How to Pray the Rosary Mysteries of the Rosary, Hail Mary Prayer

How to Pray the Rosary

We highly recommend that all 15 decades of the Rosary be prayed daily. Our Lady repeatedly emphasized the importance of praying the Rosary each day in her messages at Fatima. She even said that Francisco would have to pray “many rosaries” before he could go to Heaven. Praying all 15 decades of the Rosary each day can be accomplished in a variety of ways. However, for many it is best accomplished by praying a part of the Rosary at different times of the day, for example, the joyful mysteries in the morning, sorrowful mysteries at midday, and glorious mysteries in the evening. The Hail, Holy Queen only needs to be prayed at the end of the entire day’s rosary.

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The Rosary

We highly recommend that all 15 decades of the Rosary be prayed daily. Our Lady repeatedly emphasized the importance of praying the Rosary each day in her messages at Fatima. She even said that Francisco would have to pray “many rosaries” before he could go to Heaven. Praying all 15 decades of the Rosary each day can be accomplished in a variety of ways. However, for many it is best accomplished by praying a part of the Rosary at different times of the day, for example, the joyful mysteries in the morning, sorrowful mysteries at midday, and glorious mysteries in the evening. The Hail, Holy Queen only needs to be prayed at the end of the entire day’s rosary.

St. Louis De Montfort (+1710): “Blessed Alan de la Roche who was so deeply devoted to the Blessed Virgin had many revelations from her and we know that he confirmed the truth of these revelations by a solemn oath. Three of them stand out with special emphasis: the first, that if people fail to say the Hail Mary (the Angelic Salutation which has saved the world – Luke 1:28) out of carelessness, or because they are lukewarm, or because they hate it, this is a sign that they will probably and indeed shortly be condemned to eternal punishment.”

An essential part of the Rosary is meditation on the mysteries, episodes in the life of Our Lord and Our Lady. This means thinking about them, visualizing them, considering the graces and merits displayed in them, and using them for inspiration to better know and love God. It is also common to focus on a particular virtue with each mystery.

How to Pray the Rosary

1. Make the "Sign of the Cross"
With your right hand, trace a cross by touching your forehead, then chest, left shoulder and right shoulder while saying: “In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.”

2. Say the "Apostle's Creed"
I believe in God, the Father Almighty, creator of heaven and earth. I believe in Jesus Christ, his only son, our Lord. He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit, was born of the Virgin Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried. He went down 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 in glory 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.

3. Say the "Our Father"
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.

4. Say three "Hail Mary" prayers
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.

  • At the first “Hail Mary” you add after the word “Jesus” ‘who increases our faith’.
  • At the second “Hail Mary” you add after the word “Jesus” ‘who increases our hope’.
  • At the third “Hail Mary” you add after the word “Jesus” ‘who increases us in love’.
5. Say the "Glory be to the Father"
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.

6. Announce the Mystery you First wish to pray (Joyful, Sorrowful or the Glorious Mysteries); then say the "Our Father." and 10 "Hail Marys" following the "Our Father."
    When you Pray the 5 Decades (50 Hail Marys) in the Joyful Mysteries:

  • the First ten Hail Marys in the Joyful Mysteries – shall be meditated on The Annunciation of Mary, God becoming man (before starting the ten Hail Marys, announce one time: "a Prayer about Humility")
  • the Second ten Hail Marys in the Joyful Mysteries – shall be meditated on The Visitation of Mary to Elisabeth (before starting the ten Hail Marys, announce one time: "a Prayer about Love of Neighbor")
  • the Third ten Hail Marys in the Joyful Mysteries - shall be meditated on The Nativity, the Birth of Jesus (before starting the ten Hail Marys, announce one time: "a Prayer about Poverty of Spirit")
  • the Fourth ten Hail Marys in the Joyful Mysteries - shall be meditated on The Presentation of the Child Jesus In the Temple (before starting the ten Hail Marys, announce one time: "a Prayer about Purity of mind and body")
  • the Fifth ten Hail Marys in the Joyful Mysteries - shall be meditated on The Finding of the Child Jesus In the Temple (before starting the ten Hail Marys, announce one time: "a Prayer about Obedience")

