One Hail Mary A Day
Naima S. Panow, MD, FRCS



I was, blessed to join the pilgrimage to Medjugorje in May 2002.

I have been to Lourdes, Fatima, Assisi, Al Zetuni in Egypt and working with the future saint, Mother Teresa in Calcutta India, but did not feel any difference until I went to Medjugorje.  I was so much impressed and felt, Our Lady was present around me. 

I was touched by, every thing including the mass, the rosary, the chanting, the holy hour and the out side confession, the visits to the mountains and the private prayers.

Most of all I was touched by the lectures given to us by different priests.


Father Ljudevit Rupcic told us how to say the Rosary slowly, one Hail Mary daily.

He said, “As a child I hated to go to church and did not like to say the Rosary.”

His mother used to drag him to the church by hand and he did his best to show her how much he hated to go to church.

His mother took him to join the other children to attend Bible study classes and learn the rules of the Christianity. He hated to say the Rosary, so the priest asked him, try to say only one Hail Mary a day.  He accepted to say one Hail Mary a day. Few days later, he realized he has been saying one Hail Mary more than 10 times a day. He loved saying Hail Mary and decided to say one deck of the rosary and then one complete Rosary. He felt happy especially it was his desire and not ordered by other. 

He decided to become a priest. Although he was praying all the time, he never forgot to say one Hail Mary extra when ever he can. Some times up to 100 times a day.


When the Communist government controlled their country, he was one of the 23 priests taken to prison.  The priests were, beaten, starved, left on the floor in the cold winter. They took every thing from them including their Rosaries. That did not stop him from saying one Hail Mary. Every one (22) of his friends were killed, he was the only one kept alive.

Fr. Rupcic kept saying one Hail Mary saved me. In his old age, he never forgot to say one Hail Mary slowly and from all his heart. Father went home to the Lord few years a go.


I was readying my grandfather’s biography. He talked about the Ottoman Empire and how the, Christians were massacred by the Moslems in Turkey. Many Christian villages and towns were completely, destroyed. They used to take the Bishop, the priests, the deacons and the Christians out side the village and kill them.


Few Christians were, converted to Islam, to save their physical body. A Catholic Bishop was so scared to be killed he converted to Islam forgetting saving his soul.

The Moslem community welcomed him and made him their Imam. He was, given a nice house and a large hall to receive the Moslems and listen to his teaching. He knew so much about both the Christianity and the Islam.

Moslem Imams after morning prayers sit on the only chair in the hall and receive the faithful with out appointments. They talk about their problems and their faith.

The Bishop was well know, how much he loved Our Lady and said the Rosary daily.

As an Imam Moslem, he was afraid to say the Rosary. The real Moslems love Our Lady. They call her, “The Virgin Mary.”  There is a special chapter called “Sorat Merriam.”

Mary’s name is the only female mentioned in the Koran. They love her and light candles for her to carry their intentions to her son and to his father.


A Deacon who used to serve the Bishop during the mass, heard about the new Imam.

He prayed the Rosary daily. One day he decided to walk a very long distance to another town to visit his Bishop who is now a Moslem. He dressed as a Moslem and walked hours to enter the house. He used to sit at the end of the hall very silently. He did that every day for a week or two. He carried his Rosary on the way and said Hail Mary one more time.


One night when every one left the hall, the old Bishop or the new Imam heard some Aramaic chanting in a low voice, he decided to ignore it. This was, repeated every night and the old Bishop joined the chanting in a low voice barely heard.

The new Imam came closer to check the quite man who was sitting alone and chanting the prayers in Aramaic. He was so surprised and pleased to see his own Deacon who was serving him during the mass.

He sat next to his Deacon and start chanting with him. He burst crying knowing he tried to save his physical body and forgot the eternal life.

The Bishop or the new Imam asked the Deacon to get him some bread and wine with a small Chalice to say the mass at night when they are alone. The faithful Deacon got him every thing needed and for the first time the Bishop celebrated the mass in his place.


The Bishop knows the Moslem law. If he leaves the Islam he would be killed. He said,

“I do not care. I want to go back to my church if they accept me. Please help me to escape. Ask them to accept me to be one of the Christians and not even a priest.”


The Deacon went to the church and the faithful telling them, the whole story.

They were so happy to hear, knowing their Bishop was scared of death and he is only a human like us. They knew God had accepted their prayers.


The night of the escape, they walked hours and hours to reach to the church. The Bishop and the Deacon entered the church to find out, the church was packed with the faithful. They opened their arms and their hearts to welcome back their beloved Bishop.

Every one in the church start singing, Alleluia, Alleluia, praise the Lord and thank you Mary.

They all said the Rosary and the mass was, said by the bishop. He was the lost son who came back to his father’s home.


One simple man was able to bring the lost sheep to the church. Many say, “I am only one person what can I do.” I guess if you have true faith you could do it. Christ told us, “If you have faith as big as a mustered seed, you could move a mountain.” This Deacon did.


Some body asked the, Blessed Mother Teresa, “How could you help the hundreds dying in the streets, feed the starved and save the children.” Her answer was one at a time.”


I remember the night leaving Calcutta, what Mother said holding my hand in her two hands, “Doctor I started alone and now I have hundreds homes all over the world.”


Thanks for saying “One Hail Mary.” Try it and see the result. It works.




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