Thursday, October 17, 2002

I was never a big fan of the Rosary

although I do pray it. The repetitive nature of it left me cold. But yesterday I read the new letter from John Paul II, Rosarium Virginis Mariae, and I think he might have given me the key. Listen to what he says:

If this repetition is considered superficially, there could be a temptation to see the Rosary as a dry and boring exercise. It is quite another thing, however, when the Rosary is thought of as an outpouring of that love which tirelessly returns to the person loved with expressions similar in their content but ever fresh in terms of the feeling pervading them. . . . To understand the Rosary, one has to enter into the psychological dynamic proper to love.

This has rung a bell for me. My wife and I say "I love you," or some variation of this, to each other many times a day. If you observed us doing this, you might think it was a dry and boring exercise. But if you were on the inside of the loving relationship we have, the words "I love you" never become repetitive, but are always perfectly expressive of a deeper reality. I understand this in relation to my wife; if I can use this same understanding in the Rosary, I think the prayer will be very fruitful for me. I am not just saying a whole bunch of "hail Marys", but am saying to Jesus and Mary "I love you, I love you, I love you. . . ."

Thank you, Holy Father, for clearing this up for me. I look forward to breaking in the five new mysteries today.

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