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priests praying the rosary at Aokpe

Author: Mrs. Justina Ilochi

Today we shall be reflecting on our call to "Pray the Rosary devoutly with both hands, daily." Our focus today is on our actions (what we do) and not what we know. Consequently, we shall concentrate less on why we pray the Rosary or the benefits of praying the Rosary because testimonies abound on these topics.

Brothers and sisters join me let’s think together about this phrase "devoutly and with both hands" because they hold the key to getting this action of praying the Rosary right.

What actions must we carry out to satisfy this second bullet point of our call to action?

We already know that Our Lady has asked us to Pray! Pray!! Pray!!! Pray the Rosary!!! However, asking us to pray devoutly with both hands is newer to us. To take action and obey this heavenly order we need to understand the meaning of being devout and why we need both hands holding the Rosary while we pray.

There are several words that the online thesaurus (dictionary) suggests to mean devout. They include: sincere, heartfelt, deep, earnest, fervent, serious, pious, religious, spiritual, devoted, dedicated, committed, staunch to mention but a few. Therefore, to pray the Rosary devoutly we need to be able to apply at least 3-4 of these words to how we feel before, during and after praying the Rosary.

For example, we could describe ourselves as a staunch, devoted Rosary praying people committed to praying the Rosary every day. We should have a dedicated time of day (an appointment with heaven) for praying the Rosary. We should pray the Rosary fervently and with sincerity (meditating).

This brings us to the action of using both hands to hold the Rosary when we pray. Culturally, in most parts of the world the use of two hands to present something to anyone is a mark of respect. This respect goes both ways—respect for the preciousness of what is being offered and respect for the person to whom the offer is made. This applies to praying the Rosary as well. As a staunch, devoted Rosary praying people, we have enormous respect for the Rosary beads that we use. We also respect the deep pious thought that passes through our being when we reflect on the mysteries of the Rosary and offer our thanksgiving to God for sending Jesus born of the Blessed Virgin to us. That is one reason why using two hands is an important action for us. It gives us that feeling of respect, love and fear of God.

To pray the Rosary with both hands reduces distraction, for what else should our other hand be doing better than helping us to pray more fervently?

Our Lady of Aokpe, the Mediatrix of All Graces. . . Pray for us. Amen.

Author: Mrs. Justina Ilochi

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