Commentary on the Gospel of
Memorial of Our Lady of the Rosary
In today’s gospel, the disciples ask Jesus to teach them how to pray. Jesus shares the words that many of us know as the “Our Father”. I believe this question is asked by people all over the place. What is the best way to pray? I believe there is no right or wrong way to pray. I participated in a wonderful morning of reflection for Mothers a few years ago. A wise woman proposed that Mothers find prayer in some tasks that may seem mundane. For example, doesn’t it make sense to pray in thanksgiving when cleaning up after a meal? When one is bathing a child, isn’t it appropriate to reflect on the miracle of life? When one celebrates a birthday, there is opportunity to pray for continued health and happiness for the one being celebrated. She challenged us to turn some of those ‘thankless tasks’ into prayer.
As I reflect on my own prayer journey, I go back to my childhood. I remember each of my parents kneeling beside their bed in the morning and in the evenings. We often prayed the rosary as a family. My siblings and I were tucked into bed and prayed every night with our parents. When we were little, it was something as simple as “Jesus bless…and there was quite a litany of family, friends and pets for whom we asked Jesus’ blessing. The list grew if we didn’t want to go to sleep! The guardian angel prayer was another favorite and it a prayer that I say every morning and every night. When I got too big to run to my parents’ room during a scary thunderstorm, my mother suggested I pray until I could fall asleep. I still do this today! As an ICU/ER nurse, I can’t tell you all the times I prayed with my patients and their families during some really tough times. I helped my three children learn to pray. I’ve fervently prayed when one of my children has been sick. Along with my Mother, my siblings and treasured friends and family I believe that my Dad was prayed right into to heaven.
As I drove to work this morning, I was pondering the notion of prayer. As I headed east I saw the most beautiful sunrise. The sun was gigantic and a beautiful smoky pink. It caused me to pause and thank God for a bright, beautiful start to a day that would most certainly be full of challenges. It also led me to pray for protection for those impacted by the fires that are causing the smokiness that I saw in the morning sky.
Coincidentally, today is the Memorial of Our Lady of the Rosary. The rosary is one of my favorite prayers. It’s my favorite because it brings me such calm. I feel such an incredible sense of protection when I make time to pray the rosary. I’ve been praying is frequently of late as It is a prayer of peace and protection. The world needs peace now more than ever.
So, here’s the challenge…if you are a praying person, take some time to reflect on your prayer journey. If you are not a praying person, consider giving it a try.
Here are some words that may help…
"Prayer is nothing else than being on terms of friendship with God."
-Teresa of Avila
"Prayer is not an old woman's amusement. Properly understood and applied, it is the most potent instrument of action."
- Mahatma Gandhi