About the Rosary

The Rosary is our greatest weapon against Satan. It contains the Prayer taught to us by the Lord himself (Our Father) and the Angelic Salutation (Hail Mary) that have run off demons, destroyed sin, and renewed the world. By meditating on the sufferings of Christ, we fulfill the command of Saint Peter to arm ourselves with the same thought (1 Peter 4:1). According to St. Louis de Montfort, simply wearing a rosary has successfully exorcised demons from men1. He believed so feverently in the power of the Rosary that he said he’d sign in his own blood the statement that whoever said their Rosary every day would never become a formal heretic or be led astray by the devil2.

Devoutly praying the Rosary obtains for us the remission of the penalty and guilt of all sins. Our Lady revealed to Blessed Alan de la Roche that:

“I want you to know that, although there are numerous indulgences already attached to the recitation of my Rosary, I shall add many more to every fifty Hail Marys (each group of five decades) for those who say them devoutly, on their knees being, of course, free from mortal sin. And whosoever shall persevere in the devotion of the Holy Rosary, saying these prayers and meditations, shall be rewarded for it; I shall obtain for him full remission of the penalty and of the guilt of all his sins at the end of his life. Do not be unbelieving, as though this is impossible. It is easy for me to do because I am the Mother of the King of heaven, and He calls me full of grace. And, being full of grace, I am able to dispense grace freely to my dear children3.”

Devoutly praying the Rosary is also a clear sign of predestination. Over the course of his life, Our Lady revealed three more important things to Blessed Alan:

  1. Those who fail to say the Hail Mary out of carelessness, lukewarmness, or hatred will likely be condemned to eternal punishment.
  2. Those who love this divine salutation bear the stamp of predestination.
  3. Those to whom God has given the special grace of loving and serving Our Lady must persevere in their devotion to her until death when they shall receive the glory merited by their devotion4.

History and Origin of the Rosary

The Rosary, which is composed primarily of the Our Father and Hail Mary, was without a doubt the first devotional prayer of the faithful from the time of the apostles. The Rosary in its current form was given to St. Dominic in the year 1214 by Our Lady as a means of converting the Albigensians5 and other sinners.

St. Dominic, who saw that the gravity of people’s sins was hindering the conversion of the Albigensians, retreated into a forest where he prayed unceasingly for three days and did harsh penances to the point of falling into a coma. It was then that Our Lady appeared to him in a vision.

St. Dominic’s Vision

Our Lady: “Dear Dominic, do you know which weapon the Blessed Trinity wants to use to reform the world?”

St. Dominic: “Oh, my Lady, you know far better than I do because next to your Son Jesus Christ you have always been the chief instrument of our salvation.”

Our Lady: “I want you to know that, in this kind of warfare, the battering ram has always been the Angelic Psalter which is the foundation stone of the New Testament. Therefore if you want to reach these hardened souls and win them over to God, preach my Psalter.”

When St. Dominic awoke, he went straightaway to the Cathedral in Toulouse to preach a sermon on the Rosary. The church bells, rung by angels, alerted the townspeople to come. During an extremely violent thunderstorm, St. Dominic delivered his sermon accompanied by an apparition of Our Lady who called down the wrath of God on any who refused to convert, amend their lives, and seek her protection. When St. Dominic finished speaking, the storm ended and almost all of the people of Toulouse were converted6.

Rosary Indulgences

A plenary indulgence for praying the Rosary is gained once a day when it is prayed in a church, public oratory, family group, or a religious Community or pious Association and:

  1. The recitation of a third part only of the Rosary suffices; but the five decades must be recited continuously.
  2. The vocal recitation must be accompanied by pious meditation on the mysteries.
  3. In public recitation the mysteries must be announced in the manner customary in the place; for private recitation, however, it suffices if the vocal recitation is accompanied by meditation on the mysteries7.

A plenary indulgence can be gained only once a day (except by those who are in danger of death). To gain a plenary indulgence one must perform the indulgenced act and three other conditions must be met:

  1. A sacramental confession.
  2. Eucharistic Communion.
  3. Prayer for the intentions of the Supreme Pontiff8.

If all of the criteria above are not met, only a partial indulgence is granted.

