Baby Jen is three weeks old today. It has been a busy three weeks but things are settling down a bit as we get used to the “new normal” of being a family of eight.
It was fitting that she entered the Church “in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit” on Holy Trinity Sunday.
Today marks another feast in the Church calendar: the solemnity honouring Our Lady, Help of Christians. John grabbed some rosary beads to celebrate.
Although we had been brought up believing truths of the Christian faith such as the doctrine of the Holy Trinity, and we could easily agree to the Catholic teachings that matched what we had learned as Protestants, Ben and I were suspicious of purely Catholic practices such as praying the rosary.
Asking a person who, although alive in Christ (Romans 6:8), is no longer living here on Earth, to pray for “us sinners, now and at the hour of our death,” struck us as strange. Even though we had grown up asking people we could see for prayer, asking someone who had died to pray for us seemed like it might be wrong somehow.
One evening, after having heard from several people in our RCIA class about the power of Mary’s intercession, Ben and I were home, having just put the kids to bed. A dog across the street had been barking loudly all day, with no sign of stopping to let our children sleep. We discussed the situation – clearly the owner was not at home, so knocking on the neighbour’s door wouldn’t help. We decided to try an experiment.
Ben prayed aloud something like, “Mary, if you can, please stop that dog from barking.” The words were no sooner out of Ben’s mouth than… silence. The dog had stopped practically in mid-bark! We looked at each other, dumbfounded. And we have both been praying the rosary ever since.
Just like at the wedding feast at Cana, Jesus is quick even today to respond when His mother points out a need. “They have no wine.” Or, in our case, “the dog is barking.”
If you are sceptical, I completely understand. That’s why I encourage you to try it out for yourself. Why not ask someone in Heaven to pray for you? Mary and Joseph were hand-picked by God to care for His Son, and they are wonderful intercessors for those of us down in the parenting trenches. However, people from all walks of life benefit from the prayers of Saints – I know a Baptist who regularly asks Saint Anthony to help her find things she has lost. (I do this too – he is amazing!)
Yes – I do get excited about the Catholic faith! But I haven’t forgotten that you probably came here hoping for more newborn cuteness.
I will leave you with this shot Ben took while holding baby Jen:
We are praising God that He has entrusted us with such a precious gift and blessing!