I promised I would tell you my story with relation to the 54 Day Rosary Novena but I thought I'd add my story in relation to the Rosary as well.
To be honest, in my adult life, I never really prayed that much, the amount of times I would pray a year, I could probably count on one hand. However, my Middle Eastern mother prayed every day, sometimes more than once, so her connection to God was a lot stronger than mine. Between the ages of 10 and 18, I used to pray almost every night, nothing major, maybe a few Our Fathers and a few Hail Marys. Routine. No passion.
For the next 8 years, so between the ages of 18 and 26, my prayer life dwindled and I would say the occasional prayer at night but admittedly, when I did pray during those years, it was a lot more heartfelt than before.
I was about 23 and one Friday (instead of going out), I attended a Church group meeting to welcome back a Church member who had recently returned from overseas. With him, he brought back little saints cards to use as book marks and on the back there was The Angelus prayer. I took a card, brought it back home and chucked it in my top drawer. Three years later, I finished university and started work. It took me about 40 minutes by train to get to and from work, so I started reading books on the train. I bought a book mark from Dymocks but for some reason, one morning, I couldn't find it. So I opened my top drawer and started using the book mark with The Angelus on the back. I had no idea what this prayer was but I made a conscious effort to pray it on the way to work and on the way back. It became a weekday habit, The Angelus, twice a day. Eventually, I realised this is the prayer my mother prays every day at 12 noon. Not only that, all my friends knew it and prayed it as well.
Two years go past and one Saturday afternoon, my mother being disgusted by the state of my room, asks me to at least clean out the drawers. I take on this mammoth task and as I begin, I find a book on how to pray the Rosary, given to me by a dear friend who passed away from cancer about a decade ago. I had kept the book in memory of her, as she was a special soul. I move the book and put it on top of my Bible, next to my bed. I clean out the drawers and make a mental note that this night, I will pray the Rosary, for the first time, ever. I went into my mother's room and stole (temporarily borrowed) one of her 50,000 Rosary beads and put it on top of the book. It's Saturday night, so I went out with my friends to party the night away and returned home at some ungodly hour. However, my mind could not rest until I learnt how to pray the Rosary and did one that night. It was horrible. I couldn't think of anything except sleep. It was long and tedious, almost physically painful. But for some reason, I knew I was doing something good. I stuck by it and finished one Mystery. The next day, I attended Mass but before going to bed, I felt something was incomplete. I took out the book and did another Rosary. I've been doing the same thing for the last two years and I can honestly say that it has now become one of the simple joys of my life.
As for this website and how it came about, a good friend of mine got me on the 54 Day Rosary Novena. There was no clean pdf online with the Luminous Mysteries and I thought that Mary and Jesus deserved more. One night, we were praying the Rosary at my friend's house and another one of our friends wanted to do the 54 Day Rosary Novena but wanted a pdf with the Luminous Mysteries. So I promised him to compile one, which was easy to read and was spell checked. So, I went home that night and in a fit of divine zeal, stayed on my computer till the job was done. After I hit save, I may have treated myself to a McDonald's breakfast for 2. A month after that, I thought I might as well share it with others, in case someone wants it and so this website was born.
That's my tale, I'll be very surprised if you got this far because my story telling skills are hopeless...