Confraternity of the Holy Rosary

The Confraternity of the Rosary was founded by St. Dominic to foster great love and devotion to Our Lady’s Rosary. The confraternity is administered by the Dominicans and membership comes with additional benefits and indulgences, among which are:

  1. For members of the Rosary Confraternity, a plenary indulgence, under the usual conditions, is granted on the day of enrollment and on the following feast days: Christmas, Easter, Annunciation, Purification, Assumption, Our Lady of the Rosary, and Immaculate Conception.
  2. A share in the prayer of thousands of members the world over, even after death.
  3. A share in the prayers, Masses and apostolic works of the entire Order of Preachers9.

To become a member of the Rosary Confraternity, all you have to do is enroll here (it’s free!) and pray the complete Rosary each week. That’s it!

Prayers and Mysteries of the Rosary

This Rosary has been customized to include a prayer to Saint Benedict and his prayer of exorcism against Satan. You can skip these or change them out for different prayers (perhaps to your own patron saint).

Prayers
Mysteries

How to Pray the Rosary

Rosary Diagram
  1. Make the Sign of the Cross (crucifix).
  2. Say the Apostles’ Creed (cord).
  3. Say the Our Father (bead).
  4. Say three Hail Marys (beads).
  5. Say the Glory Be and the Fatima Prayer (cord).
  6. Say the Our Father (bead).
  7. Say the Rosary Confraternity Prayer (cord).
  8. Say the Prayer to St. Benedict and his Prayer of Exorcism (centerpiece).
  9. Read and meditate on the first Mystery (cord).
  10. Say ten Hail Marys (beads).
  11. Say the Glory Be and the Fatima Prayer (cord).
  12. Say the Our Father (bead).
  13. Read and meditate on the second Mystery (cord).
  14. Say ten Hail Marys (beads).
  15. Say the Glory Be and the Fatima Prayer (cord).
  16. Say the Our Father (bead).
  17. Read and meditate on the third Mystery (cord).
  18. Say ten Hail Marys (beads).
  19. Say the Glory Be and the Fatima Prayer (cord).
  20. Say the Our Father (bead).
  21. Read and meditate on the fourth Mystery (cord).
  22. Say ten Hail Marys (beads).
  23. Say the Glory Be and the Fatima Prayer (cord).
  24. Say the Our Father (bead).
  25. Read and meditate on the fifth Mystery (cord).
  26. Say ten Hail Marys (beads).
  27. Say the Glory Be and the Fatima Prayer (cord).
  28. Say the Hail Holy Queen (centerpiece).

Sign of the Cross

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

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 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.

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.

Hail Mary

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.

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.

Rosary Confraternity Prayer

Queen of the Most Holy Rosary and Mother of us all, we come to you for help in our sorrows, trials and necessities. Sin leaves us weak and helpless but Divine Grace heals and strengthens.

We ask for the grace to love Jesus as you loved him, to believe as you believed, to hope as you hoped; we ask to share your purity of mind and heart. Give us true sorrow for sin and make us love people as you and Jesus loved them. Obtain for us the gifts of the Holy Spirit that we may be wise with your wisdom, understand with your understanding, know with your knowledge, prudent with your prudence, patient with your patience, courageous with your fortitude and desire justice ardently for everyone with the all-consuming desire of the Sacred Heart of Jesus your Son.

Open our minds that as we pray the Rosary we will understand the teachings of the Gospel contained in its mysteries.

We pray especially for the members of the Rosary Confraternity whom we love. Help them wherever they may be; guide them, watch over them, and make them strong in their trials and suffering. We are drawn together by a common bond of great charity for you and for each other; keep us faithful to your Son and to your Rosary till death.

Intercede for the souls in Purgatory, especially for the members of the Rosary Confraternity who have died. May they rest in peace. Finally, we ask for the grace of final perseverance for ourselves and for our loved ones that we may all be reunited in heaven forever.

Saint Dominic, you who received so much grace and strength from the Rosary, pray for us.

