Friday, August 24, 2012

How Can We Make The World Better?

We're all so worried about the world, about its evils and injustices. These are evil times, we say. People are full of selfishness and violence, and our political leaders are driven by destructive agendas.

It would not be realistic to deny any of these points. And indeed, we are all called to do what we can to build up the good, and to struggle against the evils that afflict our society, our communities, our families, and our own lives. There are many things we can do.

Here is something all of us can do: Pray the Rosary! Every day.

I'm not "getting pious" here (i.e. I'm not suggesting that "piety" is a substitute for grappling with human problems, or a pretext for hiding from them). We must engage the circumstances of our lives. But as Christians we should know that if we don't pray, we'll be neglecting the most important dimension of our circumstances...and our lives.

Pray the Rosary! Pray to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. This is something Our Lady of Fatima asked us to do. She often asks for simple things: "Build me a church...." "Make this medal...." "Say this prayer...."

"Yes," we reply, "but the Rosary is not simple. It's hard!"

Not really. It's not so hard. What's hard is to be confronted, day after day, with the smallness of our love. We always make a bad job of the Rosary, because we don't love God very much.

So let us ask the Lord, through His loving Mother, to give us the grace to love Him more, and the grace to say the Rosary better. That won't make us perfect tomorrow. But the daily Rosary will teach us to be humble and to be faithful, in one small thing. And thus we take little steps, with trust.

Let us entrust it to Mary's heart. Let us entrust everything to her, and through her, to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. I think Mary asked for the Rosary and devotion to her Immaculate Heart at Fatima because the New Evangelization is all about the faith becoming concrete. It's about the faith being recognized as reality, and adhered to with affection--because what we believe in is the Love of a Person.

Mary makes things concrete. The Rosary is a way of joining with Mary in the "pondering of her heart." If we pray it, we will grow. It is an extraordinary, healing, miracle-working prayer.