PrayTheRosary Apostolate

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The Family Altar

The Family Altar

Pictures and Story by  Mary T. Meier 

 

 

There is a special place in our home
where family members and friends gather to celebrate,
to contemplate, and sometimes, to mourn together.
We come here to “get focused”, to meditate in peace and quiet,
often to commiserate when the weight of the Cross grows heavy.

This place is our family altar, or shrine,
where we find ourselves in the company of Our Lord
and His Most Blessed Mother
through their sacred images and statues.
And we find solace and companionship,
as familiar to us as those who are pictured
in family portraits that stand nearby.
Candles burn, symbolic of our prayers and petitions,
their fragrance a reminder to offer our thanksgiving.
Fresh flowers bloom, a sign of that living offering
our lives should be.

 

Most Sacred and Immaculate Hearts of Jesus and Mary,

reign in our homes.

And may our lives be always a shrine to Thee!

* * *

 

 

Our statue of the Blessed Virgin is a very special one indeed.  

Many years ago, my parents received notice that the rental property
they occupied would be demolished, clearing the land for future urban development. Relocating their large family proved very difficult,
and they stayed beyond the appointed deadline.

One fateful day, through her kitchen window, my mother was horrified
by the sight of a bull dozer plowing its way toward the outdoor shrine where her beloved Blessed Mother statue was enthroned in a stone
and concrete grotto. Running with arms flailing, and shouts to “Stop!” she pulled the heavy statue from the ground and carried it to safety.

That statue rests in my home now, my Mother in Heaven.
She bequeathed to us something more precious than this beautiful statue. The Faith that empowered her with a strength beyond
anything human lives on in her family. Our statues, our family altar,
are symbols and an embodiment of that faith. The practice of gathering here in prayer will be passed on to my children, and to theirs.


 

We have begun a practice in our home quite by accident.

The statue used to be a pure white. My brother Joe painted the beautiful face and garments she wears now. When the paint on the beautiful face and gown began to chip over time with age, we began "dressing" the statue in bits of cloth left over from the sewing basket. This was to be a "temporary fix" until the statue could be restored.

But more time passed, and we grew accustomed to the renewed beauty of the statue, now arrayed in garments of real cloth,
with gold ribbon trim, a crown, and lovely little wreathes for Her head.

 

For the May Crowning on Mother's Day

Our Lady of Grace

 

 

We've prayed many a Rosary before The Immaculate Heart

 

 


                                                                     
We have  prayed the Stations of the Cross with our Most Sorrowful Mother

 

      

We have sought the intercession of Our Lady of Fatima

 

 

      

And on the Feast of the Assumption

we honored Our Mother, Queen of Angels and Saints

 

 

And since the September 11th Attacks

We ask the intercession of Our Lady Queen of Peace

 

 

To celebrate her February 11 feastday, we honor Our Lady of Lourdes

 

 

October 7 Feast Day

Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary

 

 

 

If you don't already have a special place in your home

where the family gathers to pray

we encourage you to create a Family Altar today.

Bring the little ones and acquaint them at a very early age

with the practice of family prayer.

 

 

 

On Nov 21, 2002, we were visited by the Pilgrim Virgin statue

Our Lady of Fatima

 

For an account of this wondrous visit, please click on her image.