My journey through faith
The day I found the Rosary
"For the Son of Man has come to save that which was lost." (Matthew 18:11)
It was the end of September 2023 when I found the rosary. I was watching a youtuber showing how to use the rosary. On the 3rd of October 2023 I ordered this rosary from ebay. It arrived on the 5th of October. I started to pray the rosary right away, inbetween studying the rosary. I learnt that the centre piece and crucifix on the rosary I purchased was the St Benedict medal and cross. I also learnt that the St Benedict medal is used for labour, prayer and exorcism. On the 7th of October war broke out in the Middle East. Around this time I had also found the Miraculous Medal created by Mother Mary that was connecting me to past experiences that I have had with Mother Mary.
One paticular experience I had was in Dec 2010 just before Christmas. I had become unwell and was sectioned under the mental health act. I dont remember much about that time but I do remeber words that came out of my mouth to a nurse of the hospital I was admitted in. My words to her were "They said I have cursed Mother Mary becuase i spat in the water but i didnt curse her they put salt in the water."
I was in hospital for 3 weeks and I probably would have forgotten about this experience and what I had said to the nurse, cause i wasn't conciously aware of my words to her becuase I was so unwell. When I moved to another hospital in preparation for my release the same nurse came to find me and asked me, if I remebered what I had said to her, and I, in that moment, remebered my words to her. Something interrupted our conversation and nothing else was said but, this reminder of the words that came out of my mouth have remained with me to this day.
If I think about what did it mean for those words that I said, I often think about how others can make it look like you did something wrong when you didn't. That you can be percieved as guilty when you were in fact innocent. And that other people can cause you to sin or to make it appear that you intentially sinned!
"Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him if a milestone were hung around his neck, and he were drowned in the depth of the sea." (Matthew 18:6)
Because of my experience I was invested in finding out more about the rosary and the miraculous medal. I found the miraculous medal from another you tuber who was a member of the Militia Immaculata. I researched the MI and liked what I saw so I applied to join. Through the paperwork for membership I found out that the 7th of October was a Marion Feast Day for Our Lady of the Rosary (Mother Mary).
The 7th of October was also the day in 2023 that Israel was attacked and war broke out in Gazza in the Middle East.
After watching the news and researching this war I wanted to put down the rosary and turn away again from my faith. Religion to me was only filled with hatred and war and was too political for my liking. But I was now invested and felt connected to Mother Mary and the rosary. I felt I had found a way to keep me connected to my faith through Mary. I felt Mother Mary was my link to Christ and God. Because of my experiences the connection was too deep and I found I was no longer able to just turn away and walk away from it. So I stayed. I stayed because the rosary felt like it was connected to my soul becuase of my experience with Mother Mary in 2010.
Adversity throughout my life has caused me to turn away from God but even in those times I still felt his presence I just no longer admitted he was there.
"I say to you , if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain. 'Move from here to there.' and it will move: and nothing will be impossible for you." (Matthew 17:20)
I feel that there are certain souls on Earth that disconnect themselves from their spiritual calling because the world is seemingly cruel to them. Souls that have suffered abuse of somekind can often go on to abuse themselves through alcohol or drug addiction. Escapism from the memory of abuse can take hold in many different ways. The downtrodden inside our communities lose their faith because they lose it through witnessing abuse of others or experiencing it themselves. We quite often hear people say "if there truly was a God then this wouldn't happen!"
I have been one of those people and have uttered such words myself. I have felt the heartache, the abandonment, the despair and I have been poor, lost and confused.
I still struggle with the heartache and the poverty. It always seems the more I try the harder I fall. But one thing I am known for doing is getting back up again and coming out on top. I do feel that in getting back up we become stronger.
The war in the Middle East has taken its toll on me these past few weeks. For one; it happened on Our Lady of the Rosary day, on the week I found the rosary. Past wars have been won by warriors praying the rosary. This coincidence had played on my mental health, along side having to watch the brutal killings during this present war, especially of babies and children and all the other innocent civillians.
And 2; I have attended music festivals and free parties in my younger days and watching the attack of the revellers in Israel caused me to put myself there as I already knew what it felt like to attend a party like this. I couldnt imagine what they all went through but i could put myself in why they were there. I watched in horror and sent prayers to everyone being attacked throughout the whole experience.
I then started to see people waving the Palestine flag. At first all i saw was the odd flag flying on a passing car through london and just thought it was an extremist in our midst. But then I started to witness on the news whole protests of people flying the Palestine flag. My first response to this was 'how disrespectful of people!'
But then I started to want to know why they are all protesting for Palestine? So I went on a deep dive in researching the history of the Middle East. I was shocked by what I found and started to understand the reason for the protests. I myself have been struggling with a 20 year injustice and criminallity that I can't seem to find anyone to listen to me, or anyone who wants to help and neither can I find anyway out of. Finding out the Palestinians have been feeling like this for 75 years put my problem into perspective. I felt for them as I felt for the party goers because i know what it feels like. I know what it feels like to not be listened to, to see no way out of your predicament. I then found myself sending prayers to Gaza and all the innocent civillians having to suffer throughout this war.
I discovered that this war is based on religion and again I found myself wanting to turn away from my faith due to the fact that wars are born out of religion.
But i also found myself being able to seperate my faith from religion. I feel that your own personal faith/religion has nothing to do with a sect. We dont have to belong to any religious group to believe in God. We dont have to prove our faith in Christ through belonging to any paticular denomination. We can believe in God by ourselves. We can carry that faith on our own, privately and by not belonging to any church or group.
I put a block on all my social media and you tube accounts for 48 hours, due to my mental health suffereing, by being forced to watch the horror and witnessing everyone fighting about whose side they are on.
All I can see is innocent babies and children being killed and parents writing their childrens names, on there childrens arms, so that they could be identified if they died in this war. And all I can see is anyone asking for a cease fire is accused of being antisemitic. Which, i dont believe is true at all! All people want is the end to the mutilation and murder of innocent civillians and their children!
Whilst we all watch in horror, feeling helpless because there is nothing we feel we can do to change anything, we take on the misery, the heartache and the feeling of hopelessness.
However, I do feel that we can do something. The protests seem to be carrying alot of weight in helping to make for change. But for all those who cannot get to the protests and feel even more hopeless and helpless; I have found something that we can do and that is to pray the rosary. This war started on October 7th -Our Lady of the Rosary Feast Day. We need to push back with prayers and take back Our Ladies sacred day. We need to pray for all innocent victims on both sides and we need to pray for an end to this horror, for the sake of the innocent and for World Peace.
We also need to pray for our own countries to order a ceasefire. Collective punishment is a war crime under International Humantarian Law. We need to make it clear that this war is not in our names. We need to make it clear that collective punishment is never the solution to any problem.
Social media can also play a part in getting our voices heard but we need to be careful we do not end up inside our own battles of which side we are on. It is important when we speak that we don't offend people. We can speak and write in a way that is respectful to all victims on both sides. Just because we don't like what we see happening now does not mean we are justifying what happened on the 7th. We should always start from the position that all innocent lives are important. We also need to protect ourselves from overloading ourselves within this conflict. Taking breaks from social media and the news for self care is also important.
"You are of God. He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.
They are of the world. Therfore they speak as of the world, and the world hears them.
We are of God. He who knows God hears us; he who is not of God does not hear us. By this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error." ( 1 John 4:4-6)