Friday, November 19, 2010

The Fortieth Rose

".....Be that as it may I shall say no more than to assure you, in the words of  Blessed Alan de la Roche, that the Holy Rosary is the root and the storehouse of countless blessings.  For through the Holy Rosary:

1.  Sinners are forgiven;
2.  Souls that thirst are refreshed;
3.  Those who are fettered have their bonds broken'
4.  Those who weep find happiness;
5.  Those who are tempted find peace;
6.  The poor find help;
7.  Religious are reformed;
8.  Those who are ignorant are instructed;
9.  The living learn to overcome pride;
10.  The dead (Holy Souls) have their pains eased by suffrages.

One day Our Lady said to Blessed Alan:

"I want people who have a devotion to my Rosary to have my son's grace and blessing during their lifetime and at their death, and after their death I want them to be freed from all slavery so that they will be like kings wearing crowns and with scepters in their hands and enjoying eternal glory."

- From: The Secret of the Rosary, St. Louis De Montfort

I absolutely love this book (The Secret of the Rosary)!  I have been reading bits and pieces in conjunction with the Preparation for Total Consecration to Jesus through Mary.  At times, some of my non Catholic friends have brought up the Rosary as one of the "problems" that separate us from our Protestant brothers and sisters.  Lately, as I've been meditating on the readings and on the Rosary...I figured something out!  I had an "aha" moment!  There IS a difference between saying the Rosary and praying the Rosary.  Semantics you say?  Nope.  Here's why:

"In order to pray well, it is not enough to give expression to our petitions by means of that most excellent of all prayers, the Rosary, but we must also pray with real concentration for God listens more to the voice of the heart than that of the mouth.  To be guilty of willful distractions during prayer would show a great lack of respect  and reverence; it would make our Rosaries fruitless and would make us guilty of sin.  How can we expect God to listen to us if we ourselves do not pay attention to what we are saying?" --The Secret of the Rosary (Forty-Second Rose).

We are supposed to be meditating on the various mysteries, not just spouting off the memorized prayers.  I think of all the times I've whizzed through my Rosary just to "get it done" without really even thinking about the Life of Christ at all.  I am going to make a real effort to pray my Rosaries from now on.  How about you?


aspiring... said...

As a Catholic coming from a Protestant background --- and Protestants do believe in heaven's saints and in interaction with them --- I can say that devotion to Mary and interaction with her made perfect sense to me when I considered that she is a saint. Our love of Mary isn't an idolization any more than we idolize St. John the Baptist or St. Paul or St. John or any others. It's simply relationship and affinity with them and their life story. We'd best call on all the help we can get, right?

Regarding your aha! moment. How wonderful ! Love it when that happens ! You're right on. And it soo happens that Mary attends those who pray the Rosary and if you pay attention enough to assimilate and internalize the stories gradually and make them yours, she inspires or interjects new insight - each and every time. If you're distracted or inattentive you won't 'hear.' The format and discipline of the Rosary is a look at Christ's life through the eyes of his mother who knew him and who was there for all of it, and who is also blessed of God herself. She's a great source of inspiration and insight and instruction. Catholics happen to call on her while most others don't. Hopefully we'll all call on her in earnest sooner or later.

A great post Nancy, an inspiring one. I'm reminded of things I know but haven't been on my mind in a while...

<3, aspiring...

Michele said...

hi nancy, as posted on my blog, your Saint for 2011 is Saint Gertrude the Great. thanks for visiting!

Patricia said...

Hello Nancy, you have made a great point here. I need to work on my wandering attention during the Rosary and stay fully "in the moment". I do try but..I have to keep reeling my mind back to the purpose of the prayer :-)
Thanks for the encouragement. blessings..Trish

Abbey said...

I have the most beautiful statuete of Our Lady that was giving to me by my daughter on Mother's Day. Gazing upon her as I say the Rosary helps to keep my mind from wandering off. And, as you say, simply repeating the prayers quickly so as to get finished quickly leaves you with nothing, simply put. Embracing the words, the mysteries, and meditating with heart and soul leaves the most beautiful feeling of peace and calm, having participated in a conversation with God, Jesus and Our Lady. There's nothing like it, nothing!


Mary333 said...

I love this book, too, Nancy! Thanks for the excellent post on the Rosary and thanks for the link on the couple who are accepting votes on whether or not they should abort their baby. I could sense that there was something fishy about the whole thing!