All of my calendars give October 7 as the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary. And so it is. But, as Fr Hunwicke explains
That great Pontiff, S Pius V, established the Feast of our Lady of Victories to celebrate the triumph of Christian arms at the battle of Lepanto, October 7, 1571, a victory won by the countless rosaries which clanked through the hands of the Rosary Confraternities of Western Europe. They begged God for the safety of Christendom against the invading Turk. Gregory XIII pusillanimously renamed the feast as 'of the Rosary', and popped it onto the first Sunday of October (a stone's throw from the Feast of the Protecting Robe of the Mother of God in some Byzantine calendars) where it stayed until the reforms of S Pius X. But, to this day, those who follow the Extraordinary Form are allowed, on the first Sunday of October, an External Solemnity of this feast. And, after all, no homilist could be forbidden to refer to this celebration as our Lady of Victories.
Dom Mark Kirby has a series of meditations on the Holy Rosary and the feast day here
and a reprint of Pope Leo XIII's Rosary encyclical Supreme Apostolatus Officio here
Fr Hunwicke has a series of posts on Our Lady of Victories here
, and here
. In the first of these you will find the above quotation.
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