I realized recently that I am not the best godmother to my brother. (You’ll have to excuse the sponsorship incest.) When Ryan was baptized, I had only recently stumbled back into the Church. Now that I’m on this quest to become holy, I have to take my role more seriously. It’s even more important because I’m his big sister as well as the third-in-command in his religious education.
I took small steps at first. Ryan likes to stay up late (everyone in my family is a night owl), but he has enough discipline to still get up early when he has to. That makes him about twice as likely as my sister to be ready for Mass on Sunday morning. Since we’ve been going to St. John the Evangelist, I’ve been pointing out the readings and Nicene Creed in the missalettes they have there. I don’t really like reading along; as a lector, I feel it’s only proper to pay attention to other lectors. It helps some people a lot, though, especially children.
Back in May, when Maura, Mike M., and I took our field trip to the National Shrine, I got a black plastic-bead Rosary for Ryan. It felt like the godmotherly thing to do. Come to think of it, it was probably around the anniversary of his baptism. I also brought him a little illustrated booklet with nice pictures for each mystery (all twenty). It was clearly not the sort of present he was hoping I’d bring, but it made me feel better.
Then I got busy with work and moving into b-b.net, and now it’s nearly time for me to disappear for another few months. I mentioned to Ryan on the way home from Mass this past Sunday that I would teach him how to pray the Rosary. So last night, despite my headache, his sniffles, and my exhaustion from not getting enough sleep the previous night, I finally got around to it.
It was weird purposely inviting Courtney and Ryan into my room. They’re usually only in here on the heels of my mom. They know I’m less likely to kick them out with my mom watching. We all sat on my bed and I explained how to follow along with the beads. I’d decided beforehand that we should pray the Joyful Mysteries. Those take the least explaining. They split up leading the last decade. They had trouble with some of the language (I don’t think “blessed art thou” shows up much in manga), but it was sweet. I realized my buddy the Holy Spirit was watching over us when they took a closer look at the medals on their Rosaries. I wasn’t sure my sister even owned a Rosary, and I’d picked out Ryan’s because I liked the crucifix best on that one. It turned out that they had the same style of Rosary: hers with white beads, his with black. I briefly went over the other fifteen mysteries, then explained the writing on the scroll over Jesus on the crucifix, and they went off to bed.
The best part of our prayer session was when I told them that I pray the Rosary daily. Ryan said he’d like to pray it every week. I don’t know if he’ll remember that, but I hope he does. Our Lady could bring him such graces!