By Joe Sullivan, MJ • Phoenix, AZ

Over the years I have had a half-hearted devotion to praying the Rosary. Today, mind you, it is the strongest it has ever been as I pray the 20 mysteries daily! But when I was much younger, it was often a struggle to pray five mysteries a day or, sometimes, even just one mystery. 

Some years later I was able to step up my game, but I was still a little feeble. I remember when praying the Rosary while walking, I would sometimes ball up the Rosary in my hand so nobody would see it. I feel ashamed of that attitude. I make it a point now to keep my hand open and public wherever I go when I am praying the Rosary. 

Once while I was praying the Rosary when I was climbing the Morman Trail on South Mountain near our house in Phoenix, a hiker admired my ‘beautiful Rosary’, although it was only a simple wooden one. It is wonderful how she saw it as beautiful. 

I also make it an ongoing custom to have a Rosary in my pocket at all times. St. Anthony Mary Claret said that the apostle of the later times will always carry the Rosary with them. 

One time, while I was driving a passenger to her doctor’s appointment, we got on the subject of devotion to Mary, and I shared with her the importance of praying a daily Rosary. She agreed and told me she needs to do that, but she didn’t have a Rosary. I immediately pulled the Rosary out of my pocket and gave it to her. She was so happy! Sometimes, I carry two Rosaries for emergencies. 

Passing out free Rosaries during our street evangelization youth activity every month is a main activity in our evangelization effort. Many people you wouldn’t think would be interested in taking one do wind up taking it. And many of them want to learn how to pray it. 

A soldier is not a soldier without his standard-issue weapon. For an apostle of Christ – a soldier of Jesus – that weapon is the Rosary. 

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