Praying the Rosary

Why Pray the Rosary?

Here at Our Lady’s University, we have a special devotion to Mary, Jesus’ mother.  Even in the face of an unknown future, she said “yes” to God and His plan for her life.  By drawing close to Mary through the rosary, we too are invited to say “yes” to God and all the surprises He has in store for our lives.

So when you pray the rosary, make it personal.  The repetition of the prayers allows your mind to wander so you can pray for whatever is on your heart. For example, you could start each Hail Mary with a different name of a friend on your mind or a hope you have for the world.  No matter what you pray for, you can trust Mary is praying with you.

How to Pray the Rosary

Enter into a spirit of prayer.  Light a candle, go for a walk, stop by a hall chapel or the Grotto -- whatever helps you to quiet your mind and open your heart to God.  


Make the Sign of the Cross

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

Start with the Apostles’ 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 into hell; on the third day He arose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from there He shall come 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.

Then say an 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.

Next, say 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.

Finally, say the 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. 


You will pray with a set of ten beads, called a “decade” of the rosary.  Begin each decade with an announcement of the mystery (listed below), then pray an Our Father.  Next, pray a Hail Mary with every bead.  End with a Glory Be.  

After a decade is complete, say 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 process five times total.  


Following the completion of the five decades, recite the Hail Holy Queen:

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. 

Finally, conclude with this prayer: 

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.

Mysteries of the Rosary

Naming the mysteries of the rosary before each decade gives us an image and story to reflect upon as we pray.

Joyful Mysteries (Mondays and Saturdays)
The Annunciation
The Visitation
The Birth of our Lord
The Presentation in the Temple
The finding of Jesus in the temple

Luminous Mysteries (Thursdays)
The Baptism in the Jordan
The Wedding Feast of Cana
The Proclamation of the Kingdom of God
The Transfiguration
The Institution of the Eucharist

Sorrowful Mysteries (Tuesdays and Fridays)
The Agony in the Garden
The Scourging at the Pillar
The Crowning with Thorns
The Carrying of the Cross
The Crucifixion

Glorious Mysteries (Wednesdays and Sundays)
The Resurrection
The Ascension
The Descent of the Holy Spirit
The Assumption
The Crowning of Our Lady, Queen of Heaven