Tuesday, August 9


Le Petit Prince de l'Eglise Posted by Picasa

Once when I was fourteen years old I found a magnificent old book, St. Joseph’s Daily Missal, with pictures of the “15 Mysteries of the Holy Rosary.” I pondered deeply, then, what these mysteries were and why they were called mysteries. I decided to say “the Rosary,” but when I showed the book to the grown-ups, it frightened them.

The grown-ups' response was to advise me to lay aside my Rosary and my book and focus on the communal action of the Mass. I had been disheartened by their failure to understand, but grown-ups never understand anything by themselves, and it is tiresome to be always and forever explaining things to them.

So I said my Rosary alone, without anyone that I could really pray with, until one day I had an accident and the Rosary broke. I simply had to get another!

At the first store, then, I found only “mantra beads.” Looking around, I realized my sentiments were more isolated than a shipwrecked sailor on a raft in the middle of the ocean. Preoccupied, I ran to the next store—nothing. Thus you can imagine my amazement, at the third, when I was interruped by an odd little voice. It said:

"Will you get it blessed?"


"Will you get it blessed?"

I blinked my eyes hard. I looked carefully all around me. And I saw a most extraordinary small cardinal, who stood there examining me with great seriousness.

Now I stared at this sudden apparition with my eyes fairly starting out of my head in astonishment. Remember, I had broken my Rosary and was a thousand miles from any Leaflet Missal outlet. And yet to my surprise here was a cardinal in red gallero.

"But--what are you doing here?"

And in answer he repeated, very slowly, as if he were speaking of a matter of great consequence:

"Will you get it blessed?"

“Well, I suppose my deacon who serves as Pastoral Associate…”

"No, no, no! Where I live, every Rosary is blessed by the local ordinary. How else can you receive the June 29th plenary indulgence?"

So then I got it blessed.

And that is how I made the acquaintance of the little prince of the Church.

(adapted, of course, from the timeless original)

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