The time that we are currently living in is certainly unprecedented. As you are well aware here in the United States, we are dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic, civil unrest, natural disasters, and to top it off our presidential election is right around the corner. Now more than ever we need to pray and fast for our families and our country!
Consider this 30-day spiritual challenge in which you do two things daily:
- Pray. For the 30 days of September you are encouraged to pray a rosary daily with those in your household. This might be a challenge at first, especially if you have small children, but the witness you give will be worth it. Here is a great article titled: Where did the Rosary Originate?
Are you unfamiliar with how to pray the rosary? Check out this site for a nice PDF: http://www.kofc.org/en/resources/cis/devotionals/4772.pdf
Or you can download the “Hallow” app for free on your phone for a guide. If a daily Rosary might be too much on some days, then at minimum pray a decade of the Rosary. The whole point of this is to make a daily effort to entrust our intentions to the Blessed Mother.
- Fast or make a daily sacrifice. Jesus said, “If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.” (Matthew 6:24). An essential component of Christian living and following Christ daily involves denying oneself and doing things that might be difficult. Also in Mark’s gospel (chapter 9: 14-29) after the disciples tried to cast out an evil spirit and after they were unsuccessful Jesus told them in verse 29, “this kind (evil spirit) cannot be driven out by anything but prayer and fasting.” Jesus is telling us that prayer and fasting together can do more than on their own and can make a difference in the things that we think are difficult to change. So in addition to praying the rosary daily you are encouraged to sacrifice/fast from one thing each day (see the proposed calendar). The hope is that while you are experiencing some discomfort daily by denying yourself you will offer that up for the daily intention.
The following is a week-long calendar which will show you what your prayer intention will be for the rosary each day. The calendar also gives you a daily sacrifice you can make and that will strengthen your prayer intention. Please, if you need to switch days for daily sacrifices do so. The main objective is that each day you are making an effort even though this will be challenging.
Prayer intention: For all of those affected by Covid-19
Daily sacrifice: No sweets/desserts
Prayer intention: For all of those who are running for public office this fall.
Daily sacrifice: No TV
Prayer intention: For all of those who are discriminated against.
Daily sacrifice: No snacking between meals
Prayer intention: For all of those affected by natural disasters.
Daily sacrifice: Take a cold shower
Prayer intention: For the Catholic Church and our parish community of Saint Nicholas.
Daily sacrifice: No meat
Prayer intention: For all of those healthcare workers who are treating and researching Covid-19.
Daily sacrifice: No alcohol
Prayer intention: For your family. For their conversion, for their safety, that God’s will be done in their lives.
Daily sacrifice: None! This is the day we enjoy the resurrection!
If you have any question, feedback, want to share your successes/challenges contact Steve: firstname.lastname@example.org