We all are in need of healing.

Maybe it’s from something life-altering – the death of a loved one, a lost job, a chronic illness, a miscarriage, a hurting relationship.

Or maybe it’s from something that seems small, the thing that we want to push aside, but continues to tug at our hearts: a missed opportunity, an unkind word, a reoccurring sin we can’t seem to shake.

Whatever it is, human brokenness is universal. 

I experienced a traumatic birth with my son, and afterwards, I couldn’t bring myself to pray. I had nothing to say to God who I felt had abandoned me. 

When I did think of God, I felt a quiet understanding from Him. A feeling that He was waiting for me, but was not rushing me. Slowly, I felt a nudge towards Mary. I found in her a gentleness and an accessibility: a woman who had been through so much sorrow, someone who had seen the worst of life and yet held on to the promises of God. 

So I began to pray the Rosary. 

I could not pray in my own words, so I found comfort in the familiar prayers, the feeling of the beads in my fingers. I’d take my son on daily walks, and I’d listen to Francis pray the Rosary aloud on Hallow and feel as though I was praying alongside a friend. As I considered each mystery of the Rosary, I found a depth of emotions that spanned from complete joy to utter abandonment. I knew I was praying with a mother who understood what I was going through. Through the eyes of this woman from Nazareth, I began to see the Gospel story in a new way. As I encountered the mysteries of the Rosary again and again, I realized that at the center of each mystery was Jesus. My meditation of the mysteries went from the view of an observer to entering into each moment beside Jesus. Through this, I saw Jesus alongside me in my own suffering, a Savior who had been there, who had felt abandoned himself, and who offers us healing, if not in this life, then in the next.

In this way mediation on the Rosary can heal us. When we meditate on these moments of Jesus and Mary’s life, we are pulled out of ourselves, as suffering so often turns us inwards to the point we can see nothing but our own pain and sorrow. The Rosary reminds us of who our God is. It reminds us we are not alone, but instead are part of a larger story. A story of birth, life, death, and resurrection. A story that our own lives hope to imitate.

Grief and pain brought me to Mary, and Mary led me to Jesus. 

Our Lady of Guadalupe, a title given to Mary that is associated with her apparitions in Mexico during the 1500s, appeared to St. Juan Diego multiple times and asked him to build a church in her honor. One day, he missed meeting with her because his uncle was sick. Rather than return to meet her as she had instructed him, Juan took matters into his own hands and went to find a priest to give his uncle last rites. On his way there, Our Lady appeared to him and said:

“Am I not here, I, who am your Mother? Are you not under my shadow and protection? Am I not the source of your joy? Are you not in the hollow of my mantle, in the crossing of my arms? Do you need anything more? Let nothing else worry you or disturb you.” 

And his uncle was cured. 

As he hung on the cross, dying for us, Jesus gave us Mary as our Mother. Yet how often do we still take matters into our own hands rather than turn to her for help? We run around, like St. Juan Diego did, looking for solutions when instead, we can look to Mary. And when we look to Mary, we find a woman whose trust in God outweighed her own plans for her life. We find a woman who gave birth in a stable, heard prophecies about her child, and “kept all these things in her heart.” A mother who prompted her son to act, who interceded on behalf of those in need. A mother who stood with strength and dignity at the foot of the cross and comforted her dying son. A mother who is now ours, and still speaks to us today: 

“Am I not here, I, who am your Mother? Are you not under my shadow and protection? Am I not the source of your joy? Are you not in the hollow of my mantle, in the crossing of my arms? Do you need anything more? Let nothing else worry you or disturb you.”

We pray the Rosary because in it we find the comfort and healing of our mother’s arms. When we are afraid or worried, grateful or excited, tired or in pain, we can turn to her. When we feel as though all hope is lost, Mary is there, guiding us to Jesus, bringing us back to God.  

On this the feast of the Our Lady of the Rosary, let us give up worry and take up the Rosary. Let us run to the comfort of our mother and let her lead us to her Son. 

To listen to the Rosary on Hallow, download a 30-day free trial of Hallow plus at www.hallow.com/catholiclinken 

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Image: https://www.cathopic.com/photo/12587-rezo-santo-rosario