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The Rosary

The rosary takes fifteen to twenty minutes to pray. The rosary is a means of grace and has many spiritual benefits. Many saints have encouraged praying the rosary daily. It helps you to grow in virtue, helps you overcome life's problems, and works as a spiritual weapon. Read the 15 promises of the Blessed Virgin Mary to those who pray the rosary.

Begin by praying the Sign of the Cross
1. On the crucifix pray the Apostles Creed.

The rosary begins with 1 Our Father and 3 Hail Marys for an increase in the virtues of faith, hope, and love:
2. On the first rosary bead, pray the Our Father.
3. On each of the next three beads pray the Hail Mary. After the last Hail Mary, pray the Glory Be & the Fatima prayer.


Next you will pray 1 Our Father and 10 Hail Marys for each rosary mystery. You can find the 5 rosary mysteries below.
4. Announce the first mystery, and then pray the Our Father. (Ex: “The first Joyful Mystery is the Annunciation.”)
5. Pray 10 Hail Marys. After the last Hail Mary pray the Glory Be and the Fatima prayer.
6. Announce the second mystery, and then pray the Our Father. (Ex: “The second Joyful Mystery is the Visitation.”)
7. Pray 10 Hail Marys. After the last Hail Mary pray the Glory Be and the Fatima prayer.


Continue to pray 1 Our Father and 10 Hail Marys three more times, announcing the third, fourth, and fifth mysteries before each decade. After the last Hail Mary pray the Glory Be and the Fatima prayer.
Lastly, pray the Hail Holy Queen and the concluding prayer.

The Prayers of the Holy Rosary


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 into Hell. The third day He rose again from the dead. He
ascended into Heaven, and sits at the right hand of God, the Father almighty. He shall 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 everlasting. Amen.


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. Amen.


HAIL MARY, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of
thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.


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.


O MY JESUS, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of Hell; lead all souls to Heaven, especially those in
most need of Thy mercy. Amen. [Read about the prayers of Fatima here.]


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 vale of tears.
Turn, then, most gracious advocate, thine 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. Amen.

V. Pray for us, O holy Mother of God.
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.


O GOD, WHOSE only-begotten Son by His life, death and resurrection, has purchased for us the rewards of
eternal life; grant, we beseech Thee, that by 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
Christ our Lord. Amen.


Mysteries of the Holy Rosary

The Mysteries of the Rosary are designed to help focus our prayer on the life, ministry, and Passion of Our
Lord. Pope Pius XII described the rosary prayer as "the compendium of the entire Gospel." There are four
rosary mysteries (Joyful, Sorrowful, Glorious, Luminous) and five parts of each mystery which correspond
to the five decades of the rosary.

The Joyful Mysteries focus on the joyful events related to the Incarnation of Jesus Christ. The Sorrowful
Mysteries focus on the sorrowful events related to the Passion and Death of Jesus Christ. The Glorious
Mysteries focus on the glorious events related to the Resurrection and the reigning of Christ in heaven with
Our Lady. The Luminous Mysteries or mysteries of light (added by Pope St. John Paul II) focus on the life
and ministry of Jesus Christ.

It is recommended that you meditate on the mysteries of the rosary based upon the days of the week. For
example, on Mondays you will pray the Joyful Mysteries. With each of the five decades of the rosary you will
focus on one of the five events that comprise the Joyful mysteries. On Tuesday you will pray the Sorrowful
Mysteries, and so on through the rest of the week. This method was recommended to the faithful by Pope
St. John Paul II.

Meditating on the life of Christ with the prayers of the Holy Rosary—through the intercession of the
Blessed Virgin Mary—is a sure way of growing in faith and in your understanding of the faith, deepening
your relationship with Christ, increasing in holiness and virtue, and avoiding sin.

