I was born and raised as a Catholic, but I can’t remember praying the Rosary enthusiastically and being a devotee of Mama Mary— not until recently.
We’re the type of family who’d attend Mass every Sunday, pray the Rosary every day at 6 pm and during October and the month of the Holy Rosary, pray the Angelus, attend Black Rosary crusades in our village, and complete nine-day Novena Masses for the Our Lady of Perpetual Help.
Back then, I pray the Rosary because I have no choice. My sisters and I had to join my parents in praying the rosary or else we can’t play. My mom somehow forced me into it. You see, I hated praying the Rosary because we were required to kneel for almost 15-20 minutes. (Read: Prayers of the Rosary)
Looking back, that practice made me memorize all the four mysteries of the Holy Rosary and some Marian prayers, but I thought that was all into it.
One Holy Week, I was one of the speakers during the 7 Last Words and while reading and reflecting, I came across the Third Word which was, “Woman, behold your son. Behold your mother.” (John 19:26-27)
Accordingly, the Bible records many instances of Mary with Jesus Christ, but one instance that really struck me was when the wine ran out at a wedding, and Mary asked her Son to turn water into wine (John 2).
For Jesus, it was not yet time to perform a miracle, but when Mary interceded, Jesus couldn’t say no. How can a son say ‘no’ to his mother? (Read: 3 Things That Make the Rosary a Great Meditation Tool)
God can come to us without Mary— After all, He is God. But sometimes, our human hearts need help. Mary would join the angels in protecting us from evil and bestow special blessings upon us.
And so, I thought, “Oh, if I pray to Mama Mary, she can intercede for my prayers especially if it’s the will of God even if it’s not yet time.”
Praying the Rosary
While I knew back then that Mary can intercede for us, my belief was not yet 100 percent. I’m like doubting Thomas who needed to see Jesus first to believe that He has risen.
It was when my seven-year-old niece, who was at the ICU at that time, faced a life-and-death situation. I thought she’s going to die that night. I panicked and started searching for my rosary. All I found was my hanky where a prayer of Our Lady of Peñafrancia was printed.
I recited the prayer and prayed the Rosary after. While the doctor needed to intubate my niece that night, I knew Mama Mary interceded to save her life. My niece managed to live a few months after that incident. But unfortunately, she eventually died due to complications.
I was heartbroken but nevertheless, I knew, Mama Mary heard our fervent prayers that night. Since then, I started to pray the Rosary every day (sometimes two mysteries a day when I have extra time), attend Wednesday novenas, and devote time especially this May as the Catholic Church has set aside this month to honor Mary, the Mother of God.
Is the Rosary a Repetitive Prayer?
Many people say that the Rosary is a repetitive prayer, which directly violates Matthew 6:7, “But when you pray, use not vain repetitions as the heathen do; for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.”
But did you know that the rosary is a powerful weapon to touch the heart of Jesus, who loves His mother? (Read: Here’s What the Pope Wants You to Know About Praying the Rosary)
I like this explanation about the rosary: “The rosary is not a prayer of words, but of meditation. When a Catholic completes praying an entire rosary of 20 mysteries, he or she has meditated upon the entire gospel: the incarnation, birth, life, suffering, death, resurrection, and glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. No method of prayer is more beneficial than this.”