I was seven years old and staring at the clock, willing the hands to move forward when they seemed to have stopped entirely. My grandparents had come to town and brought with them the practice of saying the rosary every night before bed. Their fingers lingered patiently on each bead as they recited one “Hail Mary” after another. My little fingers haphazardly danced around my rosary while I wished they would speed it up. Judging from the looks on the faces of my five older brothers and sisters, they seemed to agree.
Decades of my own life passed before I discovered the gift of praying the rosary. As my fingers lingered on each bead, a sense of peace emerged. There is something about repetitive prayer that is tranquil. It quiets the mind and centers the heart. Only recently did I realize that praying the rosary is meditation with added benefits. It connects us to the mysteries and joys of our faith, to our loving God who always triumphs over death, and to Catholics around the world.
The practice of saying the rosary remains a popular form of prayer for Latin American Catholics, many who come to the United States as asylum-seekers. With permission to cross the border legally, they pass through the Welcome Center in Phoenix, Arizona where the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur have a presence.
“Their faces light up when they see a rosary. It is a connection to home and to their faith. They are even more delighted when I tell them they may take one,” said Sister Meg Walsh, Sister of Notre Dame de Namur.
According to Sister Meg, there is a constant need for rosaries. Live The Good Volunteers answered the call.
With over 9,000 beads and nearly 550 feet of string, more than 60 volunteers rolled up their sleeves and got to work. As a result, 156 rosaries were sent to Sister Meg, each as unique as the people who made them, and those who receive them.
The precious cargo was shipped to Sister Meg, who received it before Easter. What a perfect time to give such a gift to our weary brothers and sisters looking to start a new life, so far from everything familiar.
“Please tell the people who made them how wonderful they are!! They were so colorful, someone called them Easter rosaries!” said Sister Meg. What a perfect description.
How blessed we are to have the rosary as a meditation that quiets our minds and centers us in God, that connects us all, and to have wonderful volunteers who join our efforts to make known God’s goodness.
Be well. Do good.
Director of Volunteer Engagement