Prayer to Saint Benedict

Oh glorious Saint Benedict, I implore thy loving heart to pray for me before the throne of God. To thee I have recourse in all the dangers which daily surround me. May thy blessing be with me always so that I may shun whatever God forbids and avoid the occasions of sin.

Graciously pray for me to God for those favors and graces of which I stand so much in need, in the trials, miseries, and afflictions of life. Thy heart was always so full of love, compassion, and mercy towards those who were afflicted or troubled in any way. Thou didst never dismiss without consolation and assistance anyone who had recourse to thee. I therefore invoke thy powerful intercession in the confident hope that thou wilt hear my prayers and obtain for me the special grace and favor I so earnestly implore, the freedom of the mind and body from the poisons and perversities of this world that would turn me away from God.

Help me, oh great Saint Benedict, to live and die as a faithful child and servant of God, to be ever submissive to his holy will, and to attain the eternal happiness of heaven. Amen.

Saint Benedict’s Prayer of Exorcism

May the holy cross be my light!
May the Dragon never be my guide!
Get behind me, Satan!
Never tempt me with your vanities!
What you offer me is evil.
Drink your own poison!

Fatima Prayer

Oh my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell, lead all souls to heaven, especially those in most need of thy mercy.

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. Amen.

V. Pray for us, O holy Mother of God.
R. 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 on
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.

Joyful Mysteries

The Annunciation (Luke 1:26-38)

The angel Gabriel greets the Blessed Virgin Mary with the Angelic Salutation: “Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with thee.” In response to Gabriel’s news that she has been chosen to be the Mother of God, Mary replies, “Behold the handmaid of the Lord: be it done to me according to thy word.”

The fruit of this mystery is humility.

The Visitation (Luke 1:39-56)

Charity prompts Mary to visit her pregnant cousin Elizabeth in the hour of her need. Upon Mary’s arrival, John the Baptist leaps in his mother’s womb causing Elizabeth to exclaim: “Blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb!”

The fruit of this mystery is the love of neighbor.

The Nativity (Luke 2:6-20)

In Bethlehem, there is no room for them at the inn, so Mary gives birth to Jesus in a cave, wraps him in swaddling clothes, and lays him in a manger

The fruit of this mystery is poverty (simplicity of life).

The Presentation (Luke 2:22-38)

Mary and Joseph take Jesus to the temple to present him to the Lord, for it is written that every firstborn male is to be consecrated to the Lord. There, Simeon, a man righteous and devout, took Jesus in his arms, blessed him and said, “Behold this child is set for the fall and for the resurrection of many in Israel and for a sign which shall be contradicted. And thy own soul a sword shall pierce, that, out of many hearts thoughts may be revealed.” In the same hour, Anna, a prophetess who had seen Christ, went out from the temple proclaiming to all the redemption of Jerusalem.

The fruit of this mystery is holy obedience.

The Finding of Jesus in the Temple (Luke 2:41-52)

Mary and Joseph, having lost Jesus and searched for him for three days, find him in the temple sitting in the midst of the teachers listening to them and asking them questions.

The fruit of this mystery is the joy in the finding Jesus.

Sorrowful Mysteries

The Agony in the Garden (Luke 22:39-46)

Jesus sees the suffering he is about to endure for the sins of the world and in his anguish his sweat becomes as drops of blood.

The fruit of this mystery is true sorrow for sin.

The Scourging at the Pillar (Isaiah 53:5, Matthew 27:26)

To appease the Jews, Pilate has Jesus bound to a pillar and cruelly scourged until his whole body is covered with deep wounds.

The fruit of this mystery is mortification of the senses.

The Crowning with Thorns (Matthew 27:27-31)

Mocking his kingship, the soldiers strip Jesus, wrap him in a scarlet military cloak, place a reed in his hand, and a crown of thorns upon his head.

The fruit of this mystery is the reign of Christ in our hearts.

The Carrying of the Cross (Luke 23:26-32, John 19:17)

Weak and exhausted from loss of blood, lack of food and rest, Jesus with the help of Simon of Cyrene carries his cross up to Golgatha, the Place of the Skull.

The fruit of this mystery is patient bearing of trials.

