A Happy End to a New Year

I am not one to believe in the power of prayer or in miracles.

By aronki using the Creative Common license

I had a very Roman Catholic upbringing that included going to Catholic school, celebrating all the Catholic holidays and performing all the Catholic sacraments.

Some 15 years ago, Catholic school ended and so did my Catholic self. The rituals were just that. Monotonous babble for the barren and boring.

Until recently, when I took to reciting the rosary.

My mother had always encouraged me to pray to our Lady during hard times. A few weeks ago, for some strange, unexplained reason, I finally took her advice and did just that. By the third decade of Hail Marys, I felt fully focused, devoted and at peace.

What I enjoy most about prayer is not asking for things I want for myself, but praying for others–for friends enduring personal hardships, to family members undergoing serious health problems.

I am absolutely amazed when my prayers are actually answered. Astounded, not for the miracles themselves, but for the opportunity to savor life’s joy, to embrace those enjoyable moments, and feel grateful for the goodness evident in our lives.

2011 will be the year I resumed a childhood tradition–an archaic ritual that has helped me see the world as a place packed with endless opportunities, especially in trying times.

Happy New Year!

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