Praying the Rosary

 Our church recognizes the Rosary as an excellent prayer to Mary, the Mother of God. The Rosary is a contemplative prayer whose peaceful rhythm allows our minds to linger over the mysteries of the Lord’s life, death and resurrection. 

“Hail Mary, full of grace.”  Mary, full of grace, knew Jesus intimately through all his human life and after he rose from the dead. She’s with us as we pray. She guides us into the deepest mysteries of God. The Rosary is her “school”. 

Tradition suggests certain mysteries to meditate on while praying the Rosary: the Joyful, Sorrowful, Glorious and the recently added Luminous mysteries. 

Tradition suggests certain days of the week to pray these mysteries. Remember, however, the Rosary is a flexible prayer that can be adapted to different times and circumstances. It’s not a rigid prayer. We can pray the Rosary in different ways.

One suggestion for praying the Rosary, besides the schedule of Joyful, Sorrowful and Luminous mysteries, is to follow the church calendar as the mysteries of Jesus Christ unfold in the year. In the Advent season, for example, we may wish to meditate on the waiting world that Mary knew so well, described in the scriptures read on the Sundays and weekdays of that season.

The Christmas season recalls the birth of Jesus in detail, the flight into Egypt, the slaughter of the Innocents, the return to Nazareth and the hidden years. “The Word was made flesh,” St. John writes. What God reveals in his mysterious plan for his only Son can help us see and understand God’s plan for us and our times as well.

The seasons of Lent and Easter offer further revelations of God in Jesus Christ. Mary was among the women who went up with Jesus and his other disciples from Galilee to Jerusalem. She was there when he was taken to be crucified; she stood beneath his Cross. Then, she witnessed his resurrection and the beginnings of his church. She can open up the scriptures that speak of him. 

The Rosary is a beautiful prayer. Originating in the scriptures it leads us into the mysteries and promises contained in them. It also guides us into the unfolding joys and sorrows, the contradictions and questions of our own lives.  “Hail Mary, full of grace.” Mary quietly, gracefully, as a mother and wise friend brings us into the presence of God. 

Saturdays of the year are days associated with her, because she kept vigil that day after the death of her Son.   Every month of the year a feast of Mary occurs on our calendar, reminding us of her continual presence in the unfolding plan of God.  


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

2 thoughts on “Praying the Rosary

  1. cenaclemary12

    Lingering with Rosary in hand at the laundromat helps me to wait patiently for machines to stop. Focusing on Joyful Mysteries reminds me how Mary was patiently pregnant with Christ.


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