Last night, I got into bed and as I was getting ready to read Man Cub a bedtime story, remembered I still hadn’t said my Rosary for the day. After checking with Soldier Boy, to see if he minded if I played the app I use (simply entitled “Mary” by the Marians of the Immaculate Conception) out-loud to pray the Rosary aloud on certain days, I grabbed my Rosary in the bedroom and began to pray that. Man Cub was distracted by toys in the bedroom, not quite ready to give up playing, in lieu of sleep.
Sometime in the first decade (first 10 Hail Mary’s), Man Cub noticed I was trying to pray, and decided to crawl up onto the bed, and see what I was doing. When he saw me praying, he inhaled sharply and said, “ooooh, Mommy! That’s my favorite one!!!!” He was referring to the Rosary beads I happened to have in my hands. Man Cub then decided he must come pray with the beads, too, and so I quickly grabbed his wooden Rosary, and offered it to him. He had to have the Rosary I was using. So, we swapped Rosaries.
This was all happening while the prayers continued on – usually with my taking part in the recitation where the “group” were to take part if I were praying it in a group setting.
In the middle of the second Rosary, Man Cub wanted to trade Rosaries again, and as he studied his wooden Rosary, and I prayed, he began asking, “where’s Jesus? He died. Where is my Jesus?” The wooden Rosary does not have a crucifix – it has a cross. He then reached over, and placed my crucifix on top of his wooden cross and said, “that’s better.” I think I will be adding a crucifix to his cross at some point.
Now, before any of my Protestant brothers and sisters in Christ say anything – when Man Cub and I discuss the crucifix, we discuss that Jesus died on the cross for all of us, and then he “fought death and won, and woke up from the dead.” So, we tell the full story, in toddler terms, of course. The fighting death and winning concept was a fantastic idea given to me by a friend. We didn’t have that discussion last night because, well, I was still trying my hardest to say my prayers! However, the crucifix does not just symbolize his resurrection, nor should the simple cross. The cross, and the crucifix, should serve as a reminder of the sacrifice Jesus made for all of us – for our sins. So, Catholics don’t dwell on the “morbid death,” rather we dwell on the fact that Jesus, the Son of God, had to go through a torturous death, to rise again from the dead. That is why Catholics utilize the crucifix – it is a visual representation of Jesus’ sacrifice for us all.
Back to my story…
Sometime in the 3rd decade, Man Cub brought up monsters:
MC: I show monsters my Rosary?
Me: Yes! The Rosary will chase the monsters away!
MC: Monsters take my Rosary?
Me: No. Monsters are not allowed to touch or take away your Rosary. God said they can’t take your Rosary, and if God says something, everyone has to listen! God said they can’t touch your Rosary, so they can’t take it.
At this time, I was no longer paying attention to the app, and instead focusing on this theological discussion I was having with my 3 year old.
He went on to query: Ohhh! They are scared of my Rosary??
Me: Yes! And, they are scared of God and Mommy Mary! They run away from God every time He speaks!
This whole conversation led me to envisioning the pictures (many well known depictions) of demons versus angels, demons versus Mary, and God throwing Satan out of heaven. And, I was rather proud that I was quick enough in his conversation and present enough in the moment, to be able to have a deep theological discussion.
The conversation led from monsters and the Rosary, to how Man Cub’s Guardian Angel keeps Man Cub safe, because God gave the Guardian Angel a job. Which led to further questions for perhaps another blog someday.
And, I was most proud that he seems to be “getting it,” and that he was so interested in not only what I was doing, but also seemed to draw the connection as to why I pray the Rosary – it isn’t just some “rote” set of prayers, but rather, another avenue to defeat the Devil. St. Padre Pio shared that Our Lady said to him, “with this weapon, you will win,” and would refer to his Rosary as his weapon. He said, “The Rosary is the weapon of defense and salvation,” and, “Satan always tries to destroy the rosary, but he will never succeed.”
Ted Bundy, a notorious serial killer, had told a reporter once that he entered a college room in the middle of the night, intent on murdering the girl sleeping in the room – apparently he had already killed two of her sorority sisters. He entered the room, and this unsuspecting girl had fallen asleep praying the Rosary, as she had promised to her grandmother she would recite it every night. He was unable to kill this young lady, and attributed it to seeing the Rosary in her hands. Instead, he turned and ran.
So, as we look at this month as the Month of the Rosary, knowing that horrible atrocities have been committed even in the past couple days, perhaps look into the Rosary – it’s not just a “Catholic thing,” but rather I have known of Protestants that pray the prayers of the Rosary as well. Take a real, in-depth look at the words of the prayers, take a look at some of the evidence that reciting the Rosary has had, and give the Rosary a try. Perhaps that is what our world needs – a little more “monster scaring” and a little more in-depth prayer for all of us, not just ourselves as individuals.