By Melissa Butz
While coronavirus numbers are being counted around the world, Joe Kim, Joanna Hernandez and Mike Del Ponte also wanted to track something else: prayer.
To do this, they began the Map of Hope. It shows where the rosary is being prayed and even allows intentions to be posted.
“We created The Map of Hope so people could come to the website, get a sense of hope and a sense that other people are praying for them, a sense of community around the world, a deeper devotion to the rosary and ultimately, use prayer to end the pandemic,” Mike said.
The site has formed its own prayer network as a result. In a matter of weeks, there are 9,000 prayer requests posted from 130 countries. Examples of miracles from the rosary are also shown, like the end of a plague in Italy in the fifteenth century.
“The rosary is necessary at this time because it’s a powerful prayer we all can do anywhere,” Mike explained. “You can do it alone, you can do it in community, all you need are your rosary beads. Even if you don’t have a rosary, you can use your fingers to count. At this time when a lot of people can’t go to Mass, there’s still a way to do something that is ancient and significant and carries many miracles attributed to it.”
Mike insists the Map of Hope also answers Pope Francis’ call to pray the rosary, especially in the month of May.
“I asked all the faithful to pray a Rosary this month. Together, with the family, or alone,” Pope Francis said in April.
While right now the map on their website only shows the United States, in a couple weeks, they are expanding to a global map. They look forward to receiving intentions in various languages and seeing the rosary being prayed around the world, all for the end of the coronavirus.