my uncle has cancer. it is in his lungs and his bones, and he is quite ill. his wife--my dad's little sister--is distraught. she has asked us to pray for a miracle.
i have not prayed in 40 years. my older siblings were raised catholic, but by the time i came along--number 7 of 10--my parents had fallen away from the church. i only went to church once or twice a year, when my irish catholic grandmother came to town. then i'd scramble around and find a handkerchief to put on my head and we'd walk over to Holy Rosary together where i tried to look like i knew what i was doing amongst all the murmurs and hymns and rituals.
my aunt sent an email the other day, asking all of us to pray the rosary for uncle bill. she said it didn't matter if we believed or not--that she believed if we prayed the rosary it would help him. We have to keep hoping they can control this terrible lung cancer that has gone to his bones, she wrote. her message felt stark and suffused with pain.
i wrote back and said that i would do whatever i could.
my response was vague, but i know that she thinks that means i am praying. so far, i have not. i don't know how to pray the rosary, and if i decide to do it, i will have to first consult google. but should i pray?
i have gone all around this in my brain until i have a headache:
i want to ease my aunt's worry.
if she thinks i am praying, that eases her worry.
but if i am not praying, i'm deceiving her. that can't be right.
but if i am praying, i'm being hypocritical. that can't be right, either.
what is the most important thing here? i mean, besides bill getting well, which seems unlikely. my aunt's peace of mind? or my integrity? or am i looking at this all wrong?
1 hour ago