by Moira Brehony AMMM Ireland/Tanzania 08.01.2024
When I see Rose from Masaka, Uganda I understand what prayer really means. Rose grew up in Masaka, Uganda and as a young woman, she met a man and bore a son for him called David. She went on to marry this man when his first wife passed away and they had two more daughters.
Unfortunately, Rose’s husband died within a few years of their marriage. Rose was always a very spiritual person and prayed regularly, thanking God for her children whom she was able to educate, and they in turn secured good jobs. Rose’s eldest son, David, was a secondary school teacher and lived in Kampala. However, he had his struggles in life.
In 2019, David was found unconscious in his bed and was taken to the hospital. He was diagnosed with an acquired brain injury. Four years later, David is now back home in the village living with his mam, Rose, and has no idea who or where he is. Rose is the full-time caregiver for her son, both day and night. She nourishes, bathes, and prays with him every day.
Caring for David often proves difficult, and he does not always appreciate what his mam does for him. Rose herself is on strong medication for a chronic infection and she needs to eat regularly and keep herself healthy. She is attached to her local Legion of Mary presidia and never misses a meeting. Rose has talked to many priests about David and, with a lot of difficulty, has taken him on local transport to prayer meetings. Rose is always energised at these sessions, and she also feels it has a calming effect on David. Rose’s children are good to her, and they look after their brother financially so that all his medical and physical needs are met.
How important is prayer to Rose? Rose is a strong believer and prays, thanking God for all the graces she has received in having the good health to look after her son. She sees it as a privilege that she has been given this task of caring for her own flesh and blood. Rose is not looking for praise. However, I see her as a special person that radiates her selfless love for her son but, without her strong faith and prayer life, she would be different.
We thank God for people like Rose in this life who are a constant reminder that prayer is all powerful. While staying with me, Rose has just celebrated her 68th birthday while on her first break in four years from caring for David.