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The Basics:

The Rosary is prayed using a string of beads called Rosary Beads. Starting at the crucifix, each bead is held in your fingers and a standard prayer is said, such as Apostles Creed, Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be to the Father and the Hail Holy Queen

  • To pray, you follow the beads counter-clockwise around the string, praying on each bead, to eventually return to the crucifix. (try our Interactive Rosary to see this in action)  
  • The beads are divided into five decades (or sections); each decade represents an event from the life of Christ. These five events are grouped into a "mystery, that is a "truth from the life of Christ. 

  • There are four of these "mysteries of five events each each focused on important part of the life of Christ. When praying the Rosary, each day of the week is assigned a mystery to pray for that day. 

Our Lady of the Rosary


The Five Joyful Mysteries are traditionally prayed on the Mondays, Saturdays, and Sundays of Advent:

  1. The Annunciation
  2. The Visitation
  3. The Nativity
  4. The Presentation in the Temple
  5. The Finding in the Temple

The Five Sorrowful Mysteries are traditionally prayed on the Tuesday, Friday, and Sundays of Lent:

  1. The Agony in the Garden
  2. The Scourging at the Pillar
  3. The Crowning with Thorns
  4. The Carrying of the Cross
  5. The Crucifixion and Death

The Five Glorious Mysteries are traditionally prayed on the Wednesday and Sundays outside of Lent and Advent:

  1. The Resurrection
  2. The Ascension
  3. The Descent of the Holy Spirit
  4. The Assumption
  5. The Coronation of Mary

The Five Luminous Mysteries are traditionally prayed on Thursdays:

  1. The Baptism of Christ in the Jordan
  2. The Wedding Feast at Cana
  3. Jesus’ Proclamation of the Coming of the Kingdom of God
  4. The Transfiguration
  5. The Institution of the Eucharist

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