When I was four, and my mother had me in tow pushing through department store Christmas crowds, I'd hold to her hand for dear life while I gaped around at toys and elves. Now, with the rosary, saying the Hail Mary's is like hanging on to Mary's hand as I gape around at the Mysteries.

Friday, 9/7/12

Paul tells us, “One should regard us as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God.”

That means that we should be so busily employed serving Christ and promoting his  mysteries that just by looking at us people would know that’s what we do. We should be as recognizable as God’s servants and stewards as a man in gray with a leather sack over his shoulder is recognizable as a mailman.

Nobody would recognize me as a servant of Christ and a steward of God’s mysteries. They’d see a lazy old retiree. But I am still trying to qualify as God’s servant and steward, and to accomplish it I am using a tricky way of saying the Rosary. Let me explain.

To remind myself of my duties as Christ’s servant I take a long morning walk during which I pray a decade each on the eight Beatitudes and on the seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit. It gets me hungering for justice and thinking of visiting the needy.

Then, to expand my feel for the mysteries of God, I take an afternoon walk during which I pray a decade each on Chapter One of John’s Gospel, breaking it down to fifteen rich phrases. Like, “in him was life, and the life is the light of the world.” I hope that pondering such phrases could deepens my feel for God’s mysteries.

In praying the Rosary I always found it impossible to really pray the Hail Mary’s at the same time I was meditating on the mysteries. But listen to the way I have found to get around that confusion.

When I was four, and my mother took me Christmas shopping, as she pushed her way through the department store throngs I held on to her hand for dear life. At the same time I was fully involved in gaping at toys and elves and pretty little girls in tow with their moms.

Now, saying the Rosary on my fingers, my saying the Hail Mary’s is like hanging tight to Mary’s hand as I give my attention to each mystery.

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