Sunday, February 14, 2016

Sacrificing for Our Lord

Ernesto, in white, traveled 3 hours this morning to attend the
Children's Rosary at St. Thomas the Apostle Church in West Hartford CT.
Today we had a new child attend our Children's Rosary at St. Thomas the Apostle Church in West Hartford CT.  Ernesto, age 7, and his mother traveled from the Bronx in New York City.  They had called last night to let us know they would be coming this morning.  However, at 9:45 AM the time we begin our Children's Rosary they had not yet arrived.  With some of the children planning to attend the Mass following our Rosary we could not delay our start time.  As the decades went by, my heart kept hoping Ernesto would arrive before we finished.  Just as the fourth decade was complete ... little Ernesto entered the chapel.  He had the sweetest smile on his face..full of anticipation.  We paused our prayers to welcome he and his mother.  Ernesto and one of the other little boys were able to lead us in the fifth glorious mystery: The Coronation of Mary Queen of Heaven and Earth.  At the end of the decade, Ernesto placed a rose before Our Lady as we asked for the fruit of that mystery.  

One of the older children quickly helped Ernesto with the sheet music for our closing song: Rosary Children. After the Rosary was over, I expressed my apologies that they had come so far and had only been part of a portion.  Ernesto's mom, Omayra,  kept smiling and saying she was so happy she came and it was beautiful.  She mentioned that she likes to drive and a two hour drive is not that long.  Yet, when I asked if she left at 8 AM she said no 7AM which meant they really were driving for 3 hours.  They had gotten a bit lost at one point. My heart was aching to think of such a sacrifice for such a short time.  Yet, the sacrifice was made for Our Lord so in contemplating it later I realized that these two souls were giving God a most precious treasure.  They had ventured out in the coldest morning in Connecticut since 1956.  Some areas reaching - 20F without the wind chill.  They had set out on a journey that lasted longer then they thought with uncertainty of where they were going.  Why did they do it?  They did it out of love for Our Lord.  Ernesto's mom shared that they pray the Rosary each night but that she wanted her son to experience praying with other children.  Throughout the whole time I saw Ernesto and his mother, they were so full of joy.  They never once complained about the cold or the long trip.  Indeed Our Lord loves a cheerful giver as Bl. Mother Teresa of Calcutta was fond of saying.
The sacrifices would continue as two of the members of the Children's Rosary who normally attend St. Peter Claver Church surprised us at the Children's Rosary this afternoon held with the Syro-Malabar Church.  Both mother and son had walked to the Church in the bitter cold.

More and more I am aware of the effort people are putting into the prayers they are giving to Our Lord.  The children too are giving in the most beautiful ways.   How pleasing must this be for Our Lord? How pleased must Our Blessed Mother be to see her children both big and small coming together in prayer when it is not easy?  As time goes by, there is a tendency to get accustomed to prayer and lose our fervor, yet we must once again commit ourselves to make each Children's Rosary no less special than the first.  If flowers can be obtained, let each Children's Rosary have such a gift to give to Our Blessed Mother.  Even if only one person attends and that one person places the flowers at the end of each decade is it any less special?  No, I venture to say such a sacrifice from a soul does not go without extra notice from heaven.  For who would do such things unless they had a strong faith in God and a love that lets them forget all discouragement. They give their gift of prayers for the sake of God as no one else is there to see it.  Indeed group leaders have shared that there are times when they find themselves alone.  They wonder for a moment, should I still pray?  They then know in their heart that they are called to pray the Rosary if children come or if they do not.  Yes, sometimes we have to dig deep down in our hearts and go forward in humility.  Lent is a time of trial and temptation as we heard in the Gospel today.  With little Ernesto as a witness, let us not give up and with joy give every sacrifice with love to Our Lord.

Other Posts You May Enjoy:
How to Start a Children's Rosary

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