When shutdowns first started in February, we started offering Rosary every weeknight at 9pm live streamed on our website. The intention was to pray for an end to this pandemic, and to invite our parishioners to pray with their priests. Praying the Rosary as a community each day has made me rediscover the richness of this devotional prayer. There is a reason why it has continued to be one of the favourite prayers for Catholics for centuries. I find that the more I pray the Rosary, the more I’m entering into the life of Jesus, meditating on the key moments in the life of Jesus. Repetition is so important in the life of faith, because it forces us to go beyond the surface of what we know. I find that there is a process in going deeper in our spiritual life. At the start of our spiritual journey we may find excitement and desire to pray and learn. This is associated with the first stage of spiritual life also called “the purgative stage”. When we start praying the rosary we experience the beauty and joy in meditating on the life of Jesus. After some time, though, the newness of the life of faith can lead us to feel like we have exhausted its newness and there is nothing left in it to for us to explore. This is when most people fall away from faith, assuming that they have exhausted its benefits. To leave at this point is a big mistake, because behind the sense of dissatisfaction is a new and deeper knowledge of God and His truths awaiting those who are willing to push through their discomfort. The key is to stick with it even in spite of not getting much from it. We commonly call this stage “the dark night”, a time of testing, proving our faith and commitment. What awaits us on the other side of the “dark night” is the second stage of the spiritual life called “the illuminative stage”. Once we arrive at this stage we will experience a deepening of our closeness with God and a life of deeper peace. When praying the rosary we too must go through the stage of boredom, especially when we don’t feel the prayer can do much more for us. Once we persevere in praying the rosary, we will begin to enter into a new and even more beautiful appreciation of Christ’s life. We will also find a deepening of peace even in the midst of turmoil. Please continue to pray, don’t give up, and when you experience difficulties with prayer know that you may be on the verge of entering into a greater peace and joy if you only persevere. Join us Monday-Friday at 9pm for the live-stream of the Rosary on our parish website.
Fr. Wojtek Kuzma