An excerpt from Father Dwight Longenecker’s Praying the Rosary for Inner Healing
“I first discovered the healing power of the Rosary when I was an Anglican minister. As a young man, sin played havoc with my life. I went through some dark times and spent time in counseling. My counselor was a wise old priest who advised me to start praying the Rosary. I discovered that the Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary took me into the first stages of Jesus’ life and childhood. As I prayed through those stages, something mysterious happened. God’s love began to seep into the early stages of my own life, and I began to experience healing from the deep hurts I had received in the very earliest foundation experiences of my life.
“What I went through wasn’t easy. God had to take me apart and put me back together again. Jesus was doing some serious spiritual surgery, and I was in spiritual intensive care. In the midst of it, I felt an abiding presence of love and concern by my side. I felt this as a feminine presence. Because I was from a Protestant background, I didn’t know who or what this was. It was only later when I told my priest counselor that he smiled and said, ‘Our Lady’s prayers for you have been so powerful!’
“’Of course!’ I thought. ‘The presence through all this was that of a mother. That’s what it felt like!’ Suddenly the floodgates opened, and the emotions I had been holding back gushed out in a fountain of healing. Only then did I begin to realize and accept the ministry of Jesus’ mother in my life, and since then my devotion and love for her activity in the divine plan has grown through every aspect of my life of faith.
“The Rosary has become an important part of my prayer life because it works. Mary said, ‘My soul magnifies the Lord’ (Lk 1:46), and that is exactly what she does through the Rosary. She used the word ‘magnify’ to mean ‘praise’ or ‘exalt,’ but she ‘magnifies’ the Lord in another way too. ‘Magnify’ means to ‘make larger,’ and that’s what Mary does in our lives: she makes Jesus larger and more real to us than we could ever imagine.”
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