My mind went blank. What do you say when writing to The Virgin Mary?
Between the towns of Selcuck and Ephesus in Turkey stands the last house of the Virgin Mary. Mary is the Mother of Jesus in both Christian and Muslim religion. It is in this house where she is said to have lived after Jesus’ resurrection until her dying day. The house is made of beige stone and is a very small layout in a T shape of only two rooms; a bedroom and a kitchen.
There was a long line of people waiting to get into the house, all discussing their diverse travels and different beliefs but once inside no one spoke a word. It was silent, as we all imagined living in such a tiny space so long ago.
Running under the house is a sacred stream which is said to have amazing healing powers. The fountains outside of the house allow people to collect this sacred water.
The part that was most amazing to me was not the small house or the collective respect people showed or even the sacred water, it was the prayer wall. Once outside of the house if you walk down a few stone steps you will see a long stone wall where people write prayers to the Virgin Mary. They tie them on the wall with pieces of cloth. A religious Letters To Juliet but instead of writing to Juliet for unrequited love they write to the Virgin Mary with their private prayers.
I stood back from the wall in awe at the thousands upon thousands of prayers tied to it, written by people from around the world. I made my way closer to the wall and lightly began to run my hand over the people’s prayers. Who were these people? How far had they come to put their prayer on Mary’s wall? My eyes started to fill. I was comforted to see that so many people still believed in something – something bigger. I wanted to add my prayer to this amazing wall but my mind went blank. What do you say when writing to The Virgin Mary? Finding a piece of small paper and a pen in my purse I wrote:
For peace and understanding worldwide. For love and hope always. For eternal life for all Amen.
I rolled it into a small scroll and tied it to the wall. I stood back and wiped the tears from my eyes. The whole experience was very moving. People stopping in the middle of their travels to say a prayer and tie it to a wall. That’s the thing about life, sometimes we all just need to stop, to take a minute, and just tie one on in order to help us keep going.