One of the handful of incredibly influential changes or additions we’ve made over recent years in living out our Catholic faith has been the daily family Rosary. Yes, daily…as in, every single day, we pray a full 5 decade Rosary with our four small people. I know for some that sounds daunting, or even “holier than thou”, or heroic…it is not any of those things. It’s necessary. First, it was suggested to us by our priest, who was counseling us in a few areas of our family life and spiritual lives. Second, it’s what Our Lady herself has requested of us – the daily Rosary, 15 minutes of our day, this one specific prayer. So many devotions and prayers are incredible; this one is the ONE that Our Lady herself has asked of each of us. Read more about Our Lady of Fatima here, at fatima.org! Just understanding the events and the words of the Blessed Mother during these apparitions can be a life-changer for your faith!
With that being said, we do the Rosary daily as a family because it is necessary, not because it is easy, or we are experts at ‘being Catholic,’ or because our children are abnormally well-behaved…oh man…they are NOT. Often (usually…okay always), the Rosary is a struggle. It’s hard – a four year old is trying to learn her prayers and how to follow each bead, a two year old is yelling about not wanting to pray the Rosary, an eight year old is slouching, a six year old is saying her knees/back/elbows/toes hurt all of the sudden. It’s just not smooth, pretty, glamorous…it’s hard. I am always looking for ways to help it run a little smoother, and usually just end up day dreaming about making my own board books or painted blocks with roses on them – there have been very few actually helpful resources we have found for the little ones for the family Rosary!
Enter in the On a Mission to Love: Rosary Meditations for Children and Families, which we were given to enjoy and review! We’ve had them for over two months now, so I can truly say that we LOVE them. I love so much about these books, and I am thankful to have them in our home!
One of the things I love is the artwork – it’s hard to find Rosary decade images that are not watered down and childish. While I love simplistic coloring pages and child-friendly cartoon-like artwork in some circumstances, Daniel and I feel strongly that it’s important for meditative prayer preparation that children are given the “real deal” in their environment. These images are truly beautiful – rich in meaning, yet still accessible and recognizable for children.
I am also a big fan of the individual prayer meditations – for each Hail Mary of a decade, a reader can read the meditative sentence, and a non-reader can simply keep his or her finger on that “bead,” represented by connected dots on the page! I also love that you can grab these as a bundle with our favorite wooden bead Rosaries – this was a sheer coincidence in our home! The girls both have these gorgeous wooden bead Rosaries from Small Things Great Love (on Etsy), and Debbie from On a Mission to Love has collaborated with Allison to offer them with her meditation books!
If you are looking to add the Rosary to your family prayer routine with little ones, looking for a lovely First Holy Communion gift, or hoping to foster a deeper love for the Rosary in children who are already praying it with the family, I think you also will love On a Mission to Love.
Review by Claire Dodge, a homeschooling mama living out her vocation as wife and mother. She lives with her husband and four children in Dallas. You can learn more about Claire and her passion for healty living, holistic eating, making pretty things and Catholic homeschooling by visiting her blog Little Light. You can also follow Claire on Instagram @littlelightfamily.