Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Yup, Facebook's a Tool...(of the Spirit?)

There are many reasons to like and/or dislike social media. Many treatises have been written on both the power of Facebook and its perils. This will be none of those things. I simply share with you how the Holy Spirit worked in our family through the use of social media. It is possible, which is why I'm a fan.

Image by Owen Brown from

If you follow The Pitter Patter Diaries on Facebook or Twitter (or me on Instagram), you may have noticed that we have started a new tradition of intercessory prayer during our family rosary on Sundays. It all began rather small. 

We had discerned a need to pray more intentionally together as a family, so last year at some point, the Hubs designated Sunday evenings as family rosary time. Li'l G gets into praying with us, though in tried and true toddler form, she would like to "do it myself!" So we whisper and she prays...until she gets distracted, also in true toddler fashion. Sometimes, she likes to sing the prayers. We roll with it.

On a whim one Sunday, I happened to post on Facebook and let people know they could leave prayer requests in the comments or message me. We had the fascinating phenomenon at first of people simply "liking" my status, which left us scratching our heads. Do they want prayer, or are they just giving us a thumbs up for praying? At first we went with the latter.* We have also had our stragglers, asking for prayer a few hours after we had concluded the Rosary. God isn't bound by time, though, so we always go ahead and add intentions through the night.

Over time, I have been astounded at the prayer requests that have come our way, both in need and in thanksgiving. More recently, I have had many private messages with quite serious requests for prayer, so much so that I've had to wonder if I wasn't maybe parading around as a bit of a fraud. I'm not really sure my prayers are all that powerful, or that I am quite so devoted as I should be to constant prayer. God uses the weak, though, so in that I am certain that he hears these prayers. 

We have had prayers from people suffering abuse. We have seen prayers from people with cancer and those with family members suffering from debilitating diseases. We have seen prayers from people with troubled marriages and heartbreak in pregnancy. It is mindblowing to see the prayers people entrust to us as intercessors. Recently, these prayer requests are coming to me mid-week from childhood friends, school friends, obscure relations and acquaintances...all because they have noticed us weekly asking to pray for others. Mindblowing...and a little daunting.

Because the needs of those asking our prayers are not limited to a short rosary on Sunday, this last weekend we began the Casa McCormick Prayer Book. All prayer requests coming our way through the week and on Sundays are now kept in this book so we can remember them as we begin our nightly prayer practice at dinner. Inspired by the Whitakers, the thought was that we would keep the cards we have received at Christmas and other announcements in a basket at the dinner table, and each night we would select one card and pray for the sender and their family. Now with all the requests that have been coming in, we are adding this prayer book to the nightly routine. All the intentions are offered up to Jesus nightly as we pray after dinner and break open the Word from the day. 

As I mentioned, I am not the most disciplined in prayer, so there will undoubtedly be nights where things are hectic and we Wednesdays when dinner is rushed so the Hubs can get out the door to teach a night class. This is what I love about the book - I can simply offer up all the intentions as I pray at night even if we miss our dinner prayer. 

To think - we would never have been entrusted with these prayers if I hadn't decided on a whim to hop on Facebook before our Rosary one Sunday last year. When we crack open the door (or status updates), it is unbelievable how God uses that for His glory. I sincerely hope that all those who have asked our prayers have felt the peace of the Lord in their soul. We hope that if prayers are answered, they will let us know so we might offer up a prayer of thanksgiving and see the hand of God at work.

Next up on the intercessory prayer agenda: placing all the names of those asking for healing on the tomb of the Venerable Solanus Casey. I may need to ask Sally's help in this one since I can't make it down to the center every week. 

Pray on, my brothers and sisters in Christ. Pray on...

*Also, now if you like our status update asking for prayer or a photo on Instagram, we pray for you and your family and add you to our prayer book for continued prayer. Seemed better than basking in the kudos while we prayed for others. 

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  1. This is so beautiful! Reminder of the beauty of social media in reaching others and covering those who need it most in prayer! great story....goooo team McCormick!

  2. Rahki - how do you manage to do all those different social media without having it be an incredible time suck? I have a hard enough time just keeping up with the blogs on my list - I'm too intimidated to do facebook (definitely addictive) or twitter or instagram. I'd probably NEVER disconnect from an electronic device if I was doing all of them.