Without [contemplation] the Rosary is a body without a soul, and its recitation is in danger of becoming a mechanical repetition of formulas and of going counter to the warning of Christ: "And in praying do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do; for they think they will be heard for their many words (Mt 6:7)." (Paul VI, Marialis Cultus, par. 47)
Eventually, I took a page from my older friend's book, and began to pay her favor forward by beginning small home-based Rosary prayer groups for mothers and their children. Many women hunger to more deeply love their families and their neighbors, with Christ. The Rosary is perfect for this purpose; it is a sublime guide to the ways of life and love.
My years spent in the company of those women have seen me through the all the goodness and difficulties that life can bring. When I moved out of state, they "commissioned" me to bring the rosary group for mothers to my new parish. Within several weeks of my arrival, Mary introduced me to a small group of women willing to start to pray together. Thus, the circle of love that the Rosary is continues.
The Rosary connects me in prayer to my loved ones near and far—to the communion of saints that honor Jesus and Mary in heaven, and to the Church on earth. My daily ring around the Rosary is likened to the laps around a track, vital for the heart of my spiritual health.
There is nothing empty, prattling, or rattling about the Rosary. On the contrary, Popes Pius XII and John Paul II called it "a compendium of the Gospel." And that's Good News, in light of all the other kinds that are out there.