The JOYFUL MYSTERIES of the Holy Rosary
(suggested to pray on Monday and Saturday)
1. The Annunciation of Gabriel to the Virgin Mary (Luke 1:26-38)
2. The Visitation of Virgin Mary to Elizabeth (Luke 1:39-56)
3. The Birth of Jesus (Luke 2:1-21)
4. The Presentation of Our Lord in the Temple at Jerusalem (Luke 2:22-38)
5. The Finding of the Child Jesus in the Temple at Jerusalem (Luke 2:41-52)


(suggested to pray on Tuesday and Friday)
1. The Agony of Our Lord in the Garden of Gethsemane (Matthew 26:36-56)
2. Our Lord is Scourged at the Pillar (Matthew 27:26)
3. Our Lord is Crowned with Thorns (Matthew 27:27-31)
4. Our Lord Carries the Cross to Calvary (Matthew 27:32)
5. The Crucifixion of Our Lord (Matthew 27:33-56)


(suggested to pray on Wednesday and Sunday)
1. The Resurrection of Our Lord (John 20:1-29)
2. The Ascension of Our Lord into Heaven (Luke 24:36-53)
3. The Descent of the Holy Spirit on the Virgin Mary and the Apostles at Pentecost (Acts 2:1-41)
4. The Assumption of the Virgin Mary into Heaven (Munificentissimus Deus, Pope Pius XII 1950)
5. The Coronation of Mary as Queen of Heaven and Earth (Revelation 12:1)


(suggested to pray on Thursday)
1. The Baptism of Our Lord in the Jordan (Matthew 3:13-16)
2. The Wedding Feast at Cana (John 2:1-11)
3. The Proclamation of the Kingdom of Heaven (Mark 1:14-15)
4. The Transfiguration of Our Lord (Matthew 17:1-8)
5. The Institution of the Eucharist at the Last Supper (Matthew 26)


What is a rosary?
A simple rosary consists of a string of beads which includes a crucifix. Rosary beads are made from many
types of material, such as pearl, hematite, crystal, glass, rose petals, and wood. Rosaries can be any color,
shape, or size.

How do I pray the rosary?
In his book, The Secret of the Rosary, Saint Louis De Montfort says, "Every time people say the Rosary
devoutly they place on the heads of Jesus and Mary 153 white roses and sixteen red roses. Being heavenly
flowers, these roses will never fade or lose their beauty."

What is the history of the rosary?
The Rosary (The Pauper's Psalter)
This popular devotion of Roman Catholic tradition has its origins in medieval times (around the 12th and
13th centuries). Many people of this age could not afford to purchase the Psalter (a book containing the 150
psalms) which were used by the religious orders and clergy. In order to supply the great number of faithful
with some prayer form which would be easily accessible, itinerant preachers developed and encouraged the
use of a string with beads upon it. Each bead would represent a prayer to be said--either the Lord's Prayer,
the Hail Mary, and the Doxology. In time, other prayers would be added to make up what we now call the

Originally, the rosary was called "The Psalter of Jesus and Mary" because it consists of the prayer Jesus gave
us (The Our Father) and the prayer the Angel Gabriel gave us (The Hail Mary). The word Psalter, as mentioned above, refers to the Book of Psalms in the Bible, which has 150 psalms. When prayed completely, the original rosary (Joyful, Sorrowful, and Glorious Mysteries) has 150 "Hail Mary" prayers. The word "Rosary" comes from the Latin word rosarium, which means a garland or bouquet of roses. Each of the prayers of the rosary is an offering of a rose to Jesus through Mary.

The use of beads or knots when praying dates back to the early days of Christianity. String or heavy cord
was tied with knots and used to help focus and keep track of the prayers. The word "bead" comes from
biddan - an Old English word which means "to entreat" or "to pray".