  • When you Pray 5 Decades (50 Hail Marys) in the Sorrowful Mysteries:

  • the First ten Hail Marys in the Sorrowful Mysteries - shall be meditated on The Agony of Jesus In the Garden of Gethsemane (before starting the ten Hail Marys, announce one time: "a Prayer about God's Will be done")
  • the Second ten Hail Marys in the Sorrowful Mysteries - shall be meditated on The Scourging of Jesus at the Pillar (before starting the ten Hail Marys, announce one time: "a Prayer about Mortification of the senses")
  • the Third ten Hail Marys in the Sorrowful Mysteries - shall be meditated on The Crowning of Jesus With Thorns (before starting the ten Hail Marys, announce one time: "a Prayer about the Reign of Christ in our heart")
  • the Fourth ten Hail Marys in the Sorrowful Mysteries - shall be meditated on Jesus Carrying the Cross (before starting the ten Hail Marys, announce one time: "a Prayer about Patient bearing of trials")
  • the Fifth ten Hail Marys in the Sorrowful Mysteries – shall be meditated on The Crucifixion of Jesus (before starting the ten Hail Marys, announce one time: "a Prayer about Pardoning of Injuries")

  • When you Pray 5 Decades (50 Hail Marys) in the Glorious Mysteries:

  • the First ten Hail Marys in the Glorious Mysteries – shall be meditated on The Resurrection of Jesus From the Dead (before starting the ten Hail Marys, announce one time: "a Prayer about Faith")
  • the Second ten Hail Marys in the Glorious Mysteries – shall be meditated on The Ascension of Jesus to Heaven (Prayer about: Christian Hope)
  • the Third ten Hail Marys in the Glorious Mysteries - shall be meditated on The Descent of the Holy Spirit to Mary and the Apostles (before starting the ten Hail Marys, announce one time: "a Prayer about the Gifts of the Holy Spirit")
  • the Fourth ten Hail Marys in the Glorious Mysteries – shall be meditated on The Assumption of Mary to Heaven (before starting the ten Hail Marys, announce one time: "a Prayer about To Jesus through Mary")
  • the Fifth ten Hail Marys in the Glorious Mysteries - shall be meditated on The Coronation of Mary in Heaven (before starting the ten Hail Marys, announce one time: "a Prayer about Grace of Final Perseverance")
7. Is optional, but recommended by St. Louis de Montford, since it will help us focus our meditation on each of the Mysteries.

When Praying the ten "Hail Marys" while meditating on the rosary mysteries, after every “Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee, blessed art thou amongst women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus” add:
    Joyful Mysteries
  • ‘who you, o Virgin, has received through the Holy Spirit’…
  • ‘who you, o Virgin, has carried to Elisabeth’…
  • ‘who you, o Virgin, has given birth to’…
  • ‘who you, o Virgin, has carried to the temple’…
  • ‘who you, o Virgin, has recovered in the temple’…

  • Sorrowful Mysteries
  • ‘who for us has sweated blood’…
  • ‘who for us has been scourged’…
  • ‘who for us has been crowned with thorns’…
  • ‘who for us has carried the cross’…
  • ‘who for us has been crucified’…

  • Glorious Mysteries
  • ‘who has risen from the dead’…
  • ‘who has ascended into heaven’…
  • ‘who has sent us the Holy Spirit’…
  • ‘who has taken you up, o Virgin, into heaven’…
  • ‘who has crowned you, o Virgin, in heaven’…
8. After every ten "Hail Mary", say one "Glory Be to the Father"

and the "Fatima Prayer"
O my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell, lead all souls to Heaven, especially those who have most need of your mercy.

- Repeat this sequence for the remaining mysteries (after every 10 "Hail Marys")

9. After the Rosary:

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 do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this valley 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.
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 Thee, that 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.

10. Finish with the "Sign of the Cross"
With your right hand, trace a cross by touching your forehead, then chest, left shoulder and right shoulder while saying: “In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.”

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