I have recently been engrossed in a book called “Tuesdays with Morrie” by Mitch Albom. In this novel, Mitch writes about the final lessons he learned from his dying professor’s bedside. They cover a range of topics such as death, fear, family and forgiveness. Morrie offers the wisdom of an old man who suffered greatly to learn life’s greatest lesson: “If you learn how to die, you learn how to live.” I myself learned a lot from reading this novel, and much of what was already in my heart was affirmed by this agnostic Jewish man.
While reading this book, I also tried to make more time to pray the Rosary each day. Just as I had found wisdom in Morrie, a 78 year old “man-of-all-religions,” I realized a wellspring of even more wisdom and grace: Mary, our Blessed Mother. Much like the old man Morrie, Our Lady has known great suffering, which has led to even greater wisdom and charity. She, like Morrie, has learned “how to die” to herself, to submit entirely to God’s will, and to have compassion towards those who have not yet learned this great lesson. Morrie, who was slowly being suffocated by ALS, was touched by others’ suffering as if it were his own. Similarly, Mary, whose “heart was pierced with a sword,” learned to suffer alongside her precious Son, and still longs to comfort poor sinners in their anguish. I confided to Mary my deep desire to one day be a loving and selfless wife to my fiancé, and to mother my future children with the confidence and serenity of my own mother and mother-in-law. I have found that, through praying the Rosary, I have begun to grow in ways that I had not thought possible.
When it comes to the prayer itself, I have tried many ways to “enter into” each mystery of the Rosary. I have taken to asking my Guardian Angel to pray with me, instead of simply praying on my behalf if I fell asleep.
A great way to help the person praying is to focus more intimately on the mysteries of the Rosary with each meditation before every Hail Mary. You can find them here (Joyful Mysteries, Luminous Mysteries, Sorrowful Mysteries, and Glorious Mysteries).
Even long before Morrie was diagnosed with ALS, he learned that the secret to true happiness is found not in things, but in relationships. What better relationship to work on than the one between ourselves and our Mother, the Mother of God? If you pray the Rosary once every few days, why not try praying every day? If you haven’t, or don’t pray the Rosary often, you can start with once a week. Perhaps Tuesday? Or better yet, to-day.
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