“I would like the people to pray along with me these days. And to pray as much as possible! And to fast strictly on Wednesdays and Fridays and every day to pray at least one Rosary: the joyful, sorrowful and glorious mysteries.”(August 14, 1984)
Today we fast with Our Lady! Today we offer our fasts for her intentions. I want to share an email that I received last night that truly touched my heart. The power of fasting was simply presented from the witness of a holy priest who has been ordained for 62 years!! Here it is email:
I was grateful to pray and listen to the wisdom spoken today about fasting and consumerism. I was not able to pray the last decade because l was going to pick up a priest who was going to celebrate Mass here in my home along with some dear friends. After the Mass we were able to sit at my dining room table sharing another kind of meal and share hearts as well.
This priest was just here for the summer and goes back to India Sept 1. He was asked the question about his becoming a priest 62 years ago! He is 82 but looks 62! He visibly got emotional and told us his mother fasted every Friday on just a little water for his priesthood until the day that she died.
I will never forget his emotions at the table nor will anyone else sitting there.
Can you imagine how many priests we would have if we fasted or how Our Lady’s plan would come to fruition in Her Triumph. With your words the past couple of days, l took my book out on Fasting by Fr Slavko and also Sr Emmanuel. Because of MaryTV’s United prayer l was able to fast yesterday and hope with continued prayers and the help of Fr Slavko, I can continue committed and faithful.
The power of fasting! If we only knew the great graces were could obtain through our fasting! Fr. Slavko understood. He embraced fasting and lived this call in a special way. He is one who can help us to fast. He suggested that when we fast, we should pray the Rosary because the Rosary will strengthen us in our fast. Here is what he said:
Rosary on a Fast Day
To pray the Rosary means to be with Jesus and Mary, in joy, in sorrow and in glory. When things are going well for us, we easily forget God and then cause problems and difficulties to ourselves and to others. These become real crosses in life. This is why we need the Joyful Mysteries in order to learn how to live with God when things are going well.
When things are difficult, we are inclined to complain to God because of our suffering and we distance ourselves from Him. In suffering we easily lose our faith, hope, love and trust and so live in anguish, fear, bitterness and mistrust. That is why it is good for us to learn how to live when it is difficult for us and why we need the Sorrowful Mysteries.
In order to carry our crosses more easily we need to be with Jesus and Mary in glory to see what happens after the Cross, the Passion and Death. We often behave like children who see nothing else in a doctor except a painful injection. They cry and want to run away. When a person fixes his sight on healing, he can more easily accept every suffering.
In that sense, I recommend the prayer of the Rosary on a fast day for the grace of fasting and in order to learn how to live with Jesus and Mary. (Fr. Slavko Barbaric. “Fast with the Heart”. Par 12.2.)
The Rosary makes fasting more productive and bearable. The Rosary teaches us how to walk bravely with Jesus and Mary through all our trials and challenges. The Rosary ensures that we will not be alone as we fast. We will have Jesus and Mary by our side, coaching us as we go through our fast day, giving us courage and joy!
Like the mother of this dear priest, we can fast for our loved ones that they will live the vocation God has for them. We can call down the graces God has for them, so that they can live their lives for Him. One day, what joy we will have when we see all the good our fasting has done. Let us not be afraid, but embrace this call from Our Lady, trusting that she knows what is needed in our times.