Rosary - Beads, Cross, and Prayer
A rosary is the necklace-like string of knots or beads which is used to pray the rosary. The beads/knots help keep track of the components of the prayer that is uttered. Generally, the rosary has not only the beads and/or knots but also has a cross as part of it.
The rosary prayer (a.k.a. saying the rosary) is a part of the Catholic church. Praying the rosary is a very common means of reciting prayers--it is done by not only Catholics, but also a variety of other Christian sects. Praying the rosary is meant to bring about fifteen promises by the Virgin Mary to all Christians who take part in such prayers. The fifteen promises to those who pray the rosary are:
- Receiving of signal graces
- Decreasing sin and vice, and protection against hell
- Abundance of love, sanctification of the soul, growth of virtue and good work
- Eternal life for the soul
- Avoidance of misfortune & death before readiness for heaven
- Avoid death without the sacraments of the church
- Earn the light of God, and the wealth of his graces, and have a place in paradise upon death
- Avoid purgatory
- High levels of glory for the children of the Rosary
- Granting of all that is asked by the Rosary prayer
- Evangelizers of the Rosary will have all that they need
- Angels shall accompany them during life and death
- Will be considered the son of Mary and brothers to Jesus
- Shows a great sign of predestination
Praying the Rosary
There are a variety of ways to pray the Rosary; however, there is a basic structure that is present in all the varieties.
The prayer begins at the crucifix and moves along the rosary reciting combination of prayers, Hail Marys, and meditations. Each day of the week has a specific prayer which is done using the Rosary.
Joyful Mysteries - Sunday, Wednesday, and Saturday
- First Decade: The Annunciation of Gabriel to Mary - Luke 1:26-38
- Second Decade: The Visitation of Mary to Elizabeth - Luke 1:39-56
- Third Decade: The Birth of Our Lord - Luke 2:22-38
- Fourth Decade: The Finding of Our Lord in the Temple - Luke 2:41-52
Sorrowful Mysteries - Monday & Saturday
- First Decade: The Agony of Our Lord in the Garden ? Matthew 26:36-56
- Second Decade: Our Lord is Scourged at the Pillar ? Matthew 27:26
- Third Decade: Our Lord is Crowned with Thorns ? Matthew 27:27-31
- Fourth Decade: Our Lord Carries the Cross to Calvary ? Matthew 27:32
Fifth Decade: The Crucifixion of Our Lord - Matthew 27:33-56
- Glorious Mysteries - Tuesday & Friday
- First Decade: The Glorious Resurection of Our Lord - John 20:1-29
- Second Decade: The Ascension of Our Lord - Luke 24:36-53
- Third Decade: The Descent of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost - Acts 2:1-41
- Fourth Decade: The Assumption of Mary into Heaven
- Fifth Decade: The Coronation of Mary as Queen of Heaven and Earth
Luminous Mysteries* - Thursday
- First Decade: The Baptism of Our Lord in the River Jordan - Matthew 3:13-16
- Second Decade: The Wedding at Cana, when Christ Manifested Himself - John 2:1-11
- Third Decade: The Proclamation of the Kingdom of God - Mark 1:14-15
- Fourth Decade: The Transfiguration of Our Lord - Matthew 17:1-18
- Fifth Decade: The Last Supper, when Our Lord gave us the Holy Eucharist - Matthew 26 *If praying with the Luminous Mysteries the Thursday Joyful Mysteries is replaced by the Luminous Mysteries.
How to Pray the Rosary
- On the crucifix make the sing of the cross, and pray the Apostle's Creed:
- Apostle's Creed - Roman Catholic Church
- I believe in God the Father almighty, creator of Heaving and earth
- And 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;
- On the third day he rose again from the dead;
- He ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty;
- He will come to judege the living and the dead.
- I belive in the Holy Spirit,
- The holy Catholic Church,
- And the communion of saints,
- The forgiveness of sins,
- The resurrection of the body,
- And life everlasting. Amen.
- On the next large bead say Lord's Prayer (Our Father...) prayer:
Our Father, Who art in Heaven, hallowed be Thy Name. They 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.
- On the following three small beads, pray three Hail Marys:
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.
- On the chain, pray Glory Be:
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.
- Pray the Fatima Prayer:
O my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell, lead all souls to Heaven, especially those most in need of Thy mercy. Amen.
- Announce the Mystery (according to the day of the week--see above)
- Pray Our Father followed by ten Hail Marys on the next ten beads.
- Pray Glory Be, O My Jesus, and announce the Mystery (according to the day of the week--see above) The Second Decade
- Repeat steps 6, 7, and 8 counting the next ten-bead section with ten Hail Marys. The Third Decade
- Repeat steps 6, 7, and 8 counting the next ten-bead section with ten Hail Marys. The Fourth Decade
- Repeat steps 6, 7, and 8 counting the next ten-bead section with ten Hail Marys. The Fifth Decade
- Repeat steps 6, 7, and 8 counting the next ten-bead section with ten Hail Marys. The Conclusion
- Pray Salve Regina 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 we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this vale of tears. Turn, then, most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy towards 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 mad worthy of the promises of Christ. Amen. 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 while mediation on these mysteries of the most hoy Rosary of te Blessed Virgin Mary, we may imitate what they contain and obtain what they promise, through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.
The rosary beads are used as a means of keeping track of the number of Hail Marys during the prayer as each of the mysteries are contemplated. This process helps to eliminate to keep track of the count mentally which allows for deeper and more mindful meditation as the prayer is recited.
The beads can be made of any material; however, plastics, wood, and semi-precious stones are the most common.