October: Dedicated to the Rosary
This month is dedicated to the Rosary because the feast of Our Lady of they Rosary happens on October 7. According to Rev. Matthew Mauriello in his article entitled "October-Month of the Holy Rosary" (see http://campus.udayton.edu/mary//meditations/Fcc.html) "Current scholarship traces the development of the Rosary to the High Middle Ages where it came into being in various medieval monasteries as a substitute for the Divine Office for the lay monks and devout lay persons who did not know how to read. Instead of the 150 psalms, they would pray 150 "Our Fathers" counting them on a ring of beads known as the crown or "corona." With the growth of popularity of Marian devotion in the twelfth century, the "Psalter of the Blessed Virgin Mary" developed now substituting 150 "Hail Marys" in place of the "Our Fathers."
The 150 "Hail Marys" were subsequently subdivided into fifteen decades by the young Dominican friar, Henry Kalkar (1328-1408), with each decade referring to an event in the life of Jesus and Mary. The Dominican, Alanus de Rupe (1428-1478) further divided the episodes in the history of salvation into the joyful, sorrowful and glorious mysteries. He also attributed the origin of the Rosary, then known as the "Psalter of the Blessed Virgin" to St. Dominic and thus spurred the Dominican Order to make the Apostolate of the Rosary their special concern. The Dominicans have, since then, promulgated the Rosary with notable results.
The practice of dedicating the entire month of October to the Holy Rosary developed toward the end of the last century. Pope Leo XIII (papacy: 1878-1903) strongly promoted the increase of devotion to the Blessed Mother by encouraging the constant use of the Rosary."
For information about the Blessed Mother, see the University of Dayton's Marian center at http://campus.udayton.edu/mary/liturgicalseasonsoctober.html
Note: The late Holy Father John Paul II promulgated an additional decade of the rosary dedicated to the Luminous Mysteries. They may be found here: http://www.rosary-center.org/luminous.html
For a list of Marian feasts a resource link open for all to use, no matter what curriculum you have chosen, go to http://rclweb.com/resources/marian-feasts/
Catholic Updates are available to be read online at no charge. There are three of them on the rosary in their archives:
The Rosary of the Virgin Mary: Pope John Paul II Apostolic Letter on the Rosary: http://www.americancatholic.org/Newsletters/CU/ac0103.asp
The Rosary: A Gospel Prayer http://www.americancatholic.org/Newsletters/CU/ac0589.asp
The Rosary: A Prayer for All Seasons http://www.americancatholic.org/Newsletters/CU/ac0589.asp