This prayer combines two very strong currents within the spirituality of the Church. First, the Rosary
desires one to meditate on the significant events of Christ's life. Second, this prayer also hopes to
emphasize the unique role of Mary, Mother of God in the plan of salvation. These two currents of Roman
Catholic theology are meditated on by the recitation of the following prayers within the Rosary itself: the
Creed, the Lord's Prayer, the Hail Mary, the Doxology, the recitation of the Joyful, Sorrowful, Glorious, and
Luminous Mysteries.

In 1520, Pope Leo X officially approved the universal use of the rosary. In 1571, St. Piux V declared the first
Feast of the Holy Rosary which was made universal by Pope Clement XI. In 1917 the Blessed Mother
selected for herself the name "Our Lady of the Rosary" at Fatima when she appeared to three children in
Fatima saying, "I want you to continue to say your rosary every day in honor of Our Lady of the Rosary to
obtain the end of the war and peace in the world". In 2002 Pope John Paul II introduced new mysteries
(Mysteries of the Light or Luminous Mysteries) to the Rosary and wrote his apostolic letter "On the Most
Holy Rosary" (Rosarium Virginis Mariae).

What are the promises of the rosary?
Whoever shall faithfully serve me by the recitation of the Rosary, shall receive signal graces.

I promise my special protection and the greatest graces to all those who shall recite the Rosary.
The Rosary shall be a powerful armor against hell, it will destroy vice, decrease sin, and defeat heresies.

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.

The soul which recommends itself to me by the recitation of the Rosary, shall not perish.
Whoever shall recite the Rosary devoutly, applying himself to the consideration of its Sacred Mysteries
shall never be conquered by misfortune. God will not chastise him in His justice, he shall not perish by an
unprovided death; if he be just, he shall remain in the grace of God, and become worthy of eternal life.

Whoever shall have a true devotion for the Rosary shall not die without the Sacraments of the Church.
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

I shall deliver from purgatory those who have been devoted to the Rosary.
The faithful children of the Rosary shall merit a high degree of glory in Heaven.
You shall obtain all you ask of me by the recitation of the Rosary.
All those who propagate the Holy Rosary shall be aided by me in their necessities.
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.

All who recite the Rosary are my children, and brothers and sisters of my only Son, Jesus Christ.
Devotion of my Rosary is a great sign of predestination.
What indulgences can be gained by praying the rosary?
Indulgences are often a source of confusion for Catholics and non-Catholics alike, so let's take a minute
and make sure everyone is clear about the definition of "indulgence".

In the bible, sin is viewed as having two basic consequences: guilt and punishment. Guilt is washed away
when a person seeks forgiveness, however the need for punishment remains. To completely clear away sin
the person must perform an action that will work towards healing the wounds his sin has caused. For example, if a child takes a piece of candy from the store he must apologize to the store manager (to cleanse his guilt) and also pay for the candy (to satisfy the punishment).

The bible also views punishment as having two basic categories: eternal (forever) or temporal (for a short
time). For example, when the Jews disobeyed God during their time in the desert the Lord became angry
with them and wanted to destroy them (an eternal punishment). Moses pleaded with God who agreed to
allow the Jews to live. He forgave their sins (their guilt) but the need for punishment remained. No one in
that generation would be allowed to enter the promised land (a temporal punishment).

So... after a person repents and his guilt has been forgiven, an indulgence cleanses the temporal punishment required because of sin. A plenary (complete) indulgence means the temporal punishment is totally cleansed. A partial indulgence means that some of the temporal punishment is cleansed.
Both a plenary and partial indulgence is available for praying the rosary. To gain a plenary indulgence the faithful must complete the following:
Be in a state of grace (free from mortal sin)
Be free from attachment to venial sin.
Go to confession several days before or after praying the Rosary.
Receive Holy Communion on the day you pray the Rosary.
Say a prayer for the Pope.
Pray the rosary in a church or family group, or religious Community.
Pray the five decades during one session
Pray vocally, announcing the Mysteries of the Rosary and then meditating on them.

To gain a partial indulgence individuals may pray the rosary in whole or in part.
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