The Rosary, a powerful prayer

The Rosary, which developed out of Christian piety over the centuries, has shown itself to be a very powerful prayer. In this meditation we consider how:
  • The Rosary gradually developed over the centuries
  • St Dominic used the Rosary to win over the heretics of his day
  • The Rosary has been credited with winning military battles, including that of Lepanto
  • Following Our Lady’s apparitions at Fatima, the Rosaries said for the conversion of Russia helped bring down the Communist regimes in Eastern Europe
  • The Rosary is powerful in uniting families
  • The  Rosary helps those who say it to grow in holiness

Devotion to the Holy Angels

Angels are real. They appear throughout the Bible, from the book of Genesis to the book of Revelation. Because we can’t see them, we can easily forget them. In this meditation we pray about how to increase our devotion to the angels, using texts of Scripture, St Josemaria Escriva and St John Vianney, to consider:

  • The Church’s teaching on the angels in the Catechism of the Catholic Church
  • The angels’ presence surrounding the tabernacle and in the Mass
  • St Raphael as an example of the protection and many services of our guardian angel
  • St Gabriel, as a messenger who passes on to us inspirations from God
  • St Michael, who defeats Satan and who protects us in times of temptation

Using our talents

Christ teaching the apostles

In the parable of the talents, one servant received five talents, another two and another one. So too, we have all received many, and different, talents from God, for which we will give an account at the end of our life. In this meditation we consider how:

  • We have all received many talents from God: our life, family, faith, intelligence, education, skills, etc.
  • Some of these are more important than others and we should use them accordingly
  • At the end of life we will be judged, not on whether we did better than someone else, but on whether we used well the talents God gave each of us
  • We should not give in to the temptation to bury, or not use well, certain talents because it would be “too hard”
  • We should especially develop those talents related to our relationship with God, our family and friends, and our work

Always optimistic

As we go through life we often find ourselves tossed on the stormy seas and we can become discouraged, sad, and even depressed. The Covid pandemic adds to those troubles. In a situation like this, we need an attitude not of pessimism and sadness but of optimism and happiness. In this meditation we consider how:

  • Christ is always with us, no matter how bad the situation is, and he can calm every storm
  • Nothing is impossible for God
  • There is a bright side to every dark situation
  • God has a plan for our life, including our suffering, which we will see only at the end
  • We should give thanks for what we have instead of lamenting what we have not
  • Many people are far worse off than we are
  • God always brings good out of evil
  • In the end the eternal joy of heaven awaits us

The cross, pathway to heaven

Our Lord invited us, if we would be his disciples, to take up our cross and follow him. A few days later he manifested his divinity to three of his apostles in the Transfiguration, as we will see him in his glory in heaven.  In this meditation, using texts from Scripture, St Josemaria and St John Vianney, we consider how:

  • Our pathway to heaven passes by way of the cross
  • The cross is truly a blessing, in that it purifies us and it can be offered up for others
  • The cross is a manifestation of God’s love for us
  • When we have a cross to bear, we can think that Christ suffered more than we ever will, and that many others are suffering more than we are
  • If we love the crosses life brings, we will find joy in them and they will unite us with Christ
  • We should seek the cross too through mortification and penance

The Spiritual Olympics

Athletes go through a rigorous training regime in order to achieve their goal of competing, or winning a medal, in the Olympic games. The goal of Christians is much higher: eternal life with God in heaven, and we too need a training regime. In this meditation we use texts of Scripture, St Augustine and St Josemaria Escriva to consider how, like athletes, we need:

  • Determination, singlemindedness, to reach our goal
  • Commitment to training, involving regular times for prayer
  • Self-discipline
  • A spiritual diet of grace from the sacraments
  • A doctor to heal our injuries: the sacrament of penance
  • A coach, in the form of a spiritual director
  • Knowledge of the rules of morality
  • The support of others in the Communion of Saints

 

Christ the Sower

Christ gives us the parable of the sower, who sows seed on different types of soil, yielding different results. In this meditation we consider how we can all be, at times, each of the different types of soil:

  • The path, when we turn a deaf ear to Christ’s promptings
  • The rocky ground, when we begin something with enthusiasm but then give up because it was too hard
  • The thorns, when we are drawn away from God by the attraction of the world
  • The good soil, when we respond to God with generosity and yield a rich harvest

 

Growing in love through the Sacred Heart of Jesus

Our Lord has loved us to the last drop of his blood and water, and he invites us to love him more in return. In this meditation we use texts of Scripture, St Margaret Mary Alacoque and St Josemaria Escriva to consider that:

  • St John writes in his Gospel that Jesus has loved us “to the end” and in his first Letter that “God is love”.
  • Our Lord asked St Margaret Mary for the feast of the Sacred Heart, in order to increase love for him throughout the world.
  • St Margaret writes in a letter about the three streams that pour out from the heart of Christ.
  • Considering the immense love Our Lord has for us, we should endeavour to grow constantly in love for God and for our neighbour.

Mary, our loving Mother

 

From the moment she conceived Jesus in her womb, Mary became the mother of his Mystical Body, the Church, and of all of us. In this meditation we use texts from Sacred Scripture, Pope St Paul VI, St Josemaria Escriva and St Bernard to consider how:

  • Mary gave birth to Jesus and to the Church in Bethlehem
  • From the Cross at Calvary, Jesus gave Mary to St John, and to each one of us, as our mother
  • Because of the pain she suffered when Christ’s body was pierced with a lance and the Church flowed from his side on Calvary, Mary has a special love for all her children
  • Mary exercises her motherly role in many moments related in the Scriptures
  • We can show our gratitude to Our Lady and honour her through such practices as the Rosary, the Angelus, Marian aspirations and pilgrimages

Mary, teacher of prayer

The Second Vatican Council called Our Lady “model of the virtues” and we can learn so much from her. In this meditation we go to her as “teacher of prayer” to learn how to pray better. Using texts from Scripture and St Josemaria Escriva we consider how:

  • In the Annunciation Mary listens to what God is asking of her through the angel, asks about what she does not understand, and then immediately accepts God’s will for her
  • In her Magnificat, Mary praises God for his loving-kindness to her
  • On two occasions Our Lady ponders in her heart God’s providence in the events of her life
  • At Cana Mary asks Jesus with great faith to do a miracle
  • In all her activities, Mary lived in the presence of God