Thursday, August 5, 2010

Why I pray

One of my sisters mentioned that she has been saying the Memorare a lot recently, and she recited it then to the rest of us sitting on the porch last night in the dark. (Kind of weird? Yes, I know, but that's the way we roll. Another one of my sisters recited the Angelus, which she memorized because one of her teachers made the class say it every day before she dismissed them for lunch.)

The Memorare
Remember, O Most Gracious Virgin Mary,
that never was it known that anyone who fled to Thy protection,
implored Thy help or sought Thy intercession,
was left unaided.
Inspired by this confidence,
I fly unto Thee, O Virgin of Virgins, my Mother;
to Thee do I come, before thee I kneel, sinful and sorrowful.
O Mother of the Word Incarnate,
despise not my petitions,
but in Thy clemency, hear and answer me.

The Memorare is one of my favorite prayers. I say it whenever I can't sleep or whenever my prayers don't involve falling down and cursing and pleading why.

Hearing the words last night, I realized that even though I say it, I am not inspired by any confidence. In fact, I have no confidence that I will be aided. I am not really sure then why I say it.

I was reading about and watching parts of a 2008 BBC movie called "God on Trial," which tells the story of a group of prisoners in Auschwitz putting God on trial and finding him guilty.

After they find God guilty, the Nazis come in and start calling out numbers. Amid the panic, one of the prisoners says: "So what do we do now?" He's told: "Let us pray." And the men put a hand on their heads like a yarmulke and pray.

The writer, who is Catholic, says he hopes the film recalls the parable of the Prodigal Son. "Only this time it was God who seemed to go away, and people who - inexplicably perhaps - were prepared to rush out to welcome him back."

Maybe that is why I say the Memorare, to be prepared when he comes back to my life. When he does, though, I am sure not killing the fatted calf for him.


Anonymous said...

Gd Matt... I love you. What else can I say to you. We are in this together whatever that means wherever we go.

Anonymous said...

It might help you to know that often add "or so I'm told" when I finish praying it. JTG

Michael Watson said...

Hi Matt,
I mostly am able to avoid bitter, although sometimes it does appear on my doorstep. I know fear well. I'd like to think it is here to remind me to be compassionate to myself, but that knowledge is fleeting. Still, there are moments of comfort, mostly with loved ones, friends, and the natural world.

May Mary walk with you always.

Matt Trott said...

thanks all

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