By Christian Raquepo
Special at the Herald
“I am the Lady of the Rosary. Continue to pray the Rosary every day. (Our Lady of Fatima, October 13, 1917)
Unable to meet at the homes of the parishioners of the Co-Cathedral of St. Therese to recite the rosary accompanied by a pilgrim statue of Our Lady due to the security protocol in the event of a pandemic, Sister Mercedita “Mercy” Estrella of the Sisters of Saint-Paul de Chartres, organized family rosaries every evening via Zoom, the online dating application, in October 2020. By the grace of God, it continued.
A year later, we recognized three things:
- The power of technology unites us.
- A single prayer can be done in many ways.
- Prayer together helps us grow in our spiritual life.
The unifying spirit of technology
Beginning with members of the ministries and organizations of the Co-Cathedral, we have graciously extended our invitation to pray the Rosary and the Evening Prayer to the teachers and staff of Sainte-Thérèse School, to the students and teachers of Damien. Memorial, to the legionaries of Mary, to the parishioners of other churches, islands, states, and even to other countries: finally, to the whole world.
We started using social media to download recorded prayer meetings and soon broadcast our evening prayers live. By offering these alternative ways of joining our prayers, as well as displaying prayers, sacred images and invitations to our prayers, we have reached over 5,000 people, many of them from the Philippines.
Simple prayers said in different ways
Likewise, from the beginning, we have adapted our rosaries to celebrate the liturgical seasons, the different devotions and various occasions and events. Some prayer leaders add reflections at the start of each decade, expanding and deepening our meditation. Others direct the rosary to a specific intention. These creative ways of praying the Holy Rosary spark holy thoughts and images in our imaginations, thinking of “things above” (Colossians 3: 2), causing our hearts to pray for particular intentions.
Deepening the ocean of our spiritual life
We deepen our desire to know, love and serve God, simply and initially, not through intense prayer, but through consistent prayer, “the oxygen of the soul” as Saint Padre Pio, our source, calls it. of life and our connection with the Lord. We find greater growth in our spiritual lives when we come together, uniting as children of Our Blessed Mother, knowing the promise of Our Lord Jesus: “For where there are two or three gathered in my name, I am at among them! ”(Matthew 18:20).
Getting together to pray at the agreed place and time, with most of the same people, is like individual streams of graces emptying to create a vast and immeasurable ocean of love and mercy.
With the convenience of being able to join in prayer from the comfort of home at the end of a long day, our group is prayer answered in itself.
“I was looking for a group that would pray together and my prayers were answered when Christian formed the Rosary and Night Prayer 9495,” said “Aunt” Cecilia Morita.
Arimathea Bennett said: “The twice a week that we join in prayer creates a beautiful community which is truly a gift from God. “
“Ninang” Sally Mejia is “grateful for our Wednesday and Friday night prayers, to be with a group of friends to recite the Rosary regularly. It gives me joy and deepens my faith as I meditate on the life of Jesus through this devotion.
When I was a student at St. Theresa’s School, I remember asking my classmate why Catholics “worship” Mary. This question of faith was answered when I realized the beauty of the memorized prayers that we Catholics recite, which constitute most of the holy rosary, and the biblical roots of veneration of Mother Mary. It was then that I gave my “fiat” to be fully initiated as a Roman Catholic, by receiving the three sacraments of initiation at the 2019 Easter Vigil, and by becoming a son of Mary!
“If you want salvation, promote the Rosary. “(Blessed Carlo Acutis)
After this major conversion in my life, praying the Rosary and meditating on the mysteries it contains became a defining devotion for me, rekindled time and time again. Mother Mary is always persevering in the propagation of her holy rosary. She takes advantage of this pandemic to quickly share the meditation on her son’s life.
Leading our rosary and evening prayers on Wednesday and Friday is my way of sharing my time and talents and, likewise, my love and devotion to Our Blessed Mother, who has radically changed my life for the better.
Everyone is invited to join our rosary and our Wednesday and Friday night prayers. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
ALL YOU, MARIA! All yours, Marie!
Raquepo is a member of the Students for Life of the Damien Memorial School and a parishioner of the Sainte-Thérèse Co-Cathedral.