rosary guide

How to Pray the Rosary

Rosary Course (with Latin) by Dr. Taylor Marshall

Includes Latin Prayers and Readings of the Rosary

The Rosary

see diagram below

  1. Holding the crucifix of the Rosary with your right hand, make the Sign of the Cross and then kiss the crucifix.
  2. It is good to begin your Rosary by offering it for some intention.
    Example: “I offer this Rosary for all my spiritual needs and those of my family, for the conversion of sinners, in reparation for my sins and those of all sinners, for world peace and the triumph of Mary's Immaculate Heart.”
  3. On the crucifix, pray the Apostles’ Creed.
  4. On the first single bead after the crucifix, pray an Our Father.
  5. On each of the next three beads, which are grouped together, pray a Hail Mary.
  6. After the three Hail Marys, pray the Glory be. Now this is where the “decades” begin.
  7. On the next single bead, announce the decade and then pray an Our Father. (Example: “The First Joyful Mystery, the Annunciation. Our Father, Who art...”)
  8. On each of the ten beads that follow, pray a Hail Mary while reflecting upon the mystery assigned to this decade (see list of mysteries below). Some people find that looking at a picture depicting each mystery helps them meditate on the mystery.
  9. After the ten Hail Marys, pray the “Glory be” and “Fatima Prayer”
  10. Repeat steps 6 and 7 until you have prayed all 5 decades.
  11. Many Catholics also pray the “Hail Holy Queen,” the Prayer to St. Michael, and the Litany of the Blessed Virgin at the end of the Rosary. (text and audio of the Litany of the Blessed Virgin can be found on the rosary prayers page)

Rosary Diagram

This diagram shows a five-decade Rosary commonly used by Catholics. The purpose of the beads is to keep track of the prayers, especially the sets (decades) of 10 Hail Marys.

As seen in the chart, the single large beads are the Our Fathers, while the group of three small beads and the five groups of ten small beads are the Hail Marys.

As we pass each bead through our fingers, we pray the appropriate prayer, and then move to the next one. By doing this we work our way around the Rosary, beginning at the Crucifix and ending at the centerpiece.

Rosary Diagram

The 15 Promises of the Blessed Virgin Mary to Catholics who pray the Rosary everyday

  1. Whoever shall faithfully serve me by the recitation of the Rosary, shall receive signal graces.
  2. I promise my special protection and the greatest graces to all those who shall recite the Rosary.
  3. The Rosary shall be a powerful armor against hell, it will destroy vice, decrease sin, and defeat heresies.
  4. The Rosary will cause virtue and good works to flourish; it will obtain for souls the abundant mercy of God; it will withdraw the hearts of men from the love of the world and its vanities, and will lift them to the desire for eternal things. Oh, that souls would sanctify themselves by this means.
  5. The soul which recommends itself to me by the recitation of the Rosary, shall not perish.
  6. Whoever shall recite the Rosary devoutly, applying himself to the consideration of its sacred mysteries shall never be conquered by misfortune. God will not chastise him in His justice, he shall not perish by an unprovided death; if he be just he shall remain in the grace of God, and become worthy of eternal life.
  7. Whoever shall have a true devotion for the Rosary shall not die without the sacraments of the Church.
  8. Those who are faithful to recite the Rosary shall have during their life and at their death the light of God and the plenititude of His graces; at the moment of death they shall participate in the merits of the saints in paradise.
  9. I shall deliver from Purgatory those who have been devoted to the Rosary.
  10. The faithful children of the Rosary shall merit a high degree of glory in Heaven.
  11. You shall obtain all you ask of me by the recitation of the Rosary.
  12. All those who propagate the Holy Rosary shall be aided by me in their necessities.
  13. I have obtained from my Divine Son that all the advocates of the Rosary shall have for intercessors the entire celestial court during their life and at the hour of death.
  14. All who recite the Rosary are my sons and daughters, and brothers and sisters of my only Son Jesus Christ.
  15. Devotion of my Rosary is a great sign of predestination.

Archbishop Fulton Sheen