We can, of course, always go directly to Jesus in our prayer. As Christians we are called to have a personal relationship with our Saviour and that relationship should be based on communion with him in prayer. But Jesus wants us to have a relationship with his Mother too.
As he died on the cross he gave Mary to the Church when he said to the Beloved Disciple (who stands in our place) “Son, behold your Mother.”
Jesus gives us his own Mother to be our spiritual Mother. She cares for us with a maternal love, praying for us each and every day. Having conceived Christ in her immaculate womb, cared for him as he grew up, and become the most perfect of his disciples, she is a saint we should have recourse to.
One of the forms of Marian prayer is the Holy Rosary. You will have seen Rosary beads and may well own some.
What is the Holy Rosary?
“The Rosary is my favourite prayer. A marvellous prayer! Marvellous in its simplicity and its depth.”
Saint Pope John Paul II
The Rosary includes four Mysteries: the Sorrowful Mysteries, the Joyful Mysteries, the Glorious Mysteries, and the Luminous Mysteries. Each mystery has five decades dedicated to different parts of the life of Christ. So the Rosary is like a bible study with beads. It is not simply a series of prayers, but a meditation on the gospels.
You will find a guide on how to pray the Rosary at the bottom of this blog post. But most importantly keep in mind what Saint Pope Paul VI said… praying the Rosary without meditating on the mysteries “is a body without a soul, and its recitation is in danger of becoming a mechanical repetition of formulas.”
A Spiritual Weapon
“The Holy Rosary is a powerful weapon. Use it with confidence and you’ll be amazed at the results.”
Saint Josemaría Escrivá
The Rosary is a weapon in so far as it defends us against evil.
When we pray the Rosary we are invoking the protection of our Blessed Mother. She truly hears our prayer and delights in interceding for us to her Son.
Mary did not give us the Rosary to then only abandon us in our time of need, but the opposite. When we pray the Rosary it should be with complete faith and trust that our prayers will be heard and answered.
How to start
There are loads of great videos and articles online about the Rosary.
If you don’t pray the Rosary regularly, I would really encourage you to take up this practice. But maybe don’t be too ambitious.
It is perfectly fine to begin by simply praying a decade of the Rosary each day. Or maybe you would like to start by praying the Rosary once a week.
And don’t be worried about distractions. They are bound to come. When you realise you are distracted, simply bring your mind back to the mystery you are meditating on.
I once heard a priest say that the beauty of the Rosary is that you cannot pray it well! This is so true! If you are focused on the meditation you are not focused on the words of the prayers and if vice-versa. Just go with it and see if this is a form of prayer that works for you.