The rosary is both an artifact and a prayer; we use the cross and beads of
the rosary (the artifact) to say the rosary (the prayer). The Rosary may be said
without using the artifact but moving our fingers along the beads as we
complete the various parts of the rosary prayer not only keeps us from losing
our place, it also adds an intangible quality to the thoughtful experience.
Start to pray the rosary with a sign of the cross, using the cross and
In the name of the Father, and of the Son,
and of the Holy Spirit, amen.
Then, holding the cross, say The Apostle's Creed::
I believe in God, the Father
Almighty, Creator of Heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our
Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered
under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended to the
dead. On the third day He rose again. He ascended into Heaven, and is seated at
the right hand of the Father. He will come again to judge the living and the
dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Holy Catholic Church, the Communion of
Saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life
Now, hold the first bead after the cross and note each bead on the chain
that stands alone. The first bead is an Our
Father bead, while beads that are close together are Hail
Mary beads. The Our Father
beads also are larger than Hail Mary beads and the
prayer is said like this:
Our Father, Who art in Heaven, hallowed be Thy
name. Thy kingdom come; Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven. Give us
this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who
trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
After this first bead come three Hail Mary beads which are right next to
each other. Say the Hail Mary
moving your fingers from bead to bead after completing the prayer:
Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you.
Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus. Holy
Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death.
These three Hail Marys represent our
desire for an increase in faith, hope and charity.
After the third Hail Mary,
move your fingers into the space that follows after the third bead. Say the
Glory be to the Father, and to the
Son, and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall
be, world without end. Amen.
This completes the introductory portion of the rosary.
Next comes the main part of the rosary: meditating on events in the life
of Jesus and Mary. We call these events "mysteries".
There are three sets of mysteries to choose from: the
joyful mysteries, the sorrowful
mysteries, and the glorious mysteries.
Each set contains five mysteries, as follows:
The Joyful Mysteries:
The Presentation at the Temple
The Finding in the Temple
The Sorrowful Mysteries:
The Agony in the Garden
The Scourging at the Pillar
The Crowning with Thorns
The Carrying of the Cross
The Glorious Mysteries:
The Descent of the Holy Spirit
The Assumption of Mary
The Coronation of Mary
The circular portion of the rosary chain is divided into five sections
(called "decades"), one for each of the five joyful,
sorrowful, or glorious mysteries.
A complete rosary consists of all fifteen mysteries,
which means going around the entire rosary three times.
The most common method of saying the rosary is to focus on just one of the
three sets of mysteries. Tradition suggests
you say the joyful mysteries on Mondays and
Thursdays, the sorrowful mysteries on
Tuesdays and Fridays, and the glorious mysteries
on Wednesdays and Saturdays. On Sundays, we say the glorious
mysteries most of the year, but during Advent we say the joyful
mysteries and during Lent we say the sorrowful
Now move your fingers to the next bead. Note that this first bead
following the three Hail Mary beads is by
itself, so you know that it is an Our Father
bead. While holding this bead, state the first mystery (for example, "The
Annunciation"). You may wish to follow this with a special
prayer intention for this decade of the rosary. Then, while meditating on the
first mystery, say the Our Father. Continue
meditating on the mystery, while moving your fingers along the chain, saying 10 Hail
Marys as you work your way down the next 10 beads along the chain.
When you finish the 10th Hail Mary, move
your fingers to the space in the chain following the 10th bead, say the Glory
Be, and then the Oh My Jesus:
Oh my Jesus, forgive us our sins. Save us from
the fires of hell. Lead all souls to Heaven, especially those in most need of
Now you move to an Our Father bead and
announce and then meditate on the second mystery.
Repeat this for each of the five mysteries.
After you have said the "Oh My Jesus"
prayer for the fifth mystery, you are back at the beginning of the circle, and
it is time to either continue around again with another set of mysteries, or to
say the concluding prayers on the image where the parts of the chain come
Hail, Holy Queen, Mother of mercy,
our life, our sweetness and our hope. To thee do we cry, poor banished children
of Eve. To thee do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this valley of
tears. Turn then, most gracious advocate, your eyes of mercy toward us, and
after this, our exile, show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus. O
clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary.
- Pray for us, O holy Mother of God.
- That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.
Let Us Pray: O God, Whose only
begotten Son, by His life, death and resurrection, has purchased for us the
rewards of eternal life, grant, we beseech You, that in meditating upon these
mysteries of the most Holy Rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary, we may imitate
what they contain, and obtain what they promise, through the same Jesus Christ,
our Lord. Amen.
After saying these prayers, finish with the sign of the cross. You're
The Fifteen Promises of the
Virgin Mary to those who recite the Rosary were revealed to St. Dominic and
1) Whoever shall faithfully
serve me by the recitation of the Rosary, shall receive signal graces.
2) I promise my special
protection and the greatest graces to all those who shall recite the Rosary.
3) The Rosary shall be a
powerful armor against hell, it will destroy vice, decrease sin, and defeat
4) It will cause virtue and
good works to flourish; it will obtain for souls the abundant mercy of God; it
will withdraw the hearts of people from the love of the world and its vanities,
and will lift them to the desire of eternal things. Oh, that souls would
sanctify themselves by this means.
5) The soul which
recommends itself to me by the recitation of the Rosary, shall not perish.
6) Whoever shall recite the
Rosary devoutly, applying themselves to the consideration of its Sacred
Mysteries shall never be conquered by misfortune. God will not chastise them in
His justice, they shall not perish by an unprovided death; if they be just, they
shall remain in the grace of God, and become worthy of eternal life.
7) Whoever shall have a
true devotion for the Rosary shall not die without the Sacraments of the Church.
8) Those who are faithful
to recite the Rosary shall have during their life and at their death the light
of God and the plentitude of His graces; at the moment of death they shall
participate in the merits of the Saints in Paradise.
9) I shall deliver from
purgatory those who have been devoted to the Rosary.
10) The faithful children
of the Rosary shall merit a high degree of glory in Heaven.
11) You shall obtain all
you ask of me by the recitation of the Rosary.
12) All those who propagate
the Holy Rosary shall be aided by me in their necessities.
13) I have obtained from my
Divine Son that all the advocates of the Rosary shall have for intercessors the
entire celestial court during their life and at the hour of death.
14) All who recite the
Rosary are my children, and brothers and sisters of my only Son, Jesus Christ.
15) Devotion of my Rosary
is a great sign of predestination. "Say the Rosary every day, to obtain
peace for the world." -- Our Lady of Fatima, 1917
The Blessed Virgin Mary
The Blessed Virgin Mary is the mother of Jesus Christ, the mother of God.
Defense of the Blessed Virgin Mary
... The Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church, is much misunderstood today.
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