"These are the most important words in history…"

That’s the beautiful sentiment of the novice pictured below, describing to the New York Times some of what she was thinking at the moment the photograph was taken.

The Times magazine this weekend looks at the popular — and growing — Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist in Michigan.  (Mary Ann Marks — of Harvard and Forest Hills! — is a novice there , and I believe she’s seen in the photo above, on the right.)  The Times offers a preview of the story here.

Below, the sentiments of the novice pictured, Sister Mary Kate, 18:

We pray the rosary at the same time every day at the Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist — always after lunch. You’re basically repeating the words that Archangel Gabriel said to Our Lady. These are the most important words in history, so to say them over and over again doesn’t make them in the least bit old.Distraction is normal. You have to have a way to fight it. God, our father, is so merciful to us. As soon as I know that I’m distracted, I say, ‘‘Oh, I’m sorry!’’ and come back to him, because I know he understands that we’re his children and we’re weak. That’s what the beads are for, they help. When I was little, praying the rosary every night with my family helped me get into the habit of fighting distraction. You’re a kid, you wanted to be doing other things, but I always wanted to be the one to lead the prayer. And that set good habits for the future. Praying the rosary also teaches you to be silent. You’re really quiet and in front of what’s really true for a few minutes.

Photograph by Peter van Agtmael

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