The Pontifical Swiss Guard
In the early part of 2016, Fr. Richard Heilman became aware that the Commander of the Pontifical Swiss Guard had seen and very much liked Fr. Heilman’s creation: The Combat Rosary™, which is based on the original WWI military-issue Rosary. Fr. Heilman asked if he could donate one for each of the Swiss Guard. This offer was gratefully accepted by the Commander.
This speech was given by Colonel Christoph Graf, Commander of the Pontifical Swiss Guard, at the Vatican on May 6, 2016. His address was made to the new recruits about to be sworn in.
This was also the 100th anniversary of the original WWI military-issue rosary that was commissioned and procured by, believe it or not, the U.S. government and issued by the military, upon request,
to soldiers serving in World War I. While all of these were made in 1916, these were also distributed to soldiers serving in WWII.
“At the right time, at the beginning of the year, a generous donor surprised us with a gift. He sent the Pontifical Swiss Guard the most powerful weapon on the market: the Combat Rosary,” Graf said. “Literally, the Rosary for the fight. It was immediately given to all the guards. It is important to find the way of prayer, especially the prayer of the Rosary.”
The Combat Rosary™, shown by Commander Graf, is based on the original WWI pull chain rosary. The Combat Rosary is now the official rosary of the Pontifical Swiss Guard.