of some 2,500 silver-plated finger Rosary rings, along with prayer booklets that included instructions on how to say the Rosary. The booklets were available in both English and Spanish.

Because the Rosary rings are small and can be easily tucked away, such as in a jacket pocket, “they can be used anywhere … People can pray the Rosary at any time, such as when they are stuck in traffic,” said Dan Rossi of St. Gregory the Great Parish, Hamilton Square, who is a Supreme Council board member.

Rossi, who journeyed to the Basilica with his wife, Alyce, said the main reason for the Supreme Council’s donation was not only to encourage people to pray the Rosary, but also to offer their intentions for strengthening family life. In turn, Rossi said it’s the Knights’ goal to show that they are working with the Church in helping to build up the family structure, because the family is the domestic Church. Having strong family structures, he said, will lead to having strong parish communities.

“It’s all related,” Rossi said. “If we don’t build up the families, then how can we expect our parishes to remain strong?”