Hello Father Angelo,
I thank you in advance for your prayers and I apologize for writing to you once more.
Since I have been praying the Rosary for more than three months, I feel inner changes every day. First of all I have quit using profanities, although I always have some negative thoughts in my mind, concerning my unchastity of two years ago, which are accompanied by deep anxiety and distress. I hope for such thoughts to quit one day, just like happened with the profanities, and again, I hope this not to be caused by my adversary, because I feel really tormented now, unlike the time I did not use to pray.
A few days ago I asked myself why I started praying the Rosary. Although I pray the Rosary I feel so regretful about my sins (I apologize in advance since I still have to confess them, but I should be able to within this week. I just need to find a parish and a spiritual guide to support me in my spiritual journey)… But the question is: why do I pray the Rosary? Has Jesus led me to it?
Anyway, by thinking of my sins during the year I identified some important dates. At that time I didn’t even know who God was and I had no idea that unchastity was a mortal sin. For example: (…).
After last Easter I felt the necessity to pray the Holy Rosary and I felt so regretful about my sins. I saw all of them again in my head, and I could recall many dates that helped me to realize I was leading an obscene, sinful life.
So I told myself that maybe the Lord Jesus was calling me in some way, or that He was planning a radical change to my life.
Maybe somebody up there saw the obscenity of my life, between impurity and blasphemy. There have been these little punishments (related to those dates), which made me think about the Act of Contrition: “and I detest all my sins because of Thy just punishment”. I feel mirrored in Job, who found his joy in the Lord in spite of all his misfortune.
I just want to know: why me?
I found out how I love praying the Rosary.
Plus, I read the Gospel and all the Scriptures, Acts of the Apostles, etc. I am interested in the Saints’ lives, especially Saint Catherine of Siena, whom I read about on your website. Here are some of her words that impressed me:
“Well, then,” said the Lord, “who was it who made you feel this displeasure if not I, who was hidden at the centre of your heart? If I had not been there they would have entered your heart and you would have felt pleasure in them, but my presence there caused them to displease you and when you tried to drive them away because they were upsetting you and you failed to do so, this made you unhappy and you suffered. But I, who was defending your heart from the enemies, was hidden there all the time, and though I permitted you to be attacked I was still there. Then when I decided that the time for battle was over I sent down my light and the powers of darkness took flight and vanished, for they cannot exist where my light is.”
Also, yesterday by listening to the religious choir singing Eccomi (Here I am) I burst into tears as it made me recall all of my sins.
Dear Father Angelo, I apologize once again. I needed to write to you in order to get a clearer answer about what I am passing through. I do know I need Confession as soon as possible so that I can receive the Lord in me and pursue what is good.
Waiting for your kind reply, I thank you and apologize once more for writing to you again. I’ll remember you every day in the Rosary prayer.
God bless you, Father Angelo.
The answer of a priest
1. After a lifetime (in a manner of speaking, since you’re only 23 years old) spent in impurity and blasphemy, last Easter you inexplicably started to pray the Holy Rosary.
This prayer fascinated you. Now that you pray like this every day, you feel many things deep inside, starting by the sorrow for your sins and for your past “obscene” lifestyle.
2. I am not surprised by the fact that your inner change happened on Easter.
That Day, the Lord wanted to resurrect inside of you too, and you began to resurrect with Him. Obscenities just faded.
By calling them obscenities you voice your current feelings. You are no longer attracted by such things, you just feel repugnance about them.
3. The Lord used the Rosary to resurrect in you.
He used Mary and Her presence.
By letting Our Lady entering your life you just did not expect what would happened, and you unexpectedly found yourself in the same condition as the groom from The Canticle of Canticles: “Thou hast wounded my heart, my sister, my spouse, thou hast wounded my heart with one of thy eyes, and with one hair of thy neck.” (Canticle of Canticles 4:9).
This is why you pray the Holy Rosary and you can’t help it: the Lord gave you the Grace to feel its charm.
4. As Our Lady was once invited by the spouses of Cana and there obtained not only the Miracle of the water which was changed into wine but also the faith in Jesus Christ who was then recognized in His Divine Glory, the same way you have been gifted with the Grace of inviting every day Our Lady in your life.
Through the Rosary it’s as if you open your front door for Her, and you begin greeting Her by saying “Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with Thee…”
She enters and intercedes with God for you, obtaining many Gifts.
Today is the 15th July, Saint Bonaventure memorial. Well, this great Franciscan Saint, who was a friend to Saint Thomas, wrote this: “Oh, how sweetly did Mary know how to salute! Oh Mary, deign to greet us by thy grace! And most certainly she willingly salutes us by her benefits and her consolation, if we willingly greet her with Ave Maria” (Mirror Of The Blessed Virgin Mary by Saint Bonaventure, chapter IV).
5. The first of these graces is the repentance of your sins. And it is a very high grace.
I like to remember that when Blessed Raymond of Capua was assigned to Saint Catherine of Siena to follow her spiritually, he asked the Lord for a sign: if what was happening in Catherine was all God’s work, may he be granted a singular repentance of his sins.
And this repentance was so true and heartfelt that he was seized by “such a strong crying that he was almost afraid that his heart and chest would burst out” (Blessed Raymond of Capua, Saint Catherine, 89).
Therefore, repentance of sins to the point of feeling repulsion for them can only come from above.
6. You ask me if the Lord Jesus is calling you in some way (here you seem to be alluding to a vocation) or maybe he wants to turn your life upside down?
Have no doubts: He wants to turn your life upside down so that He alone is the center and goal of your life.
And since you feel gripped by the Lord in the depths of your being, I do not exclude the possibility that you may also be called to be with him and then be sent to preach and cast out demons (Mk 3:14).
Perhaps this already dawns upon you because you feel only one need: to be with the Lord.
Who knows whether Our Lady may not obtain for you even this very special grace.
7. Continue to pray the Rosary.
Be certain of this: the feelings you have, come from the Lord. Indeed, they are only the beginning of the great works that the Lord wants to do in you through Mary.
I thank you for praying for me.
I thank you from the bottom of my heart that you do so in every Rosary.
While I assure you that I have prayed for you, I am happy to continue to do so.
I bless you and wish you well.