I’ve recently learned that several communities around the world are coming together to pray the Rosary at 3pm everyday through this pandemic.   I’d like to invite you to join me and thousands of others in praying the scripture based prayer each day at 3pm at least during Holy Week.  If everyone says The Rosary during their own time zone, we will have a perpetual prayer going for the entire week!  

The Rosary is meant to lead us into contemplative prayer related to various mysteries of Jesus Christ’s life.  The rhythmic repetition serves to calm us and silence our minds so we are able to to be still and connect with the meaning of each mystery.   Find out more at www.WhatWouldMotherMaryDo.com/The-Rosary

The Rosary is most often associated with Mother Mary.  Jesus’ mother, Mary, is the first person ever to accept Jesus into her heart.  My intention for www.whatwouldmothermarydo.com is to help us explore the faith of a woman who God chose to be the mother of His son. How can we develop a faith like Mary’s? What did she do to form that perfect relationship with God and her son Jesus?  

It has always been Mother Mary’s desire to lead every person to accept Jesus into their heart and by contemplating the great mysteries of his life through the Rosary, it is my hope that many will be led to follow His word.  

The Rosary is composed of The Lord’s Prayer (also known as the Our Father), The Hail Mary, and the Glory Be. When we pray the Hail Mary, we are asking Mary to pray to her son Jesus for us because we know that Jesus honors his mother and her prayers are answered.  

Although there are specific ways we are encouraged to pray the Rosary, the most important part is the contemplation of Jesus’ life.  

In my opinion, the goal of saying the Rosary is to bring you closer to Christ so in efforts to introduce this beautiful and powerful prayer to as many people as possible, don’t be too concerned about how to do it and know your intentions are what matters.  

A Rosary strand consists of a cross, then one large bead for each Our Father and ten smaller beads for each Hail Mary which are considered a “decade”.  There are 5 decades of Rosary beads in total.  There are a few other beads in between the cross and the beginning of the decades to pray for your intentions for the Rosary.  

Traditionally, we begin with the Apostle’s Creed to profess our faith in God the Father, Jesus his Son and the Holy Spirit.  

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 rose again from the dead;

He ascended into heaven,

and is seated at the right hand of God the Father Almighty;

from there He will 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.

Next we say the Lord’s Prayer which is the prayer Jesus taught us. 

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.

Then we say 3 Hail Marys. 

Hail Mary, full of grace. 

The Lord is with thee. 

Blessed art thou amongst 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.

Next we 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.

Then we announce which mystery we are contemplating and say the Lord’s Prayer. While contemplating that mystery, say 10 Hail Marys – one for each bead. End with another Glory Be.

Announce the next mystery, say the Our Father and while contemplating that mystery, say 10 Hail Marys and again end in a Glory Be.  Repeat this 3 more times to complete a total of 5 mysteries.

Some people like to read the scripture verse that goes with each mystery before starting each “decade” of 10 Hail Mary prayers. 

There are 20 mysteries in total and only five are contemplated each day.  

On Monday and Saturday we will contemplate the Five Joyful Mysteries:

  1. The Annunciation – Mary is chosen to be the mother of Jesus (Luke 1:26-38)
  2. The Visitation – Elizabeth recognizes Mary as the mother of our Lord. (Luke 1:39-56)
  3. The Nativity – Jesus is born and laid in a manger. (Luke 2:1-7)
  4. The Presentation in the Temple – Jesus is presented in the Temple of Jerusalem.  (Luke 2:22-40)
  5. The Finding in the Temple – Jesus is found discussing God’s law in the temple. (Luke 2:41-47)

On Tuesday and Friday we will contemplate the Five Sorrowful Mysteries:

  1. The Agony in the Garden – Jesus prays when confronted with the sins of the world. (Luke 22:44)
  2. The Scourging at the Pillar – Jesus is whipped before His execution (John 19:1-3)
  3. The Crowning with Thorns –  Jesus is mocked with a painful crown of thorns. (John 19:2)
  4. The Carrying of the Cross – Jesus carries the weight of our sins to His crucifixion. (John 19:16-18)
  5. The Crucifixion and Death – Jesus Christ dies to save all humankind. (Matthew 27:32-56) 

On Wednesday and Sunday we will contemplate the Five Glorious Mysteries:

  1. The Resurrection – Jesus rises to triumph over death. (Luke 24:1-5)
  2. The Ascension – As Jesus ascends, he gives us a special task. (Acts 1:6-11)
  3. The Descent of the Holy Spirit – At Pentecost the Church is born. (Acts 2:1-13)
  4. The Assumption – The Virgin Mary is assumed into heaven. (Psalms 131:8)
  5. The Coronation of Mary – Mary is honored as Queen. (1Peter 5:4)

On Thursday we will contemplate the Five Luminous Mysteries: 

  1. The Baptism of Christ in the Jordan – God proclaims Jesus is His Son. (Matthew 3:13-17)
  2. The Wedding Feast at Cana – Jesus performs his first public miracle. (John 2:1-12)
  3. Jesus’ Proclamation of the Coming of the Kingdom of God – Jesus calls us to do something important.  (Mark 1:14-15)
  4. The Transfiguration – Jesus is gloriously transformed. (Mark 9:2-8)
  5. The Institution of the Eucharist –  Jesus shares His body and blood for our salvation. (John 6:54-57)

You don’t need to have Rosary beads in order to say the prayers – simply use your fingers to keep track of each of the 5 decades and the 10 Hail Marys however you might find comfort and structure in the Rosary beads.  They can be used as a wonderful way to be intentional and specific in your prayers.  

There have been times where I have said the prayers of the Rosary however rather than contemplate Jesus’ life, I used each bead to contemplate and give thanks to God for the things I am thankful for in my life and each “decade” of beads focuses on a different area in my life to focus on (ie. My family, my friends, my home, my work, my community).  Or I have used each bead for specific prayers and needs for my family and friends (I’ve chosen topics to pray about for each decade and chosen people to pray for within those topics for each bead).  

For this Holy Week, it is my hope that by saying the Rosary prayer, we will be united in contemplating all the mysteries of Jesus Christ’s life.  

Let’s all say the Rosary at 3pm and create a perpetual prayer this Holy Week!!!