Memorial of Our Lady of the Rosary

Today Anne O’Brien reads and reflects on the Gospel of Luke (11:1-4) in which Jesus teaches his disciples to pray.

Anne says this Gospel highlights the importance of forgiveness. She says that, in our relationships with family and friends, we know and understand the impact that forgiveness can have. If given, it can deepen relationships. If held back, it can leave scars and even destroy relationships.

One of the most powerful images of St John Paul II was his offering of mercy and forgiveness to the person who tried to assassinate him in 1981.  He visited this prisoner; sat with him; prayed with him; and listened to him.

The prayer Jesus taught us, the ‘Our Father’, captures the need to forgive and the need to pray for the grace to forgive others. It is a very special prayer, taught to us when we are very young, and prayed often: personally, in the rosary, in the Mass and in liturgies. It has been translated into almost every language. In Luke’s version, Jesus teaches this prayer to the disciples in response to their request, “Lord teach us to pray”.

Following the example of the Pope from Poland, Anne says, we too can live this prayer through our constant and daily forgiveness of those around us.  Today, Anne invites us to think about ‘Who do we need to forgive so that we can liberate just as Christ did?’

Anne concludes her reflection with the words of the Our Father and invites us to join her in praying them:

Our Father,
Who art in Heaven, hallowed be Thy name;
Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread;
and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us;
and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.