Praying the rosary isn’t all that hard, but it isn’t all that easy if you are prone to distractions and kneeling on a wood floor.
When I was 15, a group of young girls from my church all loaded in a van with a chaperone and our parish priest and took a “nun run” to visit the Missionaries of Charity (MC) in our state. It was mid-July, a season when most air conditioners would be running full steam ahead.
As soon as we entered the house where the MC’s lived, we noticed the barren appearance and the heat. The MC’s make it a mission to live like the people they serve. I’m sure even the people they served in this area had A/C, but the MC’s did not. What they also lacked was furniture. So for 20 minutes we all kneeled (even the sisters, some of whom had to be at least 70 years old) on the hard, wood floor. Several of our group were wearing shorts and how misfortunate that day…When you’re praying for 20 minutes on the hard, wood floor with no A/C in the middle of July in the South your knees start to slide apart.
Once we were nearing the end of the rosary, we all felt relief that we could sit soon. You see, the MC’s had brought out folding chairs just for us. However, once we ended the rosary and all of us were about to take our seats the lead nun began saying the Chaplet of Divine Mercy. By that point, one member of our group who had a broken tailbone took the opportunity to sit down. As we all looked at each other, we admitted defeat and sat as well.
We learned a lot that day. We learned that sometimes you just have to grin and bear it to grow in holiness. We also learned that sweaty knees and wood floors don’t mix. Most of all we witnessed the joy that comes from a life completely lived for Christ and that rejecting modern-day luxuries can lead to a more full and lasting peace than having A/C and a house full of furniture.
“People who love each other fully and truly are the happiest people in the world. They may have little, they may have nothing, but they are happy people. Everything depends on how we love one another.” -Blessed Teresa of Calcutta