A bishop who received a vision of Jesus telling him to pray the Rosary to restore peace in northern Nigeria is calling on Catholics to get involved with a persecution charity’s Rosary initiative.
Bishop Oliver Dashe Doeme of Maiduguri – who will be launching Aid to the Church in Need’s #RedWednesday Rosary Campaign with a public recitation of the devotion at St Patrick’s, Soho Square this Sunday (22nd October) – said those participating would become an army of prayer.
In the run-up to its annual #RedWednesday event in late November, Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) is encouraging Catholics to pray 100,000 decades of the Rosary for persecuted Christians in Africa.
He told ACN: “It was Pope Pius IX who said ‘Give me an army praying the rosary and I will conquer the world.’
“One of the main Marian devotions we embark upon in the Catholic Diocese of Maiduguri is the praying of the Rosary.
“And this prayer is contributing immensely to our victory over the Boko Haram insurgency in the diocese.
“Our constant praying of the Rosary has drawn us closer to Our Lady, who in turn is crushing the head of the monster known as Boko Haram.”
In April 2014, Bishop Dashe Doeme received a vision in which Jesus appeared at the right side of the altar in his chapel, where he was praying the Rosary for the Chibok schoolgirls who had been kidnapped by the Islamist militant group.
Bishop Dashe Doeme saw Jesus offering him a sword, which turned into a Rosary when he took it. Three times Jesus said “Boko Haram is gone” before the vision ended.
The prelate said he was “totally shaken” by the experience and kept quiet about it for a year – but promoted renewed devotion to the Rosary throughout his diocese.
At the height of its power, in 2014, Boko Haram controlled about 20,000 square miles of northern Nigeria, but successful military campaigns have seen the group lose most of the territory it formerly held.
Bishop Dashe Doeme concluded: “I encourage all Christians in different parts of the world who are facing one form of persecution or the other to remain steadfast in praying the Rosary.
“Mother [Mary] will continue to win victory over our persecutors for us. God bless you all.”