This week – and throughout the month of October – we celebrate the Month of the Rosary, honoring the Mother of Our Lord and looking to the Blessed Virgin as an example of, as Pope Francis says, a “woman of faith who made room for God in her heart and in her plan.”
By: Natalie J. Plumb
O Mary, conceived without sin, pray with us who have recourse to thee.
This is the prayer I say when I’m scared. It’s the prayer I know will be answered. It’s the prayer that’s the heartbeat to my day; it’s always on my mind.
It’s short and simple, but it says everything.
I prayed this prayer in Rome, Italy, when I was discerning a relationship. During that trip, I wore my Miraculous Medal. I even had it blessed by Pope Francis himself during his general audience. Exactly one week after my return home, Mary’s intercession inspired a powerful answer from the Holy Spirit. The answer was so clear that at the time I failed to describe it, and I still do.
I prayed this prayer when walking home one night in my neighborhood. That night I was mugged. Mary saw to it that my only remaining possession after the mugging was my rosary.
I prayed this prayer in college on a Catholic retreat. The day I returned to campus, I ended a 1.5-year dating relationship. Mary, my Powerful Intercessor, was praying for me. She guided me in what was a very difficult choice at the time.
But one of the most poignant times I felt Mary intercede for me was when:
I prayed this prayer in Lourdes, France, when I was looking for a job. Before my trip, I submitted applications to a number of different places. Three days after I arrived in Lourdes, I got a call for an interview. I had a job – this job, the one Mary wanted me to have – within two weeks of my return.
My list of examples is endless. I humbly ask her intercession daily, and I encourage you to do so, too. All it takes is a simple prayer. Because Mary, in her simplicity, intercedes for us humbly. And she does so without question. (Take, for example, this write-up of 10 Questions Mary Didn’t Ask that a Sinner Would.)
In October, we celebrate the month of the rosary. Praying the rosary is hard. Believe me, I struggle with it daily. But picking up this spiritual weapon and starting anew every day is so worth it, no matter how few beads you finished the day before. God is not counting. (Your Guardian Angel will finish it for you if you fall asleep! Just don’t try to fall asleep.) In the meantime, I recommend this brief prayer to Our Lady of Lourdes, whose intercession has perpetually changed my life:
Be blessed, O most pure Virgin, for having vouchsafed to manifest your shining with life, sweetness and beauty, in the Grotto of Lourdes, saying to the child, St. Bernadette: “I am the Immaculate Conception.” A thousand times we congratulate you upon your Immaculate Conception. And now, O ever Immaculate Virgin, Mother of mercy, Health of the sick, Refuge of sinners, Comforter of the afflicted, you know our wants, our troubles, our sufferings deign to cast upon us a look of mercy.
By appearing in the Grotto of Lourdes, you were pleased to make it a privileged sanctuary, whence you dispense your favors, and already many have obtained the cure of their infirmities, both spiritual and physical. We come, therefore, with the most unbounded confidence to implore your maternal intercession. Obtain for us, O loving Mother, the granting of our request.
(Mention your request)
Through gratitude for your favors, we will endeavor to imitate your virtues, that we may one day share your glory.
Our Lady of Lourdes, Mother of Christ, you had influence with your divine son while upon earth. You have the same influence now in Heaven. Pray for us; obtain for us from your Divine Son our special requests if it be the Divine Will.
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