A Lesson from my Treasures

"A Lesson from my Treasures" by Margaret Dwyer Hogan (CatholicMom.com)

Copyright 2019 Margaret Dwyer Hogan. All rights reserved.

A really wonderful moment happened for me last Sunday. My husband and I decided we had a very busy family day ahead of us, and to allow our kids to sleep in, we would attend 5:30 Mass at our parish or a later Mass at the college up the street. The point was – we had “found time”! A blessing on our anniversary weekend.

Having that space allowed me to share with him a journal I recently found that he had given me in the year 2000 – with a picture of the Blessed Mother – and a caption that said “Confess onto me your innermost thoughts, your deepest desires, your darkest secrets, your most desperate longings. For I shall not judge thee, but embrace thee.”

I wrote that year about juggling two young kids (a baby and a 2-year-old) and work – the demands of the day, and watching my husband also exhausted from “doing it all.” I journaled about how my day went – what were my priorities – how the day was actually going in terms of my time and attention, and how I desired it to go – how to “reorder” the day!

"A Lesson from my Treasures" by Margaret Dwyer Hogan (CatholicMom.com)

Copyright 2019 Margaret Dwyer Hogan. All rights reserved.

I had newly discovered the Rosary, so that was on the list. When to pray it, what happened on the days I did not pray it (things did not go so well!).

But here is where the story gets very interesting – out from the book falls a blue prayer booklet my mom kept with her all the time. She had one by her bedside, and one in her purse. And when she died on Christmas Eve, 2002 – I got them both.

"A Lesson from my Treasures" by Margaret Dwyer Hogan (CatholicMom.com)

Copyright 2019 Margaret Dwyer Hogan. All rights reserved.

I have written before about how I credit Father Peyton’s ministry for my conversion to daily Rosary prayer – a laminated card was given to me by a new friend in my life during this very time I was journaling, with the mysteries! I put it above my car visor and would learn a mystery a week until I had a whole set done, and move onto the next It became my lifeline in so many ways – but especially when my mom became ill in 2002, and passed on Christmas Eve.

So here is the bombshell – this past Sunday, I opened up this blue little Rosary booklet and there writing the introduction was a message from Father Patrick Peyton! I could not believe it! My mother, too, was touched by the work of this priest – I was literally shedding tears of joy and disbelief!

"A Lesson from my Treasures" by Margaret Dwyer Hogan (CatholicMom.com)

Copyright 2019 Margaret Dwyer Hogan. All rights reserved.


It was just remarkable that the booklet produced in 1972 was a part of my mother’s prayer life in Grand Blanc, Michigan — and 47 years later I live in Easton, Massachusetts, near the Peyton Center and have a very real personal devotion to Father Peyton. How much do I love this priest? I planned a whole family summer trip to see where he grew up, visiting his parish in Attymass, Ireland, this past summer.

Father Peyton is not a person my mom and I ever discussed – EVER! In fact, in my young adult life I was firmly secularized – while I had a great faith in God’s unconditional love, going to Mass, seeking the sacrament of Reconciliation, or praying the Rosary were not on my weekly – yet alone daily – radar. As a child born in 1964, I was firmly in frame of mind of being single, living in the city, and having it all! While money was not my motivation, I certainly aspired to make my mark on the world. My mom and I could not have been more different.

And here we are in 2019. She has been gone for 17 years, and yet we are connected. I have often said the Rosary connects heaven and earth. I visualize it as a sort of ladder really – the Blessed Mother providing the avenue through her intercession and protection.

Words seem inadequate for all the emotions this has heaped upon me – this connectedness to my mom, the Blessed Mother, Father Peyton and of course our Lord Jesus Christ whom all of these great women and man served! It is a reminder once again to remain faithful in the little things to understand in the end what a big impact you can have: my mom’s quiet witness of her devotion planting the seeds for my devotion down the road – and Father Peyton having a hand in both through his words and ministries.

My takeaway from finding all of these treasures this weekend: Be steadfast and true to whatever God is calling you to do in this moment and time, and when in doubt — pray a Rosary and have confidence the Blessed Mother will guide your path.

Copyright 2019 Margaret Dwyer Hogan


About Author

Margaret Dwyer Hogan is a mother of four, married for 20 plus years to Michael Hogan. In 1998 at the gentle invitation of a friend, she learned to pray the mysteries of the Rosary using a card published by Holy Cross Family Ministries. This led to a radical change in her family life. Margaret now promotes devotion to Family Rosary however she can! At CatholicMom.com, Margaret coordinates the Sunday Gospel Activities.

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