Pope Leo XIII (1810-1903) is best known for Rerum Novarum, his famous encyclical written in response to the social injustices of the Industrial Revolution. He also composed the prayer to St. Michael, the archangel, following a mystical experience in which he heard Satan tell Our Lord that he could defeat the Church if he had more time and more power. Pope Leo understood that the coming century would be the bloodiest in history and that the Church would be attacked from many directions. In order to enter into spiritual combat, he ordered that extra prayers be said after every low Mass including the St. Michael prayer. These are the same prayers that we now say after Sunday Mass.
There has never been a papacy as dedicated to the Rosary as that of Pope Leo XIII. He understood that the rosary was a spiritual weapon that would help expand the kingdom of God and establish peace in families, society, and the entire world.
In his eleven encyclicals on the rosary, he taught that a Christian trying to live the faith without Mary is like a bird trying to fly without wings. He believed that the rosary was part of the solution to the social problems of his day. He encouraged everyone to pray the rosary daily. He expected all priests and missionaries to preach the rosary because of its power to conquer evil and heal human hearts.
“A rosary a day keeps the devil away.”
For the Greater Glory of God,