December 7, 2017|
Dear Family of Mary!
“And to me, my children, give the gift of the rosary, the roses which I love so much. My roses are your prayers pronounced with the heart and not only recited with the lips. My roses are your acts of prayer, faith and love. When my Son was little, he said to me that my children would be numerous and that they would bring me many roses. I did not comprehend Him. Now I know that you are those children who are bringing me roses when, above all, you love my Son, when you pray with the heart, when you help the poorest…” (December 2, 2017)
Jesus told Our Lady many things, it seems, that she could not understand because they were to happen in the future. Our Mother shares one of those little prophecies of Jesus in this message.
” When my Son was little, he said to me that my children would be numerous and that they would bring me many roses. I did not comprehend Him.”
How could she know that there would be a prayer called the Rosary? How could she know that she would become our Mother, before Jesus gave her to us on the Cross? But of course she never forgot a word He told her. And so she says:
“Now I know that you are those children who are bringing me roses when, above all, you love my Son, when you pray with the heart, when you help the poorest…”
We are those children!! We bring her roses!! It is our prayer of the Rosary, prayed with the heart, prayed with love and offered for the poor souls in need of grace. How cool is that!!!
But Our Lady says that our prayer of the Rosary must not be purely exterior.
” My roses are your prayers pronounced with the heart and not only recited with the lips.”
We cannot rattle off our prayers while we are totally distracted. What kind of gift is that? But we are so tempted to distraction and superficiality by our modern cultures. So we need to be taught how to pray with the heart.
Saint John Paul II did just that in one of his final Apostolic Letters, “On the Rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary.” I will share below some of his wise counsel on praying the Rosary correctly!!
From “On the Rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary”
In effect, the Rosary is simply a method of contemplation. As a method, it serves as a means to an end and cannot become an end in itself. All the same, as the fruit of centuries of experience, this method should not be undervalued. In its favor one could cite the experience of countless Saints. This is not to say, however, that the method cannot be improved. Such is the intent of the addition of the new series of mysteria lucis to the overall cycle of mysteries and of the few suggestions which I am proposing in this Letter regarding its manner of recitation. These suggestions, while respecting the well-established structure of this prayer, are intended to help the faithful to understand it in the richness of its symbolism and in harmony with the demands of daily life. Otherwise there is a risk that the Rosary would not only fail to produce the intended spiritual effects, but even that the beads, with which it is usually said, could come to be regarded as some kind of amulet or magic object, thereby radically distorting their meaning and function.
Announcing each mystery
29. Announcing each mystery, and perhaps even using a suitable icon to portray it, is as it were to open up a scenario on which to focus our attention. The words direct the imagination and the mind towards a particular episode or moment in the life of Christ. In the Church’s traditional spirituality, the veneration of icons and the many devotions appealing to the senses, as well as the method of prayer proposed by Saint Ignatius of Loyola in the Spiritual Exercises, make use of visual and imaginative elements (the compositio loci), judged to be of great help in concentrating the mind on the particular mystery. This is a methodology, moreover, which corresponds to the inner logic of the Incarnation: in Jesus, God wanted to take on human features. It is through his bodily reality that we are led into contact with the mystery of his divinity.
This need for concreteness finds further expression in the announcement of the various mysteries of the Rosary. Obviously these mysteries neither replace the Gospel nor exhaust its content. The Rosary, therefore, is no substitute for lectio divina; on the contrary, it presupposes and promotes it. Yet, even though the mysteries contemplated in the Rosary, even with the addition of the mysteria lucis, do no more than outline the fundamental elements of the life of Christ, they easily draw the mind to a more expansive reflection on the rest of the Gospel, especially when the Rosary is prayed in a setting of prolonged recollection.
Listening to the word of God
30. In order to supply a Biblical foundation and greater depth to our meditation, it is helpful to follow the announcement of the mystery with the proclamation of a related Biblical passage, long or short, depending on the circumstances. No other words can ever match the efficacy of the inspired word. As we listen, we are certain that this is the word of God, spoken for today and spoken “for me”.
If received in this way, the word of God can become part of the Rosary’s methodology of repetition without giving rise to the ennui derived from the simple recollection of something already well known. It is not a matter of recalling information but of allowing God to speak. In certain solemn communal celebrations, this word can be appropriately illustrated by a brief commentary.
31. Listening and meditation are nourished by silence. After the announcement of the mystery and the proclamation of the word, it is fitting to pause and focus one’s attention for a suitable period of time on the mystery concerned, before moving into vocal prayer. A discovery of the importance of silence is one of the secrets of practicing contemplation and meditation. One drawback of a society dominated by technology and the mass media is the fact that silence becomes increasingly difficult to achieve. Just as moments of silence are recommended in the Liturgy, so too in the recitation of the Rosary it is fitting to pause briefly after listening to the word of God, while the mind focuses on the content of a particular mystery.
St. John Paul II, please pray for us to learn to pray ever more deeply this wonderful prayer of the Rosary. We want to give our Mother many roses!!!
Tomorrow is the great Feast of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary! May we give her many roses tomorrow and always!
In Jesus, Mary and Joseph!
©Mary TV 2017
PS. Mike Nolan has produced two new CDs:
“Oh Jesus, We Adore You!” (A collection of songs used for Adoration of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament in Medjugorje. It is very prayerful and peaceful!)
“The Mary TV Soundtrack!” (A joyful compilation of the music used on Mary TV! )
CDs are $15.00 each, and you can order them directly from Mike Nolan