The Crucifixion (John 19:17-37)

In the presence of his afflicted mother, Jesus’ hands and feet are nailed to the cross. After six excruciating hours of pain and torment, Jesus cries, “It is finished.” And bowing his head, he handed over his spirit.

The fruit of this mystery is perseverance.

Glorious Mysteries

The Resurrection (Luke 24:1-49)

Holy women, coming to anoint the body of Jesus, are amazed and frightened to find the tomb empty. The two angels at the entrance of the tomb ask, “Why seek you the living with the dead? He is not here, but is risen.”

The fruit of this mystery is faith.

The Ascension (Acts 1:1-11)

After speaking to his disciples and commissioning them to the preach the gospel to every creature, Jesus ascends into heaven to take his place at the right hand of God the Father. To comfort the apostles, Jesus sends angels to assure them that he will return in like manner as he ascended.

The fruit of this mystery is hope.

The Descent of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:1-41)

Gathered in the upper room, the apostles hear the rush of a mighty wind and the Holy Spirit descends on each of them in the form of tongues of fire. On this day, Peter baptizes three thousand, giving birth to the Church.

The fruit of this mystery is the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

The Assumption (Munificentissimus Deus)

Mary dies, not of bodily infirmity, but is overcome in a rapture of divine love. Her body is assumed into heaven, leaving only fragrant lilies in her empty tomb.

The fruit of this mystery is the grace of a happy death.

The Coronation (Ad Caeli Reginam, Revelation 12:1)

“And a great sign appeared in heaven: A woman clothed with the sun, and the moon
under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars.”

The fruit of this mystery is true devotion to Mary.

Luminous Mysteries

The Baptism of the Lord (Matthew 3:16-17)

And Jesus being baptized, forthwith came out of the water: and lo, the heavens were opened to him: and he saw the Spirit of God descending as a dove, and coming upon him. And behold a voice from heaven saying: This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

The fruit of this is gratitude for the gift of faith.

The Wedding at Cana (John 2:1-12)

Upon Mary’s request, Jesus works his first miracle at the wedding at Cana, turning water into wine.

The fruit of this mystery is faith in Mary’s intercession

The Proclamation of the Kingdom (Matthew 10:7-8)

Jesus commands his disciples, saying: “The kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out devils: freely have you received, freely give.”

The fruit of this mystery is desire for holiness.

The Transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-9)

Jesus takes Peter, James, and John up a high mountain to pray and is transfigured before them. Fearful after hearing the voice of the Father speak to them, Jesus says to his disciples, “Arise, and fear not.”

The fruit of this mystery is courage.

The Institution of the Eucharist (Matthew 26:26-28)

“And whilst they were at supper, Jesus took bread and blessed and broke and gave to his disciples and said: ‘Take ye and eat. This is my body.’ And taking the chalice, he gave thanks and gave to them, saying: ‘Drink ye all of this. For this is my blood of the new testament, which shall be shed for many unto remission of sins.’”

The fruit of this mystery is love of our Eucharistic Lord.

Footnotes

  1. St. Louis de Montfort, The Secret of the Rosary, trans. Mary Barbour (Bay Shore: Montfort Fathers Publications, 1957), 99.
  2. Ibid., 91.
  3. Ibid., 102.
  4. Ibid., 63.
  5. The Albigensians taught the existence of two mutually opposed divine entities, one good and the other evil. They believed the God of the Old Testament was an evil deity that created the material world to imprison souls and deprive them of the spiritual world created by the God of the New Testament. They denied the deity of Christ and taught that he was merely a created being and did not truly manifest in the flesh. They often committed suicide by starvation and also taught against marriage and regeneration.
  6. Ibid., 17-19.
  7. Sacred Apostolic Penitentiary, The Enchiridion of Indulgences. Rome: Vatican Press, 1968. 18, 33.
  8. Ibid., 9.
  9. Dominican Friars, Province of the Most Holy Name of Jesus. “Rosary Confraternity’s Obligations, Benefits, and Requirements.” Rosary Center. Accessed November 4, 2018. https://www.rosarycenter.org/homepage-2/the-rosary-confraternity/its-obligationsand-benefits/.