The "School of Mary"

Pope Praying

POPE John Paul II called the Rosary "the school of Mary".

How often have I been overwhelmed by distraction and anxiety, only to be immersed in tremendous peace as I begin to pray the Rosary! And why should this surprise us? The Rosary is nothing other than a "compendium of the Gospel" (Rosarium Virginis Mariae, JPII). And the Word of God is "living and effective, sharper than any two-edged sword" (Heb 4:12).

Do you wish to cut through the sorrow of your heart? Do you wish to pierce the darkness within your soul? Then take up this Sword in the shape of a chain, and with it, contemplate the face of Christ in the Mysteries of the Rosary. Outside of the Sacraments, I know of no other means by which one can so quickly scale the walls of holiness, be illumined in conscience, brought to repentance, and opened to the knowledge of God, than by this little prayer of the Handmaiden.

And as powerful is this prayer, so too are the temptations not to pray it. In fact, I personally wrestle with this devotion more than any other. But the fruit of perseverance can be likened to the one who drills for hundreds of feet beneath the surface until at last he uncovers a mine of gold.

    If during the Rosary, you are distracted 50 times, then begin to pray it again each time. You have then just offered 50 acts of love to God. –Fr. Bob Johnson, Madonna House Apostolate (my spiritual director)